Marky Mark scores a touchdown at the US box office

All in all, this was a rubbish weekend for the US box office as the country busied itself with back to school preparations and generally tried to enjoy the end of the summer. And the films on offer weren’t exactly inspiring.

Mark Wahlberg’s true-life tale of American footie courage Invincible proved to be the most popular, but even that could only score $17 million to take the top of the charts.

Second place went to one of the summer’s success stories – Will Ferrell’s Talladega Nights. The NASCAR racing comedy is still hanging on in there, earning more than $8 million this weekend and speeding towards $130 million in total, a figure which is well on the road to making it the most successful comedy of the year. Take that, Adam Sandler and Click!

Third was another barnstormer, this year’s indie success story Little Miss Sunshine. The Sundance smash hit has been slowly building thanks to hugely positive word of mouth, and with a stack of new cinema openings, it’s now firmly into the top 10 with $22 million so far.

In fourth was the week’s second new opening – Broken Lizard’s latest comedy, Beerfest. Few cinemagoers found it to their taste and the film could only rustle up $6.5 million for the weekend. It remains to be seen if it has legs – but based on this opening, we’d have to guess that they’ll be rubbery drunk’s legs.

Fifth place was taken by Oliver Stone’s World Trade Center, which has been performing well but hardly brilliantly. Fake college comedy Accepted shuffled down one place to sixth, and appears to be holding up okay, even if it isn’t exactly cramming them into cinemas. At seventh we find those Snakes On A Plane, with the campy horror thriller losing what bite it had, down 62% and scaring up just $6 million. DVD appears to be the reptiles’ best hope for profit now.

Eighth was teen dancing drama Step Up, which is showing some staying power, while the third new entry of the week – OutKast’s musical Idlewild lived up to the first part of its name with a mild $5.7 million. In its defence, the movie’s in a lot less cinemas that most of its chart mates.

Down at the bottom of the charts, Barnyard holds on at tenth, just above the week’s fourth new film, How To Eat Fried Worms. The kid pic could only manage 11th place with a disappointing $4 million. Nobody likes it, everybody hates it, think it’ll go eat… You know the rest.

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