Monday Morning Quarterback Part III

By BOP Staff

August 13, 2015

Meryl rox.

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Kim Hollis: Ricki and the Flash, Meryl Streep's latest starring effort, earned $6.6 million. What do you think of this result?

Matthew Huntley: Eh, this an okay opening weekend and more or less right on target with my expectations given the material and marketing campaign, as well as the number of theaters that were showing it. I don't think the studio will turn a huge profit, if any, on the $18-million drama, but they won't lose a bundle, either. Ricki and the Flash won't earn Streep her latest Oscar nomination and will most likely get swept away into obscurity, and not because it's bad, per se, but because it just didn't make a very resounding impact. It feels like one of those movies you and your spouse might catch haphazardly on Netflix because it has Meryl Streep in it, but it's not one I feel anyone will actively seek out. With that said, I think it will cover its production budget while in theaters but will need help to cover its advertising costs.

Felix Quinonez: It's not good or bad but very expected. This movie seemed like it could have been memorable but judging by the reviews and trailers, the potential of the premise seems to have been squandered. The resulting film seems very predictable and will most likely be forgotten very soon.


Ryan Kyle: I think this is a pretty lousy opening. As I stated before, I think The Gift might have knocked a few million off of Ricki and The Flash. Opening in a similar amount of theaters as The Gift in hopes of adding a few hundred more in the upcoming weeks, Ricki's per theater average of $4,367 doesn't justify an expansion making the strategy backfire from opening wide immediately if even the targeted-area theaters can't get an audience.

Unless Sony couldn't cut a deal for the music rights, probably more than half of the $18 million budget went to Streep as nothing else about the production seems expensive. This is the kind of film that reviews matter for, and the collective reaction was about as equivalent to a shrug as you can get. The film even opened to less than half of Hope Springs in 2012, another Streep-Sony collaboration that opened over this same weekend. If Ricki follows Hope Springs' pattern, it would wind up with a final of roughly $35 million. However, I think something hovering in the $25-30 million range seems more likely for Ricki given its reviews and lack of any hype.

Edwin Davies: Well, it's the best opening for a Jonathan Demme film since The Manchurian Candidate in 2004, so that has to count for something.

Apart from it being exciting that Demme is taking a break from making documentaries about Neil Young to make a mainstream movie again, I think this is fine. It didn't get a huge push, either in terms of screens or marketing, and it seems that the whole strategy was geared towards a long run built on older audiences who have made Streep's other films into leggy hits. I'm not sure if that will happen since the support doesn't seem to be there - although the critics who liked the film seemed to really dig it - but this doesn't strike me as a disastrous start, but one that could go either way.

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