By Daniel Garris
Disney's Guardians of the Galaxy took in $10.36 million this weekend to remain in first place at the box office. The blockbuster sci-fi superhero adaptation from Marvel has now led the box office for three consecutive weekends and for four of the past six weekends. Guardians of the Galaxy was down 39 percent from last weekend's three-day frame, which represents a very solid hold for the weekend after Labor Day weekend. The film continues to benefit from very strong word of mouth and was also aided by the limited amount of new major releases entering the marketplace this weekend. Guardians of the Galaxy has grossed a massive $294.77 million in 38 days, which leaves the film just $5.23 million away from becoming the first release of 2014 to reach the $300 million domestic milestone.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles held steady in second place with $6.51 million. Paramount's successful franchise re-launch was down a respectable 45 percent from last weekend's three-day performance. While its box office run is slowing down now, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles continues to exceed expectations in a very big way with $174.65 million through 31 days of release.
Let's Be Cops inched past If I Stay to place in third with $5.569 million. The two films were separated by only $13,627 for the frame. Fox's low-budget action comedy held up very nicely this weekend, as it was down just 33 percent. The 26-day total for Let's Be Cops stands at $66.77 million. Let's Be Cops continues to be aided from strong word of mouth and from the current lack of new comedies in the marketplace.
Warner's If I Stay followed in fourth with $5.556 million. The low-budget drama starring Chloë Grace Moretz was down a solid 40 percent from last weekend. If I Stay has grossed $39.47 million in 17 days, which is in line with pre-release expectations and represents a very solid performance with the film's cost in mind.
Relativity's The November Man and Universal's As Above/So Below claimed fifth and sixth place with respective takes of $4.31 million and $3.85 million. The November Man was down 46 percent from last weekend, while As Above/So Below fell a significant 55 percent. Respective total grosses stand at $17.98 million for The November Man in twelve days and at $15.71 million for As Above/So Below in ten days.
Freestyle's The Identical, the weekend's only new wide release, debuted with just $1.59 million to place in twelfth. The faith based drama was off to a very soft start, especially when considering that the film was only able to manage a per-location average of $811 from 1,956 locations. The poor performance of The Identical is in sharp contrast to the strong performance of Freestyle's God's Not Dead earlier this year.
Paramount's IMAX re-issue of Forrest Gump also failed to make much of an impact at the box office this weekend. The re-issue of the 1994 blockbuster starring Tom Hanks grossed $381,654 from 337 locations. That gave the film a lackluster per-location average of $1,133 for the frame. The lifetime unadjusted domestic gross for Forrest Gump now stands at $330.08 million.