Tom Cruise wondering why no one wants to see Lions for LambsRobert Redford’s oppressively earnest Lions for Lambs opened very weakly at the box office in its opening weekend, coming in fourth in U.S. receipts, bringing in just $6.7 million.

The film explicitly opposes President Bush and the Iraq War (what a brave stand to take these days!) and features Tom Cruise in a supporting role, which clearly was not enough to overcome the film’s unappealing trailer and astoundingly lame concept: a long-winded and superficially fair but fundamentally skewed discussion of the merits of the Iraq War.

Apparently Redford did not realize that most people have already had much more than enough of such discussions on TV, radio, and the Internet and in the newspapers and magazines. How out of touch can you get?

Consisting largely of a series of lectures disguised as intellectual dialogues, Lions for Lambs is one of the most boring films I’ve seen in years.

The new Christmastime comedy Fred Claus, starring Vince Vaughn, came in third, bringing in $19.2 million. That constitutes the weakest opening weekend for a Vaughn-starring comedy since 2003.

Numbers 1 and 2 at the box office were Bee Movie and American Gangster, respectively, reversing their positions of a week earlier.

The grim Coen brothers crime drama No Country for Old Men opened well, grossing $1.2 million at just 28 theaters.

The George Clooney starrer Michael Clayton, another film opposing President Bush and the Iraq War, fell out of the top ten, earning only $1.7 million in its fifth week, a very poor performance, especially given the presence of Clooney’s star power.

Clearly, audiences know what Hollywood thinks of the Iraq War and is not interested in further messages from the Left Coast on the matter, even if Tom Cruise’s face is on the poster.