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David Poland

By David Poland poland@moviecitynews.com

Friday Estimates by Klady – 3/29

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Monsters vs Aliens is about a third off of the top non-summer/non-holiday animation opening day of all time (Ice Age: The Meltdown), which was on the same relative release date in 2006. The 3-day on that film turned out to be $68 million… a third off would make $46 million or so.
But his is based on Klady’s estimates of Friday, not what studios are telling people. One guesser has the day at $16m… two others at $16.7m. Len is all the way down at $14.6m.
Even the $16.7m has the opening off 23% of Ice Age 3, leading to a reasonable $52.4 estimate for MvA… so the game still may be about other studios trying to make this opening look less successful than it is come Sunday night. But if the final looks more like $49 million and it gets spun as a disappointment of some kind, you will know that it was bull before it was spun the last time. And if it really does get up past $55 million, you will know that it is actually an unusual success based against its Friday number.
Lionsgate improved on its My Bloody Valentine 3D opening with the 2D opening of The Haunting in Connecticut . Not exactly Saw V, but damned good – Screen Gems good – for junky (on the face of it… haven’t seen the film) horror with no names.
12 Rounds will be a pricey dump for Fox. $3 million weekends on 2331 screens hurt.
Race To Witch Mountain got slapped hard by MvA… but they must have seen that coming.
And Watchmen, just crossing the $100 million mark this week, is now looking at an eventual $106 million domestic total. Anything less than $117.6 million will make the film a piece of film history as the single worst performance by a movie opening at $50 million or higher, replacing Hulk and the rest of the current Bottom 5, Spider-Man 3, The Village, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, and 8 Mile.

145 Responses to “Friday Estimates by Klady – 3/29”

  1. bulldog68 says:

    I see that almost everyone has their MvA estimates about $2m more than you. Why the huge difference?
    Another steep drop for Watchmen, will be lucky to double its opening weekend box office. Nice hold for I Love You man, and suprisingly for Knowing as well, thought it would drop more than 50%. And even dropping less than Duplicity, which I thought would have been the leggier film. 2009’s box office is a crazy kettle of fish.

  2. Hallick says:

    Kind of saddening to see Watchmen doing this kind of business so soon. As a movie, it’s as bad as it is great, but the great parts are still floating around in the front of my mind.
    And Jackie Earle Haley is pretty much 90% of why I’d still recommend that somebody see this thing (Matthew Goode, whose performance is highly and unfairly overlooked, is 6%, the opening montage is 3%, Patrick Wilson’s razor-clean cut schlub counts for another 1%). The one thing the movie delivered beyond the graphic novel was his performance without the mask; which was way more intense, unsettling, and moving than anything else in the film (jesus, just look at his face in the last confrontation with Dr. Mahattan. I just about wanted to cry).
    And his best line in the movie in the prison cafeteria? FRISSONS you could feel on Mars.

  3. Hallick says:

    “12 Rounds will be a pricey dump for Fox. $3 million weekends on 2331 screens hurt.”
    As John Cena becomes the Brian “Stone Cold” Bosworth of our times. Wait – WTF??? It’s a Renny Harlin movie!? What’s the next circle of hell going to be for this dude? A straight-to-video “Doom 2″ starring Joe Lando?
    “And Watchmen, just crossing the $100 million mark this week, is now looking at an eventual $106 million domestic total. Anything less than $117.6 million will make the film a piece of film history as the single worst performance by a movie opening at $50 million or higher, replacing Hulk and the rest of the current Bottom 5, Spider-Man 3, The Village, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, and 8 Mile.”
    For what it is, if you hermetically seal off any and all discussion of the film’s cost, I think the movie deserves its props for making what it did before the general public caught on to what it actually was as a movie.
    And apropos of nothing, in regards to the so-called sick violence factor of Watchmen turning right-thinking americans off before they ever see a frame of the film, I just saw a girl in a morgue snorting cocaine out of her dead brother’s open intestinal tract on “NCIS”(?!?) last night. Now THAT is going to give me nightmares for the next week. I never knew that show had the balls to go someplace like that before.

  4. Wrecktum says:

    The $3.50 3D upcharge for Monsters v Aliens will add a couple million to the final weekend gross. Probably just enough to push the film over $50m.
    Considering how much DreamWorks has pushed this 3D release over the past year, I’d consider this a disappointment.

  5. It may not be fair, but cost is a factor. Just like had Duplicity only cost $30 million (which is what it looked like it cost, give or take above the line talent prices), it’d be doing quite alright. But since it apparently (according to Jeff Wells) cost $80 million, it’s smallish opening weekend and 50% decline is a near disaster.
    Had Watchmen kept its budget at $100 million (and had WB made sure that it actually owned the rights to make the movie), then this figure would be embarrassing on the surface level, but something that could be eventually profitable. But the apparent $150 million cost, plus the Fox lawsuit, means that this flawed but ambitious film is going to lose quite a bit of money.
    I will say, that the only thing more surprising than Watchmen actually opening to $75 million (as certain parties had predicted) was its final gross coming in at barely $100 million.

  6. christian says:

    Has anybody noted that TV violence is on a par with movie violence now? The CSI shows are revolting to watch…

  7. mysteryperfecta says:

    A question to those in the know: is Duplicity underperforming? If so, how badly? What were the expectations for this film?
    Also, I continue to be surprised by the strength of the horror genre. Another great open for a starless, formulaic film.
    Finally, from what I’ve read, Adventureland is a solid film with heart. So it seems weird to me that their overriding selling point is “Come watch how much we say dirty words!”

  8. Hallick says:

    “Has anybody noted that TV violence is on a par with movie violence now? The CSI shows are revolting to watch…”
    I don’t think “violence” is really the word for it. That NCIS thing I was mentioning earlier couldn’t be categorized as violent, but it was still rather horrific and gruesome nonetheless. If I’d seen it on a show like Nip/Tuck, I would’ve shrugged it off as a typically outlandish action for that series and soon forgotten about it. But in the context of a little 8 o’clock CBS family hour show, the nervy-ness blew me away.
    What the CSI franchise has really done brilliantly is to sneak an unheralded amount of graphic content onto network television under the guise of being educational somehow at the same time in a Mr. Wizard-like way that kept the usual professionally outraged L. Brent Bozells of the world from being able to lay a glove on them.
    If a homosexual character casually picks a piece of lint off the shirt of another character, then holy shit, it’s the end of Western Civilization again for those types, and out streams the fire and brimstone press releases. But I can’t recall any CSI getting the same five alarm treatment since the inception of the series.

  9. Hallick says:

    “Finally, from what I’ve read, Adventureland is a solid film with heart. So it seems weird to me that their overriding selling point is ‘Come watch how much we say dirty words!'”
    Unfortunately, I think it’s impossible to market “heart” without coming off treacly or lame. Movie advertising is all about using the instantaneous; be it a cool image, a string of cuss words, the promise of nudity, or funny one-liners. Heart in a movie is rather cumulative, and it builds over the course of a scene or an entire film. How do you find a shorthand for something rather intangible like that to put into a 30 second TV ad?

  10. leahnz says:

    i was channel surfing during a bout of insomnia the other night and happened across a re-run of CSI:NY in which a man’s lower face had been blown off by an exploding joke cigar gag gone criminal; there was a huge gaping hole where his jaw/mouth should be with ragged flesh and bone fanning out grotesquely in a little blast pattern, very graphic and shown unflinchingly during an autopsy scene, and i thought, ‘holy shit, this is a tv show?’ (there’s a difference between gore and violence but tv seems rife with both nowadays)

  11. jeffmcm says:

    Where else are kids going to learn about the horrors of novelty joke cigars that have been enhanced by M80s?

  12. Wrecktum says:

    Sounds like something the Comedian would pull in Watchmen.

  13. adaml says:

    That’s a pretty interesting stat – lowest grossing $50m+ openers. Can’t believe The Village opened that well. Spidey 3 was obv shit even before it was released, no surprise that it didn’t hold. Ditto FF2. Didn’t see 8 Mile.

  14. Joe Leydon says:

    OK, I’m a little confused: How does Spider-Man 3, a movie with a worldwide gross of $890 million, wind up on any kind of “worst performance” list? I mean, OK, I can understand if some folks didn’t like it, but look at the scoreboard, folks.

  15. bulldog68 says:

    Its purely numbers Joe. Of all the movies with an opening of $50m and over, the three worst when comparing opening weekend percentage to final box office gross are currently Hulk with 47%, Spiderman3 with 44.9% and The Village with 44.4%. Watchman currently sits at 54.5%. It may hold the dubious distinction of being the first movie to open above $50m and not double its opening weekend gross.
    While it may seem that DP was thrashing Spiderman3, the scoreboard showed that it dropped like a rock. Dark Knight, the only movie to open bigger that Spidey3 had a 29.7% comparison, and PoTC3, the movie with the third largest opening weekend had a 32% comparison. As for Spidey 1 & 2, their respective comparisons were 28.4% and 23.6%. Therefore Spidey 3 while being the largest opener of the bunch, was by far the ‘worst performer’ when compared with its own prequels, as well as with movies that open in its range. Having said all that, I’m sure that while the studio still made serious coin, their only worry will be if this type of performance hurts the future sequel(s). I count myself as one of those who liked Spidey1, loved Spidey2, and was completely flabbergasted at Spidey3.

  16. Joe Leydon says:

    Bulldog: OK, I think I understand where you’re coming from. But isn’t Spidey 3 actually the top grossing (in terms of wordlwide gross) of the bunch?

  17. bulldog68 says:

    You’re absolutely correct with that Joe. It was the only one that grossed more than $500m internationally so nobody is crying at the studio while we split hairs.
    I may be wrong, but while the big threequels of that summer all made money, domestically they all underperformed their immediate prequel, and you can’t help but shake the notion that they robbed each other of 25m-50m or so in eventual domestic gross. That combo was Spidey3, Shrek3, and PoTC3 was the biggest line up I’ve seen. It could also be because they all disappointed their respective fanbases as well. Shrek3 was drek. And while of the threequels I was disappointed the least with PoTC3, it still felt like it suffered from excessive indulgence.
    All that being said, for summer 2009, the only film that will be disappointed with less than 300M will be Transformers. If Harry Potter comes in at 275-300 its still in the ballpark. Terminator looks like an absolute crowdpleaser and could surprise in the 250m range. Star Trek also could bring out old trekkies, who may want to bring along their kids, (at least the ones that got laid anyway).I think Up will do more than WallE, and there is always room for a few pleasant surprises.

  18. Martin S says:

    I was going to mention CSI:NY. I’ll never forget hearing that it was originally designed after Se7en, and you can see it in the lighting and color of the first season. But it was the CBS execs based that made them change course.
    Hallick – nothing personal, but I think it’s a mistake to assume anyone who complains about TV is apart of the Bozell camp. Christian is a solidly left guy and he called CSI revolting to watch. The common ground isn’t ideology and I think you’d find a number of stalwarts on the left in agreement. The difference is Bozell is a loudmouth over the issue and IMO, the only reason we don’t hear more audience complaints over the content is audience drift.
    As for Watchmen, I had no idea they made action figures, figurines, toys, dolls, whatever-the-hell-you-want-to-call-em. That to me, really sums up how nuts T-W is as a company. They agree to a 3HR R flick – then bang out a toy line.
    Reminds me of when Vince McMahon used to vehemently deny they marketed towards anyone under 17, while his PR flacks were issuing releases about how well toy sales were doing with the 10-13 year-old demo. Linda got called on it during one investor conference call, IIRC.

  19. Hallick says:

    “Hallick – nothing personal, but I think it’s a mistake to assume anyone who complains about TV is apart of the Bozell camp. Christian is a solidly left guy and he called CSI revolting to watch.”
    waitwaitwait whoawhoawhoa!!
    Martin, I wasn’t referring to Christian at all in that response. His mention of CSI only had made me realize that there was a lot of revolting sights on the show, which in turn made me realize that in all the years of Bozell’s TV watchdog group releasing its annual(?)list of television horrors, I never really noticed CSI in their litany of complaints. It could have been there, but I don’t remember it so.
    I was just going off on a tangent and speculating on a possible reason the series has always seemed to escape certain criticisms for its content because its seems so gosh darn educational about it all. Christian’s reaction to the show is wholly valid as far as I’m concerned. I don’t have any problem at all with it.

  20. Hallick says:

    “I think Up will do more than WallE, and there is always room for a few pleasant surprises.”
    Really? I had the opposite feeling after seeing the trailer. I think it’s going to be one of the bigger disappointments of the season.

  21. bulldog68 says:

    I think Up will do more because to many people WallE was an underperformer. While WallE had looked kid friendly at the first glance, it did’nt turn out to be that type of movie. It was more cerebral than a fun ride at the park. Up looks more like that fun ride, and plush toys of that fat little kid are gonna sell like hotcakes. Doesn’t that Up kid come across like he was Paul Blart at eight?

  22. Aris P says:

    Maybe my idealism needs a reality check but I find it sad, pitiful and disappointing that more average, non-fanboy moviegoers didn’t give Watchmen a chance. People are pathetic sheep, and word of mouth certainly contributed to this film’s death. Half of all the gems I’ve ever seen I’ve known nothing about, and walked blind into the theater. People keep saying Watchmen wasn’t everyone’s cup of tea but so what? It’s a daring, different and in some respects, unique film, and THAT kind of film experience is exceedingly rare in 2009. Shit all over it – AFTER you’ve seen it. Their loss, not mine.

  23. Lota says:

    Maybe Kamikaze is already on the plane to NYC but this is a great series…
    http://www.filmforum.org/films/dassin.html
    I won’t be in NYC until after most of these films : (

  24. Wrecktum says:

    I remember when people said Cars would tank. And then Ratatouille. And then Wall-E. All three opened to $40m+ and played out past $200m. Bottom line: never underestimate the power of Pixar.

  25. The Big Perm says:

    Aris, if people were really sheep, wouldn’t they have gone to see the movie that the big company spent a lot of money telling them to see?

  26. David Poland says:

    Actually, Joe, Watchmen will be the first of the group to actually lose money, though Hulk was right at the precipice, likely pushed over by the DVD boom of that period.
    All 5 were over $100 million.
    And it’s no real shock that all five are niche films.
    The details do matter.
    And being the worst at anything in the history of the industry, when there is a decent sized statistical grouping, is not nothing.
    I would actually NOT argue that this suggests that these films had the worst word-of-mouth of all time or anything as harsh as that. What I would argue is that they had huge interest in a specific niche and that the niche came out big-time in opening weekend… and no one else much cared. There are variations as to why… but the difference between a bigger gross and a big drop is finding the wider audience.
    Spider-Man 3, obviously, is a bit of an anomaly here… and the summer it was in, followed 2 weeks in by Shrek 3 and a week later by Pirates 3, was unusual. The film won the summer, in great part because it was first and had that one open weekend… even though it was still off 61%… but off of a $151m start.
    Anyway… studio wasn’t crying… but not thrilled either. Those giant films are highly leveraged.

  27. KamikazeCamelV2.0 says:

    “People are pathetic sheep”
    a) people don’t have money to just throw on movies they don’t think look any good
    b) people don’t have money to throw it on movies their friends say was terrible
    c) people would rather see their superhero movies a little big light of they’re dealing with an unknown brand
    d) maybe people just didn’t think it looked any good. these geek movies don’t tend to ever do as well as people “expect”
    You, who goes to see movies without putting any thought into it whatsoever, are not the average moviegoer. They prefer safe. They’d rather go see “Paul Blart”. But don’t act all high and mighty while sprouting condescending bullshit like “all people are pathetic sheep”.
    It’s downright insulting, actually.

  28. Joe Leydon says:

    OK, now let me make sure I understand what you’re saying: Spider-Man 3, a movie with a worldwide gross of $890 million, the 13th highest worldide grosser of all time, was a niche film? Damn. That’s some pretty freakin’ big niche.

  29. Joe Leydon says:

    Er, that should read “the 13th highest worldwide grosser of all time…”

  30. Aris P says:

    Sorry if you’re downright insulted Kamikaze. Never pegged you as one in the flock.

  31. David Poland says:

    Here’s a question… when the cool kids go see Observe & Protect, which no matter how “good” is a hard R Paul Blart… will they be sheep?

  32. The Big Perm says:

    A friend told me Raiders of the Lost Ark is a really great movie, but I told that fucker I’m no sheep, I don’t listen to you! And to this date, I haven’t seen it. It probably sucks.
    Hey Joe, the people who saw Spider-Man 3 are a niche of the “humans who breathe oxygen” group. A small niche as you can see, they couldn’t even put up a billion dollars worth of cash?

  33. Joe Leydon says:

    Gosh, Perm, does that mean Titanic is the only non-niche movie ever made? Or if you make allowances for inflation — which, yeah, I know, David is reluctant to do — does Gone With the Wind still qualify as non-niche?

  34. leahnz says:

    i’m unclear as to the definition of ‘niche’ as it pertains to movies here. what exactly is ‘niche’? or maybe easier to explain, what ISN’T niche? don’t all movies pretty much fit into some kind of niche if you think about it hard enough? i’m so confused!
    ‘Here’s a question… when the cool kids go see Observe & Protect, which no matter how “good” is a hard R Paul Blart… will they be sheep?’
    what is it to be a sheep? aren’t we all sheep in some respect? does not going to see popular movies mean you are less of a sheep? what if you are, in fact, a black sheep? does that make you better or worse than other sheep who go to the movies? (as someone who comes from a land with a shitload of sheep, i feel particularly well suited to pose these philosophical queries)
    nah, i’m just being a pain in the ass. but i am confused a bout the whole niche thing tho

  35. Joe Leydon says:

    I really liked Observe and Report. Baaaaaaa.

  36. IOIOIOI says:

    The Sheep that follows Poland around from Australia gets McWEENEY STYLE!
    “‘People are pathetic sheep'”
    Especially when they follow Poland around as if the fucker was Moses. If he’s Moses. Nat Portman and her peeps are in TROUBLE!
    “a) People don’t have money to just throw on movies they don’t think look any good.”
    GEORGE WENDT CALLS; “BULLSHIT!”
    I saw people walking out of American Haunting and Last House on the Left Tonight. Did those movies look 1/12th as good as Watchmen? HELL TO THE KNOW, CAMMY!
    People just refused to give something different a chance. This is why I like Warners unlike Poland. They at least as a studio have made two trippy ass exceedingly awesome films that Americans did not get over the last year in Watchmen and Speed. Mr. S and Dog Balls can go on all day about their money situation, but they at least give the American public something more unlike Lionsgates. Who should be putting a horrour movie out any week now titled; “MADEA SCARES SOME WHITE FOLKS WITH VIOLENCE, WHILE VISITING CONNECTICUT!”
    People see shit. What’s your next point Mr. Clever?
    “b) People don’t have money to throw it on movies their friends say was terrible.”
    SHEEP FOLLOW THEIR FRIEND’S ADVICE. I do not care how close a motherfucker is to me. I take the leap. I could give two shits of your piss and one bag full of a used Just for Men’s kit about what my friends think about a movie.
    Afterwords, it’s alright to check in, compare and contrast, then possibly yell at one another. If I just blindly took my people’s advice. I would have gone and seen “Tits, Nazis, and Comeuppance” in a theatre.
    Your next point Mr. Man.
    “c) People would rather see their superhero movies a little big light of they’re dealing with an unknown brand.”
    Would it have killed you to use a Comma? Jesus Christ Superstar and Judas’ exceptional solo number. That aside, Wendt, LET HIM HAVE IT! “BULLSHIT!”
    They will give shit a chance. Unless it seems like something that’s outside of their comfort zone. I would buy your point if you went there, but you are convinced of a BRAND selling these films. Well, Iron Man, was not a brand. He’s a Brand Now. So really, you are typing out of your ass again, but that makes you so damn special.
    Next.
    “d) Maybe people just didn’t think it looked any good. these geek movies don’t tend to ever do as well as people ‘expect’.”
    TDFUCKINGK! Really? People only HOPED that the American moviegoing public would be audacious enough to take a chance on this film. They once again proved they are a bunch of sheep. They will see Oscar pablum after Oscar pablum. They will see Taken just because it has a cool trailer, but something really cool they avoid. Why? America is 1/3rd COOL and 2/3rds LAME. This is what you have to deal with in terms of moviegoing audiences. The lames always going to see shit, making it successful, and ignoring the quality films that come out every fucking Friday.
    It’s sad, but Watchmen EXIST MOTHERFUCKERS! IT’S REAL, I HAVE ACTION FIGURES, AND T-SHIRTS TO PROVE IT! No matter what hate Dog Balls spews about it. No matter how much Cammy types out of his ass. No matter what pedestrian fucking critic comment Scott Mendelson makes. THIS FILM EXIST. IT REALS, IT GOT MADE FOR 150 MILLION, AND BA BA BOOEY TO YOU ALL!
    “You, who goes to see movies without putting any thought into it whatsoever, are not the average moviegoer. They prefer safe. They’d rather go see ‘Paul Blart'”.
    No, they prefer shit. They also make my favourite comments about the Matrix. “It’s not deep.” “There’s no philosophy in it.” “It’s just a stupid action movie. Why did they ruin it?” THEY DID NOT RUIN IT YOU STUPID MOTHERFUCKER. YOU WERE JUST TOO FUCKING STUPID TO CATCH ON TO WHAT WAS GOING DOWN 10 YEARS AGO!
    “But don’t act all high and mighty while sprouting condescending bullshit like ‘all people are pathetic sheep’.”
    No; Academy’s that vote for shit Best Picture winners, and nominate shit films year after year are sheep. The people they ignore, that go see the films the Academy ignores. They are sheep as well.
    It’s an endless fucking cycle, but Watchmen EXIST! It happened. I won, you all lost, and I will buy that DVD like a bad motherfucker.
    I AM STARSCREAM, AND YOU ALL ARE NOT EVEN CLOSE TO BEING ON GALVATRON LEVEL! MvA all up in your grill!
    It’s downright insulting, actually.

  37. bulldog68 says:

    One of these days Dave, you’re going to have to break down for us the several categories of niches and what are some of the films that you don’t consider niche.

  38. IO, i stopped reading your buffoonery after “I saw people walking out of American Haunting and Last House on the Left Tonight. Did those movies look 1/12th as good as Watchmen? HELL TO THE KNOW, CAMMY!
    People just refused to give something different a chance.”
    I’d say that they probably had trailers that better played to their strengths (albeit, however minuscule they may be). And, as I also wrote – people prefer safe. They’d rather the meat-and-potatoes of Taken than the weird European meat with that funky-tasting sauce of Watchmen. They knew what they were getting with Last House on the Left and (what I assume you meant) The Haunting of Connecticut (nobody went to see American Haunting if I remember correctly). And, yes, people do see shit. We’ve known this for as long as there has been cinema. We also know they ignore the challenging and difficult a good amount of the time, too. Why is it suddenly so shocking/insulting to your personal beliefs that they did it with Watchmen – a movie that has gotten far from unanimous critical praise btw. Judging from the reception it has received from regular people I think $100mil+ is bloody good (not compared the budget, mind you) since many people think the movie is downright terrible.
    Of course, I’m not sure why you’re bringing those two horror movies up since Watchmen will make more money domestically than those two will make worldwide combined (I would imagine – those sort of horror titles don’t sell as well internationally). Again, people will go see shit movies. Always have always will. The reason why people use word-of-mouth to determine movie going is because, unlike you I presume, people have friends who they trust to make good judgments. I told my friends Watchmen was kinda shit and, thus, none of them have gone to see it. That’s how it works. Not everyone likes to see every movie that gets released or is willing to gamble $15 on a movie that they don’t think looks any good. Maybe they would go see Last House on the Left which looks like a safe alternative (and one that less people have seen and thus hasn’t had the opportunity to receive widespread deadly word of mouth.) It’s not being a “sheep” it’s just being rationale. And as someone else implied (Joe Leydon perhaps?), wouldn’t it have been more sheepish for everyone to go see it because the marketers told them too? For once they’re actually using their own judgment and turning it down when the studios with their billions of dollars try and cram something down their throats. They got given superheroes and big colours and action and violence and they REJECTED it. Clearly they saw something there that they just didn’t like. What it was I don’t know, but it was there and they chose to not go. I mean, it’ll barely gross more than DareDevil!
    Besides, it was all the Watchmen fans that lead to such a downfall since they had built it up as the second coming of Christ and almost nobody who hadn’t read the book was falling for it. So the movie had such high recognition value and yet nobody actually wanted to see it. Blame yourselves, not the lowly audience members who’d rather see Taken (a far better example to use).
    Although looking up just now I see you talking about Starscream and Galvatron and I wonder if you are actually an alien. It would explain why you have no understanding whatsoever of human-to-human correspondence, nor the ability to understand why people think you’re a psychopathic dimwit.
    I am so glad to be going on holiday on Tuesday and am going to not have to think about you and your insane and insidiously devout megalomania for a whole two weeks. I am also genuinely so glad to not live near you because if I did I’d probably be tempted to meet you (we’d run in fear of you if any of us actually did, apparently) so as to prove how unimposing you really are when you’re no longer within the confines of your keyboard and monitor. MCWEENY STYLE ASSHOLE! Whatthefuckever.
    I’m not sure if you mentioned it (I assume you did since you think people’s grammar is some reason for sanctimonious outrage) but re-reading my initial reply I realised c didn’t make much sense. What I meant was that people are more likely to go with a dark superhero movie when they are a known brand. Jumping straight into the dark and sinister stuff just instantly turns people off. Would the Indiana Jones movies gotten anywhere if Temple of Doom were the first one? Nooo.
    I can’t even imagine what more I could’ve typed here if I actually had the willpower to read your claptrap beyond a paragraph or two.

  39. BTW, wouldn’t niche just be a movie that seems to be marketed towards only 2 quadrants. Young/Old/Male/Female/AfricanAmerican/Tween/Teen/IO.

  40. mysteryperfecta says:

    I think Kam has it right. I know we have a tendency to think of “niche” as something small. But DP uses the term to refer to a distinct, specific segment of the population, which is perfectly legitimate. In that regard, a smash hit can still be a niche film.
    When looking at the top grossers for the “superhero” genre, the category is dominated by a few players– the Spider-mans, the Batmans, the X-mens. You could argue that those properties have transcended their niche, and gained mass appeal. But you can’t legitimately consider these properties a part of the “comic book” niche anymore– they became way more than that before they became movies. So it would be helpful if DP defined the niche he is referring to when talking about Watchmen.

  41. The Big Perm says:

    I think you could refer to Watchmen as a niche film in some ways, but NOT Spier-Man 3. A huge budget movie with a huge ad push coming after two previous hits? If Spider-Man 3 is a niche film than every movie is…which in a way, like leahnz said, is true. If you get technical every movie that does not appeal to 100% of moviegoers is “niche.” So if every movie is nich, then why use “niche film? Just say “film.” It’s quicker and you don’t have to look up the spelling of “niche!”
    IO, dumbfuck, Watchmen is going to make more than a lot of Oscar movies do.

  42. Martin S says:

    Kam – I tend to agree.
    On Watchmen’s release, I mentioned that the opening could be low by 10-15% because of the economy. I think AvsM is proving this to be a trend. All I have is anecdotal proof, but parents I know are making kids choose between short and long-term wants instead of giving into both, or getting some kind of job for spending cash. Once a tweener has to babysit or whatnot for their money, they have heightened discretion on purchases.
    Re: niche. For something to be niche, something else must be popular. Duplicity fits the model of popular, but it’s not going to do a fraction of the business Hulk or Spidey3 did. The whole idea of niche/popular movies has become inverted.
    Spidey1 was consider niche before it opened to 110Mil. Then, it took it’s place next to Star Wars, which was also niche before release. So you can have popular and niche within the same genre instead of being a zero-sum game. Watchmen is niche because it obviously only appealed to a fraction of the Spidey/TDK audience, just as Ghost Rider and FF did. Hulk and Superman are both popular, but each failed on WOM to carry them into that realm. IMO, if Norton’s Hulk came before Ang’s, it would have reached near-Spidey numbers because it’s as good as Spidey1 and better than DD. But Ang-Hulk shot Hulk’s popular wad, as it were. This is partly why WB froze any movement on a new Superman.
    So Julia is as popular as Spidey, but Duplicity’s Rom-Com formula only attracts a fraction of the audience it once held, while Watchmen only pulls in the core of Spidey’s attendance. Studio logic then says to cast Julia as Spider-Woman and pool both audiences. Except this doesn’t work because the interest of both audiences are mutually exclusive.

  43. The Big Perm says:

    I think when discussing movies as niche though, intent is more important than performce, in my opinion. So like, some guy makes a zombie movie for a hundred grand for DVD, that was made as a nich film, and that’s how we can discuss it. And if it makes a hundred million dollars like Blair Witch, we can call it the niche film that transended. But it started as niche.
    Spider-Man 3, on the other hand, was never niche. They wanted to make as much money on a huge blockbuster as possible and sell toys. If it happened to make ten dollars, I wouldn’t call it a niche film, I’d call it a bomb.

  44. Hallick says:

    “Maybe my idealism needs a reality check but I find it sad, pitiful and disappointing that more average, non-fanboy moviegoers didn’t give Watchmen a chance.”
    It’s kind of sad. I don’t think it reaches the level of tragic.
    “People are pathetic sheep, and word of mouth certainly contributed to this film’s death.”
    Like somebody already said before, the sheep would have been the people that flocked to the movie thanks to the hype, the advertising, the other people telling them that it’s the greatest comic book ever written, the water cooler arguements here and on other blogs, etc. Why should someone disinclined to spend money on “Watchmen” because it didn’t interest them be anymore upbraided than someone who was disinclined to spend money on “Confessions of a Shopaholic” for the same reason?
    “Half of all the gems I’ve ever seen I’ve known nothing about, and walked blind into the theater.”
    I’d say that it would be all but impossible to walk blind into “Watchmen” at this point, unless you just woke up in a hospital like the Cillian Murphy character in “28 Days Later”.
    “People keep saying Watchmen wasn’t everyone’s cup of tea but so what?”
    So what is that there are people who had the opposite experience that you had and they would argue that a filmgoer’s money is better spent elsewhere, since for most working people there really is a finite amount of options.
    Personally, if half of the people who saw a movie said it was great, and the other half said it was shitty, I’d take a gamble and go check it out just in case I’m lucky enough to get the former experience. But most people go to movies thay they’re already expecting will be good; and they won’t go to movies based on the odds of a coin toss. It doesn’t make them sheep, it just makes them normal.
    “It’s a daring, different and in some respects, unique film, and THAT kind of film experience is exceedingly rare in 2009.”
    In other respects, it’s dated, poorly acted in several roles, the old age makeup is hoot-worthy, and other drawbacks. I think it’s an uncut diamond myself, but uncut diamonds look a lot like rocks to most people.

  45. steamfreshmeals says:

    Senor Arroz at FOX-TV should just have Fox Atomic Friday nights on the network, and release 12 Rounds and all that product straight to Network TV

  46. Chucky in Jersey says:

    Admit it, “Watchmen” went over $100M but will end up in red ink.
    The fanboys ought to be more worried about what’s going down in England. The Coroners Bill, now pending, is written so broadly that it could outlaw ordinary comic books.
    England also have an out-of-control Government in which a minister’s husband used taxpayer money to watch blue movies.

  47. Hallick says:

    “England also have an out-of-control Government in which a minister’s husband used taxpayer money to watch blue movies.”
    How is this any more out of control than half the shit members of the US government have done in the past and present? That example was pretty bush league by comparison. No pun intended.

  48. anghus says:

    i’d like to throw my 2 cents in on Spiderman 3 being a ‘niche film’.
    This shows Dave’s prejudice against all things geek. If it was translated from a comic book, it’s ‘niche’.
    Talk about a skewed perspective. One of the most recognizable and iconic characters is not ‘niche’. ‘niche films’ dont make 3 quarters of a billion dollars.
    Is every film that comes out during award season ‘highbrow’? Is every film that comes out in the Summer a ‘Popcorn film’?
    Sigh.

  49. Hallick says:

    When you come right down to it, what film ISN’T a niche film? Pick any movie and at least one of us here could find a way to pidgeonhole it in one kind of niche or another. So then, if everything can be reduced to a niche based on the fact that every movie has a primary slice of the audience that somebody could consider its base, then isn’t the entire idea of “niche” irrelevant? And do movies fail at the box office ONLY based on whether or not they (A) appealed to their particular niche, and (B), appealed to niches beyond their own?

  50. christian says:

    David waxes prophetic on the niche IRON MAN:
    “There is nothing here for non-geek adults, which there was in the coming-of-age Spider-Man films, the serious-minded Batman films, and the romantic-tinged Superman films. There is nothing here for women, unless they are suckers for the woman-who-obsessively-care-for-the-selfish man schtick. And it really is too dark for the little tykes…Either way, the movie has 3 weekends, max.”

  51. movieman says:

    Poor Renny Harlin.
    You’d never know judging by the mediocrity that is “12 Rounds” that he actually knew how to make smart, stylish kick-ass action movies once upon a time (“The Long Kiss Goodnight,”
    “Die Hard 2,” “Cliffhanger,” even “Ford Forlaine”).
    I just hope that after this film’s dismal failure Vince McMahon will stop trying to turn John Cena into a movie star. Dude is so boring and lameass he makes Brian Bosworth look like the bastard spawn of Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone. (Not a pretty picture, I know.)
    The greatest tragedy of “Rounds” is that the script–as unoriginal as it is–might have made a respectable Bruce Willis (or Arnie or Sly) vehicle two decades ago. And “Wire” alumnus Aidan Gillen actually does a pretty respectable job (think “Gary Oldman Gone Slumming”) as the psycho villain.
    Equally sad is the spectacle of Virginia Madsen reduced to doing disposable junk like “The Haunting in Connecticut.”
    You’d almost swear that her “Sideways” comeback four-plus years ago never happened.
    But hey, at least she got a (one-weekend-wonder-type) hit out of “Connecticut.”
    Question: if Madsen had won the Oscar instead of Cate Blanchett, would she be in a better position today re: the quality of scripts currently being offered?
    I’m almost afraid to answer that.

  52. bulldog68 says:

    My humble apologies for the length, but I love this discussion.
    The commerce definition of the word niche is as follows: specialized market: an area of the market specializing in one type of product or service. Somehow this argument reminds me of Evian water.
    Sci fi has always been considered a niche market and then Star Wars blew the lid off of that. Was it a niche film, or did it transcend? Is it still in the same niche as Firefly, Starship Troopers, and Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy? Did Star Wars serve the geek crowd, well what about the romantic elements, or the action elements? Are action films a niche, like Speed and 12 rounds, or is 12 rounds targeting the WWF niche, if then did Rundown target that same niche?
    We can ask so many questions about niche, but I think that really there are no rules and clearly defined lines. IMO, the film business, is just that, a BUSINESS. The makers of Watchmen did not take a meeting and decide

  53. Dr Wally says:

    “Would the Indiana Jones movies gotten anywhere if Temple of Doom were the first one? Nooo.”
    A pedant writes : chronologically Temple of Doom IS the first one.
    Randomly, i’m glad to see ILYM holding quite well, hopefully it will exceed Sarah Marshall’s numbers at least. Segel’s engagement party ‘toast’ will be hard to top as the year’s funniest scene.

  54. To be fair, I’m sure Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom would have done just fine as the first film in the series. Most of the outcry over the film was over the (misconception, in my opinion) that is was so much more violent and gorier and less family friendly than Raiders Of The Lost Ark. Had it been the first one (and had Spielberg not became ‘mr. family filmmaker’ with ET by the time Temple of Doom came out), I’m sure few would have complained. Because at that point, like Raiders, it would have been ‘an exciting action film directed by the guy who made Jaws and produced by the creator of Star Wars’. People were (if I recall) mostly upset because the film was so different from Raiders (and, in retrospect, kudos for Spielberg and Lucas for playing with a different set of blocks). Had Temple Of Doom been the original, there would have been no basis for the criticisms. Is it as good as Raiders or Last Crusade? No, but it’s pretty great by any reasonable standard (I’d say the same about Crystal Skull, but I digress).

  55. storymark says:

    “As for Watchmen, I had no idea they made action figures, figurines, toys, dolls, whatever-the-hell-you-want-to-call-em. That to me, really sums up how nuts T-W is as a company. They agree to a 3HR R flick – then bang out a toy line.”
    You’re working off a false assumption there. The toys aren’t aimed at kids – they aimed at the same 20-35 year old nerd base as the comic. They sell the toys at record stores and novelty shops along with the Texas Chainsaw Masacre action figures, not next to the Ninja Turtles.

  56. Actually, even Toys R Us has a ‘collector’s editions’ or what-not isle where they sell Watchmen figures right behind the isle with GI Joe and Batman (also stuff like Twilight action figures and, if I recall, Matrix stuff). I noticed it just yesterday and was amused.

  57. IOIOIOI says:

    Perm: you are a big fat dummy. That’s all I need to respond to you.
    Kamel wrote; “IO, i stopped reading your buffoonery after ‘I saw people walking out of American Haunting and Last House on the Left Tonight. Did those movies look 1/12th as good as Watchmen? HELL TO THE KNOW, CAMMY!’People just refused to give something different a chance.”
    Buffoonery? Use firefox you dick. It’s a general point to make in the context of your goofy fucking response to Aris. If you did not respond like the cunt that you are, then things would be different. You being a douche with a gaping asshole. Well, really, that’s on you.
    “I’d say that they probably had trailers that better played to their strengths (albeit, however minuscule they may be).”
    Bullshit. The Last House on the Left trailer gives it all away. While the Haunting in Connecticut trailer is nothing more than a rip off of the fucking UNBORN trailer. Again… DOUCHE… try harder.
    “nd, as I also wrote – people prefer safe. They’d rather the meat-and-potatoes of Taken than the weird European meat with that funky-tasting sauce of Watchmen. They knew what they were getting with Last House on the Left and (what I assume you meant) The Haunting of Connecticut (nobody went to see American Haunting if I remember correctly). And, yes, people do see shit. We’ve known this for as long as there has been cinema. We also know they ignore the challenging and difficult a good amount of the time, too. Why is it suddenly so shocking/insulting to your personal beliefs that they did it with Watchmen – a movie that has gotten far from unanimous critical praise btw.”
    Film critics are the safest and most lame of all moviegoers. Anything that is different. They usually dismiss, then 10 years later they praise. Flawed argument there, douche.
    “Judging from the reception it has received from regular people I think $100mil+ is bloody good (not compared the budget, mind you) since many people think the movie is downright terrible.”
    And those people lack the ability to grasp what they are seeing. Again; read my bit about the Matrix sequels, and you will get how I feel about those people.
    “Of course, I’m not sure why you’re bringing those two horror movies up since Watchmen will make more money domestically than those two will make worldwide combined (I would imagine – those sort of horror titles don’t sell as well internationally).”
    You just explained why I did it, but you lack the ability to realize what I did. You really are a goofy motherfucker.
    “Again, people will go see shit movies. Always have always will. The reason why people use word-of-mouth to determine movie going is because, unlike you I presume, people have friends who they trust to make good judgments. I told my friends Watchmen was kinda shit and, thus, none of them have gone to see it.”
    Did you also tell your friends you have shit taste in movies, have no idea about genre films, and it shows? No? Well that’s why I would never listen to a word you would say about a genre film. It’s not your thing. The fact your friends do not realize this… is kind of funny.
    “That’s how it works. Not everyone likes to see every movie that gets released or is willing to gamble $15 on a movie that they don’t think looks any good. Maybe they would go see Last House on the Left which looks like a safe alternative (and one that less people have seen and thus hasn’t had the opportunity to receive widespread deadly word of mouth.) It’s not being a ‘sheep’ it’s just being rationale.”
    Avoiding something challenging in order to see something safe. Makes you a fucking sheep. Going along with the herd is never a good fucking thing. Again, dumbass, this has nothing to do with Watchmen. It has to do with any film that’s creates it’s own thing, and the sheer neglect shown to these films by the American moviegoing public.
    “And as someone else implied (Joe Leydon perhaps?), wouldn’t it have been more sheepish for everyone to go see it because the marketers told them too?”
    Uh no. You and him are giving too much power to marketers. Really. It’s just a bad argument.
    “For once they’re actually using their own judgment and turning it down when the studios with their billions of dollars try and cram something down their throats.”
    Again, let’s go back to your fucking astute statement to your friends, that you think the film sucks. Obviously; your friends are a bunch of fucking sheep, that decided to let your fucking opinions be shoved down their throats. Instead of going along with their own opinions. The fact that you would give the shit to the studio. While referring to the power of word of mouth, is fucking staggering.
    People who go along with their friend’s opinions on film are sheep. PERIOD. Thus explaining why word of mouth is and will always be a way people are sheep more then movie marketing.
    “They got given superheroes and big colours and action and violence and they REJECTED it.”
    Yes; idiots rejected it. Good for them. Good for them.
    “Clearly they saw something there that they just didn’t like. What it was I don’t know, but it was there and they chose to not go. I mean, it’ll barely gross more than DareDevil!”
    Worldwide it will gross much more than Daredevil, and your spelling of Daredevil. Demonstrates that you should stick to the flicks you like, and shut the fuck up about comic book films. You know absolutely nothing about them, but you have sheep friends who think you do. Again, I find that rather fucking funny.
    B”esides, it was all the Watchmen fans that lead to such a downfall since they had built it up as the second coming of Christ and almost nobody who hadn’t read the book was falling for it.”
    Again, this just means that people are stupid, they are sheep, and ignored a great story for safe bullshit. This makes you seem as daft as your fucking friends. Seriously; it’s one of the greatest books of the 20th century. If you do not get what that is. You are gone.
    “So the movie had such high recognition value and yet nobody actually wanted to see it. Blame yourselves, not the lowly audience members who’d rather see Taken (a far better example to use).”
    Blame yourself for being such a fucking simpleton.
    “Although looking up just now I see you talking about Starscream and Galvatron and I wonder if you are actually an alien.”
    Alien? Again, really, you are an asshole.
    “It would explain why you have no understanding whatsoever of human-to-human correspondence, nor the ability to understand why people think you’re a psychopathic dimwit.”
    A psychopathic dimwit? You are such a fucking waste on this blog, that you should just leave.
    “I am so glad to be going on holiday on Tuesday and am going to not have to think about you and your insane and insidiously devout megalomania for a whole two weeks.”
    Read this last paragraph you git, then come back to me with whose an insane and insidiously devout megalomaniac. Seriously; I do not give a fuck if you are going on Holiday, and no one else does either. You have only a small group of people on this blog that give a shit about your ass. Most of them could give a shit about your catty bitchiness, and will celebrate this blog not having to deal with it next week. You and McMahon add and have never ADDED JACK OR SHIT TO THIS BLOG. YOU ARE A NOTHING HERE. LEAVE, RETURN, NO ONE GIVES A SHIT.
    The fact that you think anyone will give a shit about you. Demonstrates how sad you are, and how much you and McMahon have in common.
    “I am also genuinely so glad to not live near you because if I did I’d probably be tempted to meet you (we’d run in fear of you if any of us actually did, apparently) so as to prove how unimposing you really are when you’re no longer within the confines of your keyboard and monitor. MCWEENY STYLE ASSHOLE! Whatthefuckever.”
    Kamel; do you think I would back down to you? Really? You think I am an internet tough guy? Uh no. You would meet me, fall in love, then realize how fucking daft you have been. It would be rather funny.
    “I’m not sure if you mentioned it (I assume you did since you think people’s grammar is some reason for sanctimonious outrage) but re-reading my initial reply I realised c didn’t make much sense. What I meant was that people are more likely to go with a dark superhero movie when they are a known brand. Jumping straight into the dark and sinister stuff just instantly turns people off. Would the Indiana Jones movies gotten anywhere if Temple of Doom were the first one? Nooo.”
    Blah blah blah.
    “I can’t even imagine what more I could have typed here if I actually had the willpower to read your claptrap beyond a paragraph or two.”
    Yeah. You just got MCWEENEY STYLED AGAIN BITCH! FUCK YOU, FUCK OFF, AND HAVE A WONDERFUL HOLIDAY!

  58. Joe Leydon says:

    IO: “Film critics are the safest and most lame of all moviegoers. Anything that is different. They usually dismiss, then 10 years later they praise.”
    This is just plain wrong, IO. Demonstrably wrong. From the 1970s onwards, film critics — well, OK, the best film critics — have been at the forefront of welcoming and encouraging innovation and envelope-pushing. Using this as an argument because two of your faves of recent times didn’t get universal raves is, well, weak.

  59. leahnz says:

    movieman, i’m the only person i’ve ever met who likes ‘the long kiss goodnight’! (i have a sloppy crush on it, actually, one of my fave sam jackson perfs and it’s just a weird bit of fun that works for me somehow)
    re: david poland’s ‘iron man’ quote posted by christian: ‘There is nothing here for women’
    say it isn’t so, dp! i have three little words that refute that statement: ROBERT DOWNEY JR
    (he’s a slice of heaven for us chicks, and the female vote is what made ‘iron man’ a winner at the box office; that film never would have made massive bank without us ladies opening up our wallets to indulge our collective crush on the incomparable rdj and his quite outstanding, cheeky take on the otherwise rather despicable tony stark)
    (i don’t know, i can’t stand that rather nasty, puerile, even annoying piece of work that is ‘temple of doom’, i sorta pretend it doesn’t exist)

  60. leahnz says:

    bulldog, i still don’t quite get what is considered niche and what isn’t, but i appreciate your effort there to unravel the mystery there

  61. Blackcloud says:

    Critics are either the safest of moviegoers or elitists who actively denigrate mainstream tastes in condescending, holier-than-thou tones. Joe, doesn’t it give you whiplash? Have you made up your mind which of those caricatures you represent?
    Temple of Doom is better than Last Crusade.

  62. movieman says:

    IO: As a “Watchmen” admirer, I’m as stunned by its screeching halt at the box office after opening week(end) as you are.
    It saddens me that horse dung like “The Incredible Hulk” and “The Fantastic Four” (1 and, most especially, 2) will outgross it.
    But isn’t it time for everyone to just move on?
    I loved “Speed Racer,” but didn’t obsess about it’s b.o. demise-
    or how utterly clueless/stupid audiences were for rejecting it.
    (Which, of course, they were.)
    “Watchmen” will most assuredly be solid gold on dvd, and fans can regale each other for years with stories about how ahead of its time it was; how it was “Blade Runner, Part Deux” (not really, but you get the extrapolation); yadda, yadda.
    On another tangent altogether: “Monsters vs. Aliens;” major yawn.
    Am I the only one who’s already bored to tears with 3-D CGI ‘toons? And to think, there’s (at least) a dozen more set for release by year’s end.
    Props to Danny Boyle & Co. for matching (and soon besting) “Juno”‘s domestic cume.
    Gotta admit that I never saw that coming. Of course, I never took it seriously as an Oscar contender until early December.
    In Toronto I (stupidly) pegged it’s ultimate North American b.o. purse at around “Namesake” levels. Guess the joke was on me.
    Hell, Jamal is even a contestant on “American Idol” this season.
    Didn’t think that was possible after “American Dreamz,” but it just proves sometimes you never know…
    P.S.= “I Love You, Man” is perfectly fine. It’s not, however, the second coming of “The 40-Year-Old Virgin.”
    Or even “Role Models.”
    Sorry, but Jason Segel creeps the crap outta me. His screechy-bitch voice alone is worse than a million fingernails playing chopsticks on a blackboard.
    Moving On, Part 2

  63. leahnz says:

    i prefer ‘last crusade’, blackcloud, by a looong way

  64. bulldog68 says:

    IOIO, you

  65. movieman says:

    Leah- I (correctly) guessed you might be a “Kiss Goodnight” fan.
    Terrific movie; and superior (thanks to better direction and no Val Kilmer) to Shane Black’s “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang” in my book.
    Finishing my previous thought:
    Jason Segel?
    “I Loathe, Despise and Detetst You, Man.”
    P.S.= Sorry, Leah, but I have to agree with Blackcloud.
    “Temple of Doom” IS better than “Last Crusade” (despite our abiding love for River Phoenix and, oh yeah, Sean Connery).
    On a completely unrelated note:
    “Summer Lovers” is Randal Kleiser’s best film.
    Ever.
    Do I hear an amen, Lex?

  66. mysteryperfecta says:

    “I think you could refer to Watchmen as a niche film in some ways, but NOT Spider-Man 3.”
    You’re right, but that’s because the biggest target market for Spider-man 3 was the audience for the first two, which was, well, almost everyone.

  67. Joe Leydon says:

    Blackcloud: Yeah, I’m sure that’s exactly what people thought two years ago when they saw all those lobby displays of my Knocked Up rave review: Boy, what an elitist! LOL.

  68. ployp says:

    “re: david poland’s ‘iron man’ quote posted by christian: ‘There is nothing here for women’
    say it isn’t so, dp! i have three little words that refute that statement: ROBERT DOWNEY JR”
    I second Leah. My mom, who I dragged to see Iron with me, remarked how ‘cute’ Robert Downey Jr. is. Coming from some one who doesn’t usually give out these kinds of compliments, that means a lot.

  69. ployp says:

    About Taken – finally caught it on DVD and I was very disappointed. What a bad movie although Liam Neeson’s presence sort of justifies me watching it ;). How could it have been such a hit in the US?

  70. leahnz says:

    all right, ployp! backing up for the ladies
    ‘P.S.= Sorry, Leah, but I have to agree with Blackcloud. “Temple of Doom” IS better than “Last Crusade” (despite our abiding love for River Phoenix and, oh yeah, Sean Connery).’
    that’s ok, i can take it (sniff, sniff, wiping the tears form my face). i’m sure there are swarms of people who prefer ‘temple’, i just don’t like that movie! it’s icky hockum in my book (and going from the fabulous marion ravenwood in ‘raiders’ to that annoying kate capshaw character was a big step down for me, yuck)

  71. IO, I did not read a single word of what you typed so it was all in vain. I’m sure I’m better off by having done so.
    Scott, you make a good point about the Indy movies. If Temple of Doom had have been first would people have then criticised Raiders of being too family friendly and not as hard-edged as Doom? With audiences being the fickle things that they are I’m sure it would have been.
    In regards to niche… I think what it all boils down to in regards of the highest grossing movies of all time technically being “niche”, there are movies that are niche and marketed as such (Watchmen) and movies that are maybe niche but can then transcend that and appeal to other segments of the audience.
    Iron Man may appear niche by appealing to teen boys, but the quality of final product made it appealing to older audiences, the presence of Downey Jr made it more appealing towards “mature” women who think he’s a bit of a crumpet, and because also by appealing to those teen boys with it’s bright colours and such it sucked in their dates, too. So they ended up having a big chunk of different crowds.
    Watchmen appeared niche by advertising it solely based on the presence of the book (“those who haven’t read it need not bother” almost – turns out fewer people had read it than they were banking on, perhaps) and while they probably got a limited number of teens it was marketed more towards adult men. The women… was it marketed in any way to them whatsoever? It wasn’t marketed as a “women kick butt!” picture, nor was it marketed as a movie filled with sexy superheroes. It was dark and brooding but without the name brand of The Dark Knight so – as I’ve previously stated – some of the potential audience probably decided to see one of the safe horror titles on offer. Especially since they’re all R and they’d have a better chance of getting lucky after one of those than they would after the 2.5hrs of Watchmen.
    er, did any of that make sense?

  72. leahnz says:

    (‘that backing up for the ladies’ was re: ployp’s rdj remark, i personally liked ‘taken’)

  73. leahnz says:

    ‘er, did any of that make sense?’
    yes, kam!
    (but ‘niche’ is still so convoluted, i don’t get it; it would appear the term ‘niche’ can be bent to anyone’s will to fit any circumstance or definition, therefore losing its power and meaning; plus, someone referred to women as a ‘niche’ market a while back and that really got up my nose, i’ve had issues with ‘niche’ ever since)

  74. movieman says:

    Of course Karen Allen was vastly preferable to (terminally icky) Capshaw in “Doom,” Leah.
    But, really, that’s not a fair argument.
    Was there even a female lead in “Last Crusade”? If so, I’m totally blanking on who it might have been.
    And while we’re on the subject (sort of), aren’t Capshaw and Rita Wilson two of the biggest tools in Hollywood (“famous,” if at all, for marrying well)?
    At least Capshaw seems (reasonably) content being Mrs. Spielberg. Wilson’s on and off again attempts at reigniting her never-was acting career are utterly delusional.
    Guess I should add Jada Pinkett to the mix since she’s the worst of the bunch. Pinkett even likes to pretend that she’s some kind of rock star as well as an, uh, actress, when all she really is
    is Will Smith’s second wife.

  75. leahnz says:

    ‘last crusade’ had allison doody (dooley?) as the nazi double agent for whom both indy and pops fall (into bed at least), i guess technically she’s the female lead (quite bland from what i remember)

  76. jeffmcm says:

    You know what the biggest problem is with people who are mentally ill? That they are so often unable to recognize that they are mentally ill and project all their problems onto other people. That’s what I’d like to think, because otherwise they’re just colossal assholes who actively refuse to get along with others – as gets proven again and again, by their own words.
    Anyway, my take on the Indy movies is that Raiders is clearly the best, and Crystal Skull is clearly the weakest, but that Temple and Crusade are both very good movies in two very different ways – Temple, by emphasizing the dark thrill-ride kineticism, and Crusade by having the most heart and emotionality of the three films.
    Re: Jada Pinkett, I think she’s actually the best actress of that little group, and actually had the best career for herself before subsuming her life into that of her husband’s.

  77. Blackcloud says:

    I enjoy Last Crusade. I still have fond memories of seeing it in 70mm at the Eric 5 theater in Pennsauken, NJ when it premiered. But I’ve always felt that the movie smacks too much of a course correction. After the flack Temple received for its darkness and misanthropy, Lucas and Spielberg decided to go back to the slapdash, feel good adventure stylings of Raiders. Along the way, though, they lost something of the heft and mystery, and perhaps a little of the pathos, of Raiders. Leaving aside the poignancy of the Indy Sr./Jr. relationship, it’s kind of Raiders light. Same villains, same kind of quest, same sidekicks, etc. A little too facile, a little too predictable. I actually think it doesn’t have as much heart as Raiders.
    Believe it or not, I think Crystal Skull is more successful than Last Crusade. My view is that just as Raiders was Spielberg and Lucas’ homage to the 1930s serials they grew up watching in the 1950s, so Crystal Skull is their reconstruction (or maybe deconstruction) of the 1950s itself. And the 1950s, of course, were characterized by a fear and fascination with two things: the Soviets and extraterrestrial. Both exogenous, mysterious alien forces. Stick Dr. Henry Jones, Jr., into an adventure like the one he usually has and set it in the 1950s, and you are likely to wind up with something like Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. At its heart, it’s a meditation on mortality, L and S coming to terms with their youth and then overcoming it. On those terms it succeeds remarkably well. That may not be what everyone wanted or expected, but I far prefer that to what might have happened if they had had given the audience just what it wanted.

  78. movieman says:

    “Doody” is correct, Leah! (I looked it up in Maltin’s book, lol.)
    I’m assuming that you’re also spot-on about her being “quite bland” since–as mentioned earlier–I couldn’t even remember a prominent female role in that film.
    Jeff- While I’ll grant that Pinkett was kind of charming, and very pretty, in “Nutty Professor 1,” nothing she’s done since–nope, not even “Collateral,” a role I’m assuming she got as a favor to Big Willy (star of Michael Mann’s “Ali” three years earlier)–has made me want to reconsider her failed diva/professional appendage/major tool status. And wow, did she ever stink up the screen in last fall’s “The Women” (which would have smelled pretty rancid even without her irritating non-performance).
    Side note: At a “Collateral” press conference back in ’04, Pinkett was so attitudinal and full of herself you’d swear she actually believed she was the star of the damn movie. Poor Michael, Jamie and Tom could barely get a word in edgewise.

  79. The Big Perm says:

    Back to niche…The Godfather, as mentioned above, is a great example. We can say it’s nich because it’s a gangster drama and that serves a niche. BUT, it was based on a best-seller and the studio saw it as a big event type of movie and Coppola even looked at the project as a sell out movie. No one at that studio was thinking niche. I think DP throws niche around willy-nilly so it has no meaning.
    I think Last Crusade is sort of dull but Crystal Skull was just stupid. There is nothing I can remember from that movie that wasn’t insulting…not a cool action bit, not a really funny scene, nothing.
    Love the first two…while Doom isn’t as “quality” as the first, Lucas and Spielberg sucessfully topped it. And it’s the only movie of the four to have Indy actively engaged and proative during the climax.
    IO, I don’t think anyone reads your bullshit. No one wants to read the War and Peace of blog postings, written by a nerd maniac.

  80. The Big Perm says:

    I should also add that Renny Harlin has NEVER made smart movies. They may be entertaining, and I do like Cliffhanger…but he fucked up Die Hard with his fetishistic violence which the first didn’t have, The Long Kiss Goodnight was dumb as a box of IOs, and Ford Fairlane…no.

  81. Hallick says:

    “Terrific movie; and superior (thanks to better direction and no Val Kilmer) to Shane Black’s “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang” in my book.”
    Ach! That reminds me – What the hell has happened to Val Kilmer’s career? I was just at the video store a couple of hours ago, and yet again there was another straight to video release starring Val Kilmer.
    In the last three years you have to dig through The Steam Experiment, Columbus Day, 2:22, Felon, Delgo, Conspiracy, Have Dreams Will Travel, The Ten Commandments:The Musical, Dead Man’s Bounty, Played, and Moscow Zero just to get to the only major film in the bunch, Deja Vu. And I’m not even going to start in on “Knight Rider”. What the hell gives?

  82. scooterzz says:

    i had to sit through ‘the ten commandments’…i can/will never take kilmer seriously again….

  83. LYT says:

    I think Kilmer’s probably one of those guys that people got tired of putting up with, his value to the bottom line never having equaled how difficult he is to work with…except small companies for whom he’s the only “name” in the cast and will treat him like a star as much as they’re able.
    See also Wesley Snipes, Steven Seagal, Jean-Claude Van Damme…

  84. Click my name to see what Kilmer has been up to.
    For Top Secret and Salton Sea alone, Kilmer gets a lifetime ‘pass’ from me.

  85. The Big Perm says:

    Wow…I’m shocked he’s made that many movies in three years. Wonder what it’s like to go from Batman and Michael Mann to bottom of the barrel DVD movies?

  86. Lota says:

    Ha ha ha JBD
    Well Kilmer would get a lifetime pass + 64 oz drink from me too if he did not Phone in the worst Phoned-in-perf ever in a movie in Island of Dr Moreau. Yeah, So the movie was having other major problems, but he made the re-interp of it a particularly painful experience.
    I give him a lifetime pass for Top Secret! and Willow and the reckless but lovable dumbass Chris Shiherlis in HEAT.
    “the sun rises and sets with her man”
    I wish he’d lose 30 pounds and get back into things better.
    He wasn;t quite there in Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, but going in the right direction. he might be the next Mickey Rourke but he should skip the facial regime.

  87. The Big Perm says:

    I think there aren’t a lot of people who like WIllow. I do though!

  88. scooterzz says:

    seriously, all passes revoked:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bJ9JqIDffAw
    it went on forever……

  89. Lota says:

    A Lifetime Pass for Big Perm.
    C’mon Scoot–some of our best actors male and female have done some horrendous movies for money, or because they have major problems in their delusioned heads for a wee while.
    If he does it again, then you can revoke the Pass. Give him one more year.

  90. scooterzz says:

    lota — i’m a pretty cheap lay when it comes to live theater…..but….he went up on his lines and kinda hummed through a lot of lyrics…really a mess in a really messy show….and (not that this is a valid complaint) it appeared that he did nothing to get in shape for the tour…it was disturbing……

  91. I will give Jada Pinkett Smith a free pass since she was in Scream 2 – a movie that is very near and dear to my heard for reasons I won’t go into. “Bitch is gonna geddit! Want some popcorn?” haha. Amazing.
    In regards to Val Kilmer… one must suspect that he has not investing his earnings wisely and must take any job he possibly can just to survive in a manner that he probably thinks is befitting for a man of his “stature” (hah).

  92. Jeffrey Boam's Doctor says:

    I have some great Moreau stories (Stanley, Marlon & Ratman) Lota but they’d have to be off-site.
    People site REAL GENIUS as a Kilmer highlight but they are way off, that film has an offbeat charm but Kilmer seems wrong for the role. Kilmers metabolism is on prozac now. He’s going to be one doughy dude for the future. And he likes to p-a-r-t-y a lot.
    His best five films I feel are:
    Top Secret, Salton Sea, Top Gun, Tombstone, Heat

  93. Jeffrey Boam's Doctor says:

    Lota soon you’ll be able to actually BE Chris Shiherlis in the video game of HEAT.

  94. Lota says:

    No thanks JBD, I already was an Eadie to a Neil Mcauley in real life so taking down bank scores even in a game would be too foreign to my nature! I don’t even cheat on my taxes and I want to so badly.
    I don’t know if I am dying to hear your stories or if they’d make me bawl since I wanted that movie to succeed, and instead it was all kinds of f*cked up. Everyone including Frankenheimer’s wig acted like they were on heroin.
    Actually I thought Fairuza Balk was an excellent choice but then someone let her have dialog. Too articulate. Too human. Arrgh. And David thewlis…who must have been weaned on a pickle. So wrong for that part it seemed like sabotage.
    Island of Lost Souls is my favorite movie of all time :(
    I will have to do much soulsearching for when I am next in LA or NYC which is fairly often, if I want to hear these stories JBD :)
    Frankenheimer, may he RIP gets a lifetime Pass for Seconds, Manchurian Candidate and for Ann-Margret in 52 card pickup.

  95. Lota says:

    Yes Scoot, I realize that Kilmer is par-taying beyond even being able to or wanting to remember his lines but I hope with turning 50 and having IRS episodic battles that he understands he’s in gray list territory already and he needs to calm down or not be looking at gigs that will pay for a decent lifestyle.
    I hope he can lose some weight…he does not look good with the extra side of beef around the middle and chub in the face. So is chub a side-effect of prozac JBD? Too bad, but that could explain it.

  96. The Big Perm says:

    I love Thewlis in Moreau…you can tell he’s all “what the fuck have I gotten myself into” so he’s just trying to be solid and get out of there unscathed.
    I could watch Tombstone every night.

  97. Lota says:

    Whose Ratman by the way–do you mean Ron Perlman?
    And Stanley you mean the writer who was canned…he did an oddity called Hardware that was kind of good in parts and creepy. And nothing Marlon did would surprise me, although I’m sure problems with his offspring heightened his odd behavior.

  98. Lota says:

    Yuck.
    But that’s not what he was supposed to be Perm–he was supposed to be a surviving alpha male. Thewlis was not *capable* of doing anything. If IOLS was re-interpreted, he was to be a fit human partner for the leopard woman. Ugh. I would prefer extinction.
    Going by the book there was no Lota per se as it was developed by IOLS, a great interpretation of the HG Wells story, but since they had a woman (Balk) in that role, they likewise should have reprised the object of her affection in a similar way–righteous and masculine, not that limp pickle.
    And where Charles Laughton was sinister and fiendishly smart and camp all at once, marlon was just weird and hopelessly fat. I think Marlon could have done it mind you, but he wasn’t up for it at that time.

  99. Lota says:

    There was one really phenomenal scene in Island of Dr Moreau.
    When the little man…one of Moreau’s children introduced himself to the thundering oaf (Thewlis), and shook his finger with great solemnity.
    The little man reminded me alot of one of JF Sebastien’s toys “Gooood evening JF!”

  100. Hallick says:

    Don’t know about the partying or the Prozac, but when I see Kilmer on these DVD boxes nowadays, he always puts me in the mind of a guy pumped full of painkillers for a back/knee injury. He just has that bloat of a dude stuck on the couch watching daytime television in his sweatpants seven days a week.

  101. scooterzz says:

    i remember talking with thewlis for ‘james and the giant peach’ and him being more than willing to share ‘moreau’ horror stories…. it sounded like a nightmare (and, yet…i wish i’d been there…could you imagine?!)…..

  102. scooterzz says:

    He just has that bloat of a dude stuck on the couch watching daytime television in his sweatpants seven days a week.
    ouch….if it weren’t for my sweats, that would have stung even deeper…..

  103. Jeffrey Boam's Doctor says:

    Stanley was writer and director remember. He got fired but snuck back onto set under animal makeup to watch proceedings. Ratman and Marlon formed a great friendship, and Brando used him as a drinking buddy like a pirate with a parrot on his shoulder, literally. Not Perlman. The actual Ratman aka Nelson De la Rosa.

  104. scooterzz says:

    not sure how much of the legend i’m inclined to believe but…really….gotta love the image of kubrick sneaking (in make-up) on to a set to spy……

  105. Hallick says:

    “Click my name to see what Kilmer has been up to.”
    My eyes! Year’s worst upskirt shot ever!!!

  106. Hallick says:

    “ouch….if it weren’t for my sweats, that would have stung even deeper…..”
    Sorry ’bout that, scoot. I’m sure you cut a dashing figure all the same.

  107. Jeffrey Boam's Doctor says:

    scooterzz – you know I mean Richard Stanley not Kubrick right? Not a legend. Ask Stanley next time you see him.

  108. scooterzz says:

    um…at my age, ‘dishing’ is easier than ‘dashing’ but certainly appreciate the thought….

  109. scooterzz says:

    jbm — sorry, i totally misunderstood…. i’ve just done a piece on how brando fired kubrick from ‘one-eyed jacks’ and kinda mixed the thoughts…(tomorrow being the anniversary of ‘one-eyed jacks’ release)….i should probably be embarrassed…my bad….

  110. Joe Leydon says:

    A random thought: had there been homevideo (and direct-to-video movies) in the early 1960s — would Troy Donahue and Tab Hunter have had longer film careers? Along with Sandra Dee?

  111. Joe Leydon says:

    And Connie Stevens?

  112. scooterzz says:

    leydon — i don’t get it…

  113. leahnz says:

    ‘thunderheart’, hands down. i love that movie

  114. scooterzz says:

    leydon — if you’re equating the hsm crowd with the names you mentioned….it’s always been about marketing….dollar-for-dollar/era-by-era i think everybody’s on the same page…..

  115. Joe Leydon says:

    Scoot: I’m just wondering if these late ’50s/ early ’60s sex symbols might have found work after the dimming of their stardom if they’d been able to appear in made-for-vid features. Like Val Kilmer, Eric Roberts, Michael Pare and others too numerous to mention.

  116. Joe Leydon says:

    I wrote a magazine piece back in 2000 that touched on this. It’s a bit dated now, but…
    http://www.movingpictureshow.com/dialogues/mpsVideoStars.htm

  117. Video killed the radio star but did allow actors far beyond (or before) their prime to continue acting.

  118. Joe Leydon says:

    True enough, Kam. And, mind you, there were lots of other actors I could have mentioned in that piece…

  119. christian says:

    Troy Donahue was in THE GODFATHER PART 2.

  120. jeffmcm says:

    One more here for Top Secret!.
    What The Happening was for 2008 and The Wicker Man for 2005, The Island of Dr. Moreau was to 1996.
    If there hadn’t been home video in the Pare/Roberts/whoever era, wouldn’t they have just gravitated to low-budget theatrical B-movies? I mean, just for example, Ray Milland was a big star in the 1940s but by the 1960s ’70s he was doing Corman movies and The Thing with Two Heads.

  121. Joan Crawford in Trog is one of my favourite examples.

  122. omg the first pictures have surfaced from the city-wide blackout that has hit Sydney. http://twitpic.com/2lkd2 terrifying!

  123. The Big Perm says:

    Jeff hit it right. Who can forget all the shit Italian horror movies proudly proclaiming’ And come see Mel Ferrer for five minutes standing in a room and never associating with the rest of the cast!”
    You know, to see the talent of Fulci all you have to do is watch City of the Living Dead. That brings you right back to appreciating the man.

  124. Nicol D says:

    “As a “Watchmen” admirer, I’m as stunned by its screeching halt at the box office after opening week(end) as you are.”
    I am an unabashed Watchmen fan. Loved the movie. This weekend I also watched the motion comic and the Black Frieghter DVD. Can’t get enough.
    …but Warner’s and Snyder have no one but themselves to blame for Watchmen’s failure. Truth is, it did not have to be a hard R.
    They were trying to appeal to the same fan base as 300 with the extra hard violence and sex. But the comic is nowhere near as graphically violent or sexual as the film.
    The film should never have been green lit as a hard R. And those who say that means I don’t “get” the comic…quite the opposite.
    What made the comic so adult were the ideas and the tone. That is what The Dark Knight understood. You actually do – not – have to show everything if you find the right tone which Nolan did.
    And again, I say this as a fan of the movie. As a fan, I loved the graphic nature of it. But had I been the director or the executives who green-lit it…never.
    Watchmen failed because they made a film that really has no mainstream appeal. And let’s be honest, the whole “made Time’s top 100 novel” schtick is just corporate synergy to raise awareness of a film coming out with a massive budget and limited appeal.
    I will see the film again, but I do not harbour any ill will against people who did not like it. I can see why it is not everyones cup o’ joe.

  125. The Big Perm says:

    I don’t think the extreme violence or sex is what killed it. To use your example, it didn’t kill 300. Let’s face it, it’s long tough cerebral superhero movie without a real villian, and the sort-of villain they do have gets away with it. Not really an audience pleaser.

  126. Nicol D says:

    It wasn’t the – only – thing that killed it but it did dominate a lot of the writings about the film. I think people can withstand graphic sex and violence in a story they believe in…but Watchmen just was not the name brand WB thought it was.

  127. christian says:

    I adore CITY OF THE WALKING DEAD. Best Italian DAWN OF THE DEAD rip-off eva!

  128. christian says:

    But Fulci didn’t direct COTWD aka NIGHTMARE CITY — Umberto Lenzi all the way. Ferrer does get a hot sex scene, so that might have been his bonus…

  129. jeffmcm says:

    Fulci’s film is City of the Living Dead, which is more similar to his The Beyond than anything else. Nightmare City is less artful but more goofy. It’s the one where the zombies arrive on an airplane which they have apparently been flying for some time.
    Nicol, I agree with most of what you said above, except one thing – the Time magazine ‘Top 100′ list came out in 2005, when there was no reason to assume that Watchmen would ever actually be made into a movie. If you want to suppose that it made the list as part of corporate synergy, it would have only been to promote the book itself (and by extension, appeal to a demographic not particularly interested in the likes of Evelyn Waugh or Chinua Achebe).

  130. christian says:

    Jeff, I saw COTWD when it came out in the theater…zombies with machine guns!

  131. Nicol D says:

    Jeff,
    I’ll split you the difference. Watchmen as a potential film property has been around for awhile with many big directors making pitches to do it well before Snyder. I do remember reading about the film being developed in the mid 2000’s. That’s how I first heard about it. I missed it in the 80’s.
    When did Fox develop it vs. Warner’s?

  132. jeffmcm says:

    The ’90s, I think. I don’t know for sure.
    My point was, it was in development hell until Snyder revived it as his next movie post-300, and after that list got made.

  133. Nicol D says:

    I don’t disagree with what you are saying, Jeff, just looking at it from another angle. Feel free to disagree, but Warners was flailing in the mid-2000’s with its film franchises. Batman was yet to be the hit it is now and Superman was still wandering in the wilderness as Marvel had hit after hit.
    I just do not think it is too out of order to think they were trying to see if they could get some appeal/traction out of Watchmen by putting it on that list.
    I could be wrong…I don’t know timelines of ownership for sure… but it wouldn’t surprise me.

  134. The Big Perm says:

    christian, I know Fulci didn’t direct City of the Walking Dead…my bad on not being clear. What I meant to say was, you watch a Fulci movie and you think “this is the dumbest thing I’ve ever seen,” but THEN you watch City of the Living Dead or even worse, Night of the Zombies…and you realize he was miles ahead of a lot of his contemporaries. At least Fulci had some atmosphere and some creepy zombies in decent makeup.
    I still think a soft R Watchmen would have done about the same amount of money. I mean, yeah the movie didn’t go amazing, but hasn’t it beaten Daredevil and many other comic book failures that were all PG-13?

  135. The Big Perm says:

    I can’t imagine being an age to see movie like City of the Walking Dead in an actual theater in a first run. Although I did get to see it on a double-bill drive in a few years ago with The Beyond.

  136. jeffmcm says:

    Nicol, I can believe that the Time Magazine editorial staff would have been encouraged to put a graphic novel on their list to keep it hip. And I can believe that they were encouraged to put a DC property on the list to keep it within the company (which also explains why they would pick Watchmen over the much-superior-in-my-opinion Maus). But to go the extra step and say that the corporate higher-ups were interfering with the magazine’s editorial staff to try to promote a movie that might have never been made that had been labelled ‘unfilmable’? I think that’s too much of a stretch. Studio people are too busy actually making movies to spend their time on such conspiracies.

  137. jeffmcm says:

    Let me emphasize, though, I agree that a PG-13 Watchmen would have made a lot more financial sense – and that a true ‘visionary’ could have made it happen by distilling the book and maintaining what works at its core. But Snyder isn’t a visionary.

  138. Hopscotch says:

    Skeet Surfin’!!!!
    Yeah, I love Top Secret too. I don’t think any of those parody movies really age that well. But some of the jokes in that movie still crack me up. “have we not met before meusier?”
    I’m not really sure what to make of Kilmer. I’m in the small minority on this one, but sure I like Tombstone, but don’t love it. His performance in the Lion movie with his Irish accent, is particularly dreadful. The Saint, to me, is what did it in.

  139. christian says:

    I prefer COTWD over any Fulci. It’ just so bugfuck. Mel Ferrer, machine gun zombies and an aerobic massacre…ZOMBIE is too gross, makes me feel dirty watching it. Except for the shark vs zombie fight.

  140. storymark says:

    Jeff – “the Time magazine ‘Top 100′ list came out in 2005, when there was no reason to assume that Watchmen would ever actually be made into a movie. ”
    2005 is the year Greengrass’ version almost started shooting. So, while it clearly fell apart, there was a pretty good reason to think a movie could be made at the time – because it was about to be made at the time.

  141. Lota says:

    okay JBD got it now. And agree re. Real Genius.
    And re. my ragging on Thewlis in Moreau…no disrespect to him as an actor he’s done many great films, but he was the wrong guy for that movie part.
    I get bored easily with zombie movies. There’s like 4 good ones and one of them is Shawn of the Dead. Great stuff.

  142. jeffmcm says:

    Storymark, I wasn’t aware of that.
    Never mind my earlier comment.

  143. frankbooth says:

    I’m off to finally see Coraline. I’ll be pissed if it isn’t a hell of a lot better than Mirrormask.

  144. Hallick says:

    “‘thunderheart’, hands down. i love that movie”
    Thunderheart is one of the great uncelebrated little gems made in the last 15-odd years. I think its time to buy myself a copy tomorrow. Graham Greene is GOLD in that movie.

  145. leahnz says:

    yes, hallick, yes, yes, yes!
    (ok, that sounds a bit ‘when harry met sally-ish’ creepy, but ‘yay’ to that sentiment! one of the most gripping ‘true crime’ flicks – tight, convincing, well-paced, beautifully photographed, plus i have a never-ending crush on sam shephard, green is simply outstanding like you said, and kilmer gives one of his nicest perfs, a lovely, subtle arc for him – just sublime all around, imho, a big kiss on thunderheart’s cheek from me)

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“I remember very much the iconography and the images and the statues in church were very emotional for me. Just the power of that, and even still — just seeing prayer card, what that image can evoke. I have a lot of friends that are involved in the esoteric, and I know some girls in New York that are also into the supernatural. I don’t feel that I have that gift. But I am leaning towards mysticism… Maybe men are more practical, maybe they don’t give into that as much… And then also, they don’t convene in the same way that women do. But I don’t know, I am not a man, I don’t want to speak for men. For me, I tend to gravitate towards people who are open to those kinds of things. And the idea for my film, White Echo, I guess stemmed from that — I find that the girls in New York are more credible. What is it about the way that they communicate their ideas with the supernatural that I find more credible? And that is where it began. All the characters are also based on friends of mine. I worked with Refinery29 on that film, and found that they really invest in you which is so rare in this industry.”
Chloë Sevigny

“The word I have fallen in love with lately is ‘Hellenic.’ Greek in its mythology. So while everyone is skewing towards the YouTube generation, here we are making two-and-a-half-hour movies and trying to buck the system. It’s become clear to me that we are never going to be a perfect fit with Hollywood; we will always be the renegade Texans running around trying to stir the pot. Really it’s not provocation for the sake of being provocative, but trying to make something that people fall in love with and has staying power. I think people are going to remember Dragged Across Concrete and these other movies decades from now. I do not believe that they will remember some of the stuff that big Hollywood has put out in the last couple of years. You’ve got to look at the independent space to find the movies that have been really special recently. Even though I don’t share the same world-view as some of my colleagues, I certainly respect the hell out of their movies which are way more fascinating than the stuff coming out of the studio system.”
~ Dallas Sonnier