Box Office Preview: 8 New Films With Something for Everyone

For those who have been clamoring for some quality choices at the theaters the past couple of weeks, it looks like the slow period between the summer and fall movie seasons is finally letting up. This weekend will see the release of several films sure to please movie-goers no matter what mood they might be in. Here are several of the most high-profile releases this weekend.

1. Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2 (Sony Pictures Animation)

The biggest movie release this week and likely to place number one at the box office is Sony Pictures Animation’s (NYSE:SNE) Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2. The sequel to the 2009 animated hit Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs will see the return of actors Bill Hader, Anna Faris, James Caan, Andy Samberg, Neil Patrick Harris, and Benjamin Bratt. The anaimted film is helmed by newcomers Cody Cameron and Kris Pearn with the original film’s directors, Phil Lord and Chris Miller, serving as executive producers. The animated Sony film follows the adventures of Flint Lockwood and friends after they are forced to leave Swallow Falls following the events of the original film.

Critics so far are giving the film positive marks with several writing that the sequel improves upon Sony’s original film. “Better in every respect than the original Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs,” writes the Chicago Tribune’s Michael Phillips. Bill Goodykoontz of the Arizona Republic agreed, writing, “It’s the rare [sequel] that takes the spirit of the original and runs with it, coming up with something uniquely good in its own right.” However, The Hollywood Reporter’s Michael Rechtshaffen felt that the original was superior, explaining, “While not as delightfully breezy as the original, an engaging voice cast and hordes of ‘Foodimals’ still manage to serve up a tasty sequel.” Rechtshaffen still gave the film a positive mark overall as did all the top critics listed on Rotten Tomatoes as of this writing.