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Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice has had a great weekend with audiences, but a bit of a rougher slog when it comes to the critics. Yet there's a surprising correlation between this crowd-pleasing hit and a couple of history's most infamous comic book flops. We say this because the film is currently ranking in with a CinemaScore of a B, which is the same score Green Lantern and Catwoman both obtained during their box office run.
This news comes from IGN, who saw that the Zack Snyder hit of the weekend somehow managed to bring home the same audience appraisal as those two other infamous Warner Bros / DC Comics collaborations. For comparison, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice finds itself above such C-grade films as Batman and Robin and Superman IV: The Quest for Peace, but also below A-graded films like Man of Steel and the entire Dark Knight trilogy from Christopher Nolan.
Reminiscing back to the days of Catwoman and Green Lantern's releases, their opening weekends were moderate to lukewarm successes. Catwoman opened to a $16.7 million start, with several weekends of sharp drops in its box office march towards a $82 million gross worldwide. Green Lantern had it slightly better, with a $53.1 million opening that lead to a $219.9 million worldwide total. Out of the two films, Green Lantern was the one to actually exceed its production budget – but only by $19.8 million, which couldn't possibly have covered the additional expenses the film would have racked up. But despite the bad business these films ran into, their CinemaScores are on the same level as Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, which makes us ask the question, "How?"
Well, it's very simple: CinemaScores are calculated based on polls administered on the opening night of the films they're looking to measure the opinions of. So you'd think that the most enthusiastic / interested audiences for a film like Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice would show up on opening night, which may in turn skew the scores for such films in either direction. Even people that were the most pessimistic about the Zack Snyder DC Cinematic Universe launching pad were most likely people that lined up for those first showings, so as to be the first people to say, "It stinks!" for all the world to hear. So while the scores might say that audiences like Catwoman and Green Lantern about as much as they did Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, those results are only based on those brave enough to get out to the cinemas for the premiere.
Despite the rather interesting correlation between Catwoman, Green Lantern, and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, the last film in that series managed to pull off a devisatingly brilliant opening weekend that shattered records and ensured that Warner Bros' plans for further DC Comics pictures is still on track, for the time being. That said, we'll see how well the film fares in the coming weekends, as this weekend's drop-off is only a sign of what fate eventually befalls such juggernauts. In the meantime, you can see Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice in theaters now.