Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
American Made (Photo: Universal Pictures)

Final numbers are still rolling in, but in a tight three-way race for no. 1 at the U.S. box office, a certain monster hit appears to have won by a (bright red) nose. Yes, It slithered back into first place, reclaiming the top spot stolen by Kingsman: The Golden Circle last weekend. The Matthew Vaughn spy pastiche had to settle for third place this time around, below not just It, but also Tom Cruise and Doug Liman’s American Made, which landed in the runner-up spot. But all three films hovered around $17 million, falling within $300,000 of each other’s earnings, making this a photo finish at the end of a record-breaking September.

Adding another $17.3 million to a total that’s now risen to $291 million, It is just a day or two away from becoming the highest-grossing horror movie in U.S. history. (Only a shocking Shymalanian twist, like the Stephen King adaptation being a figment of our collective imagination this whole time, could save The Sixth Sense’s title.) It’s runaway success has been great news for the movie industry, less great news for any thrillers unlucky enough to open in its wake. This week, the apparently abysmal Flatliners remake, which landed in fifth place with just $6.7 million, joined Mother! and Friend Request on the list of horror or horror-adjacent projects to get clowned by Pennywise. October brings a whole new crop of scare fare. Will It keep toppling all of it, rampaging straight through to Halloween? Or will Leatherface and/or Jigsaw send him back to the sewers?


Debuting to the tune of just over $17 million, the imitation-Scorsese crime opus American Made isn’t an enormous flop or anything. But it will have to hold decently over the next couple weeks to even make its $50 million production budget back. Think pieces about the end of Tom Cruise’s reign as a reliable movie star have been popping up since that embarrassing couch-hopping incident a decade ago, but between this so-so debut and the underperformance (at least here in the States) of this summer’s The Mummy, Cruise’s leading-man bankability does seem to be showing much more serious wear and tear than his fiftysomething physique.

Battle Of The Sexes expanded into wide release, rising to sixth place with a slightly weaker-than-expected $3.4 million on about 1,200 screens. Meanwhile, a couple of demographically targeted almost-wide releases made quiet debuts, with thriller Til Death Do Us Part (featuring a cast of mostly black actors) squeaking into the top ten with $1.5 million on 562 screens and the latest Pure Flix sermon, A Question Of Faith, sitting just outside of it with about $1 million on 661 screens. Sandwiched between the two: Mother!, which you all still have a few days to see, at least before it finally disappears from theaters to make room for the several screens they’re surely reserving for Blade Runner 2049.

For more detailed numbers, visit Box Office Mojo.

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