Box Office: “Maleficent” is queen at box office
Maleficent took the top spot domestically with $69.4 million and is so far #1 for this box-office weekend. Apparently this was quite the surprise as droves of families went to see the new Disney reimaging of Sleeping Beauty and its appeal to the female audience certainly shows. According to Box Office Mojo, the audience was 60 percent female and certainly was a summer highlight for being the first so far to be targeted at women. Though this can also be counted for fans of Disney version who know the iconic villain well enough for a spot in Disney history and its marketing really pushed the “think you know the tale” motif to stir some curiosity.
However, not all were pleased as it left critics mixed but surprisingly the audience was more in favor of it. As of this post, according to Rotten Tomatoes only 51% of the critics gave Maleficent a positive review while 77% percent enjoyed it. This is almost adjacent to another fairy tale reimaging back in 1991 with Steven Spielberg’s Hook which left critics mixed to negative but its viewership holds up really well. Its safe to say this family flick left a spell on its audience and one that last long depending on its reception in the home video market.
But not all movies have a fairy tale ending as Seth McFarlane’s “A Million Ways to Die In The West” did have a happy weekend. Debuting in
third place with $16.8 million, this is considered a huge disappointment compared to Ted’s opening gross of $54 million. Seth’s dark western comedy bomb for a variety of reasons that I wish to theorize. One could be the fact that the marketing this month tried to push it so much that it felt forced to its viewers (accounting for having the “Ted” connection and spoiling a major cameo). It was almost like they didn’t even try to sell this picture as it only focused on its outrageous humor and none of the attributes from plot to its celebrities. Another could be the Oscar hosting back in 2013 that got a unanimous amount of negativity in regards to Seth’s comedic style and presentation that didn’t gel with every viewer.
On top of that, westerns seem to be a dying genre that gets an attempt to be boosted from the tombstone but is not getting anywhere. A good explain is last year’s The Lone Ranger that alienated viewers over wondering how a movie with such a major price tag can get made and yet disappoint. I don’t think there is a hint this genre is completely dead but considering past summer western flops like Cowboys and Aliens, Johan Hex and Wild Wild West, I think its time Hollywood started searching for another “Unforgiven” or “Tombstone” before declaring it completely dead. Or at the very least, release westerns in the off-season. Just a thought.
But the biggest nail in the coffin is the loyal viewers. According to Rotten Tomatoes, the critical reception was much worse than Maleficent obtaining only 33% positive reviews while its audience was only 51 %. To top it off, Seth’s popularity has been dwindling recently with the recent revamping to Family Guy as they killed a major character off for a short time that left a huge backlash. At this point, I wouldn’t be surprised if “Million Ways” passes the $50 million mark but I would actually settle for a night renting Blazing Saddles than this any day. At least pray Ted 2 improves something.
Posted on June 4, 2014, in Box-Office Buzz and tagged Bomb, Box office, Disney, Flop, Heaven's Gate, Maleficent, Million Ways To Die In the West, Seth McFarlane, Sucess, Western. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.