Critics love Christopher Nolan's 'Dunkirk', but will moviegoers?

'Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets', 'Girls Trip' also opening


SAN ANTONIO – Christopher Nolan's World War II feature "Dunkirk" hits theaters this weekend and is already being hailed as a surefire Oscar contender. But will the movie capture the hearts of audiences as it has the critics?

"Dunkirk" opens with an approval rating of 93 percent as the $150 million production will be in 3,720 theaters across the country, including several IMAX locations.

Nolan's previous works "Inception" had a debut with $62.7 million while "Interstellar" delivered $47.5 million.

Expectations for this new movie are around $35-40 million which could in fact be a conservative estimate. Positive word of mouth has spread like wildfire, with many calling the movie "one of the greatest war films ever", as well as Nolan's best.

The film stars Harry Styles, James D'Arcy, Kenneth Branagh, and Tom Hardy and is being told from three perspectives – the land, sea and air – while supposedly containing little dialogue and creating suspense only through details.

RELATED: Harry Styles Makes Big Screen Debut in 'Dunkirk'

RELATED: 'Spider-Man' slings $117 million debut and Sony rejoices

Nolan said he made a conscious decision to never show Germans on screen in the film, trying to instead convey perspective of the soldiers who rarely saw the enemy. He also chose to specifically leave out Winston Churchill and other high ranking generals.

Also hitting theaters this weekend is "Girls Trip" which enters looking strong with an anticipated $20+ million opening for the Malcolm D. Lee comedy. The R-rated female driven film stars Regina Hall, Tiffany Haddish, Jada Pinkett Smith and Queen Latifah and may just be the first sucessful comedy of the summer.

"Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets" debuts in 3,553 theaters and is an original sci-fi feature based on a 1967 French graphic novel series. Industry expectations for this weekend have Valerian opening in the low $20 millions, which considering the cost of production, would be less than ideal.

Here's a look at all the latest films (with their trailer) that were released for the weekend of July 21.

And don't forget to look for the latest article each week to see what else will be playing at the movies.


In May 1940, Germany advanced into France, trapping Allied troops on the beaches of Dunkirk. Under air and ground cover from British and French forces, troops were slowly and methodically evacuated from the beach using every serviceable naval and civilian vessel that could be found. At the end of this heroic mission, 330,000 French, British, Belgian and Dutch soldiers were safely evacuated. (Google synopsis)

The movie is 2 hour and rated PG-13. 

You can view the trailer below or by clicking here.

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets

In the 28th century, special operatives Valerian (Dane DeHaan) and Laureline work together to maintain order throughout the human territories. Under assignment from the minister of defense, the duo embarks on a mission to Alpha, an ever-expanding metropolis where diverse species gather to share knowledge and culture. When a dark force threatens the peaceful city, Valerian and Laureline must race against time to identify the menace that also jeopardizes the future of the universe. (Google synopsis)

This film is 2 hour and 17 minutes and is rated PG-13.

You can view the trailer by clicking here.


Girls Trip

Best friends Ryan, Sasha, Lisa and Dina are in for the adventure of a lifetime when they travel to New Orleans for the annual Essence Festival. Along the way, they rekindle their sisterhood and rediscover their wild side by doing enough dancing, drinking, brawling and romancing to make the Big Easy blush.  (Google synopsis)

To read a full review of the film, click here.

The film is 2 hour and 2 minutes and is rated R.

You can view the trailer below or by clicking here.


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