Yesterday, Valentine’s Day, Fox held special advanced sneak previews for the upcoming romantic/comedy/action movie This Means War. It was originally supposed to be released completely yesterday but advance tracking had not picked up, and The Vow was pretty much going to eat it, so Fox was wise to move it and save themselves from embarrassment. I checked the sellouts for Valentine’s Day yesterday and The Vow, as aforementioned, ate everything in sight and even sold out all the showings in one day at a paritcular theatre near me. Safe House had some sellouts, The Woman In Black… even Underworld: Evolution. But none for This Means War. So, what does this mean?
This Means War comes out this weekend. The Vow will have treaded a lot of ground by that time, exhausting most earnings (it’s Valentine’s Day box office # will be very interesting) and it’s only other compition is Ghost Rider 2, which, who cares? I think This Means War can do at the very least $20 million. If it does so, I’ll call it a mild success and most other critics will too. If it does $25 million we’re good, but anything under $20 million, everyone will point there fingers at Reese. It’s been a rough go for her the last couple of years. Sweet Home Alabama was a massive success and established her and her southern twang as a box-office draw. After that though, films like Vanity Fair & Just Like Heaven were straight up bombs. Walk The Line came next and gave her an Oscar. She chose to follow that up with Rendition (bomb) Penelope (who? what?) and Four Christmases which was critically destroyed but did well because of the combination of her and Vince Vaughn. How Do You Know? was a very expensive disaster and the failure fell on her shoulders. And then we have last year’s Water For Elephants. Opened very mildly but had decent legs and was a mild, mild success but one none the less.
So who’s fault is it then if this movie flops? I don’t want to say it’s Reese’s but because she is the big name and initial attraction it would make the most sense. But it might be the men’s fault, Chris Pine & Tom Hardy. They are practically unknown. Chris Pine is an Interchangeable Actor with Sam Worthington/Jeremy Renner/Ryan Reynolds(at this point). They’re all the same to me. Tom Hardy is loved by women, but his only big North American release was Inception. No one knows who he is and with the case of a film like this, were the pratfalls and attraction and desire to watch this has to do with the men who are fighting over Reese’s character, I say they could’ve picked better.
The film has been marketed pretty well. The trailers and TV spots are effective enough and get the point across. Chelsea Handler is a big name and they’re selling her more than Reese, even though Ms. Witherspoon is the one getting paid $15 million. Oh ya. That might all change after this weekend. We’ll see what happens.