Oh my GAD! Guardians outfoxes the big guns and the little guys – but not D'Mammy

Rocket Raccoon (Bradley Cooper) in Guardians of the Galaxy. Yes, he's a raccoon

Rocket Raccoon (Bradley Cooper) in Guardians of the Galaxy. Yes, he's a raccoon

Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 10:36

You there. Down the back. Sit up straight. You’ll ruin your innards. Last lesson, we were speaking about the Great Anglophone Divide (GAD), and how the old plimsoll line between Domestic (read USA) and International (Rest of World) markets needs to be reconfigured around the English-speaking nations and everybody else.

On the same theme, we present to you the snark-savvy, post-ironic, Anglophone-friendly Guardians of the Galaxy, the second most popular film in the Republic of Ireland with a haul of €1,580,237 after three weeks. Stateside, the same Marvel heroes have taken $222,661,385 after 17 days.

But out there in countries not known for buffalo wings or roast beef, Guardians has made only a ripple at the box office. The film’s $196 million haul outside the US amounts to a very underwhelming 46.9 per cent of overall ticket sales.

Conversely, The Expendables 3 was declared an outright flop on its opening US weekend, when it failed to dislodge Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles from the top spot (despite the Turtles’ poor word-of-mouth, a low CinemaScore and a whopping 57 per cent drop from the previous week) or Guardians of the Galaxy from second place. In fact, Sly and co landed in fourth place behind the heavily advertised comedy Let’s Be Cops.

The Expendables’ underwhelming $15,879,645 North American debut marks a 43 per cent drop in sales since The Expendables 2 and has inspired American analysts to ask: “Why, Sly, why?”

We’ll tell you why. Too many action flicks. And GAD. The Expendables 2 didn’t need the domestic market, where it grossed just $85 million or 27.8 per cent of its overall take.

Piracy also made a notable dent in The Expendables 3’s sales. That factor makes the Turtles’ staggered international release – the film won’t open here until October 17th – look like an act of cinematic seppuku.

Because internet, dude.

The Expendables 3, in keeping with the GAD thesis, landed very softly with a third-placed €116,351 in ROI last weekend, a small slice of what was a very small pie. As everyone gears up (or possibly down) for school next week, business was far from booming. The Inbetweeners 2 has retained the top spot over two weekends with a running total of €1,336,018. Last weekend, however, the nation’s most popular film rustled up only €269,423 in receipts.

We often say there’s no room for the little guy in the summer months. Sure enough, The Rover took just €7,101 from four prints, The Congress scored €2,926 from three and, in keeping with a pattern of grey pound catastrophes, Lilting took just €126 from one.

But last weekend there wasn’t much room for the big guy either. The popular Rise of the Planet of the Apes dragged in just €81,894, to bring its overall tally to a healthy €2,321,774. And Mrs Brown’s Boys D’Movie managed €29,762 in its eighth week. With €3,758,406 in the kitty, it’s Ireland’s favourite film of 2014. Come and have a go if you think you’re hard enough, JLaw.

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