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New in Theaters September 22: Kingsman: The Golden Circle, LEGO Ninjago Movie, Friend Request

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By Chris Kavan - 09/21/17 at 06:52 AM CT

With It burning up the charts and breaking plenty of records along the way, it hasn't left much for the rest of the bunch. American Assassin and mother! both had minimal impact last weekend and now we find three new entries trying to muscle their way to a decent spot at the box office. We have yet another horror film trying to get in on the action along with a sequel to a very fun action movie and the next entry in the LEGO animated series of films. Each looks to take a bite out of the audience that has supported It the last two weekends - we'll see if any of the three can topple the champ.

KINGSMAN: THE GOLDEN CIRCLE I was a big fan of Kingsman: The Secret Service. It has a lot of action, wasn't shy about the violence and even some twists I didn't see coming. Plus, Taron Egerton proved he up to the challenge in his first major film role. It also made a nice, tidy sum at the box office so it was inevitable we could get a sequel. This time around, the Kingsman themselves get taken out - their huge base, their secret location and nearly every member, save for Eggsy (Egerton) and gadget master Merlin (Mark Strong). In order to get revenge for the attacks, what is left of the Kingsman are going to need some help - and lucky for them, America is more than happy to help. That would be The Statesmen, a more rough-and-tumble crew led by Champ (Jeff Bridges) and featuring plenty of macho swagger in Tequila (Channing Tatum) and Whiskey (Pedro Pascal) while still offering brains in the form of Ginger (Halle Berry). Their target is Poppy (Julianne Moore), who holds a major grudge against The Kingsman and who, of course, wants the world for her own. Oh, and it turns out that Harry Hart (Colin Firth) is still around - and maybe he can help too. While Golden Circle hasn't got as glowing reviews at the first film, I don't think it will hurt it too much. There have been a lack of laughs lately and maybe Kingsman is exactly what we need.

THE LEGO NINJAGO MOVIE The LEGO Movie was a huge hit, full of plenty of laughs that both the adults and kids could enjoy. This was followed up by LEGO Batman, which was another fun romp. The third entry in the franchise is Ninjago and while it is based on the TV series, it looks like it keeps the irreverent humor that made those first two films so enjoyable. The film follows every-day highschooler Lloyd (Dave Franco) - who is having the worst sixteenth birthday party ever. You see, Lloyd happens to be the son of the evil Garmadon (Justin Theroux) who routinely attacks the city, causing widespread destruction and chaos in the process. But Lloyd happens to have a secret alter-ego, the leader of the Secret Ninja Force (along with his friends voiced by Fred Armisen, Kumail Nanjiani, Michael Peņa, Abbi Jacobson and Zach Woods). They are led by Garmadon's brother, Master Wu (Jackie Chan) who teaches them the Ninjago arts. But really, Lloyd just wants to reconnect with his father - when they aren't trying to kill one another. Rife with plenty of humor, dazzling visuals and one cute, destructive kitty - Ninjago is sure to please families. That is why this will probably topple It - after two weeks on top, bringing out the whole family should allow this take down the scary clown.

FRIEND REQUEST It wasn't bothered too much by mother! and I have a feeling that Friend Request is also going to fall short of topping the more popular horror film. Alycia Debnam-Carey (of The 100 and Fear the Walking Dead) leads the film as a popular college student who accepts the friend request of a seeming lonely social outcast only to find that she has welcomed in a demon - one who is willing to kill everyone she cares about in order to be her only friend. Much like Unfriended, Friend Request relies on social media for most of its scares. Cyber horror? I guess this is going to be a sub-genre from now on. William Moseley, Connor Paolo, Brit Morgan, Brooke Markham, Sean Marquette and Liesl Ahlers round out the cast and I'm guessing most of them will wind up dead by the time the film ends. Eh, I have a feeling this is for the younger generation, social media is scary enough without adding demons. It should do fine, but it's going to overshadowed by LEGO and Kingsmen.

I have a feeling that It will be knocked down a peg or two as both Ninjago and Golden Circle look to open strong. But it will also continue a strong September that looks to be one of the best on record following a sad August. I'll be back on Sunday with the numbers.


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