American Sniper is crushing expectations. The movie is doing better than anyone in the industry could have imagined possible- making more than any other movie in January and becoming the second highest grossing opening weekend for an R-rated movie (two MAJOR accomplishments). But why? Analysts are dumfounded by it’s staggering $110 gross over 4 days. That’s more than triple the previous record (held by Kevin Hart’s 2013 comedy Ride Along). January and February are famous for being terrible release dates, with blockbusters staying clear. With Oscar season gearing up, movie theaters suffer a drought. Clearly, that idea is being ripped to shreds by the ridiculous success of AS. These numbers are on par with the latest Summer Blockbuster .After sweeping the Award Season with countless Oscar nominations (paired with its MLK weekend release), the film is Hollywood’s staggering success. Clint Eastwood, who misstepped with last years Jersey Boys, has shot a truly incredible piece (with arguably the greatest trailer of the year). But he’s not the sole reason this movie’s on top. The story of Chris Kyle, named the most lethal sniper in U.S. history, is profoundly patriotic. Grounded by his life in America, the movie ventures into the terrors of war like no other movie has done before. Red states wanting to glorify the U.S. and honor Chris Kyle are making American Sniper one of the biggest successes. Whether you find it patriotic or propaganda, it’s a historic film that has changed the way the industry thinks.