114 big ones

Spiderman made an estimated $114 million in its opening weekend, setting the record for the largest opening weekend ever, smashing the record set by Harry Potter and the Sorceror's Stone for a 3-day opening.
Formula for big-time opening weekend:
1. Movie that appeals equally to males and females (action for boys, love story for girls)
2. Movie that appeals equally to the old and the young (older generation grew up with Spiderman, young kids familiar with Tobey and Kirsten)
3. Release during time of year when many people can go see a movie (start of summer or holiday season)
4. Hype. Hype. Hype. Run impressive trailers for months leading up to opening weekend.
5. Story people already know. See Harry Potter or any sequel for proof.
I didn't hate Spiderman, I didn't love it. Half the fun of seeing big summer blockbuster films is rounding up friends, fighting to nab tickets for the primo opening night show, coordinating everyone to show up in the right place, sitting in a darkened theater full of hyped-up kids, cheering when a trailer for another blockbuster film plays, and shouting at the screen throughout the film. And, if you're lucky, the film is so good that everyone is clapping and cheering at the end.
Friday night had most of the above. A big crew of friends. Hyped up kids in the theater. Some decent trailers for a few other Columbia films (Columbia is in franchise mode this summer--MIB II, Stuart Little) but no Hulk trailer. I wore my glasses for the first time and the screen was sharper than normal.
But the sound system at Meridian 16 is terrible. I'm spoiled by holding the remote control at home in my home theater and being able to toggle volume up or down to my heart's delight. Meridian doesn't have digital sound and doesn't even turn the volume up enough to hear all the dialogue. Unless I have to, I'm boycotting that damn theater. Most theaters in Seattle have terrible sound systems. If I didn't have a good home theater at home I'd have to move to a different city.