Although the newest studio releases have had their stab at the box office, the order hardly matters this weekend. The big story isn’t The Possession or the latest Tom Hardy picture, Lawless. It’s interestingly enough, political.

Don’t worry yourself, this article won’t be a political foray. I do happen to find it interesting that the biggest topic of discussion about 2016: Obama’s America concerns the actual accuracy of the film, which I’m sure wasn’t the debate the filmmaker was looking for, but I think it’s quite clear that the success of the film is owed quite thoroughly to simple curiosity.

Any independent film that polarizes so completely attitudes towards the president would certainly garner immense interest, and the mere fact that everything didn’t get better instantly probably didn’t help anyone’s trust in Obama. But every Republican will take interest in seeing it, no matter what anyone says about it, because it confirms their opinion, and everyone likes to feel correct.

But for a documentary, and a purely conjectural one at that, it’s success is still somewhat impressive, no matter how massive its target audiences is—which reaches even into the undecided rest of the political spectrum, those that have not quite seen the change they wanted soon enough.

Until Bane, the only truly memorable or interesting character in Dark Knight Rises, I wouldn’t have believed that Tom Hardy could truly lead a film. Not even with Warrior under his belt did he make it clear to me his range could accommodate a true actor, and star, but it certainly is now.

I am converted to a fan, and I am sure his fellow fans relished a bloody (if routine) exercise in genre filmmaking with Lawless. It’s too bad Shia couldn’t have followed suit. And speaking of characters, with The Possession we have a ghost story that mostly involves people—and that makes for an interesting story, sure to bring in fans of horror, if not quality or suspenseful horror.

The weekend’s Top 10 movies:

1. “The Possession,” $17.7 million
2. “Lawless,” $9.7 million
3. “The Expendables 2,” $8.8 million
4. “The Bourne Legacy,” $7.25 million
5. “Paranorman,” $6.55 million
6. “The Odd Life of Timothy Green,” $6.1 million
7. “The Dark Knight Rises,” $5.9 million
8. “The Campaign,” $5.45 million
9. “2016 Obama’s America,” $5.1 million
10. “Hope Springs,” $4.7 million


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