Monday Morning Quarterback Part I
By BOP Staff
September 30, 2008
It's marginally better than the Kathy Bates nude scene...Kim Hollis: Nights in Rodanthe, quite possibly the oldest-skewing romantic comedy ever released, earned $13.4 million. Is this a good result?
David Mumpower: I think that the strangest marketing move I have seen in calendar 2008 is the frequent marketing of this film during shows on The CW. Matlock and The Golden Girls re-runs were a much better call for this. I do think a total that effectively matches The Notebook's $13.5 million is a solid result for a title with romantic leads who have a combined age of 102.
Scott Lumley: Nights in what? Seriously?
Considering that I did not see one commercial for this film on TV or in a theatre, I think that this has to be a pretty spectacular result. Eagle Eye has been advertised since early June and I knew it was coming. Nights in Rodanthe did almost 50% of Eagle Eye's total with no marketing at all.
Tim Briody: If the ads on the CW went "remember Rachel McAdams and Ryan Gosling in The Notebook? Now picture them a lot older!" then it would...no, wait, it still wouldn't have made sense.
Shane Jenkins: This is currently my go-to movie punchline, but I guess it's good that there are $13.6 million worth of people who aren't cold-hearted cynical bastards like me. But really, Diane Lane in soft focus running with horses on the beach? Am I really the monster here?
Kim Hollis: Like David, I was perplexed by the marketing strategy to target shows on the CW. Sure, you're probably looking at a cheaper buy, but it's not coming anywhere close to giving you the reach you need in your target demographic. They should have been all over CBS and even cable nets like Food Network and HGTV. With that said, I think the weekend result is fine and it should limp along to a decent total overall. It's probably going to be a bigger DVD hit, actually.
Reagen Sulewski: This is a fantastic result for a film with one of the worst titles in recent memory. If you say it out loud and don't see it, you'd expect there to be a bunch of elves and ogres running around.
Jason Lee: I can't argue with your point about the studio's questionable ad buys, David, but I still thought this total would edge a little closer to $20 mil given the strong performance of The Notebook in its theatrical run and subsequent success on DVD.
Sean Collier: How many actual romances show up a year? One? Two? Not romantic comedies, mind you, but actual romances. (Wall-E doesn't count, even if it was the BEST romance in years.) Romances are almost as rare as westerns, and yet, there's still a large built-in audience - the aforementioned Golden Girls crowd. If it had been marketed better, it could've done a much higher number, I think. Incidentally, I was working on a joke about a monster-movie porno named "One Night in Rodan," but I couldn't pull it together.
Max Braden: There's no comedy in this movie; if that was implied by the marketing then the marketing was bad. It's a straight up romantic tragedy just like Nicholas Sparks' previous works. Had this not had his name behind it, I would have expected a sub-$10 million opening. But he's got intensely loyal fans. I think the relative box office to The Notebook would probably relate directly to book sales. The Notebook had a stronger response because it was better material.
Daron Aldridge: Since Lakeview Terrace was so lovingly called out for being the template for generic action/thriller or as Reagan dubbed in the wrap-up, Crisis in Generictown, Rodanthe equally fits bill for the nondescript romance film about two people who learn to love again after...blah blah blah. So, if we justifiably give an "acceptable" to Sam Jackson's forgettable film, then I will extend the same judgment to Gere and Lane and say that this is a decent result.