With Hollywood focused on the Oscars, this was one of the dullest box office weekends in recent memory, with each of the new releases arriving with a shrug, last week's champions plummeting and 'Identity Thief' climbing back to the top of the chart.

FilmWeekendPer Screen
1Identity Thief$14,064,000 (-40.6)$4,376$93,667,000
3Escape From Planet Earth$11,013,000 (-30.7)$3,281$35,144,000
4Safe Haven$10,600,000 (-50.5)$3,289$48,062,000
5A Good Day to Die Hard$10,000,000 (-59.7)
6Dark Skies$8,850,000$3,805$8,900,000
7Silver Linings Playbook$6,051,000 (-3.1)$2,982$107,500,000
8Warm Bodies$4,750,000 (-46.4)$1,778$58,200,000
9Side Effects$3,511,000 (-44.0)$1,691$25,300,000
10Beautiful Creatures$3,410,000 (-55.0)$1,153$16,300,000


Despite being dragged through the muck by critics, 'Identity Thief' is a hit and more importantly, it's a hit with staying power. Not too many films can open at number one, fall down a slot or two and then climb back to number one again. As we've discussed in previous box office reports, this one has a strong chance of cracking $150 million if things go its way, but it's already a smash. Expect it to break $100 million by next weekend.

Melissa McCarthy managed to outmaneuver Dwayne Johnson, whose 'Snitch' opened at number two with $13 million. The film isn't too expensive and it feels like it was built to be a hit on DVD and VOD, not theaters, so no one is probably too surprised or perturbed by this. In any case, chalk this up as further proof that audiences only tend to embrace The Rock when he's part of an ensemble. Which is strange, mainly because he's great.

Of last week's new releases, only 'Escape From Planet Earth' had a drop that wasn't unsettling, dipping 30% for a $11 million weekend and $35 million total. It didn't cost too much, so breaking even is probably in the future. You can't say the same for 'A Good Day to Die Hard,' which dropped a disastrous 59% for a $10 million weekend and a $51 million gross. Suddenly, the $100 million mark is looks very, very far away. In fact, it looks like the romantic drama 'Safe Haven' (which also suffered a large drop) will soon outgross the fifth adventure of John McClane.

'Dark Skies,' the weekend's only other major release, opened in sixth place with a weak $8.8 million. Chalk that one up to a poor marketing campaign. Moving on!

In seventh place, 'Silver Linings Playbook' continued to be a beast, dropping a minuscule 3% and making $6 million for a $107 million total. This is a textbook example of using critical acclaim and festival buzz to transform a hard sell into a hit. Kudos to the Weinstein Company on that one. Well played, you devious sons of guns.

The top ten is rounded out with 'Warm Bodies,' 'Side Effects' and 'Beautiful Creatures,' each of which are limping in place at this point. They'll vanish as soon as new movies open.

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