Box Office Suffers Worst Decline In Three Decades

The Hollywood Reporter writes that Summer 2014 is shaping up to be the worst in 8 years thanks to the worst year-over-year decline in three decades. With only 6 weeks of summer remaining and middling titles like “Hercules,” “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles,” “Lucy,” and “Guardians of the Galaxy” in the warm-up box, there is little hope for a rebound between now and Labor Day.

The season is expected to finish down 15 to 20 percent compared with 2013, the worst year-over-year decline in three decades, and revenue will struggle to crack $4 billion, which hasn’t happened in eight years. As a result, analysts predict that the full year is facing a deficit of 4 to 5 percent.

Speaking to THR, Rentrak’s Paul Dergarabedian is the only one adding a fresh insight that hasn’t already been tilled over and over again in numerous other reports on the sagging box office (including my own).


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Crisis Prone Day: Gaza Invasion, Malaysian Air Crash, Persistent Border Issues

It’s just one of those days. Israel invades Gaza .  After ten days of on-and-off ceasefires and peace talks, the Israelis decided that a blunt force trauma to the Hamas terrorist infrastructure would be the best move to secure their border.  Can’t blame Israel — they even announced days ago that they were coming in order to limit civilian casualties. Sharing the headlines this afternoon was a Malaysian airliner which was shot down by who-knows-who over Ukraine killing 295, including 23 Americans.  Was it the Russians? a Ukrainian splinter group?  a terrorist infiltrator? Who knows!  The chaos in Eastern Ukraine has made anything possible.  Tragically, it hasn’t been such a good year for flying Malaysian Air. And don’t forget the escalating crisis on the US Southern border ( though given the latest polls the administration would be happy if we did ).  On this issue I think it’s safe to say that what we are experiencing is tantamount to an invasion — another self-inflicted wound to our national security which the administration will be glad to see relegated to the back burner for a few days while the other crises explode. This one’s not going anywhere though — can’t wait until September when school districts across the country will have to account for thousands of new LEP (Limited English Proficient) students in the Fall, or in January when the Obamacare employer mandate kicks in to the chagrin of native workers who employers may lay them off in light of all the cheap underground laborers they can exploit instead.  Those issues should go over just peachy with the American people. I’d feel better about things if we had competent people with America’s best interest at heart running things.

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Crisis Prone Day: Gaza Invasion, Malaysian Air Crash, Persistent Border Issues


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Stephen Colbert Doubles Down on AG Holder’s ‘Racial Animus’ Attack on GOP

Is this what CBS had in mind when the network hired Stephen Colbert to replace David Letterman? For now, Colbert is still toiling away on Comedy Central, where his awkwardly conceived conservative character continues to play defense for President Barack Obama. Monday night, Colbert piggy backed on Attorney General Eric Holder’s claim that some Republicans disagree with him and the president for racial reasons .

First, the liberal comic (who claims he doesn’t show his political hand through his art) tried to spin away Obama’s executive actions–the same behavior liberal attorney Jonathan Turley–and Obama booster–says will alienate fellow Democrats. Next, Colbert dubs his own conservative character racist in order to paint the GOP with that same, ugly brush recently held by Holder. Selective facts. Lazy arguments.

Dubbing roughly half the nation racist for daring to disagree with Obama. Does CBS know the performer tasked with replacing a legend? The Colbert Report Get More: Daily Show Full Episodes , Indecision Political Humor, The Colbert Report on Facebook Follow Christian Toto on Twitter @TotoMovies

05f6ad386bolbert.jpg 150x112 Stephen Colbert Doubles Down on AG Holders Racial Animus Attack on GOP

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Stephen Colbert Doubles Down on AG Holder’s ‘Racial Animus’ Attack on GOP


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Two Big First Amendment SCOTUS Decisions

The Supreme Court handed down two big decisions today (5-4, predictably), one striking down parts of the Obamacare contraception mandate, the other allowing certain employees to opt out of union membership. The Burwell v. Hobby Lobby decision notes that since HHS has already carved out some exemptions for religious institutions to be exempt from the contraception mandate, freedom of conscience allows of owners of “closely held” businesses to do the same for some of the contraceptives involved.  Justice Alito wrote the majority opinion for this narrow, but important ruling. The Harris v. Quinn decision was also defined narrowly:  public sector unions cannot collect dues from home health care workers if those workers do not want to be part of the union, in this case SEIU, a notoriously aggressive union. Pretty straight forward First Amendment case too. It’s nice to see that at least five of our esteemed oligarchs justices come down supporting the First Amendment from time to time.

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Two Big First Amendment SCOTUS Decisions


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The Brat Who Ousted a Majority Leader

Last evening a political earthquake took place that everyone is still trying to absorb.  Eric Cantor became the first sitting House Majority Leader to ever lose a primary (at least since the position was created in the 1890s).  That’s big, especially since his opponent was a little known college professor named Dave Brat, who won with 56% of the vote . Cantor was on the path to perhaps being House Speaker one day, but instead will likely join the K-Street lobbyist crowd this January.  I’m sure he’ll be fine. However, the Establishment lost one of their top brass and should be concerned .  Cantor’s campaign spent $5 million to Brat’s $200,000.  Cantor’s name ID in his district is near 100%.  As Brat said, “Dollars don’t vote, you do” — a very troubling prospect for the Chamber of Commerce and the GOP Establishment.  If money loses its monopoly on the selection and manipulation of the members of one’s caucus, then the game really has changed. Yet, one election does not make a game-change, but the message is clear to our ruling class elites — no one is completely safe from the judgment of the people. It’s very refreshing.

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The Brat Who Ousted a Majority Leader


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