For our first post, we believe it pivotal to familiarise you with some recent facts! We will be discussing the evident statistical disparities in modern cinema between critic consensus and audience response, and hopefully answer some initial questions on what we’re all about!
As recently as last month, social media giant The Atlantic stated: “It is almost certainly the biggest disagreement between critics and moviegoers… to date.” This quote comes from an August 12, 2016 deliberated discussion regarding the societal split between citizens and critics over the hotly anticipated film Suicide Squad. If it is supported on a larger spectrum, renowned film review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes contains an average audience rating of 7.4/10 as opposed to the critical rating of 4.7/10. The Atlantic sums up the opinionated feud as: “The experts panned the flick. The fans loved it.” No doubt the controversy between citizen and critical opinion arises often throughout the film industry, and although negatively panned by critics, it’s audience, generating a $133 US million in its opening weekend, generously saved Suicide Squad. DC Entertainment’s latest superhero effort is grateful for the determination of citizen’s, although perhaps this is pure luck generated by the year-long marketing hype and effort prior to release.
Todd Gilchrist of Forbes in his article ‘Do Film Critics Destroy Good Movies?’ discusses the obvious separations between citizen and critic with major blockbuster films of 2013. Despite a high critic evaluation of 90% on Rotten Tomatoes, The World’s End written by Simon Pegg landed at fourth place with a measly $8.9 million in revenue to reflect it’s 79% citizen approval rating. It appears that regardless of a successful critical consensus, it is proven that it is you as the audience and your opinion or interest that has more gravitas, as it is the paying viewer who determines a film’s worth.
Moreover, The Mortal Instruments directed by Harald Zwart outplayed Simon Pegg’s screenplay and placed 3rd at the box office with $9.3 million despite a ‘rotten’ critic evaluation of only 13%. Not only does this suggest a disparity between citizen and critic opinion, but also it suggests that one does not influence another. This controversy is an important benefactor to consider when discussing the pre-release of critic reviews of films, as we raise the question to you as to whether you believe critic opinion should be internationally trusted, or perhaps it should be your citizen opinion. However, further than necessary is the opinion that pre-released critic opinion may sink a vessel before the audience are even able to board it. For example, Johnny Depp, Armie Hammer and Jerry Bruckheimer have publicly stated that critics are the reason 2013’s The Lone Ranger performed so poorly. In an interview with Yahoo Movies, Depp suggested that he thought “the reviews were written when they heard Gore and Jerry and me were going to do the Lone Ranger.” In this sense, actor Johnny Depp believes that immoral critics and their bias 31% approval rating of The Lone Ranger prior to audience viewing is what enforced the film to stop dead in its tracks. In this case, unfortunately the citizen audience have been influenced by the critics, and jumped on the bandwagon, preventing all societal enjoyment, exploration or progression for the franchise, much to the dismay of the cast and company.
We would love to hear what you think of some of the most recent cinematic stats! Did you like or dislike any of the film’s mentioned? Or better yet, did you knowingly disagree with any of the critical evaluations that we have referred to above? Let us know in the comments below or via email!