Here’s a Thought

Spare me your condescension, I've worked with MametParamount chose not to screen “G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra” for critics, because — they said — it not the kind of movie that critics would find, you know, fun.

“G.I. Joe” opened to decent box-office this weekend, grossing $56.2 million domestically and pulling in another $44 million internationally.


Less than two months ago, “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen”, that other Paramount summer action movie based on a line of Hasbro toys, enjoyed a five-day opening gross of $200.1 million in North America alone — $89.2 million of that between Friday and Sunday — and that film was screened for critics.

I respectfully postulate that, since the “G.I. Joe” movie would certainly have pulled in better reviews than the “Transformers” movie (or a less vituperative assortment of negative reviews, anyway), Paramount’s decision not to screen the film for critics served to diminish its box-office take, since the negative implications of the critical blackout kept away those potential ticket buyers who might have been curious about the movie’s supposed failings or excesses.

After all, there must have been some people who went to see the “Transformers” movie because all the reviews mentioned Megan Fox running in slow motion.

So: “G.I. Joe”, not reviewed, $56.2 million opening weekend. “Transformers 2”, reviewed with contempt, $89.2 million in the same three-day span. How well might the Joes have done if they’d been given an early chance to win over our cold, black hearts?

I guess we’ll never know. Which is too bad, because knowing is half the battle.

6 thoughts on “Here’s a Thought”

  1. Interesting theory Norm, but I’m fairly confident that the sequel to a huge hit (and a returning Megan Fox) would have made at least $30 million more than “G.I. Joe” on opening weekend, with or without the mediocre to bad reviews for the latter.

    I’m actually surprised “Joe” did as well as it did. Maybe the executives were right all along…

  2. I also have to point out the fallacy of your statement that G.I. Joe “would certainly have pulled in better reviews than the ‘Transformers’ movie.” Now that the reviews are coming in, yourself excluded, the movie is doing pretty lousy on the Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic indexes. To say that the reviews are “better” than Transformers 2’s is like saying that being punched in the gut is better than being punched in the face.

  3. I don’t care about G.I. Joe or Transformers…the only “blow-em-up-real-good” movie I’ve seen this summer was The Hurt Locker, which is not exactly the same thing at all. I’d just like to comment that your embedded comments in the photos have all been top notch lately. Often the best chuckle of the day.

  4. I agree with the others, the captions are a daily highlight.

    Also, saw GIJoe late Friday, and sure enough, it didn’t suck. It wasn’t great, but it didn’t suck.

    I’m waiting for my cell phone to accept Celtic commands.

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