Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image

December 10, 2005

Brokeback Mountain — the Critics vs. the Box Office

December 10, 2005 | By | 29 Comments

10003965.jpg

How much do I wish I had had a wager on this one. Cold, hard cash on the line. ‘Cause you could see this one coming a mile away.

NEWS FLASH!! Brokeback Mountain “tops L.A. crix pix,” says Variety.com. The movie has won the award for best picture of 2005 from the L.A. Film Critics Association.

Well of course! Cue the violins. It’s a story about “the enduring but thwarted love between two cowboys.”

But it’s not too late for an easy prediction: this movie will go down in flames at the box office. It won’t make it to the New Year.

Guarantee it. Critics will love it, but no one is going to spend money to go see it.

<narnia.jpg

Meanwhile, Narnia is sold out.

Friday box office for the Chronicles of Narnia — $23,900,000

Friday box office for Brokeback Mountain –$191,543

Aslan is on the move.

* * *

Hat tip: Drudge.

Share on Facebook0Tweet about this on Twitter0Share on Google+0Buffer this pagePrint this pageEmail this to someone

Comments

  1. Gay cowboy movie: box office poison.

  2. I said exactly the same thing to my husband tonight (about Brokeback Mountain). Just who exactly is the audience for that movie? No straight man is going to want to see THAT and no woman is going to want to see husbands cheating on their wives with men. Puh-leeze!

  3. Pat Patterson

    Not to sound a note of cynicism but this might save Heath Ledger’s career. Nobody will see it except his fellow actors, producers and critics and maybe make him more bankable for being brave in his roles. But then again look at what happened to Hillary Swank, Oscar and then a string of flops, though Million Dollar Baby was critically well received but didn’t make much of a dent with filmgoers. Sartre and existentialism are dead except on the Westside of LA and at the movies.

  4. AWESOME! Very very very very very cool…did I say this is very cool!

    I’m hoping to see Aslan tomorrow… I can’t wait!

    After a week with liberals who hate Republican’s and Christians I’m ready for some fun 🙂

  5. Breakfast 12-12-2005

    Try one of these specials with your breakfast:

    From the Best of the Top 501 – 1000 Blogs nominees on my blogroll. This is a difficult category, because all those listed here are worthy of your vote:

    *Vince Aut Morire hates Iran

    Reasoned Audacity …

  6. progressive conservative

    Haha: ‘Mountain’ climbs to new heights. http://www.variety.com/VR1117934426.html

    Just when will you guys join the 21st century?

  7. Leading Up To A Cotillion Christmas

    It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas and the Cotillion ladies are busy preparing. Cleaning and decorating, cookies to bake and dinners to cook, along with seemingly endless shopping. Gifts to wrap…oh, don’t even remind me of the…

  8. Leading Up To A Cotillion Christmas…

    It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas and the Cotillion ladies are busy preparing. Cleaning and decorating, cookies to bake and dinners to cook, along with seemingly endless shopping. Gifts to wrap…oh, don’t even remind me of the wrapping! …

  9. Leading Up To A Cotillion Christmas

    It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas and the Cotillion ladies are busy preparing. Cleaning and decorating, cookies to bake and dinners to cook, along with seemingly endless shopping. Gifts to wrap…oh, don’t even remind me of the…

  10. Just heard this morning that there is Oscar buzz around Heath Ledger…..as if that really means anything anymore. I am absolutely appalled at what come out of Hollywood. There are very few movies that I actually want to see. Then of course, it is always refreshing when a movie like Narnia comes out. Maybe the sane people of the world can, by filling the theatres, can show Hollywood what the majority of America REALLY wants to see.

  11. Pat Patterson

    Just a note that since my first comment I have seen Heath Ledger in an endless parade of ads for Cassanova but not one for Brokeback Mountain. Plus I just realized the possibility of a rather bad pun based on the title of Ang Lee’s film. I took my mother to see Chronicles of Narnia, she loved it.

  12. azz

    very sloppy analysis here… look at the difference in screens each film is playing on…look then at average takings…thats the way we compare apples and apples…

    At least get your facts right before you voice your nastyb prejudices

  13. Azz,

    Obviously, if Brokeback Mountain could fill more theaters, it would be playing more screens – unless you believe the movie studios don’t care about making profits.

    How else do you think the number of screens a movie plays is determined? By picking straws? Picking names out of a hat?

    Get your thinking cap on before you start accusing people of voicing nasty prejudices.

  14. azz

    Mrs R…You obviously dont work in the film business…studios and distribution compnaies use a variety of techniques when releasing films, including soft openings and targeting eraly releases where only a select number of screens show the film. In BM case only 8 screens in LA, SF and NYC were used in the opening – to generate interest. This is called marketing and is a highly calibrated art in the movie business. Thats why real analysts (not prejudiced blabber mouths) look at average or per screen takings.

    Perhaps you should get out of the kitchen and do a little more thinking.

  15. progressive conservative

    Azz,

    Nasty prejudices? You condemn people for wanting to marry (be in partnership or whatever you want to call it) their loved ones.

  16. Matthew

    Its breaking records and making millions in the top ten at the box office…..

  17. Pat Patterson

    “and making millions” as in 3.2million total, 1/7 the total of the absolutely inexcusable and forgetable Aeon Flux. And yes I did see Brokeback Mountain, it wasn’t as bad as I expected but the consequences of this romance pretty much destroys any women that these two gay rancheros come into contact with.

  18. rugbyusa

    You forgot to mention on your figures that narnia was playing in wide release around the country and brokeback was only playing in 5 theaters that weekend. If you know anything about the box office, you would know Brokeback is a hit with america. Sucks to be prejudiced jerk.

  19. steve

    Bet you don’t post this…..’Brokeback’ Breaks Records

    19 December 2005 (StudioBriefing)

    Far more surprising to box-office watchers than the tame debut of King Kong over the weekend was the performance of Brokeback Mountain, which packed the 69 theaters in 21 cities that it played in. In such cities as Toronto, New York, and Los Angeles, the take was more than $70,000 at each theater. Nationally, it averaged a sensational $34,194 per theater, which Daily Variety said was a record for any film released on more than 50 screens (except for those released in IMAX theaters, where ticket prices are substantially higher). Generally described as a gay cowboy romance, the film reportedly played well in some smaller test markets. Today’s (Monday) Los Angeles Times observed that the film fared well in the “closely watched” city of Plano, TX. Jack Foley, Focus Films’ distribution chief, told the Times that its debut there “was a revelation about the accessibility of this movie. … This is not gay-dependent. Attendance at those theaters indicates the film has the attention of suburban moviegoers.”

  20. Brokeback Total Gross: Sensational??!!!

    Steve thought I wouldn’t post his comment with evidence of the “sensational” showing of Brokeback Mountain at the box office this past weekend. Steve, I’ll post your comment and raise ya one. Judge for yourselves. 69 theatres in 21…

  21. Brokeback Total Gross: Sensational??!!!

    Steve thought I wouldn’t post his comment with evidence of the “sensational” showing of Brokeback Mountain at the box office this past weekend. Steve, I’ll post your comment and raise ya one. Judge for yourselves. 69 theatres in 21…

  22. Pat Patterson

    These avg. daily numbers for Brokeback Mountain don’t make much sense. If some theaters are taking 70k per screen then others, using the 34k avg. must be taking in somewhere between 0 and some minor amount. Daily avg. again according to Daily Variety is now at 13K per screen as of 12/17. It would appear that the film is doing well in its target areas and not as well in the hinterlands as claimed. Remember how long it took Michael Moore to admit that his film had no effect on the election and that it did terrible outside of the major metropolitan areas. About all this proves is that Ang Lee has still only made one good film, Sense and Sensibility, and that the value of the film is not neccessarily how many people see it.

  23. Making Money vs Making a Movie

    Brokeback breakdown. Why does Hollywood continue to invest time, talent and treasure into products nobody wants? Brokeback Mountain is receiving rave reviews. But seen in only 69 theatres in 21 cities? And these are empty. Lots of ink; no…

  24. Making Money vs Making a Movie

    Brokeback breakdown. Why does Hollywood continue to invest time, talent and treasure into products nobody wants? Brokeback Mountain is receiving rave reviews. But seen in only 69 theatres in 21 cities? And these are empty. Lots of ink; no…

  25. Making Money vs Making a Movie

    Brokeback breakdown. Why does Hollywood continue to invest time, talent and treasure into products nobody wants? Brokeback Mountain is receiving rave reviews. But seen in only 69 theatres in 21 cities? Lots of ink; few viewers. This is because…

  26. tired of hate mongers

    to the last comment posted, you are correct, the value of a film is not neccessarily how many people see it. It is how many people are talking about it and alot of people are talking about this movie and this subject. Remember back in the sixties when middle america had issues seeing a black man and a white woman on screen, now we look at movies like guess whose coming to dinner and they seem outdated because everywhere you look is interracial couples and it did not destroy society. Another few years this movie will be outdate and everyone will be asking themselves what the hell was wrong with the people who lived back then that they spewed hate onto others for wanting to love another human being regardless of sex or color.

  27. Bart Nielsen

    The total audience for Brokeback Mountain would have an easier time fitting in a phone booth than filling a football stadium. This is just another example of the glitteratti talking to themselves and thinking they understand how America thinks. Reminds me of the shocked woman from NY the day after Bush was reelected. She said something to the effect,”How could he have won? I don’t know anyone who voted for him!” They live in a bubble.

  28. Eric

    I have to ask, but why are you all so concerned with Brokeback Mountain’s profitability?

    Is it your belief that every movie made in the US should be acceptable to you? Must you like every movie made?

    If you don’t like something, don’t go see it. But for heaven’s sake, stop the masturbation over the failure or success of a movie solely because you don’t approve.

  29. MEH

    Pretty funny, reading all the comments about no one seeing Brokeback Mountain, it won’t last past New Year’s, etc. Well, looks like it was again, over the New Year’s weekend, making the most money per screen, and has already made over $15M with expansion to 80 additional markets this coming Friday. Of course it’s not making the money of Narnia, no one would have expected it to compete with a megamovie like that with a huge advertising budget…but anyone hoping that Brokeback would quietly fade away should be eating a lot of crow about now.

Submit a Comment