Summer Box Office Winners and Losers
The summer movie season ended as it began – with lackluster offerings. Labor Day signaled the end to a summer box office season, which boasted impressive numbers ($4.35 billion), though largely due to inflated ticket prices for 3D offerings rather than big crowds.
The “cerebral” thriller netted an impressive $697 million worldwide. Fans of the movie are making repeat trips to the multiplex and bringing friends. Nearly two months since its splashy debut, Inception still enjoys a home in the box office top ten.
- Toy Story 3
While there may not have been a lot of new old toys on display, there was still plenty for the boomer and space age generations to enjoy. I’m pretty sure I was the only person in the packed theater to laugh at the homages to old prison-break movies like Cool Hand Luke, with Buzz playing Boss Carr, and “the box” being the sand box (“I’m pretty sure those weren’t Lincoln Logs…”). I had to explain to my kids later on what that was about; they finally understood when I told them that Cool Hand Luke was the movie with the oft-parodied line “what we’ve got here is a failure to communicate.”
Toy Story 3 was a real crowd pleaser, boosting Pixar’s bottom line to the tune of over 1 billion dollars in global box office bidness.
While not doing the kind of bragtastic numbers of films such as Inception or Toy Story, Salt‘s respectable global take of $262 million should hopefully settle the debate of whether Jolie can get butts into theater seats. In addition the film has what’s termed in the “industry” as legs, meaning it’s still holding steady and earning its keep.
- The Expendables
For a film with more lulz than legitimate box office potential and who some snarky folks didn’t predict would earn $100 bucks, much less $100 million domestically (about $200mil global and is the top global box office draw), The Expendables showed the world these old ass dogs could learn a few new tricks. The success of the film means a franchise is inevitable. Lucky us.
- Films such as Knight and Daze, Killers and Jonah Hex and all those interchangeable romantic comedies I can’t be arsed to mention.
- Jerry Bruckheimer Jerry’s summer consisted of a doubled fisted assault of fail with two express tickets to stinktonia: The Prince of Persia: Sands of Time and The Sorcerer’s Apprentice. It was pretty brave to subtitle Persia, though now it’ll be an embarrassing reminder of the cheek involved with assuming that turkey had Franchise written anywhere on it.
- Michael Cera. With disappointing grosses for Scott Pilgrim and some critics – coughAnthonyLanecough – wondering why Cera’s even a star in the first place. Perhaps the backlash will deflate Cera’s head and he’ll start the only project we really want to see him do: Arrested Development.
- Audiences. Between soaring ticket prices, craptastic offerings, indistinguishable from one another, audiences were treated to a dismal summer at the movies.
Sarah Linn of She Likes to Watch wrote a recent piece entitled Summer movies suck so far, which finally gave voice to my grumblings regarding the steaming pile Hollywood has been releasing since Memorial Day. While Linn does not delve deeply into the topic, I found her willingness to blog about it quite refreshing. If you’re wondering what summer movies from the stone age have to do with the current crop of awful playing on multiplex screens all over the country, let me spell it out of for you. This summer has seen the near erasure of marginalized folks in nuanced roles. It has seen those same groups who were starting to enjoy some complex treatment in action films demoted to eye candy, harmful stereotypes and the whitewashing of characters who were of color in the original source material. Summer 2010 is one of the worst for feminist action movie fans in years…
What are your thoughts on Summer Movies 2010. What releases are you looking forward to this fall?