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.
Rotten Watch Prediction
Since 1993, there have been 33 movies based on (or sourced from) video games. Suffice it to say, they've all been terrible. The average Tomatometer rating for these flicks is an astoundingly low 18%. This is really something, and a sign that critics may simply never like a movie whose roots are in the gaming world. None of them have ever finished higher than 36%, and I can't imagine this latest reboot of Tomb Raider will be the one that bucks the trend. It looks silly in all the wrong ways, and I doubt it's any kind of improvement over the pre-reboot titles, Lara Croft: Tomb Raider (20%) or Lara Croft: Tomb Raider -- The Cradle of Life (24%).
I get why studios would want to reboot this crap, i.e. "We're out of ideas," but I predict isn't going to light a fuse under the franchise by a long shot. Like its video game brethren, it will stink and keep the Tomatometer average well in the basement.
Rotten Watch Prediction
It can't be easy being a high school kid these days. And I can't imagine it getting easier living life with a secret. But that appears the case in Love, Simon, where your cookie-cutter kid is hiding the fact that he's gay from the world at large (but more specifically, his close friends). I suspect as we move more and more into a self-actualized society where these kinds of "taboos" (which I honestly didn't think were even taboos anymore) are stripped away, movies like this will go the way of the dodo. But this one appears a sweet look at the ongoing struggles of living with secrets.
Based on the novel Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda, we follow the titular Simon in Love, Simon as he navigates the pitfalls of high school as a kid with a secret. Unlike reality, his parents are amazing looking (Jennifer Garner and Josh Duhamel), and most of his existence is filled with hijinks. Critics are loving it so far, with the Tomatometer sitting at 90% through more than 20 reviews. It's a good start and will finish on the overwhelmingly positive side of things.
Rotten Watch Prediction
With I Can Only Imagine we are here to drill down even deeper into the cultural void with the creation of a film based on a single song. "I Can Only Imagine," written and sung by the band MercyMe, is the most-played Christian Rock song of all-time, and is now brought to the big screen in a feature-length treatment about its origins, starring J. Michael Finley, Brody Rose, Dennis Quaid, Cloris Leachman, Madeline Carroll, Trace Adkins, and Priscilla Shirer
The faith-based film seems to act more like a biopic of the band's lead singer Bart Millard, than anything. Director Jon Erwin has critical "success" (only 13 reviews) in the genre with Woodlawn (77%). I suspect the same amount of critics review this one, and generally like it. It looks like a fine, vanilla retelling of the origins behind a famous song. Not much can go wrong here.
I had an uninspiring run last time out. One prediction fell within range, one just missed, and two were off by a wide margin. The biggest mistake was A Wrinkle in Time (Prediction: 68% Actual: 42%). While I thought the visuals and source material would carry the movie to critical success, the reviews didn't come close to holding up. The biggest complaint amongst the critics was the film's apparent inability to cross-appeal to both kids and adults. Most agreed that it was a sloppy and childish adaptation with little to grab onto to for the older folk. This is a big miss for such a classic novel.
Gringo (Prediction: 58% Actual: 39%) was another misstep both in prediction and actual critical reception. Reviews ranged from meh to something close to a disdain for the sloppiness of the film. Some enjoyed the irreverence and pacing, but by and large they disliked the dark comedy aspects and felt the jokes didn't land.
Meanwhile, Strangers: Prey at Night (Prediction: 24% Actual: 35%) was a near miss and actually could eventually fall within range if just a couple of more reviews trickle in soon. It's hard to get too worked up over the percentage point considering I had the tenor of reviews right in line. This was simply a bad film, easy to see from just watching the trailer and understanding how the first the series fared.
And finally, Hurricane Heist (Prediction: 20% Actual: 29%) was a win. It doesn't take a cinematic prediction genius to know where this thing would fall. It's your whizz-bang action movie without any real merit except the explosions and action. But it might turn into a cable darling because of the pace.