In its fifth week at the top of the national box-office charts, "Wayne's World," the comedy based on the spaced-out "Saturday Night Live" TV characters, showed a small jump in business--1% above the previous week. Small as that is, it nevertheless defies gravity. Usually, film grosses follow the path of Newton's apple, dropping after the first weekend. That an increase should occur in a film's fifth week is noteworthy.
Overall, national box-office grosses are sorely depressed, with the majority of movies doing only tepid business. Totals lag behind this point last year, despite the success of "Wayne's World" and continued good showings by "Fried Green Tomatoes" and "The Hand That Rocks the Cradle."
"My Cousin Vinny," featuring Joe Pesci as a bumbling, stereotypical New York loud-mouth, opened to strong business. But the debuts of two socially conscious dramas, Edward James Olmos' "American Me," about the cycle of gang violence in the barrio, and "Article 99," about poor conditions at a veterans hospital, did not generate much box-office heat.
* "The Mambo Kings," still in limited release, played to a lively $1.3 million over the weekend, drawing the highest per-screen average of any current film.