I used to follow the box office reports somewhat regularly. I was fascinated by what it took for a movie to really make a lot of money. Most people don’t really get what a phenomenon something like Titanic was and that, no matter how many times you read those Harry Potter books, nothing is going to come close to touching it for quite sometime.
But it’s become just silly over the past few years. The fact that the movie industry hates to reveal how many people are actually seeing movies just shows how much of a farce it is. They rely on the total money brought in, and hope that people don’t realize that increasing ticket prices from $9 to $9.50 will increase that number even if less people see a movie. But it must be popular! Look at how much money it made!
This week, as you are bombarded with news clippings about Spider-Man 3 shattering all kinds of records, just take a quick look at the real numbers. Am I really supposed to be impressed by a movie that grossed about $12.5 million more than the previous record holder when it opened on about 1500 more screens? And this isn’t me being bitter or anything – as much as I loved the first Pirates of the Caribbean, I still haven’t seen the “record-breaking” sequel yet. And as much as I dislike Spider-Man, I enjoyed the first movie and want to see this one in spite of the turd-fest second sequel as it’s got the lone awesome character from that comic: VENOM!
Ugh, I hate becoming a crotchety old man, but I sure do miss the days when you had to pick which theater you were going to because not everyone was playing all of the big releases. And when the 10 screen multiplexes finally showed up, they weren’t using 6 of the screens for a single movie. Remember those days when movies laster longer than their opening weekends? And yet the industry wonders why more people just wait for it to hit DVD – the theater experience just flat out sucks these days.