This summer the weekend box office has been strong on tenth-rate third sequels that lack the creativity of their predecessors and light on slightly disappointing movie spin-offs of popular TV shows that you really, really wanted to love.
But, hey, The Simpsons Movie has gone and redressed the balance. The Simpsons Movie is top of the US weekend box office, even though just about everyone who has seen it wishes that Chief Wiggum was in it more and that bit with Lisa and the Irish boy actually went somewhere. And that the surprise superstar cameo belonged to someone other than Tom Hanks. And that it was as funny as The Simpsons was in its prime. And that, deep down, they didn't think it was the best film of the summer so far, which it probably is.
The Simpsons Movie, close to 20 years in the making, is number one at this week's weekend box office, taking over three times more than its closest competitor. Even though The Simpsons Movie got middling reviews at best – mainly by people who love The Simpsons so much that they'd have been disappointed by anything that didn't actually make them literally die from laughter – its weekend box office haul makes The Simpsons movie immediately the most popular TV spin-off movie since Holiday On The Buses, and for that the producers should be proud. Here's the US weekend box office top five…
1 – The Simpsons Movie (Enjoy the success of The Simpsons Movie while you can, because it's only a matter of time before other films start copying its marketing campaign. And when you see a giant Robin Williams vicar painted on a hill next to an ancient chalk man with a hard-on, remember that it's basically all your fault) $71,850,000
2 – I Now Pronounce You Chuck And Larry (Gay people are funny, aren't they? America still thinks so) $19,063,000
3 – Harry Potter And The Order Of The Phoenix (The third from last-ever Harry Potter movie, until the inevitable Son Of Harry Potter movies come along in 20 years. And, trust us, they will come) $17,065,000
4 – Hairspray (Starring the man from Grease and the girl from Grease 2. Throw in a cast member from Dirty Dancing and Hairspray would honestly be classified as a tool for promoting genocide in men) $15,550,000
5 – No Reservations (Containing a gem of a moment where a chef says "Why isn't there a cookbook… for life?" Because she's a chef, you see. Genius. We're already lamenting the fact that in Transformers nobody says "Why isn't there a giant angry robot who speaks like an American teenager and pisses on government agents… for life?") $11,755,000