Okay, so one of the movies I’m most excited to see this year comes out on Saturday, 8pm-ish Central. Red Letter Media’s review of Attack of the Clones. Or so says that guy’s twitter feed. Holy so excited.
THE ICEBERG AHEAD
As with last week, we’re looking at another 3-D picture (which also happens to be available on D-Box screens): Clash of the Titans. But here, for the first time in the 3-D wave of cinema, we are dealing with a collective effort of critics to warn consumers “The 3-D really, really sucks on this one!” How long will it take for this word to take hold? I have no idea. But likely twitter, facebook, everywhere is going to be saying similar things, especially with the ticket price hike. The Internet creates a number of isolated bubbles, and criticism – even if people scan Rotten Tomatoes or what have you – is not what’s going to sink this, and the main consumer of this film isn’t going to be reading the paper. What sinks this is word of mouth.
Criticism isn’t necessarily dying, it just doesn’t have a central figure beyond Roger Ebert. Ebert no longer lords over print and television, but print and the Internet (and twitter, holy shit does that guy tweet a lot. That said, I once responded to him – with no real provocation – that he’s one of the reasons why I love movies. And not just because of Beyond the Valley of the Dolls). I believe that the world is constantly in transition, and how we consume text has changed rapidly over the last decade, so making declarations of criticism’s death is pointless and shortsighted. Yes, newspapers and the outlets are shrinking and shuttering, but there is an ebb and flow, and it’s just as likely criticism will come to a greater prominence again. But as long as the studios aren’t chasing Oscar gold, they could give a shit about critics, and we’ve seen many studios abandon their art house “dependents” (as David Poland so aptly named them), with Paramount Vantage, Miramax and Warner Independent shuttered. I feel like The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, a nine digit Oscar chaser, is likely the last of its kind for a while. My point is this: at one point studios needed critics to help with some pictures. Now? Not so much.
But even with criticism in a transitional period (it may be divorced and staying with its parents, but it’s not done yet) you can’t fight word of mouth, which has made and broken pictures. The question becomes if people will think Clash of the Titans sucks and is in 3-D, or if people will think 3-D in general stinks. Devin wrote about this earlier this week, and I think the audience will need more evidence this gimmickry is a sham of a mockery of a mockery of a sham. But the picture should open. The question is: How hard will it get punched in the dick by word of mouth? My guess: Pretty hard
PREDICTIONS AND HAPPINESS
So Clash of the Titans opens, and opens big, but Friday should be the big number, and I’m reminded of Watchmen. But – that said – people will buy their hella-stupid expensive 3-D tickets and complain later. I’m going to go low on it. Tyler Perry‘s got a new movie, and we know how that works, and The Last Song… I have a friend named Jeff who will probably see it seventeen times.
1. Clash of the Titans (at Demonhead) – $61.4 Million 2. How to Train Your Dragon – $28.5 Million 3. Tyler Perry‘s Why Did I Get Married (Teen Wolf) Too - $20 Million 4. The Last Song – $18.9 Million 5. Alice in Wonderland - $10 Million
And then Saturday, I’m going to spend some time on youtube.