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David Poland

By David Poland

Box Office Note

Last summer, I wrote day by day about the fastest grossing film of all time, Pirates of The Caribbean: Dead Mans Chest, as it kept pace after its then-record opening ahead of all others for more than a month.
So you might be wondering how Spider-Man 3 is doing after its record-setting 3-day opening…
It fell behind Pirates 2 on Tuesday, Day 5, with $169.4 million versus P2’s $169.5 million.
On Day 6 the spread got wider, with P2’s $183.7m gaining $7.5m on SM3’s $176.2m. It also fell behind both Star Wars: Episode One – Revenge of the Sith ($182.7m) and Spider-Man 2 ($180.1m).
Of course, all of this doesn’t diminish the fact that Spidey 3 had a truly breathtaking opening. And May fatigue does not scream that people dislike the film. Schools are open later than ever and that massive opening eats through must-sees dramatically.
But thinking about to The Right Stuff… “And for a brief moment, Spider-Man 3 became the greatest box office smash anyone had ever seen.” 5 days.
(Corrected for too many Pirates, 7:41P)

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77 Responses to “Box Office Note”

  1. Jeffrey Boam's Doctor says:

    i’m confused is the new Pirate film coming out Pt4? Did I miss one?

  2. jeffmcm says:

    Whoa, May fatigue? If there’s such a thing as May fatigue I feel bad for all those huge movies that are opening in July, much less Shrek and Pirates.

  3. Lark says:

    Funny, I was just over at Boxofficemojo right now checking the numbers for SM3. Could have saved myself some time by coming here first.

    Whatever caused SM3’s lackluster weekday numbers, I think they pretty much mean that the movie has no chance of matching the Pirates 2 final domestic gross, especially with the heavy competition ahead. I wonder how it will do in the foreign markets tough. The first two film were comparatively weak internationally, but this one seems to be doing better.

  4. Wrecktum says:

    I think you’re wrong, Poland. I think that word of mouth is slaughtering this film. $400m is completely out of the question now and, I believe, so is $350.

  5. David Poland says:

    sorry, jbd

  6. MarkVH says:

    Opening weekend box office records in the age of inflation we live in are are something akin to home run records in the steroid era – they simply don’t matter any more. The only one that matters is Titanic’s overall worldwide gross, which the current climate doesn’t allow for. It’s the equivalent of DiMaggio’s 56-game hit streak.

  7. Eric says:

    David, I’d be a bit more interested in your thoughts on the insanely expensive movies this year. I think I read somewhere that two or three movies this summer cost more than Superman Returns, which you constantly harped on last year. Is this the most expensive summer ever?

  8. Tedward says:

    One thing to keep in mind though David is this:
    Pirates 2 opened in July.
    School was out, all theaters (as oposed to just the big multiplexes) were open for matinees instead of just evenings, so the weekday grosses for Pirates 2 are obviously going to be a bit higher.

  9. Jeffrey Boam's Doctor says:

    Definitely fatigue. These boxoffice behemoths aren’t that interesting anymore -my cynical ears only perk up when I hear trainwreck or see an op-ed piece by Steven Bach. To me the real interesting stories are the films that breakout – the Disturbia’s and their ilk. To me they are far more fascinating to examine than these mc franchises that pretty much offer nothing outside of the pre-determined marketing juggernaut behind them.

  10. Skyblade says:

    Yeah, I think the threequels are going to exhaust the hell out of people. I think if Spider-Man 3 got a better reaction, we might not quite be seeing a piece like this, but it was going to be outpaced by Pirates and really, the first two movies sooner or later. The other two May titans better watch out, I think the same feeling of saturation is going to hit them too.Pirates also has the disadvantage of being released in twelve months, and the last movie not getting an astounding amount of kudos. I think Spidey 3 will be the lowest, but I don’t think we’ll be seeing a large range between the three.

  11. The bad buzz is spreading like wildfire. It’ll be interesting to see how the other threequels fare and perhaps non-sequels could get extra patrons purely because they’re not sequels (although, that will then prompt those movies to indeed get sequels greenlit. it’s a vicious cycle)

  12. EDouglas says:

    It’s not really a fair comparison since Pirates 2 opened at the height of summer when there was no school on its first Monday, Tuesday, Weds, etc. There’s no way Spider-Man 3 can do as well during the weekdays with that in mind. The real test will be this weekend when Spider-Man 3 will have a big drop… but will it have as big a drop as Pirates did in its second weekend?

  13. crazycris says:

    Fatigue for threequels notwithstanding… everyone I know is really anxious for another dose of “Captain” Jack Sparrow! ;o)
    ALthough the 2nd movie was a bit wanting (anyone else think that fight on the wheel would have been more effective at 1/2 its length?), it left many people with questions to be answered: how on earth are they going to bring Jack back? what will the East India Trading Company do with Davy Jones’ heart?, and even more suprising: how on earth did Barbossa come back to life after the 1st movie?!?! he was dead!!! (not to mention the romantic note: who will Elisabeth end up with?)
    Oh, and KCamel you said:
    “perhaps non-sequels could get extra patrons purely because they’re not sequels”
    you mean there are actualy summer movies this year that AREN’T sequels?! wow! ;o)
    (ok, I’ll admit to looking forward to Becoming Jane, which is I believe a summer movie, except in my neck of the woods it won’t be out till the fall)

  14. murdocdv says:

    It’s Star Wars Episode 3 not One. On SM3, I haven’t found anyone that has seen the film that out and out recommends it. I agree Wrecktum, word of mouth is horrible. Here how my projections work out right now. Assume another $6 million yesterday for a weekly total of $182. If SM3 only loses 50% of its audience week over week for 10 weeks, its domestic tally is $332 million, if it loses 60% of its audience week over week, its domestic tally a the 10 week mark is $272 million. I think its going to have a hard time cracking $300M once Shrek 3 and Pirates 3 land.

  15. ThriceDamned says:

    There’s no way SM3 doesn’t break 300m. Failing to do so would mean a multiplier of less than twice opening weekend, which even The Hulk managed to do (and that film was I believe, a LOT more hated than SM3). I’m guessing that it will end up in the 340-355m range.

  16. murdocdv says:

    ThriceDamned: Ok, that was my really quick week-by-week math. This time, I did weekend-to weekend drops, and then weekly total to weekly total drops separate. Starting numbers:
    SM3 Weekend 1: $151M
    SM3 Weekday 1: $31.7M (assuming $6M yesterday)
    10 week total using 50% drops on each component individually: $365M
    10 week total using 60% drops on each component individually:
    It’s all crystal ball work at this point, the possible 10w totals are numerous, and you can play with lower or higher percent drops. Most of it of course comes down to this weekend with no competition, so if SM3 has a Hulk size drop of > 60 percent this weekend and maintains that trend, it is going to have trouble hitting $300M domestic. This is all for fun of course, I have nothing against the movie other than I don’t think it was good.

  17. Sandy says:

    I watched Starz Family and they had their On the Set piece for POTC3…have to say it looks the most fun and impressive of all the Pirates films..plenty of battles and no sign of the Kraken….Capt. Jack is back to his old self! Plus, Keith Richards and Chow Yuan Fat as pirates!

  18. Wrecktum says:

    Spidey didn’t even hit $6m today. X3 anyone?

  19. MASON says:

    But according to Patrick Goldstein’s column today, the “kids” don’t want to see POTC 3 at all.
    And the “kids” he interviewed all live in the Hollywood Hills (seriously) and talk like the sons of daughters of filmmakers and studio execs, which they probably are.
    I love Goldstein, but sometimes he really misses the mark.

  20. Hopefully this puts an end to all the “Spider-Man 4, 5 and 6!” talk.

  21. storymark says:

    I think the school thing is a bigger element that people are taking into account. Though many colleges are out for summer already, most public school are still in session. A huge chunk of the audience for the movie is still sitting in a little desk, getting dreaming of summer.
    Around here, the theatres don’t start showings untill after 4:00. In 2 weeks, they’ll be adding a minimum of 2 more shows per day.
    And as for the word-of-mouth, on-line it does seem to be pretty awful. But no one I have spoken to in person is nearly as critical of it as the average net poster.

  22. Wrecktum says:

    “Around here, the theatres don’t start showings untill after 4:00. In 2 weeks, they’ll be adding a minimum of 2 more shows per day.”
    In two weeks Spidey will be down to 1,500 screens.

  23. cjKennedy says:

    “Hopefully this puts an end to all the “Spider-Man 4, 5 and 6!” talk.”
    Don’t bet on it. I submit as evidence Exhibit A: Hulk 2.
    Superhero franchises are like studio crack. The more watered down the return, the more they smoke.

  24. storymark says:

    “In two weeks Spidey will be down to 1,500 screens.”
    That has nothing to do with it’s current weekday performance, which is effected by the target audince being sequestered for most of the day.
    I’m not saying the weekday take will shoot up once school’s out, just that the current situation does effect the dialy totals.

  25. Direwolf says:

    Good discussion. I think the best tracker for SM3 is the orignal film. It was released at the same time and broke the opening weekend records in similarly easy fashion.
    Using Mojo’s ticket prices and bumping up 2007 by 18 cents over 2006 (in line with recent trending), I calculate SM3 sold about 22.3 million tickets on opening weekend vs. 19.8 million for the original. This front loading of ticket sales is clearly taking away from ticket sales on the weekdays so far. The comparable weekend 2 drop will tell us a lot more than these weekday figures.
    Also, Sony is perfectly happy to front load given the competition. This thing needs to be well over $300 million before Pirates 3.
    I think that is doable but I do think it will fall short of $400 million.
    Maybe it is because I am not the target market but I worry most about Shrek 3. It only has one weekend before P3 although it does get the great Memorial Day weekend bump.
    As for P3, everyone I know is anxious to see how the story turns out. Assuming it is as good or better than P2, which I think is likely (not that I think P2 was bad — just a step down from the excellent original), it has the best path to blowing past $400 million given the timing of its opening, the breadth of its potential audience, and the freshness of its storyline.

  26. Wrecktum says:

    Running time might hurt Pirates 3 but I agree with your analysis.

  27. Amblinman says:

    You’re dreaming if you think there won’t be more Spider-Man movies. At the very least a 4. Regardless of what the drop is for the film this weekend and the next, studios do not turn their backs on an opening like this one. It would be insane.

  28. jeffmcm says:

    I can see the movie falling short of $300m, depending on how well it holds up this weekend.
    I’m glad DP referred to Disturbia (previously) as ‘cockroach-like’, I’m amazed it’s making as much money as it still is.

  29. Wrecktum says:

    I don’t think it’s possible for Spider Man 3 to make less than $300m. If it did it would have worse week-to-week holdovers than X3. The drops would have to be extraodinary for it to miss that mark.

  30. murdocdv says:

    Here is another way of looking at. Look at the 6-day all time totals on Box Office Mojo:
    Spidey 2 had 48% of its total after 6 days. If Spidey 3 follows the same pattern, then $176/.482 = $365M
    However, if Spidey 3 has 58% of its total at the 6-day mark like X-men 3, then $176/.58 = $303M.
    So unless it really tanks this weekend, Spidey 3 is probably a lock to hit $300M.

  31. jeffmcm says:

    That X-Men 3 comparison is probably closer, especially given the extreme front-loading and a movie where fans are unhappy and general audiences are merely okay with it.

  32. Crow T Robot says:

    Poland, your day-by-day play-by-play of box office numbers over the past few summers has become a poisonous thing. It represents all that is wrong with this industry.
    It also appears that you scrutinize movies you have some kind of critical agenda with. Be it Superman Returns or Pirates or Dreamgirls, whether you realize it or not, it’s pretty clear that you use the numbers to boost another kind of argument.
    So… a wager now…
    I’ll bet you a cool $100 that you can’t limit ALL discussion of weekend and weekday grosses to ONLY Saturdays and Mondays. All the way into August.
    I think it’ll do you and your credibility some good.

  33. murdocdv says:

    Geez Crow T Wet Blanket, playing armchair executive with box office results on this site is a lot of fun. Don’t make DP stop!

  34. Wrecktum says:

    I love reading BO analysis. Considering this is a site about the motion picture business, I think it’s perfectly acceptable fodder for discussion.

  35. jeffmcm says:

    Crow’s comment is just going to cue DP to make a “go away if you don’t like it” comment, which is fair, but I agree with him in a very general sense – the movie world would be better off if we didn’t treat this art form like a horse race as much as we do.

  36. Wrecktum says:

    There are plenty of art and cinema blogs to access if that’s your interest.

  37. jeffmcm says:

    That’s not the point.

  38. bmcintire says:

    I know it means little in the long-run / big-picture aspect of things, but both WAITRESS and AWAY FROM HER had better per-screen averages than SPIDERMAN 3 yesterday. And while most title’s rises and falls over the weekdays have been single-digit (plus or minus three or four percent), SPIDEY’S drops have all been in the double-digit range.

  39. bmcintire says:

    That horse-race / art-from dichotomy shift is going to have to start much higher up the food chain than in the press. The studios’ investment in the words “product” and “franchise” and “property” have done much more to damage the art form than the up-to-the-minute revelation of box office figures.

  40. brack says:

    I think Dave’s credibility went out the door with his SM3 review. It may be the worst review I’ve ever read for a film, and unjustly I might add. You couldn’t even follow the plot, or the characters motivations. I mean jeez, the first two movies had their “problems,” but no one seemed to care. It’s curse of the third movie, and it’s very real.
    Rarely do I see a movie more than once, and I’ve already seen SM3 three times (once at the IMAX, and it’s looks amazing). It’s damn good entertainment.

  41. Wrecktum says:

    Everyone I know who’s seen it (to a person), has told me it sucks. Why should I trust brack over them?

  42. Hallick says:

    “I think Dave’s credibility went out the door with his SM3 review. It may be the worst review I’ve ever read for a film, and unjustly I might add.”
    Only-because-you-liked-it-instead. You found a movie you loved sitting through three times. Kiss your popcorn box, because that’s a rare as hell experience.
    But you’re still the exception. Considering all of the other reviews and comments I’ve heard from friends and acquaintances, Poland’s reviews of Spider-Man 3 was still within the realm of reasonable; and if his credibility rested solely on his SM3 review, it’s resting all comfy with a big frosty glass of lemonade.
    His review was probably more negative than the average, but not as far off the radar as your elation with the movie.

  43. Direwolf says:

    “You found a movie you loved sitting through three times.”
    I have a few though not in theatres. I can’t even count how many times I’ve sat through Shawshank. And everytime Oceans Eleven (Clooney/Pitt version) is on HBO I stop and watch it to the end. Return of the King I saw in the theatres three times including the midnight and earliest AM showing (that’s not fair as I am a LOTR addict from a young age). One Flew Over Cuckoo’s Nest. Godfather 1. Usual Suspects. Monty Python and the The Holy Grail. Zoolander. Any Seinfeld episode.

  44. jeffmcm says:

    The last movie I saw in theates three times was The Bourne Supremacy.

  45. Hopscotch says:

    Obviosuly from college-age downward you have much more time to see films on numerous occasions. There are many movies I’ve seen more than 3x in a theater…well not that many. But I’m pretty sure I saw The Fifth Element at least five times. I have no clue why I like that damn movie so much. It really is just incredibly juvenille, but god i loved it.
    Since acheiving adulthood, the only movie I saw three times in a theater was Return of the King.
    I’ve seen Hot Fuzz twice, and might see it again.

  46. brack says:

    trust your friends, wrecktum, they sound like jaded douchebags.
    okay, the first time I saw it there was some little boy who was way too young to be in a theater who couldn’t shut up, which left me pretty distracted for the first 25 minutes. I couldn’t get up and move, it was opening day. I yelled at his mom, told her to shut up her kid. she threw a waded up napkin, took her kid, and sat somewhere else. the second time was with friends for tuesday wings/movie, all you can eat wings and $5 movie down the steet. I was able enjoy myself this time. then I decided yesterday to see it at the IMAX on a quiet Thursday matinee before the weekend came–and it looks pretty good.
    I don’t know, it wasn’t like it was a throwaway sequel or anything. It had good action, was often funny and hilarious at times, and touching. that’s a good movie experience in my book.
    As far as Dave’s review, he(as well as a lot of the negative reviews) just seem like he forgot the first two films existed and had some of the same “problems” that the first two did. It was a bad review because he failed to even follow the story, and had questions about things that happened that anyone with half a brain or was paying attention you tell you. It was just very nitpicky is all.
    And this is from the same guy who adored The Thin Red Line because it was so deep. Give me a break.

  47. jeffmcm says:

    The Thin Red Line was the best movie of 1998.

  48. brack says:

    The Fifth Element is great fun.

  49. brack says:

    “The Thin Red Line was the best movie of 1998.”
    best at what, boring me to death?

  50. brack says:

    okay, TTRL wasn’t that bad, it was decent, but by no means great.

  51. Hopscotch says:

    The best movie of 1998 was a tie between The Big Lebowski and Rushmore. THAT’S FINAL!!!
    I’m predicting 60% drop of SM3. Which is what $60M still.

  52. jeffmcm says:

    “best at what, boring me to death?”
    You must not have seen Sphere (kickin it old school 1998-style)

  53. David Poland says:

    I’m not sure how I got to be “wrong” because I pointed out the fact. I didn’t say that word of mouth wasn’t a factor. I am quite sure it is. What I wrote that Mon-Wed numbers did not neccessarily reflect this. And they don’t.
    If you think box office analysis is bad, so be it. But we are talking about a $400 million-plus investment… and another $350 million on Shrek The Third and another $450 million on Pirates 3 (which will become the new MEFE).
    I followed Pirates and Superman last summer since they were the biggest movies. I will follow these three massive things closely this year (less closely than last year) and if Transformers or anything else jumps into these kinds of numbers, I will follow those two. And yes, J-Crack, if anyone doesn’t want to follow it, don’t read the piece.
    The problem with box office analysis is not, in my opinion, those of us who analyze, but the many loudmouths – including some pro journalists – who speak out based on little more than personal opinion. (and this is not a carpet condemnation of everyone in here at all) But the conclusion jumping gets crazier every year. Such as the SM4 talk. The breakeven on this film is somewhere around $700 million worldwide (once you add DVD, etc). They will make some money, but it will not be a major cash cow for the studio.
    And as I often write…
    Movies do not open in quality.
    Weekday box office in May IS different than weekday box office in July. (Which is why I really don’t like the Pirates 3 date.)
    And when we talk about numbers this big, the standards have to be taken with a grain of salt. If SM3 drops in the mid-60s this weekend, it should not be a shock or the start of headline hype.
    A $51 million second weekend would still be Top 10 all-time for a second weekend. And $233 million would still be the third highest gross after 10 days ever. So none of it is a disaster. And Shrek The Third opening under $100 million would not be the end of the world either. But the bar… so high… so irrational… and I don’t see how I can be blamed for that for trying to discuss these things in depth.

  54. Wrecktum says:

    “trust your friends, wrecktum, they sound like jaded douchebags.”
    Pot, kettle, etc., punk.

  55. So, apparently Dave has no credibility because he liked The Thin Red Line and not Spider-Man 3.
    That’s some crazy logic you got there Brack.

  56. ployp says:

    “The breakeven on this film is somewhere around $700 million worldwide.”
    Could you please tell me how these things are calculated? Thanks in advance.
    Also, with a movie this big, how much would the ads cost?

  57. murdocdv says:

    Using Spider-Man 3’s opening week total, $182M, here’s new projections:
    Spider-Man 2 had 51.4% of its’ total after opening week: SM3 total projection $354M
    X-men 3 had 60.3% of its’ total after opening week: SM3 total projection $301M.
    One more interesting bit of crystal balling from the Box Office Mojo all-time week chart. Revenge of the Sith at #3 has the best per theater average of $52,271 on 3,661 screens. I wonder what would have happened if Sith opened on Pirates 2 or SM3 # of theaters?

  58. The Pope says:

    It shouldn’t happen, but it’s simply absurd that EACH of this season’s blockbusters will be compared to others and then in their defence (or indeed the case against), mitigating circumstances will be found to support the argument: animated, 2nd or 3rd in franchise, release date, budget, etc.). And all this will relate to how well the film is PERCEIVED to have done (and as we know, PERCEPTION is everything and REALITY counts for very little).
    The only Hollywood picture I am actually looking forward to with any degree of anticiptaion is THE BOURNE ULIMATUM.

  59. Cadavra says:

    I’m with Jeff. THIN RED LINE was the best movie of 1998. Each time I see it, I catch something I missed before. Nolte not getting an Oscar was criminal.

  60. brack says:

    “So, apparently Dave has no credibility because he liked The Thin Red Line and not Spider-Man 3.
    That’s some crazy logic you got there Brack.”
    He seems to have a grasp on the biz as a whole, but he’s a terrible reviewer.
    If you read his review of TTRL eons ago, you’d see how passionate he was about a film that really wasn’t that great. I went to the theater based on how he described the film, and when I watched it I was thinking “was he on crack.”
    I’m sure the book is good, but I didn’t give a crap about any of the characters in TTRD–there were way too many, and all I kept thinking was “hey, there’s another celebrity that has one line.” I just didn’t find it all that interesting, and also didn’t know what it was about. I think there’s been much better war films.
    Now there’s SM3, which is a lot of fun, if you let it be and not nitpick it to death like all the critics have, as well as the comic geeks all pissed off because of Venom’s short appearance. The first two films were fun, but to say this one is so much less than those two is absolutely ridiculous.

  61. brack says:

    “Pot, kettle, etc., punk.”
    I may be a douchebag, but I’m not jaded.

  62. Stella's Boy says:

    So some big names in The Thin Red Line only have small roles. Big deal. Get over it. Sounds like some serious nitpicking to me. And plenty of people don’t think S3 is as good as the first two. I don’t think they are all being ridiculous.

  63. David Poland says:

    I don’t feel any need to defend my opinions on these films, but I will say that the argument that my opinion is somehow invalid because it doesn’t match yours… I am not a bad critic because our taste is divergent and conversely, you are not a moving loving idiot for the same reasons.

  64. jeffmcm says:

    The Thin Red Line isn’t really a ‘war film’ as that genre is generally defined, for one thing.

  65. As David said, you don’t agree with him so that makes him wrong? That makes no sense. It’s not like he’s saying Catwoman is a better movie than Spider-Man 3. He’s saying The Thin Red Line, a film by Terrance Malick with a 95% cream of the crop rating at RT is better than Spider-Man 3, a film with 45% cream of the crop rating.
    If your thinking is that Dave Poland is “on crack” and “wrong” for having the view of The Thin Red Line > Spider-Man 3 then surely essentially every other major critic in America is “on crack” and “wrong. And I’m sure if that’s case then, as the old saying goes, they don’t wanna be right.
    “No you’re out of order!! This whole court room is out of order!!!” 😉

  66. jeffmcm says:

    Or even better: explain why you think he’s wrong and persuade us.

  67. Cadavra says:

    The casting of TTRL is one of the reasons it’s such a great film. Not only does he mix up stars with unknowns, giving us a real sense of the combat arena (i.e., some familiar faces, some you don’t know), but by having some of the stars die, he creates an authentically suspenseful atmosphere in which no one is safe. This is in sharp contrast to SAVING PRIVATE RYAN, which in typical Hollywood fashion killed off its actors in ascending order of their billing.

  68. brack says:

    Man does typekey suck.
    All right, here’s where I stopped considering Dave’s opinion:
    “…sneaking into the cold water flat of the daughter he has been kept from who, almost hilariously, has oxygen tubes up her nose…”
    Haha, a girl on oxygen. Man, that’s so funny. I hope you’re on oxygen someday. It was pretty low, even for you Dave.
    As far as TTRL vs. SM3, I think SM3 is better in its genre than TTRL is in its genre.
    The problem with TTRL is that I’ve seen these actors act better in better films, and it’s distracting. It’s a decent movie, but to say it’s some profound movie, I just don’t see it. Maybe I was well aware of what war is like or does to soldiers way before I saw the film. *shrugs*

  69. jeffmcm says:

    It’s a great movie within its genre when you consider that it’s genre is ‘art film’ and not ‘war film’. And yes, I consider that it’s indeed profound.
    Shrug indeed.

  70. brack says:

    what a crappy genre

  71. brack says:

    but good for you. I’m happy you liked it. I was rather indifferent.

  72. David Poland says:

    You make my point, Brack. The oxygen was very low of the film. It was not neccessary to the drama. It was so over the top that it was insulting.
    And do be a grown up and not assume what I have experienced. I assure that I take the illness of others quite seriously. Do you really want to try to win such a small rhetorical point by assuming I don’t?

  73. jeffmcm says:

    I don’t mean to cause trouble, but…what does ‘the oxygen was very low of the film’ mean and which film, Thin Red Line or Spider-Man 3?

  74. brack says:

    “I don’t mean to cause trouble, but…what does ‘the oxygen was very low of the film’ mean and which film, Thin Red Line or Spider-Man 3?”
    Spider-Man 3.
    A little girl peacefully sleeping, on oxygen. That’s got to be the most quiet over the top moment in the history of cinema.
    You really didn’t consider that the filmmakers just wanted a quick way of saying his daughter was sick? I wouldn’t think most people would have a problem with this. If it wasn’t there, when Flint says “We’re going to make you healthy again” it would’ve been distracting. I always favored the whole “show, don’t tell” of movies, but whatever.
    Why did you stop at the oxygen? She also was walking with a crutch. Is that low as well. It wasn’t like the film was trying to make us think “oh my god, that’s so sad! this is such a great moment, and I’ll love this movie because of it.” They’re just going to think “that really sucks” and understand why Flint does what he does in the movie. At least that’s how I reacted. You must hate documentaries about kids with cancer.
    “And do be a grown up and not assume what I have experienced. I assure that I take the illness of others quite seriously. Do you really want to try to win such a small rhetorical point by assuming I don’t?”
    Well I don’t know you, so obviously I can’t assume what you’ve experienced. I’m assuming your take on illness based on what you said about a kid on oxygen as being hilarious, without any further elaboration. What else is one to think?
    Fine, I’ll add another thing, a whole paragraph actually (there’s about 5 more I could do, I just don’t have the time) I had a problem with in your review:
    “When an off-planet force, such as the black muck that becomes The Black Suit and later Venom in SM3, doesn’t have any reason behind its appearance other than an utter coincidence in happening to land near Peter Parker and Mary Jane stargazing in Central Park and then becomes Venom through another unlikely coincidence that leads to the gunk dripping on a second character, the effort is wasted. Cool suit, cool Venom effects, but what is the motivation?”
    Didn’t Peter Parker get bitten by a the genetically engineered spider for no reason in first movie? Why didn’t you complain about that? What was the spider’s motivation?
    “If The Muck seeks rage and power, great. But the movie doesn’t even try to sell that idea. It just plays out the plot points as complete coincidence.”
    Well obviously the movie sold you that idea. Please don’t pretend like it was some big secret.
    We know that the suit/goo makes Peter more powerful, based on his response to it when he’s first wearing it, calling it “something else” and pictures of him doing things even incredible for Spider-Man.
    Getting back to the paragraph. Brock is at the church too because Peter told him “you want forgiveness, get religion,” so I guess Eddie listened to his advice. Sounds good enough for me, I mean really.
    The symbiote was living off Peter, who is a superbeing, and thus makes Eddie a superbeing with the same powers because the symbiote had now absorbed Peter’s powers. I’m sorry you don’t understand the concept of a symbiote.
    Let’s talk about coincidences. In SM1, The Green Goblin just happens to be Pete’s best friend’s dad? Why did no one care about this then? Because people were smart enough to know those little details were not the point. But apparently those details are important now.
    I just doesn’t seem like you payed much attention while watching this movie, and least at the important times. You were too worried about little girls on oxygen.
    I don’t even care if you liked the film or not. It’s your reasons for disliking it that dumbfound me.
    Oh yes, I’m winning!!! *rolls eyes*

  75. jeffmcm says:

    Brack – relax. Read Matt Zoller Seitz’s review if you want to see a sensible middle-ground review that acknowledges both the good and the bad of the movie, and he’s a good writer to boot.

  76. Crow T Robot says:

    The problem with Spider-Man 3 is owed to Spider-Man 2. If the middle film weren’t the unlikely classic it ended up being, people would probably be yapping about how the 3rd is a welcome return to the harmless fun of the original.
    So take a look at the other sequels coming this summer. Which are the ones whose artistic failure will hurt the most?
    It’s hard to think of even one.
    The Bourne Ultimatum maybe?

  77. brack says:

    ^^^ Rush Hour 3

Quote Unquotesee all »

It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon