Box Office: WAR FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES swings past SPIDER-MAN!

WAR FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES has been, well, at war with SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING this weekend at the box office. Estimates had pegged both movies to make somewhere in the upper $50 million range over the weekend with Homecoming still being powered by immense positive reception and the fact that it’s a Marvel joint, even in its second frame. Nevertheless, the beloved web-slinger was sent to the second spot in its second weekend, making an estimated $45.2 million by the end of today, while Matt Reeves‘ exceptional APES film took the top spot with $56.5 million.

Though the story arc of WAR FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES is familiar, grim, and more than a little predictable as things get going toward the climax, it’s hard to overstate just how strange the movie is as a blockbuster. There’s very little dialogue in the film and an astounding amount of sign language, and whereas past movies hinged on men and women who wanted peace, this film places the apes as the clear heroes of the story. Reeves’ work with CGI and motion-capture is simply head and shoulders above every other film currently in theaters and most that have been released this decade. If the Academy were to ever give over a statue for motion-capture performance, Andy Serkis‘ work in this film would be the clearest example of the form’s artistry. It will likely go down as the most thrilling and ambitious big-studio release of the summer alongside WONDER WOMAN and SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING.

Edgar Wright’s BABY DRIVER is holding strong in the fourth spot with $8.7 million, right below DESPICABLE ME 3 with $18.9 million in its third frame. And in the fifth spot with $7.6 million, as seemed clear yesterday, is THE BIG SICK, Michael Showalter‘s lovely romantic comedy, which has proven to be one of the most uniformly beloved movies to be released this year. It’s made a move from a specialty box office hit to being a genuine contender on the big stage, even narrowly beating out Broad Green’s WISH UPON, an inoffensive and not particularly memorable horror film.

Here’s your top five:

1. ‘War for the Planet of the Apes’ $56.5M
2. ‘Spider-Man: Homecoming’ $45.2M
3. ‘ Despicable Me 3’ $18.94M
4. ‘Baby Driver’ $8.75M
5. ‘The Big Sick’ $7.6M