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The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 1” smashed records at the box office this weekend with an estimated whopping $123 million. Even though the follow-up to “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” is officially 2014’s biggest opener, the third installment in the film series failed to live up to its predecessors’ record openings. “The Hunger Games” opened to $152 million in 2012, while the sequel, “Catching Fire” raked in $158 million on its first weekend in 2013.

Check out the trailer for “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 1”

'Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 1' is 2014's Biggest Blockbuster

‘Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 1’ is 2014’s Biggest Blockbuster

“Part 1″ is by no means a failure, the film based on the novels by the American author Suzanne Collins still posted the biggest opening of 2014, beating “Transformers: Age of Extinction” (previous champ) with $100 million. The film received an A- on CinemaScore while the previous ones earned a solid A. Despite the slight drop in ratings, “Part 1″ is doing exceptionally well overseas. The number crunchers revealed that the third installment raked in an additional 4 percent compared with “Catching Fire” with $152 million. Review aggregator Rottentomatoes.com is not impressed with the third installment, with an overall critic rating of 66% so far.

The consensus reads:

“The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1 sets up the franchise finale with a penultimate chapter loaded with solid performances and smart political subtext, though it comes up short on the action front.”

Perhaps Lionsgate played their cards to rake in millions on a sequel that could have been avoided? As for the rest of the competing blockbusters, last week’s number two opener “Big Hero 6” retain the position with $20.1 million. “Interstellar” raked in a solid $15.1 million in third place, followed by last week’s box office champion “Dumb and Dumber To” in fourth place with around $13.8 million. The top 5 is rounded up with Ben Affleck’s “Gone Girl” in fifth with an estimated $2.8 million.

Quick look at the top-grossing pictures in North American theaters, courtesy of Box Office Mojo:

  1. “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 1” – $123 million
  2. “Big Hero 6” – $20.1 million
  3. “Interstellar” – $15.1 million
  4. “Dumb and Dumber To” – $13.8 million
  5. “Gone Girl” – $2.8 million
  6. “Beyond the Lights” – $2.6 million
  7. “St. Vincent” – $2.4 million
  8. “Fury” – $1.9 million
  9. “Birdman” – $1.9 million
  10. “The Theory of Everything” -$1.5 million