Many forces have converged to make this the best possible weekend for The Heat, the new buddy cop comedy starring two of Hollywood’s most game and charming actors, Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy.
It was a bravura performance of a fiercely capable and passionate woman having her most important day at the office ever. Women want to see women on screen they recognize and sometimes aspire to be. And that’s part of why it was so fun last night to watch Bullock and McCarthy, both operating in top form, bring it.
It’s great news that The Heat is going to make a ton of money. (Friday’s box office estimates has the Paul Feig-directed film bringing in $13.6 million, nearly $5 million ahead of the new Channing Tatum/Jamie Foxx sweaty action movie White House Down.) Great news for everybody involved. Though I worry how much we, the moviegoing public will benefit from the success. I dread the same game-changer stories on Monday about the surprise power of female dollars at the box office.
The problem is it’s always the same “surprise”–the unexpected success of Something’s Gotta Give or Sex & the City or Bridesmaids or Magic Mike or Pitch Perfect. But the game seems to remain the same because then there follows the same unacceptably long slog in between movies for women to rally around.