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Volume 68, Issue 158, Monday, July 21, 2003

Arts & Entertainment

'Bad Boys' dominates box office

Summer in Houston usually means trying to stay cool, but action films at movie theaters continue to stay hot as people rush to see more explosions and death-defying stunts on the big screen.

Will Smith and Martin Lawrence set the stage for clichés like "bad is good" as they carry Bad Boys II to the top of the box office 10 this week. Bad Boys II is for fans of the action genre that want to see their films pure and unadulterated by fantastic elements like robots, pirates or comic-book characters. 

Car chases, explosions and every other vital element of an action flick hold up a story line that revolves around the ecstasy drug trade in Miami. Smith's character and Lawrence's sister, played by Gabrielle Union, also play up a love story on the side.


Will Smith (left) and Martin Lawrence star in Bad Boys II. The buddy cop movie earned a spot at No.1 on the box office by grossing $46.7 million over the weekend.

Photo courtesy of Sony Pictures

Action movies stay near the top at Nos. 2 and 3. Johnny Depp's Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl stays strong at No. 2, proving that people still enjoy a light-hearted tale of pirates and their booty. Sean Connery and company keep The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen at No. 3.

Mike Myers has used his characters in the Austin Powers series to successfully spoof the famously suave James Bond, but now the British are taking their turn. England's own Rowan Atkinson takes a hop over the pond to bring Johnny English to the American populace.

Atkinson's character is a clumsy diplomat who is anything but suave, but somehow he is mistaken for the famous spy with the same name as the film. Needles to say, Atkinson's claim to fame, Mr. Bean, probably played a substantial role in landing this film in fourth place.

Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines falls to the No. 5 spot, and Pixar's Finding Nemo takes sixth. Reese Witherspoon keeps Legally Blonde 2: Red, White, and Blonde at No. 7.

No. 8 finds Mandy Moore in a movie about teen love. Her character refuses to believe in true love until a certain guy (played by Trent Ford) walks into her life. It may be a stretch, but it's possible that more of the movie's popularity is due to Moore's incredible looks than the story line. Either way, How to Deal comes in at No. 8 in its first weekend.

Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle takes No. 9, using beautiful women and great stunts to pull in a large teenage audience, and 10th place goes to the British thriller 28 Days Later. Finally, after becoming quite a hit, The Italian Job drops off the list.

 Send comments to dcshobiz@mail.uh.edu

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