Monday Morning Quarterback Part I
By BOP Staff
March 29, 2016
Kim Hollis: Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice earned $166 million domestically and $254 internationally during its debut weekend. What do you think of this result?
Jason Barney: I am of two minds about this. First, by the numbers, this is a pretty stellar opening. Only a small number of films have ever opened this big, and when history is essentially made, it is appropriate to notice. Unfortunately, I find myself struggling for other ways to sugarcoat this...
And I simply cannot. I guess I find myself thinking about much smaller films that make money, that justify the costs involved. Batman v Superman is turning out to be a fine example of box office stupidity, and I feel saddened by one of the potential results here. As a fan of much of the DC comic universe, if the long term numbers don't pan out....you have to wonder if the rest of the "franchises" will ever see the light of day. It is as though DC took a look at what Marvel had accomplished with Avengers, and to a lesser extent X-Men, and just said, "We can do that!"
Unfortunately that seems to be the extent of the thought they put into this. Perhaps I am being too critical here, the film did just open globally to $424 million. By most people's calculations, that is about 40% of the way to profitability, because a billion dollars seems to be the goal. My problem is that the film appears to not just be bad, but absolutely TERRIBLE. For the record, Batman seems to be the only DC character that constantly makes money. Man of Steel was worthy, but fell off the map very quickly. Most people seemed to have forgotten Green Lantern, but that went no where. All we have to do is look at Ant-Man and Guardians of the Galaxy to see the differences here with what Marvel has been able to achieve.
For a superhero film to get a Rotten Tomatoes score of 29%, the film has to be awful. I mean, we are already talking about comic book characters. People are expecting to grab onto the unbelievable and be entertained, and that isn't happening. At all. I will probably see it, but from this point on, I imagine Batman v Superman is going to get hit with some scathing word-of-mouth.
All of my criticism could be premature, though. $424 million in weekend #1 is a big haul.
Ben Gruchow: Every time I saw an industry update this weekend in regard to grosses for this film, I sounded like Sideshow Bob stepping on a rake.
Kudos to Warner Bros. for opening this thing close to $170 million; it's an awesome number. This is a $250 million production with roughly $150 million more in ad spend; the worldwide gross will ensure a profit for this quite easily, unless all my dreams come true and the final worldwide multiplier is 1.5. I don't normally vouch for a film's failure; I express disappointment at BvS:DOJ's relative success here because the movie is a mercenary project that transparently exists mostly to quick-launch a franchise. That happens a lot, but rarely this ponderously, with this lack of ambition or novelty, with this infusion of money, and rarely with this good of a B.O. result. I'll put it this way: Fan4Stic 2015 landed in my Bottom 5 of the year, and it's a terrible movie, but it was at least trying to tell a superhero story in an original way. The muted response to this I've seen from audiences heartens me.