Tag: Solo: A Star Wars Story

The Bottom Five: Each of These Movies was a Box Office Bust

By Brennan Dubé | @Brennan_Dube71R

2018 has been a year that has provided us with several hits at the box office so far, but that doesn’t mean there haven’t been some absolute duds as well. Here is a rundown of the top 5 box office busts of 2018… so far. For this list, I have compiled how bad films did in comparison to what they were expected to earn as well as how poor of an intake it had at the box office in comparison to its budget. Here we go!

5. Sherlock Gnomes

The animated feature, ‘Sherlock Gnomes’ was not as much of a high stakes release as some of the others on this list budget wise, but is still costed $59 million dollars to make. That’s a lot of money to be messing around with. This movie came out on March 23rdand was expected to bring in a less than stellar $13-18 million for its opening weekend, it did not even reach that standard. ‘Sherlock Gnomes’ opened to $10.6 million in its opening weekend and went on to gross $42.3 million domestically. The movie grossed a worldwide total of $78 million dollars, when considering that its budget was nearly $60 million pre-marketing, it’s hard to mathematically find ways that ‘Gnomes’ and Paramount Pictures made much of a profit from this movie.

4. Pacific Rim: Uprising

When Warner Bros. released the first ‘Pacific Rim’ in 2013 and it turned out to be a hidden gem, it grossed over $400 million globally and was no box office bust in China. This success sparked a sequel, ‘Pacific Rim: Uprising’ came out in March and it did not nearly garner as much success as its predecessor. ‘Uprising’ had a production budget of $150-175 million dollars, on top of that marketing expenditures reached up to $140 million. This hefty spending meant that the sequel to the surprise 2013 success film, would need to smash $300 million dollars to break even and reach upwards of $350 million to turn a noticeable profit. It is safe to say, ‘Pacific Rim: Uprising’ was a box office bust as it managed to only make $290 million dollars globally when all was said and done. This result leaves studios with almost no hope at a third ‘Pacific Rim’ installment.

3. Hurricane Heist

‘Hurricane Heist’ hit the big screen on March 9th. This movie carried a budget of $35 million dollars but was expected to be a box office bust. Initially experts and the movie execs themselves eyed a $7 million dollar opening weekend at the domestic box office, but with an opening day total of just $950,000 it ended up just grossing $3 million for its opening weekend. ‘Hurricane Heist’ ended up grossing just $6.1 million domestically and less than $7 million internationally for a global gross of just $12.5 million. After factoring in marketing and the fact that it barley grossed a third of its budget, there were over $30 million dollars in losses for the studio.

2. Solo: A Star Wars Story

‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’ is the moment Disney and ‘Star Wars’ finally looked vulnerable. After the billion dollar releases of ‘The Force Awakens’ (2015), ‘Rogue One’ (2016) and ‘The Last Jedi’ (2017), we get ‘Solo.’ Now there are tons of theories as to why this movie flopped, but let me just give you the numbers first. With a budget of around $250 million plus $200 million in marketing costs, the studios stated that ‘Solo’ would need to make $500 million to turn a respectable profit. $500 million, no big deal! Back-to-back-to-back billion dollar movies… ‘Solo’ will be just fine right? Not a chance. In the weeks leading up the projections had this movie set to open with $135-150 million in its first weekend. As we got closer and closer that number dropped to around $115 million. Finally, the weekend of May 25thcame and ‘Solo’ opened… to a shocking $84 million dollars. The poor domestic showings along with bad numbers globally have put this film on pace to gross less than $400 million when all is said and done. Studio officials have stated that the losses will be around $50-80 million dollars, making it a considerable box office bust.

1. A Wrinkle in Time

Disney’s ‘A Wrinkle in Time’ was perceived by many to be a potential hit in 2018, then it finally hit the big screens. Dampened by poor marketing schemes and absolutely awful reviews by critics, ‘A Wrinkle in Time’ lost all hype heading into its release and was not able to generate the motivation and hype of usual Disney films. The budget for this movie was listed at a whopping $100 million dollars, and on top of that another $100 million plus was spent on advertising and marketing. ‘A Wrinkle in Time’ opened to a dismal $33.3 million at the domestic box office. It went on to gross a global total of $130 million during its time in theaters. Many reports list that this movie has lost its studio anywhere from $85-185 million dollars. Definitely a well-deserved number one on this list. ‘A Wrinkle in Time’ will go down not only as a major box office bust of 2018, but also one of the biggest of all time.


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Solo Review: Solo is Definitely More Than So-So, but Still Feels Forgettable

By Brennan Dubé | @Brennan_Dube71R

‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’ is out this weekend and is the second ‘Star Wars Story’ we’ve had in the last two years (‘Rogue One’, 2016). It is also the fourth ‘Star Wars’ installment given to us in the last three years. One can wonder, when will the fatigue set in. Here is my review of ‘Solo: A Star Wars Story.’

Production of this film was deemed a mess by many: directors were fired, re-shoots were rampant and Alden Ehrenreich’s hiring of an acting coach led this film to be a big question mark and concern for many fans of the beloved franchise. Nonetheless, ‘Solo’ was brought to us in this busy box office summer and it was an enjoyable film.

Firstly, it took some time to get used to Ehrenreich as the ever so famous ‘Han Solo,’ but Ehrenreich for the most part did this job well. I can safely say he played the part justice and offered fans a safe and charming portrayal of ‘Han Solo.’ I say safe because this movie did not feel the need to take risks: it was quite a basic plot driven film that did not add much to the overall ‘Star Wars’ universe… we will get into that a bit later.

Alden Ehrenreich was not the only individual who took the leap and portrayed a famous character from the past, Donald Glover plays ‘Lando Calrissian’ and he also did an adequate job at playing this role. When Glover and Ehrenreich have scenes of interaction this movie is at its best. They have a few moments in this film that are simple yet special and quite entertaining to watch.

Woody Harrelson is also in this film and he plays a mentor-ish individual who is the leader of the group. Harrelson offers a good performance as always, quite the actor who never fails to impress. I quite enjoyed the story arc between Harrelson’s character and ‘Han’ as in the past we have never seen Mr. Solo have to be in a position where he is under someone’s wing.

Paul Bettany is in this film as well, he plays the role of our villain and his performance as ‘Dryden Vos’ is great. One gripe I have about his character though is I feel he is underused. His performance on screen was quite well done and he provided that feel of a menacing vibe whenever he was in the room. This is a feeling that overall I felt was missing from ‘Solo’ and would have enhanced the film quite a bit.

Special effects in this movie are stunning and it is quite clear that this franchise will not settle for second best when coming to visuals and CGI. Certain chase scenes early on in this film look very clean and crisp and offer good sequences of action. That train scene that is shown in every commercial is as awesome on screen as it is in the trailers. Other than that, ‘Solo’ fell flat. I can recount zero other action sequences that stood out to me.

The opening third of this movie holds its intrigue and stands strong, then we hit the middle third. The middle third of this movie was slow, choppy, silly and boring. It dragged on far too long and felt rather filler. I felt optimistic after what the first third of this film had to offer, just to be disappointed by a rather annoying middle chunk.

Deep into the second act of ‘Solo’ things happen that are just plain stupid. Without giving up too much I felt this movie would have been much more enjoyable without a certain droid…you’ll know. The final third of this movie got back on track for the most part. Also, expect references… a lot of references.

Personally, I am a fan of nostalgia, but in ‘Solo’ you feel like you are being force fed things just for fanfare. Sure, we get to learn how ‘Han’ becomes ‘Han Solo’, and sure we learn how him and ‘Chewbacca’ meet and yes, we also learn how the ‘Millennium Falcon’ becomes Han’s, but it was not interesting and those moments didn’t feel magical like they should have.

The Big Plus: ‘Solo’ is a fun time. Forgettable but fun. Expect some entertainment in the action sequences and good portrayals of old characters by Ehrenreich and Glover.

Where it lacks: This movie lacks a villain that makes the story compelling thus leaving us with a forgettable addition to the ‘Star Wars’ franchise.

Score: 66/100

In the end ‘Solo’ feels plain. It did not offer much to the ‘Star Wars’ universe and it stayed its course, not taking too many risks or jumps. Alden Ehrenreich and Donald Glover both do solid jobs portraying the famous ‘Han Solo’ and ‘Lando Calrissian’ and the rest of the cast give good performances as well. ‘Solo’ was driven by a tasteless plot that had predictable outcomes. If you are a casual movie goer you might find enjoyable fun in this space western. Big props to John Powell and John Williams for creating a great soundtrack. Williams is often taken for granted now due to being so damn good at what he does, but him and Powell did a great job at bringing this movie to life with the music.

Box Office Forecast:

‘Solo’ is expected to open up somewhere between $125-145 million dollars meaning it will be the lowest opening for a ‘Star Wars’ movie in the Disney era. The high-end estimate of $150 million would give ‘Solo’ the all-time best memorial day opening weekend at the box office.

Upcoming Releases:

June 1: Adrift

June 8: Ocean’s Eleven, Hereditary

June 15: The Incredibles 2, Tag, SuperFly