OK, I kid. I kid because I love.
I was chatting with a couple of theater managers today about Thursday night’s and Friday AM’s numbers for “Justice League,” and one said and I quote, “OK, but it’s not like WE KNOW this movie is opening because of the crowds. Not like ‘Star Wars,’ where the place is just packed and buzzing.”
So. Multiply that by a few thousand cineplexes, and damned if “Justice League” didn’t manage a Thursday night and daytime Friday that points to a $97 million opening.
Considering the projections from Box Office Mojo and others were $110 million, well, no champagne at the WB this weekend. Maybe Korbel. But not the good stuff.
I saw it as roughly on a par with the spectacularly successful and grossly over-rated “Wonder Woman.” Folks, these movies are long past the point where they shared an original idea. “Wonder Woman” was “The First Avenger” — War, Germans, a bomber that “must be stopped.” Seriously.
“Justice League” has a great Jason Momoa take on Aqua Man, a nebbishy spin on The Flash. And that Israeli model Gal Gadot back as Diana, the “adult in the room” over all those superheroes.
These aren’t serious movies, they’re serious money-makers and the best “Avengers” is not that much better than the worst “Justice League.” So, as Abraham Lincoln once said in a review, “Those who like this sort of thing will find this the sort of thing they like.”
“I laughed, I cried,” was taken.
“Wonder” is selling out evening showings, my manager friends told me.
“Nobody” is going to see “The Star,” my folks tell me.
One thing working against the movie which nobody is talking about? Rotten Tomatoes withholding critic-linked reviews of the film until Thursday afternoon, to allow two critics that they’re promoting on a TV show/webcast as their…whatevers.
Warners, part owners of RT, might have been down with hiding reviews for a movie after the “Batman vs. Superman” debacle (which I rather liked for its tone and the fact that is was “about something”), and “Suicide Squad,” where all the reviews nuked it.
But RT’s stunt made it look like they were helping WB hide the film from ticket buyers.
Who, if my staggering readership numbers are an indicator, simply clicked on Metacritic and saw the movie wasn’t terrible, but wasn’t all that.
RT gave the film the air of something worth hiding. They punched a hole in “Justice League,” just for a chance to launch two young, telegenic nobodies nobody has ever heard of on a TV show where they share their five years of moviewatching experience.
Sorry, sometimes you feel like poking the bear.
Anyway, maybe Friday night will fix this shortfall, maybe Saturday will push those numbers up. Stay tuned. Here.