Vampires Are Among The Quartet Of Wide Releases In This Week’s Box Office Poll

I expect we’ll see the “New Moon“-slaught wane a bit this week, especially in light of its not-overwhelming performance through the holiday weekend. Not that $42 million is bad, but it’s quite a drop after the $140+ million opening weekend the previous week. Perhaps that was just holiday traffic? Or is declining attendance the sign that the phenomenon isn’t quite as big as some had guessed? I’ll be following up on those questions later today, but for now let’s consider what’s new this week.

We’ll start with “Armored,” directed by Nimrod Antal. This is the guy who’s currently hard at work on “Predator” sequel “Predators.” So if you’re curious about what to expect there, “Armored” is a good place to start. It’s also an action-thriller starring Matt Dillon, Laurence Fishburne and Jean Reno, so there’s that.

There’s also “Brothers,” a family drama starring Tobey Maguire, Jake Gyllenhaal and Natalie Portman. Maguire and Gyllenhaal star as at-odds brothers: one a Marine Captain, the other an ex-con. When the older, more responsible of the two is lost during a tour overseas, his younger brother steps in to take his place at the head of the family.

There are a wider range of options for those who seek lighter fare, starting with family comedy “Everybody’s Fine.” Robert De Niro stars as a widower who hits the road to bring his grown children back into his life. Only — surprise, surprise — they’re not what he expected. Also starring Drew Barrymore, Kate Beckinsdale and Sam Rockwell.

If you’re looking for something a bit more irreverent, there’s also vampire spoof “Transylmania.” It’s basically a college comedy, set during a group of students’ semester abroad in — where else? — Transylvania. Expect shenanigans to ensue.

There are also laughs to be had for limited release audiences. Cheryl Hines, who plays Larry David’s (ex-)wife on “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” has her feature directorial debut with “Serious Moonlight.” Timothy Hutton, Meg Ryan, Kristen Bell and Justin Long star in a dark comedy about an unhappily married man who runs off with his girlfriend. His lawyer wife (Ryan) devises a plan to hopefully rehabilitate their marriage… only things don’t quite work out the way she prepared them. Naturally.

For quirkier comedy, look no further than “Up in the Air,” from “Juno” director Jason Reitman. Adapted from the book by Walter Kirn, George Clooney stars as a corporate traveler, with the focus on the emptiness contained within such an existence. Expect chuckles more than laugh-out-loud hysterics, but Reitman is known for his light touch and no one does quirk like Clooney. Needless to say, this one’s my pick of the week. What’s yours?