Ashton Kutcher in The Guardian

Hola amigos, it's Sandie again with another installment of the Monday box office roundup. Although last weekend we were only half right with our predictions, this weekend we were five for five. That's right, we (well, ok, technically just Patricia, but she does sorta write on our editorial team's behalf ) batted 1.000 on just our second week of predictions. Let's relive the glory, shall we? Here were P's top-5 picks:

  1. 'Open Season'
  2. 'The Guardian'
  3. Jackass Number Two
  4. 'School for Scoundrels'
  5. Jet Li's Fearless

And as she has written, so shall it be done:

  1. 'Open Season,' $23 million
  2. 'The Guardian," $17.7 million
  3. 'Jackass Number Two,' $14 million
  4. 'School for Scoundrels,' $9.1 million
  5. 'Jet Li's Fearless,' $4.7 million

Look closely and you'll notice the top two films star none other than Ashton Kutcher. Yes, Kelso Kutcher's head-to-head openings made more than $40 million. And although it's not his body but that of a one-antlered buck named Elliot you see in the country's No. 1 movie, Kutcher and co-star Martin Lawrence's animal buddy comedy 'Open Season' was just what families wanted after a month of back-to-school stress.

As for 'The Guardian,' it's hard to go wrong when you've got Kutch and his older-but-still-very-handsome fraternity brother (it's true, I looked it up) Kevin Costner in a military action flick. Little tidbit: the $17.7 million opening is actually Costner's best in years -- since 1999's romantic weeper 'Message in a Bottle,' which I was surprised to discover made $18.9 million its first weekend in theaters.

Forest Whitaker in The Last King of Scotland

'Napoleon Dynamite' fans apparently forgot to vote for Jon Heder's new lovable-loser comedy, 'School for Scoundrels.' Despite Heder's cult following, the flick made a modest $9 million. But my co-workers swear it's hilarious, so maybe it'll catch on next week. ... or on DVD.

Filed in the 'For Your Consideration' file is news about the weekend's two Oscar-worthy releases: Helen Mirren's turn as Queen Elizabeth II (she already won an Emmy for playing EI in the HBO biopic, so playing a royal comes naturally to the Dame) in 'The Queen' proved powerfully profitable. Showing at only three theaters in New York, Stephen Frears' drama about Her Majesty's response to Princess Diana's death earned $123,000 in just two days (it opened, inexplicably, on Saturday). And Forest Whitaker's rave reviews for his portrayal of Ugandan dictator Idi Amin helped 'The Last King of Scotland' debut with $143,000 at four NYC and LA screens. Both Academy hopefuls expand to a theater near you in the next two weeks. All hail the world leaders!

Tags: Open Season, The Guardian, Ashton Kutcher, Kevin Costner, Martin Lawrence, Jon Heder, School for Scoundrels, Helen Mirren, Forest Whitaker, The Queen, The Last King of Scotland, box office

categories Features, Cinematical