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New in Theaters September 04: The Transporter Refueled, A Walk in the Woods

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By Chris Kavan - 09/03/15 at 06:45 AM CT

With August going out with somewhat of a whimper, with only the faith-based War Room showing any promise, I have a feeling the opening of September isn't going to be much better. Granted, the Labor Day holiday is typically a slow one for Hollywood, but this year might be particularly slow. We have the attempted relaunch of a successful action franchise with a brand-new face along with a geriatric road trip (well, hiking trip), odd couple comedy. After three weeks on top, it may finally be the week that Straight Outta Compton hands its box office crown to another - but don't count the biopic short just yet.

THE TRANSPORTER REFUELED It has been seven years since we last saw Jason Statham in The Transporter 3. The series has done decent, though by no means outstanding, at the box office. But Statham has moved on and this time around a relatively fresh-faced Ed Skrein is taking on the iconic role of the driver with his own personal code of conduct. But when his father becomes involved with a group of femme fatales planning the ultimate bank heist - going up against a Russian kingpin, of course. Ray Stevenson plays the father, while Loan Chabanol, Gabriella Wright and Tatiana Pajkovic are the women with Radivoje Bukvic playing the baddie. I have nothing against the Transporter films - I always found them to be enjoyable, if forgettable, action films. The reboot is probably going to do decent business on opening weekend, but I don't expect it to have very good long-term prospects, especially with Statham out of the picture. Still, good action has been hard to find lately and while it will likely give Straight Outta Compton a run for the top spot, it still may fall short.

A WALK IN THE WOODS Despite a title that sounds like it would make a bitchin' horror film about staying out of the woods - A Walk in the Woods is actually a kind of buddy comedy involving Bill Bryson (Robert Redford) and his old friend, Stephen Katz (NIck Nolte) as he tries to reconnect after years abroad by taking a hiking trip down the Appalachian Trail. While Redford is gregarious and outgoing - Nolte is the gruff, silent type. This odd couple pairing is what will drive A Walk in the Woods. I'm sure older audiences will appreciate this - but it's an audience who doesn't rush out to see films. This is one that, if it gets decent reviews and audience response, will slow burn across the entire month of September, and will ultimately wind up with a nice pile of cash. Emma Thompson, Mary Steenburgen, Nick Offerman and Kristen Schaal round out the cast. I don't expect this to open very high, but if it can bring in older audiences, it should stock around for the weeks to come.

Once again the weekend will probably not be the most exciting of the year, but we'll see if a new Transporter is enough to getting motors revving once again and open September on a decent note. I'll see you on Monday with the results.


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