Monday Morning Quarterback Part II

By BOP Staff

November 28, 2012

What did you do for *your* Thanksgiving holiday?

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Kim Hollis: Red Dawn, the remake of the '80s flick, earned $21.7 million over the five-day Thanksgiving weekend. What do you think of this result?

Jason Barney: Based on the amount of negativity I had heard prior to the opening weekend this result is actually quite strong. The $65 million budget is key here, regardless of how bad the film actually is. I guess in some odd way I am pulling for this one to succeed, as I was such a fan of the original. I'm also a Hemsworth fan and have been since his appearance in Star Trek as Kirk's father. The film is not going to rip up the box office over the next few weeks, nor will it have strong holds, but if it is as bad as everyone is saying, and it even comes within spitting distance of the production costs, the studio will have dodged a major bullet.

Looking at the numbers, if Red Dawn manages a 55-60% drop from Sunday's total's during the will be closing in on $30 million going into weekend #2, and that is nearly half of the budget. If the drops are larger, if the bottom falls out, this one will be out of the top 10 pretty quickly. The quality of the top 10 will push this botched remake out of movie-goers' attention pretty quickly.

Matthew Huntley: It puzzles me why MGM (finally) released Red Dawn at Thanksgiving of all times of the year, not least because of its quality, but also because their juggernaut, Skyfall, is only in its third weekend of release and both films are competing for the same demographic. It's almost as if the studio didn't care and said, "Eh, just get it over with." I think a drop-off of 55-60% or less next weekend is too bullish and it's going to ultimately cap out at $45 million, which will be a disappointment but not an all-out disaster. Honestly, I don't think anyone, including the studio, ever expected this movie to do well.

Bruce Hall: Red Dawn is a remake nobody wanted of a movie whose concept is as hilariously dated as friendship pins and parachute pants. The original is such a bad film it literally becomes a work of satirical genius if you choose to watch it that way (and you should). I'd have been willing to accept the same thing out of the remake, as well. But in one of the most ironic things ever, an American entertainment company subjected itself to voluntary censorship to avoid offending a deep pocketed Communist benefactor.

That's almost as funny as Powers Boothe getting into a fistfight with a tank. But even the Chinese wouldn't have made a suitable proxy for the Soviets; we just don't have the same hysterical fear of them that we did of the Russians. So replacing them with mighty North Korea made it clear to me that for a new generation, Red Dawn would again break new ground in almost infinite levels of unintentional humor. The difference would be that in 1984, a room full of people already convinced the Russians were on their way could still take such a stupid movie at least half seriously.

I can say with a straight face that in the here and now, I take Iron Sky more seriously than I do Red Dawn.

But by God, was I curious. And I don't think I was alone. If ten people knew when and where a train wreck was going to happen, at least two of them would pack some lawn chairs and go check it out. They did this weekend, and Red Dawn walks away with almost $22 million. Even counting international box office - including North Korea - this thing isn't going to break even. But it's already made more money than it should have. It's already gotten more attention than it deserves. This weekend, Red Dawn pulled a Rocky and lost the fight, yet it has won my grudging respect.

Well done, Wolverines. Well done.


Felix Quinonez: I think the bar was set so low that this opening has to be a pleasant surprise for the studio. And although legs are pretty much out of the question, this result is not nearly as bad as it could have been for a movie that was on the shelf for three years.

Tim Briody: I completely expect it to fall off the cliff from here, but this is actually a very good total considering what it is and how long it sat on the shelf. It's very easy to bomb badly over Thanksgiving weekend, but $20 million for this is quite surprising kind of hard to complain about. Wolverines!

David Mumpower: What I want to know about Red Dawn is whether the Americans win. Nobody spoil me on this! With regards to the box office, if you had asked me at the start of the year how to rank the re-makes, I would have said Total Recall wins with Red Dawn and Dredd far behind. This appears to be the an accurate assessment but Red Dawn will wind up closer to Total Recall than I had anticipated. I also believe that it is positioned well on DVD because a lot of people who had interest in the title were not going to pay to see it in a theater. With a $65 million production budget, I feel that this is going to be a push or maybe even a modest victory, assuming there is any overseas appeal.

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