July to be a 'suicide' month for good Summer blockbusters in 2017

Half way through the summer everybody was scared that the summer box office is looking weak compared to the years before it. Except for 'Wonder Woman' and 'Guardians vol2', none of the films really took off; some even diving into the abyss. People were not coming out into the theatres as much as anybody related to the film business would have liked. Everybody blamed it on the films and the badness of it. Most films made the bottom half of Rotten Tomatometer, indicating to the public that the movies were not worth the time and money of moviegoers.


The film industry began pointing fingers at the reviewers who got a peek before the actual screenings and bashed the movies unapologetically, resulting in low theater turnouts. Reviewers defended themselves saying good movies will be well received. The point was proved by 'Wonder Woman' and 'Guardians', though I wouldn't count them as classics; but as good entertainment.

Then comes July.

'Despicable Me 3' was doing decently well as the month began though not up to the expectations. But the first weekend saw the most anticipated wall crawler's new incarnation in 'Spiderman: Homecoming". Not only was the movie very well reviewed, but it also made a grand opening weekend of 117m$, that surpassed most expectations. It was like a breath of fresh air for the industry looking at the dismal box office performance of the summer. With such ratings and anticipation, it was a sure shot hit and is expected to continue energizing the box office for weeks to come. But, will it?


The week before 'Spiderman' reached the theatres another July blockbuster opened for the critics to review - 'The War for the Planet of the Apes'. It's reception was astounding. So, it was expected that this movie will dethrone 'Spiderman' in a week. Sure enough, this weekend, that's exactly what happened. 'War' made $55m, while 'Spiderman' had to settle for $45m, which is a drop of above 60%; a much sharper drop than expected. Did the well reviewed 'War' cause this? It might have.

On the other hand, 'War' was being anticipated to open much better. Some analysts even marked it at $80m in the opening weekend. It's prequel ' Dawn of the Planet of the Apes' opened to 72m$. 'War' was better reviewed than even the critically appreciated 'Dawn'. Therefore, there was always the chance that it opened better than $72m. It fell short, by almost $20m. So, not only 'Spiderman' had a sharp drop, but the topper didn't exactly perform as it deserved. The weekend's overall gross was $163m, whereas the week before it made 200m$ and 225m$ before that. The $63m was attained by 'Despicable Me 3' which fell 42%, 'The Big Sick' an indie which went wide and still running 'Wonder Woman'. 'The Big Sick' was also a very well reviewed movie, that opened wide with confidence due to it's amazing performance in limited theatres. Well, it fell short too. This was just one such week. Three amazingly reviewed movies not performing to expectations. Which begs the question; is public not influenced by reviews as previously stated?

Coming into the mix next week, is the legend Christopher Nolan's 'Dunkirk'. Guess what? The movie is amazing too. It is one of the best war movies as per one critic. That is yet another greatly reviewed movie in direct competition with some of the other best-reviewed movies of the year. Will people come out to see 'Dunkirk'? Or will they choose to see the other movies pending in their list? Or will they just choose to remain at home?

This tight competition is causing great harm to all these amazing works. 'Dunkirk' has to succeed in a place where other good movies haven't been able to cash out their reviews for box office profits. How are these movies going to play out in the coming weeks at the box office will be watched very closely, and anxiously.





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