How horror became Hollywood’s safe bet in a scary box office climate
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The first trailer for “Fury” came out in August, but it was followed by a number of more “viral” hits and an Oscar nomination for Sam Raimi.
The blockbuster “Fury” is opening nationwide next week, one of the first big studio movies of the year. The film is based on a graphic novel series by James Asher, an author best known for creating the popular Batman comic books. And it’s not just any comic book. It’s a high-concept thriller about a vigilante who becomes a pawn of the system. It’s the kind of movie your father, brother, or neighbor might try to stop.
But “Fury” is also an unexpected hit. The film opened to $25 million in its first three days of release for a projected total in the $35 million range. The audience seemed to be embracing it as another genre-busting, genre-bending film, perhaps like “The Hunger Games” or “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.” It’s also being hailed as the genre’s first major triumph, a bold step ahead of the trend to make movies like “Hunger Games” or “The Girl.”
The story of “Fury” goes like this: A man has a chance meeting with a woman on an airplane. He tells her a story and gives her the nickname “Fury” for a reason. So she tracks him down in his hometown of Baltimore. On the way there, she discovers a mysterious box buried near her house. Inside, she finds a videotaped report on a bank heist that was discovered two months earlier.
Once the pair arrive in Baltimore, Fury tracks down the heist’s mastermind. He’s a bank robber who was just acquitted. He also turns out to be a man named Richard “Boom Boom” Harrow, who is in prison on gun charges.
Harrow is a genius and the mastermind of the heists, who has a plan to get the money back. The scheme is simple: He and Fury would take a boat and set out to find the money themselves. Instead, they end up in a series of bank robberies that end up in a shootout with cops and Harrow’s gang. They escape, though, with the ransom money.