Box Office Power Rankings: August 10-12, 2007

In the three months since we started the Box Office Power Rankings, we’ve had two perfect scores.

Now we have three, but not in a good way. Unlike Ratatouille and The Bourne Ultimatum — both of which scored first in the rankings’ four criteriaDaddy Day Camp scored last in all four. That means that it was popular enough to place tenth in overall box office but among the top ten was the worst in per-screen average and in two measures of critical opinion.

Box Office Power Rankings: August 10-12, 2007
(Rank) Movie (last week; box office, per-screen, Rotten Tomatoes, Metacritic: total)
(1) The Bourne Ultimatum (1; 9, 9, 10, 10: 38)
(2) The Simpsons Movie (2; 8, 7, 8, 8: 31)
(2) Hairspray (3; 6, 6, 10, 9: 31)
(4) Rush Hour 3 (-; 10, 10, 4, 4: 28)
(5) Stardust (-; 7, 8, 6, 6: 27)
(6) Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (4; 3, 4, 7, 7: 21)
(7) Underdog (5; 5, 5, 2, 3: 15)
(8) No Reservations (7; 2, 2, 5, 5: 14)
(9) I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry (5; 4, 3, 3, 3: 13)
(10) Daddy Day Camp (-; 1, 1, 1, 1: 4)

Methodology

Culture Snob’s Box Office Power Rankings balance box office and critical reception to create a better measure of a movie’s overall performance against its peers.

The weekly rankings cover the 10 top-grossing movies in the United States for the previous weekend. We assign equal weight to box office and critical opinion, with each having two components. The measures are: box-office gross, per-screen average, Rotten Tomatoes score, and Metacritic score.

Why those four? Box-office gross basically measures the number of people who saw a movie in a given weekend. Per-screen average corrects for blockbuster-wannabes that flood the market with prints, and gives limited-release movies a fighting chance. Rotten Tomatoes measures critical opinion in a binary way. And Metacritic gives a better sense of critics’ enthusiasm (or bile) for a movie.

For each of the four measures, the movies are ranked and assigned points (10 for the best performer, one for the worst). Finally, those points are added up, with a maximum score of 40 and a minimum score of four.

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