I'm Drowning In My Own Hypocrisy!

on Wednesday, February 04, 2009   10 comments

Okay, you all are going to kill me, especially because I promised that I wouldn't do this all over again, but this is going to be the final post on The Box Office Junkie. I'm officially ending my writing on this blog, and even though I have loved getting to build up TBOJ's film-related content, I want to give you a little bit of reasoning for the demise of this site. It is List Wednesday, so here are 5 reasons why I'm ending The Box Office Junkie:

1. Film blogging is way too intense.
I like writing about the box office, but the amount of built-in deadlines make it really tough to enjoy. Weekend Previews always need to be written by Thursday night. Friday Estimates have to be posted on Saturday afternoon. The Weekend Fix must show up at mid-day on Saturday. Sometimes I just wish I could write on my own schedule.

2. I like going to church!
The Weekend Fix, typically the most popular of any column I write either forces me to be up into the wee hours of the morning on Saturday night, or writing all morning on Sunday. Going to church is really important to me, and keeping up with TBOJ has prevented me from attending numerous times.

3. Not to be shallow, but $$$ is a factor.
I really don't make much money at all by writing this, and I'm pretty much okay with that, but for the amount of time I put into it, it feels there is no return at all. I make a little bit of money when people click the Google AdSense advertisements on the side, but the reality is, not that many people actually click the ads! If this were my job- if I were a professional blogger writing for a newspaper or magazine, I would have no problem keeping up with the blog, but as it is, the opportunity cost of my time is outweighing the monetary reimbursement.

4. I'm only going to be in college once.
I'm a 19 year old student in college, and sometimes I feel like I am married to a nagging wife, who is constantly badgering me for attention. The only thing is that my nagging wife is actually my blog. Here at school, there are so many people I want to talk to and opportunities I'd love to partake in, but writing for TBOJ takes away so much of my time! I feel like I am missing out on the full life experience of college when I am forced to dedicate so much of my energy to analyzing the film industry.

5. I don't have another reason. I just wanted to say, "Thanks."
Look, it's not you, it's me. You all have been wonderful. Even though I have to beg and plead for a single comment sometimes, I know that there are faithful viewers of this site. I can tell that there is a small following by the people who are subscribed to the RSS feed, or by the few of you who do comment or send me an email. Trust me, your words did not go unnoticed- they meant a lot to me, and I've hesitated writing this post because I dont want to disappoint anyone.

So I guess this is the end. I don't know that I'm ever going to start The Box Office Junkie back up. I might not be totally done writing on the film industry, though. If some magazine or website or newspaper has seen the site, and they'd like to offer me a position as a blogger for them, I'd be down! And I'd be sure to let you all know where I was headed. All I know is that I'm definitely not done writing. I enjoy it way too much to just quit altogether, so if there's anyone out there who just likes the way I write, I might start up my own, non-topical blog one day, just to reflect on the complexity and awesomeness of every area of life at my own leisure. Either way- whatever my next step is- I'll do some sort of update post here in the future. If you'd like to get in touch with me now (and don't worry- I'm prepared for some hating) you can send me an email at TheBoxOfficeJunkie@gmail.com or just leave a comment! So goodbye, guys! I'm sad to be signing off, and I'm going to miss you!

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Grading The Super Bowl Movie Trailers

on Monday, February 02, 2009   0 comments

Alright, so we all saw the Super Bowl last night, and whether we're moping around that the Cardinals couldn't quite reach an underdog victory, or still smiling about a repeat Steelers championship (me!), there's one thing we can all agree on: there were some pretty great movie trailers that aired during the big game. By my count, there were ten movies that shelled out a hefty chunk of their advertising budget to play a trailer last night, and many of them were quite effective. Of course, there were some pretty bad ones too. That's why TBOJ has decided to separate the wheat from the chaff (there's my attempt at a Year One joke) and grade each of the Super Bowl trailers! So without further ado, in order of their appearance...

Angels And Demons C+
I think the clue-hunt fad is kind of over. Like The Da Vinci Code, this looks like some sort of pseudo-expose of the Catholic Church that wants you to believe it's exciting because all the characters are talking in elevated voices. It would receive a much lower grade, but Tom Hanks cut his hair, which is just a good thing for the world.

Year One B-
Hmm. It looks like a very funny concept, but I think the trailer was too crass for its own good. It seems like the low-brow humor will take away from its satirical bite.

Fast And Furious B+
YES! Vin and Paul and Michelle and cars and explosions and action! As I've written about previously, I'm already partial to this movie, and I think the trailer did a good job of selling it. My favorite exchange of last night:
"Wait, so there jsut calling that The Fast And The Furious too?"
"No, they removed all the articles from the title."
Grammar jokes FTW!

Land Of The Lost C
This confused me. On the one hand, it looked like a family adventure movie that might draw in a similar crowd as Night At The Museum. On the other hand, it looked like a complete farce, and shots like the one with the giant crab left me confused as to whether I should be laughing or intrigued.
Star Trek A
Best trailer of the night, hands down. It wasn't all mindless explosions, but it wasn't just talking, either. It gave a great sense of the the main character, Captain Kirk, as we got to see him in real life before joining the starship. Then it goes into a frakkin' amazing montage of action shots, and generally looked awesome. Despite my love of J.J. Abrams, I had no desire to see Star Trek until last night. Now, I can't wait!

Up! A
Okay, perhaps the "Look how amazing Pixar's movies are!" introduction is getting a little redundant, but hey, if anyone has bragging rights, it's Pixar. The Super Bowl spot did a surprisingly effective job of introducing the film's story and main characters. That one shot of the boy scout on the porch and Mr. Frederickson slamming the door summed things up perfectly. I'm very excited for Up!

Monsters And Aliens C
With our 3D glasses on, the room was silent, as all 30 of the people in the room eagerly waited for the mega gimmick to arrive. Then it did. And the room remained silent. No laughing at all. Call this one a victim of high expectations. Maybe it was too hard to focus on the story because I was waiting for something cool to happen in 3D, but everything about this trailer just said "eh."

G.I. Joe: The Rise Of Cobra C-
I'm sure it'll have some cool action, but the trailer last night just made it look dumb. The combination of too much cheesy dialogue with not enough over-the-top action made this trailer forgettable. Also, doesn't the title seem like it should read "Rise Of The Cobra" instead of "The Rise Of Cobra?"

Race To Witch Mountain B+
Some people in my room said that this looked stupid, but I disagree. I think that this trailer was pretty effective. The Rock and AnnaSophia Robb are two of the most undeniably charismatic stars out there, and I'm thrilled to have them paired together in the same film. The concept of the children being aliens is cool, and the shot when the kid phased himself out of one car only to slam into another one at full speed was pretty aweosme.

Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen A-
Okay, okay. Even with all my distaste for Michael Bay, I can't deny the fact that this looks eye-poppingly incredible. This trailer had all the essential elements of the Transformers franchise. Giant robots, tons of explosions, more robots, more explosions, Shia LaBeouf, a couple more robots, a bunch more explosions, Megan Fox's hotness, and then a HOLY CRAP-WHAT IS THAT GIANT WHEEL MACHINE?!

Now, let's hear it from you! Which of these trailers made you squeal with excitement, and which of them ellicited no reaction at all? Which film are you most excited to see, and do you agree with these grades? Talk to me in the comments!

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Weekend Fix: Paul Blart Gets Taken Down!

on Sunday, February 01, 2009   0 comments

Hey guys, I'm down with some kind of flu and not feeling too great, and I want to be ready for the Super Bowl tonight, so there won't be much analysis today. All you really need to know is that Taken had a great weekend ($24.5 million), The Uninvited ($10.5 M) and New In Town ($6.7 M) were relative disappointments, and something finally removed Paul Blart ($14 M) from the top spot. All is well in the world again. Here are the full weekend numbers:

WAIT! For some reason, I feel obligated to give Hotel For Dogs a shout out. After it's so-so opening of $17.7 million a couple weeks back, it's been a very solid performer, dropping just 27% last weekend, and 32 % this weekend, for a not-half-bad $48 million total. Okay, now, onto the weekend numbers:

Top 12 For January 30-February 1
#
Movie Title
3-Day Gross
% Change
AVG.
Total
1 Taken $24,625,000 New $7,736$24,625,000
2 Paul Blart: Mall Cop
$14,000,000 -35% $4,367$83,375,000
3 The Uninvited
$10,512,000 New $4,485$10,512,000
4 Hotel For Dogs
$8,706,000 -32% $2,755$48,229,000
5 Gran Torino
$8,600,000 -47% $2,852$110,547,000
6 Slumdog Millionaire
$7,680,000 -28% $4,703$67,244,456
7 Underworld: Rise Of The Lycans $7,200,000 -65%
$2,447$32,784,000
8 New In Town
$6,750,000 New $3,478$6,750,000
9 My Bloody Valentine: 3D
$4,260,000 -58%
$3,030$44,610,000
10 Inkheart $3,700,000 -51% $1,394$12,792,000
11 The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button
$3,611,000 -41% $1,698$116,540,000
12 Bride Wars
$3,570,000 -48% $1,798$53,936,587
All Numbers Provided By Exhibitor Relations Co.

What do you think about the weekend? Is Puffy Face (Renee Zellweger) in need of a major career revival? Have you seen Taken? And Lost fans, are you excited to see Maggie Grace (Shannon) find box office success with Taken? I know I am!

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