The Movies Are All Right

was given Spider-Man: There is no room for home Poor review, but even I’m glad to see it works so well. In fact, I’m quite optimistic about the future of films.
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You thought Sony’s box office performance was amazing Spider-Man: There is no room for home This past weekend will be good news for just about everyone. The unprecedented arc of the $260 million movie marks the second biggest opening of all time Avengers: Endgame$357 million. (There is no place for home He’s already made $750 million globally after barely a week in theaters.) Fans of the superhero movies were delighted, of course. The owners of the theater, who went through difficult years, were certainly pleased. “Hello Prophets of Death,” Adam Aaron, CEO of the heavily beleaguered AMC Theaters series, Tweet on Monday For those who claimed broadcasting would kill cinemas. “#CHOKEonTHAT.”

However, some were (understandably) worried. For those who watched the slow death of adult films over the past decade and more, the problem wasn’t that the superhero flick was making a lot of money but that the other big releases were crashing and burning around. Noir Guillermo del Toro’s star-studded period nightmare alley, said to be the most expensive movie ever funded by Fox Searchlight, opened for $3 million that same weekend. Steven Spielberg sang West side story, after its disappointing opening of $10.5 million the previous weekend, is down 68 percent to $3.6 million. Here, in undeniably stark terms, was the popular culture dystopia that many feared: comic book columns obliterating anything that isn’t a comic book column out of the market. (There are even reports that theaters have told ticket holders to cancel their shows nightmare alley To make room for more offers Spider Man. That’s a bit of reality there.) The pandemic may have only precipitated an already troubling, irreversible end game: Goliath, victorious — forever and ever.

Pessimists should relax, at least for a minute. was given Spider Man Poor review, but even I’m glad to see it works so well. Lots of movie theaters had the best weekend in their history. For those of us who were hoping those theaters would survive, this is really good news. It might not be sustainable, for sure: One of the problems of relying on a small set of large addresses for all of your revenue means that when those large addresses start to fall apart, you’re immediately screwed up. But a success like this was it is necessary The equivalent of antibody therapy to fight a fatal disease.

And on a micro level, there is a glimmer of hope throughout the movie scene. Throughout the summer and fall of 2021, I found myself moving from theater to theater in New York, surprised by the level of turnout. These were often reference shows of beloved classics such as do the right thing or North North West Or John Carpenter the thing. Discussions with theater directors and programmers confirmed this observation. “I was amazed by the audiences, frankly,” Bruce Goldstein, director of reference programming at Film Forum, told me. Since the theater reopened its doors earlier this year, it has been programming a steady stream of war horses as a way to facilitate the return of viewers. “I call them relaxing movies or audience portraits — familiar titles people know about,” he says. “They are eager to go back to the cinema and watch the classics. There is no dispute as to whether rear window Fun or not! They know they’re going to have a good time.”

It gives a certain amount of psychological meaning, but is also a bit surprising because such films are generally widely available via live broadcast and home video. When shows White House Sold out (as they did this year at the Film Forum during the Humphrey Bogart Festival, another huge hit), it’s about more than people want to see White House; It’s about people wanting to be around other people while they’re watching White House together. Believe it or not, this is somewhat similar to the phenomenon of people going out in droves to see Spider-Man and a variety of old bad guys known for nostalgia. In stressful times, we are all drawn to familiar comforts.

Meanwhile, the landscape of the new releases was much more uneven. But even on that front, just two weeks ago, you could have seen any number of shows all sold out in New York Licorice pizza or driving my car. Friends who tried to manipulate the system by trying to watch Paul Thomas Anderson’s latest performances on morning and late morning shows were shocked to discover themselves entering crowded theaters. Obviously, not every city is New York or Los Angeles, and there is still a long way to go before everything returns to normal. The new, highly contagious COVID variant arriving in the middle of the holiday movie season certainly isn’t helping matters either.

But that’s why I’m more optimistic than I’ve been in a long time.

In the early months of the pandemic, large groups of so-called intelligent people believed that movie theaters were not only doomed, but perhaps even deserving of death. The thinking was that the bright future of streaming services that streamed any image we might want on our sofas was much better than a world in which we go out watching movies in theaters on the big screens between our (gossip, disgusting, possibly virus-filled, perhaps politically suspect) fellow human beings. As I wrote before, this kind of thinking has consequences beyond whether or not your local multiplex survives. Making ourselves slaves to solitude and comfort has all sorts of repercussions for our cultural and social well-being. If we can no longer stay around each other, we are no longer a community, a country, or a civilization. We are just a pouch of people tied up in the Matrix.

To be clear, it’s not about whether or not we can enjoy movies at home. Of course we can! It comes down to whether you should enjoy movies Just at home. Because if theaters die, that’s what we get whether we like it or not. Cinema cannot survive without theatres. Without them, television becomes a completely different art form.

It’s not like people who predicted a future without theaters were all about trying to bankrupt movie theaters. They just assumed that after a few months to a year of no movie theaters, we’d all realize we didn’t need them. Well, we’re going to have a two-year epidemic in less than three months, and almost no one is spouting that nonsense flowing anymore—at least not in public. Perhaps because after trying it for a while, we realized that a lifetime of spending on our sofas is neither possible nor desirable. Maybe because missing things makes you appreciate them sometimes. Perhaps because 2020 and early 2021 have been an unintended test run of our non-theatrical and benevolent future… And It was so awful.

It turns out that people love to go to the movies. And they love cinemas. And There is no place for homeThe numbers are the clearest example of this. The movie’s success revolves around more than just curiosity about Spidey’s latest adventure, the progression of spoiler events, or even the nostalgia factor in seeing Dr. Octopus and Green Goblin again. Not only did the film’s box office overtake that of every other film released in 2021 or 2020; As I overcame it from Previous Spider-Man movie Spider-Man: Far From Home, which needed six full days during an extended holiday on July 4 in the virus-free summer of 2019 to reach a total of “only” $185 million in the weekend. repeatedly, There is no place for home made 260 million dollarsAnd this wasn’t even a weekend. In addition, a new variant was making its way through the largest theater markets in the country. When the numbers are big in the face of such challenges, it means that something else is going on.

For many people, There is no place for home It would likely mark a return to the movies after what many of them had a very long hiatus from. Whatever the image quality, I’d like to think that at least some of these viewers felt the same electric shock as I did earlier this year when I went to see A Quiet Place Part Two As my first movie in theaters in a few months. holy shit, I remember thinking. How can we, in the name of God, think that such an exhilarating experience would ever go away? No joke – for a few hours after seeing A Quiet Place Part TwoI enjoyed it A Quiet Place Part Two It might be the greatest movie ever.

It is clear that there is still much work to be done. There is no monolithic year, and this year is even less. Movie box office fates have waned and dwindled throughout the year as the realities of the pandemic continually change—whether it’s related to vaccinations, new variants, live streaming availability, disposable income issues, age group concerns, or a chaotic calendar. (And let’s not get into how much the crazy and ever-changing studios cost to release.) Until last weekend, the general assumption was that all of this year’s box office was weak due to ongoing pandemic fears. Even this year’s other superhero movies—some released exclusively to theaters, some released concurrently during broadcast—didn’t achieve the success that many had hoped. But There is no place for homeThe huge box office, which would have caught the eye even in normal times, turned this thinking on its head.

However, all of these things can be true at once. The big films that have done well this year – No time to dieAnd Poison: Let there be a massacreAnd Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten RingsAnd F9 They did so well primarily because they appealed to young males, the demographic most ready to go out to the movies this year. A lot of people who want to go to theaters are still hesitant to do so. The numbers show that many older moviegoers and viewers make up a much smaller percentage of the audience than in the past. This would explain why the title is so popular West side story The musical, which probably wouldn’t have had much success at first, was already considered a failure. It might also explain why the noir period is so popular nightmare alley It was unlikely to set the box office on fire. Families still have to return to theaters at the rates they once attended. That’s why a movie like a Disney movie Charm, which would have been a hit in The Before Times even if it was terrible (it’s not – it’s exhilarating), made less profit than intimidation free man. The fact that the boutique releases and blockbuster movies seem to be doing better still leaves the ongoing question of whether the mid-budget movies, already on life support, can come back or whether they’re set to become a one-off Netflix.

These remain important concerns, but they are all secondary to the simple fact that we cannot save cinemas if there are no cinemas to preserve them. There is no place for homeHis success is not the bloody climax of the battle between different genres of films. It’s an important victory in the ongoing battle to save all the movies.

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