Box Office Flashback: When women ruled the top 10 in 1992

Sister Act continues to soar to this day, with stage adaptations popping up all over the globe. Final gross: $29,000,301
Where to stream: iTunes, Google Play, Vudu, Playstation
9. Still, I won’t be surprised if it’s a hit.” C+

Final gross: $107,533,928
Where to stream: Starz
7. She’s appointed choir leader, and she transforms a collection of largely ancient Carmelite sisters who haven’t carried a tune in 50 years into a soulful, rockin’ chorus. We also never looked at stilettos quite the same way, ever again. Labor Day Weekend, 1992: Six of the top 10 films at the box office were female-led or female-centric films —   Single White Female, Death Becomes Her, A League of Their Own, Sister Act, Enchanted April,   and the top film from the weekend, Honeymoon In Vegas, a nuptial comedy starring Sarah Jessica Parker. What we said then: “In   Unforgiven, Eastwood is out to fashion a dark, revisionist update of his stoic macho persona. Sure, this comedy didn’t earn her one of her 20 Oscar nominations, but it just might be the most fun Streep ever had on screen. As Hedy, she offers the most convincing portrayal of a psychotic in recent films. It also marked the beginning of Madonna and Rosie O’Donnell’s friendship, which lives on to this day. Perhaps Hollywood, currently suffering from the most dismal box office returns in years, should take a page from the history books and add some more female-led fare in 2018 (especially after   Wonder Woman proved so many naysayers wrong)? It’s meant to distract us from the fact that the star, Brandon Lee-son of the late martial-arts legend Bruce Lee-doesn’t resemble his father so much as a smirking American Ken doll fresh out of Hollywood High.” C-

Final gross: $14,356,479
Where to stream: Starz
10. 1. The first time they do one of their revved-up numbers, it’s sort of a joke — you know, the old lady at the piano flashes a mean look of pleasure and, as they used to say, gets down. He wants us to gaze with awestruck ambivalence upon the quasi- sociopathic Eastwood loner, the steely enforcer who, somewhere within his clenched-teeth grimace, gets a charge out of killing.” B
Final gross:   $101,157,447
Where to stream: HBO
3. What we said then: “Goldberg gets to drop a few tasty anticlerical barbs, but then she becomes the film’s comic anchor — in effect, the straight woman. Fisher (Joan Plowright), a poker-faced dowager, and Lady Caroline (Polly Walker), a beautiful, upper-crust flapper. What we said then: “I really, really wanted to like   Honeymoon in Vegas, the sweet-‘n’-zany new comedy about a guy, a gal, a gangster, and a planeload of skydiving Elvis impersonators. Before long, the women smile, relax, let their hair down. ENCHANTED APRIL
Directed by Mike Newell
Weekend gross (weeks in theaters): $1,632,218 (6)
Refresher:   The incredibly prolific Mike Newell has 80 directing credits that go back to 1964, when the Englishman was only 22 years of age, but it wasn’t until this prim and proper delight that he broke big:   Enchanted April   scored Joan Plowright her only Oscar nomination, and also awarded Plowright and Miranda Richardson a pair of Golden Globes. Fun fact: Mary Lambert also directed Madonna’s historic music video for “Like a Prayer” in 1989. Whoopi, it turned out, laughed all the way to the bank, and then did a sequel. 3 NINJAS
Directed by Jon Turtletaub
Weekend gross (weeks in theaters): $1,878,444 (5)
Refresher: Long before the contemporary joys of the LEGO Ninjago Movie, this slightly silly crime-fighting kids flick ended up launching a mini-franchise, with three sequels to follow. HONEYMOON IN VEGAS
Directed by Andrew Bergman
Weekend gross (weeks in theaters): $9,170,428   (2)
Refresher: This comic love-triangle starring Nicolas Cage (who would take a much darker jaunt through Vegas three years later to win his Oscar), a pre-Sex and the City   Sarah   Jessica Parker, and James Caan as a crooked gambler was a funnier, lighter precursor to   Indecent Proposal, which arrived in theaters the following year. SISTER ACT
Directed by Emile Ardolino
Weekend gross (weeks in theaters): $2,485,730 (15)
Refresher: Looking back, the most accurate thing to say about this mega-hit is, “Who knew?” Certainly not Bette Midler, who famously said “no” to this madcap musical movie,   conceived just for her. What we said then: “The cat-and-mouse structure remains fun, and Schroeder, by letting the scenes play at a lifelike tempo, gives the actresses room to create detailed characters. What we said then: “Rose (Miranda Richardson) and Lotte (Josie Lawrence), two middle-class Londoners, take a vacation from their overbearing husbands by renting a majestic Italian villa. PET SEMATARY 2
Directed by Mary Lambert
Weekend gross (weeks in theaters): $3,851,969 (2)
Refresher:   Just when you thought it was safe to go back to where you buried the hamster… This schlocky sequel was Edward Furlong’s first major vehicle after the blitz-like success of 1991’s   Terminator 2: Judgment Day,   and it may have typecasted him — not until John Waters’   Pecker   in 1998 (along with Tony Kaye’s   American History X)   did Furlong again turn heads. Her chemistry with Goldie Hawn is electric, and the film’s camp factor has given it a well-deserved place in the cult pantheon. SINGLE WHITE FEMALE
Directed by Barbet Schroeder
Weekend gross (weeks in theaters):   $5,137,325   (4)
Refresher:   Back when the horrors of Craigslist still came through the newspaper’s classified section, this urban nightmare put Bridget Fonda on the map, and made us just a little bit frightened of Jennifer Jason Leigh. But mostly we’re meant to cheer with enthusiasm. I mean, how could a movie featuring the Flying Elvises be anything less than…entertaining?” C+
Final gross:   $35,208,854
Where to stream: iTunes
2. This, I think, will turn out to be Jennifer Jason Leigh’s breakthrough performance, and not just because she has the showy, vengeful role. Here’s a look back at the Hollywood box office for the weekend of Sept. Little
Weekend gross (weeks in theaters): $1,871,215 (3)
Refresher: The teaser trailer for this shoot-em-up, kick-em-up, punch-em-up action flick (watch below) reveals not one iota as to what it’s about, but it does exclaim, “Move over, Van Damme and Segal; Brandon Lee has arrived!” Tragically, Lee, son of kung fu action star Bruce Lee, died the following year on the set of his hallmark film,   The Crow. The movie is a nuns-are-people-too heart-warmer posing as an irreverent farce.” B-

Final gross: $139,605,150
Where to stream:   HBO
8. What we said then: “It’s an odd movie, at once bubbly and amorphous, with plenty of mild laugh lines (the one bona fide hilarious scene is Hanks’ tirade about how ”There’s no crying in baseball!”) but virtually nothing you could call dialogue. Final gross: $17,092,453
Where to stream:   iTunes, Google Play, Fandango, Vudu
5. What we said then: “During the opening credits, we hear flutey, mysteries-of-the- Far-East music. It makes perfect sense, really: 3 Ninajs   was what filled the void after the third   Karate Kid   installment came and went in 1989, plus everyone was in love with butt-kicking delinquent children thanks to a kid named Macaulay Culkin (Home Alone). She makes Hedy seem emotionally wayward, out there, floating in some weird space between neediness and anger.” B

Final gross:   $48,017,402
Where to stream:   Crackle
4. Enchanted April is perfectly pleasant, but it’s also second-rate-a tasteful spectacle of middlebrow feel-goodism.” B-
Final gross: $13,200,170
Where to stream: iTunes, Google Play, Vudu, Playstation

Show Full Article What we said then: “Death Becomes Her, directed by the wizardly pop engineer Robert Zemeckis (Back to the Future,   Who Framed Roger Rabbit), has an original black-comic theme: It’s about the link between cosmetic surgery and rage—about the underlying connection between going under the knife to look young, beautiful, and ”perfect” and despising the wrinkled, aging specimen you’ve in fact become (not to mention anyone who looks better than you).” C+

Final gross: $58,422,650
Where to stream:   Showtime
6. UNFORGIVEN
Directed by Clint Eastwood
Weekend gross   (weeks in theaters):   $6,352,892   (5)
Refresher:   The film that would eventually clinch the Best Picture Oscar the following spring, Eastwood’s gritty Western masterpiece — along with Kevin Costner’s Dances With Wolves   two years prior —   ushered in a renaissance of the genre over the next few years, with varying results. 4-7, 1992. Leigh isn’t just playing a cartoon schizoid. RAPID FIRE
Directed by Dwight H. League   is easy to watch, but there’s no there there. DEATH BECOMES HER
Directed by Robert Zemeckis
Weekend gross (weeks in theaters): $3,194,135 (6)
Refresher:   Depending on how you choose to look at it, Death Becomes Her   is either from the zenith or the nadir of Meryl Streep’s storied career. Joining them are Mrs. A LEAGUE OF THEIR OWN
Directed by Penny Marshall
Weekend gross (weeks in theaters): $2,671,250 (10)
Refresher:   This crowd-pleasing tale of the Rockford Peaches — part of the real-life all-female baseball league that was popular during WWII — combined historical drama, comedy, and the chick-flick into a major hit that became one of the most successful sports movies of all time.