Monday Morning Quarterback Part I
By BOP Staff
October 14, 2008
If people wanted horror, they could have just watched the Dow bounce up and downKim Hollis: Quarantine, a horror film starring a bunch of unknowns, was the most successful new release this weekend with an estimated $14.2 million. To what do you attribute this performance?
Pete Kilmer: Zombies and the fact that it's "Cloverfieldesque" (TM Pete Kilmer) with its viewpoint. Also, has there been a scary movie in the last couple of months that a had a cool concept?
Scott Lumley: Halloween is bearing down on us like a freight train, and this is traditionally the time for scary movies to do well. Also, it starred the hot chick from Dexter (Jennifer Carpenter), so that's got to be an extra three or four hundred dollars right there...
Sean Collier: I'm always shocked that there isn't more of a Halloween release rush. Horror is cheap to make and easy to sell, and has a natural home in the month of October; while too many releases would tend to cannibalize each other, a lot of the smaller horror flicks that get scattered throughout the calendar would do much better in even a busy October, I think. Quarantine stood as the lone horror offering a mere three weeks from Halloween night; add in a relentless marketing blitz and a solid concept (and the Cloverfield bump) and I'm not at all surprised at the result. Now, if you'll excuse me, the one-screen house across town is doing a Cannibal Holocaust/Cannibal Ferox double feature that I really must attend.
Reagen Sulewski: It's sort of a myth that horror films do better in the fall - I mean there is a mood for horror films around Halloween, but it's more a boost to rental titles than theatrical ones. There have been a lot of really successful horror films in winter and spring lately. The most important thing to be for a horror film is innovative (if you're not a sequel). Quarantine is hooking into that idea that everyone is documenting everything these days, and the trailer had a fantastic level of paranoia.
Jason Lee: Frankly, I thought the commercials and trailer looked underwhelming. Horror films live and die by their ability to deliver a money shot - some crazy, scary, two-second shot that promises loads of unexpected scares. I didn't see that with Quarantine and so I honestly believe that teens came in based on the premise of the film alone (which isn't half bad) .
Kim Hollis: I think it's really a combination of a solid marketing campaign (it's not my cup of tea, but I do think it was totally hitting the sweet spot for teens/young adults) and the fact that we've had a bit of a dry spell when it comes to horror recently. There is a certain audience that will consistently come out for this stuff if they think it looks "good enough". This just seems to be one of those rare circumstances where the film actually delivers on its promise.
Brandon Scott: Teens continue to need movies to go to, to enact the yawn move with and hopefully make out during and after. Can't imagine many people over 20 would be contributing much to these sorts of efforts. That being said, the little marketing tagline implying it was based on true events was apparently effective.
Tim Briody: Somewhat related, when looking up what Cloverfield made, I had entirely forgotten that this movie happened nine months ago. I'm just not sure what it means.