The Critical 'I'

Read. React. Repeat.

Tuesday, July 08, 2003

It's fitting irony. Hollywood studios released more sequels in this one summer movie season than ever before. Because sequels are seen as safe bets, since they offer a continuation of stories and characters that were so popular the first time around, industry observers figured it was going to be money in the bank from May through August.

Well, it ain't turning out that way at all. Fact is, the expected blockbusters like Matrix Reloaded, Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle and others are fizzling to the point where they're being regarded as borderline bombs.

Quick aside: Let the record show that I predicted that if Matrix Reloaded didn't live up to it's big expectations, the studio would do the obvious thing to hedge bets on the next installment:

If "Reloaded" comes up even a little bit short of the sky-high projections they've got, they'll hack "Revolutions" to bits if they have to to get it down to PG-13. At that point, it's all about simply maximizing the number of bodies willing to buy a ticket.

We'll see.

The tone of the AP article makes it sound like the moviegoing public is more bored with the superhero genre than anything else, and since a big chunk of this summer's movies are that, that's why there's a slump. (I guess that means League of Extraordinary Gentlemen is toast-on-delivery; and with a stupid shorthand like "LXG", it deserves it.) I mentioned to my friend Kirby, a fellow comic-book geek, that the superhero movie bonanza would run its course in exactly this way: A bunch of projects would get rushed into production, audiences would get sick of them, and then we wouldn't see any more big-budget superhero movies in a long while.