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It feels as though 2017 has only just begun, and yet we have already come to the end of two full months. In that time, we've already seen some interesting and awesome titles hit the big screen, and hopefully we'll be getting some more of those this Friday. This week we have Get Out, Collide, and Rock Dog. It's gonna be a Rotten Week!
Just remember, I'm not reviewing these movies, but rather predicting where they'll end up on the Tomatometer. Let's take a look at This Rotten Week has to offer.
If the trailer for Get Out doesn't scare the crap out of you, then I need to come over to your house and figure out when/why your central nervous system shut down completely. This film looks absolutely terrifying. Forget the part about newly minted couples feeling a bit nervous about visiting parents for the first time. That's scary enough on its own. Now we introduce the added element of those parents running some kind of cult/hypnotism center/demonic home (or whatever the fuck is going on), and we've got scares coming from all directions.
Written and directed by the impressively versatile Jordan Peele, who makes his helming debut with this one, Get Out is already crushing it with critics. Sitting at 100% through almost twenty reviews, the title looks like just what the genre needs. It's reportedly a terrifying movie that also appeals to film buffs. That's no easy thing to pull off, but Peele and company look like they've done it by taking an already scary situation and turning it completely upside down.
The tag line for the new movie Collide is "How far would you go for the one you love?" My answer? Not to the theater to see this thing. I don't think I love anyone that much. While the movie does somewhat suck you in with its cast (including both Anthony Hopkins and Ben Kingsley as antagonists), the story seems beyond silly. Guy and a girl are in love. She needs a transplant of some kind. He needs to raise the money, and instead of going over the GoFundMe, he decides to return to his previous (and lucrative) life of crime. Of course it doesn't all go according to plan and now he's in a race against time (that kidney's going to crap out any minute) to raise the funds. It looks silly.
Movies like this get made all the time and are usually quickly forgotten. This strikes me as the kind of film we look back at a year and half from now and say, "Wait, Hopkins and Kingsley were in what? I had no idea." I predict Collide barely finishes with a score over 20 percent.
I can't claim to be too excited about watching the story of a Tibetan Mastiff who dismisses the guard dog lifestyle high in the mountains to enter the big, bad city to fulfill his rockstar dreams. Though I guess some kids can get behind the feel good story, to me it just seems like another in a rather long line of contrived animated films searching for a good story, but generally falling flat when it's all said and done. Ladies and gentlemen, meet Rock Dog.
The film's originally a Chinese production, based on a graphic novel and had a tough time when originally released there over a year ago. Maybe Rock Dog fairs better stateside with the message, but the trailer suggests a mostly vanilla flick without any real stakes or story. I always hope I'm wrong about these kinds of things, because I want all movies to be good, but I'm not getting that vibe. Some of the jokes come off as forced, and the plot is a bit hokey (and yes I'm factoring in that it's an animated movie made for kids).
It was a pretty solid week all around with two out of the three movies falling within range of my prediction. First off, The Great Wall (Predicted: 40% Actual: 36%) was critically below par, but could become a much, much bigger issue at the box office. Early numbers on the movie have it pacing way below it's budget, and we could be looking at our first major bomb of the year. It makes sense. After all, this is a movie about a group of Americans in historical China fighting off cave aliens. It doesn't sound super solid on paper, and it doesn't seem to translate to the big screen.
Then there was Fist Fight (Predicted: 47% Actual: 33%) which fell outside my prediction. I had the tone of this guess correct, in that I didn't think it looked all that good, but my score still just missed. Comedies like this aren't often darlings of the critics. Sure, they might be good for some laughs, but they're often too silly or inane to really create much excitement from the critical crowd. It doesn't mean you can't go out and have a chuckle, but they'll rarely finish high on the Tomatometer.
And finally,The Cure for Wellness (Predicted: 31% Actual: 38%) was another win, though I did have something of a head start with early reviews trending just a little bit negative. The visuals were more than a little creepy and I think that's the only thing from keeping the score all the way in the basement because critics thought the story was more than a little lacking.