Fulvue Drive-In.com
Current Reviews
In Stores Soon
In Stores Now
DVD Reviews, SACD Reviews Essays Interviews Contact Us Meet the Staff
An Explanation of Our Rating System Search  
Category:    Home > Essays > Film Industry > Motion Picture Box Office 2013: Will Hollywood Learn To Love Big Budget Bombs?

Motion Picture Box Office 2013: Will Hollywood Learn To Love Big Budget Bombs?


Despite the latest claims of another record summer at movie theaters and even drive-in theaters for 2013, it is obvious that it was not a great summer by any means for those paying to see feature length motion pictures.  As has been the case for the last 20 years, there have been few surprises, nothing very exciting and adding to the glut of sequels, remakes and sequels to remakes, this summer saw movies labeled as new franchises simply copying played out films.


Most of the CGI animated feature did well, but more than ever opened, so some underperformed no matter if they were good or not.  The larger hits came early on at the box office like Iron Man 3, Fast & Furious 6, Man Of Steel, Star Trek: Into Darkness, The Heat and even World War Z.  But then came the bombs like White House Down, After Earth, Percy Jackson: Sea Of Monsters, Kick-Ass 2 and especially The Lone Ranger, which did not have its reviews written 8 months before its release despite what the makers might claim.


So what happened?  Too many played-out franchises, too many package deals made without hardly any thought on what the competition would be, if there was an audience for a given release and the hope that a combination of foreign box-office and tie-in items (like toys and other promos) would make up any lack of North American box office in case those “ungrateful” domestic viewers would not be suckered into paying for just any movie to see as if people only had a few choices on what to do with their time.  In extremely cynical cases, in case those suckers do not cough up enough money to pay for our mistakes and admissions that we should not be making movies at all.


Guillermo del Toro's Pacific Rim dodged what troubles it could by Warner. Bros and Legendary Pictures changing the ad campaign in the last week, but this turned it into a mere disappointment instead of an outright bomb, but audiences in most other countries found the film and we might get a sequel that makes sense.  The back story is that Legendary and Warner were at the end of their extremely long, prosperous and immensely profitable relationship with Legendary leaving the studio and signing with Universal.


However, that was one of the only films that got such serious consideration in the midst of the disasters.  Next summer will likely repeat the pattern since the condescending approach of making two-hour ads for toys is too easy for the increasing number of studio executives who know zero about moviemaking to go in and make more pointless, soulless product.  It's going to take some very creative people who care and know the basics of commercial genres (horror, action, adventure, science fiction. etc.) to change this situation.  Until them, audiences will not be singing “well meet again” as often and the record summers will come to a halt until audiences stop letting themselves be used to pay for garbage.


It was not always like this and along with media hacks who recommend everything with a big budget, even when they know it is lame, ticket buyers need to weed these people out and start ignoring them.  Only then will those customers (not just disposable consumers, as they are too often being treated as) will get their money's worth because the scripts are decent, the casts doing fun work and behind the scenes talent working at their best instead out of entitlement and arrogance.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


 Copyright © MMIII through MMX fulvuedrive-in.com