Rotten Potatoes: ’Cause and F/X

Why have some movies done the business at the box-office while others have bombed? Because, because, because, because . . .

Diaz think we’d go see The Counsellor just cos  big stars like Cameron are in it? You betcha.

Diaz think we’d go see The Counsellor just cos big stars like Cameron are in it? You betcha.

Fri, Nov 22, 2013, 00:00

Linguists tell us that English has acquired a new preposition.

Because internet.

So cinemagoers had best huddle together in expectation of many, many shipwreck flicks with sci-fi set design in 2015.

Because Gravity.

With $516,556,931 in its international account and a brace of ecstatic notices, it’s hardly surprising that the space opera has already hit 11,314,713 on its second Irish weekend. Try to act pleasantly surprised if a sequel in which Sandra Bullock must rescue William Shatner or a cruise liner appears in the near future.

Because money.

The big shock of last weekend was not that Gravity only dropped 26 per cent between weekends at the box office. Nor was it Philomena climbing to the second spot – against box-office gravity – with an 1851,444 running total inspired by great word of mouth. The big shock was The Counsellor debuting at No 4 with 1101,409. The bizarre Ridley Scott-helmed drama starred – as the glossy poster tells us – Fassbender, Cruz, Pitt, Bardem, Diaz, but received (quite rightly) some of the most negative reviews ever written. Ever.

How were regular movie punters duped into parting with their cash for this turkey, we wonder?

Oh yes. Because movie stars.

Box-office history tells us that the denizens of ROI love a good, multiple-decade-spanning historical drama. So The Butler was a silver-service smash, with 164,013 from 22 sites last weekend. The chronicles also note that the same population goes bananas over any kind of daft comedy. Take a bow, Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa, with 1661,947 in the kitty after four weeks on release.

Bubbling below this week’s top 10, we find box-office blockbusters such as Prisoners (No 11) with a 11,398,874 total haul, and The Smurfs 2 (No 17) with 11,661,432. We also find flops such as In Fear, which managed to scrape into the top 20 with only 12,776 from four prints last weekend.

That’s disappointing, but it still represents better screen averages than Battle of the Year, a dance-off starring unpopular Rihanna-basher Chris Brown, which opened here with no press show, no fanfare and a dismal 17,767 take-home from 23 sites.

This hasn’t been a good year for Irish releases, and with just two titles left on the books – The Swell Season (2013’s second Glen Hansard doc) and Moon Man, a disappointing animated feature that’s sure to displease adults and kids alike – there’s hardly enough time to turn things around.

That said, the well-reviewed Dublin-based hip-hop drama Broken Song scored 11,947 over the weekend at the IFI. Congratulations to all involved.

Chris Brown: You’ve been served.

Because karma.

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