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James Bond Makes History – Biggest UK Opening Of All Time

Daniel Craig as James Bond in SPECTRE
Daniel Craig as James Bond in SPECTRE

Albert R. Broccoli’s EON Productions, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios, and Sony Pictures Entertainment announced today that SPECTRE has shattered box office records in nearly everymarket in which it has been released, led by a historic performance in the UK.

In total in the six released territories, the film has taken in $80.4 million, including $67.7 million from SPRI territories and $12.7 million from territories in which MGM is distributing.

In the UK, the film has opened to an estimated £41.7 million ($63.8 million USD) in its first seven days of release, securing new records for the biggest opening of all time in UK box office history.

SPECTRE took the opening record from Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkabanwhich was also released on a Monday to £23.882 million. SPECTRE also achieved a new record for the highest seven-day gross in UK box office history, overtaking the last James Bond film, SKYFALL.

SPECTRE, the 24thJames Bond adventure, continues the longest running and most successful film franchise in cinema history. The film opened in 647 cinemas and on 2,500 screens, making it the widest release of all time in the UK and Ireland.

The UK wasn’t alone in shattering box office records as nearly every releasing market saw SPECTRE make history as the biggest box office opening of all-time.

In the Netherlands, SPECTRE took in 3.3 million Euro ($3.7 million USD), surpassing the record set by Skyfall and bringing its cume to $3.9 million including previews.

In the Nordic region, markets distributed by MGM, SPECTRE took in a total of $12.7 million USD, setting new opening records in Finland and Norway, both surpassing Skyfall– Finland took in 2.35 million Euro ($2.63 million USD), and Norway 24.4 million krone ($2.88 million USD). The film also set a new record in Denmark for the biggest three-day opening of all time, as SPECTRE took in 28.1 million krone ($4.21 million USD), also surpassing Skyfall. In Sweden, SPECTRE took in 24.95 million krone ($2.97 million USD), a spectacular result that is 30% over the opening of Skyfall.

SPECTRE has also set a new IMAX record, recording the highest per-location average in IMAX history as the first film ever to top a $100,000 per-location average, with $105,000 in 47 IMAX locations.

In response to the #1 UK opening, producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli said, “We’re so grateful to all our James Bond fans and the British public for making SPECTRE’s debut in the UK box office history!”

“What an incredible thrill it is for us at MGM to see how James Bond continues to deliver such excitement to his fans. This record-breaking support from UK audiences for what is our 24th outing is nothing short of amazing. We can’t wait for the rest of the world to see SPECTRE,” said Gary Barber, MGM Chairman and CEO.

Peter Taylor, Managing Director Sony Pictures UK, also commented We are delighted that audiences in the UK and Ireland continue to embrace these stories about one of our biggest and best cultural icons. This opening proves once again, that the film world of James Bond speaks to cinema-goers like no other.”

SPECTRE releases in South Africa on the 27th of November.

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dvd / blu-ray Review

San Andreas (Blu-Ray): Review

The Film

San Andreas, a disaster movie on a grand scale. Following LAFD rescue chopper pilot Ray (Dwayne Johnson) as he battles trouble in his family life, and needs to pull out all the stops to save his daughter Blake (Alexandra Daddario). Along the way, he rescues and teams up with his soon-to-be ex-wife Emma (Carla Gugino) and together they must not only battle the ever growing natural disaster and all it has to throw at them, but they need to put aside their past and the hurt from losing their other daughter.

The film feels a bit over the top, with all it has to throw at you. Realising that a lot of this is actually happening in camera is a bit of a thrill though. The stunts are huge, and the visuals even bigger. For fans of the genre, this certainly will not disappoint.

Story-wise, there are no twists to the plot, but that is to be expected in a film about a massive earthquake. It’s a fun, action romp through a crumbling city, showing what may be in the Los Angeles area someday, as they live in daily fear of the actual San Andreas fault line.

A lot of research has gone into the facts and events of the film, making this an escape from thinking, and something to enjoy on a rainy day.

Disc And Bonus Features

The disc is encoded at a high bitrate, with no visible artefacts on screen, with a clear and detailed image.

Sound is provided via a 7.1 soundtrack, totally immersing the viewer in the many action scenes.

There are a number of bonus features on the disc to enjoy, including a commentary.

San Andreas: The Real Fault Line: Takes the viewer behind the scenes to look at some of the very big action sets, and the many in-camera effects and stunts. This brings a small amount more excitement to the scenes in the movie, knowing they are real, and not al CG as with most things these days.

Dwayne Johnson To The Rescue: More on the very demanding physical aspect of the film, focusing on Dwayne Johnson and sharing some details on the many stunts he did himself, from rappelling to the huge underwater rescue sequence. Again, this additional knowledge makes the relevant scenes that much more exciting to watch.

Gag Reel: A few quick clips cut together, showing the cast having a laugh on set. Not so much a gag reel, as a look at the funnier side of being on the film set.

Stunt Reel: A quick cut compilation of some footage from behind the scenes of some of the stunts performed in the movie. This feature is more like a quick action music video than actually explaining the stunts, and would have benefited from some commentary.

Commentary By Director Brad Peyton: Peyton admits right at the beginning, to being a movie nerd. This is apparent, as he tries to squash in as much detail as possible, referencing other films and techniques, as he explains how the movie was created.

The commentary is very detailed, and is sure to excite aficionados and filmmakers alike. It’s great to see a director who is willing to share so much of their craft with their audience.

San Andreas is now available to purchase on disc in South Africa.