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December 13 2005

IGN reviews the "Serenity" DVD and likes it, scores it at 9/10.

Still don't agree with their comment about how it bombed at the cinema, it could have done a hell of a lot worse. It also repeats the popular, yet incorrect belief, that it's only because of Firefly DVD sales, that the movie was made.

Despite the mistruths you listed, this still has made my day.

One week until the DVD hits!
It's a "mixed blessing" because it doesn't fall short of greatness? And it looks like "there are noticeable compression problems" should be "aren't", which is a relief. I just can't wait to hear me that commentary. He's the only film-maker I'd happily listen to all day long. I agree that it didn't bomb at the cinema. Yes, it could have done much better, but that would have been something of a shock given the general public's preference for innocuous, irrelevant and completely forgettable movies. Since when does greatness equal popularity anyway? It was a complete artistic success. That's what matters. Oh, and it kicked ass.
Special Agent Dale Cooper - I love the nickname.

Anyway, my thoughts on the Serenity DVD here. I like it. There's a few hours entertainment in it. I think the Oz version, however, will be well worth purchasing.
Special Agent Dale Cooper - It seems to me that the writer meant that the mixed blessing was in the fact that it was such a great movie that relatively few saw, and it's a shame that its greatness probably won't be replicated in the form of a sequel. I had to read it a couple of times before it made sense.

Personally, I think it's a pretty half-empty way of looking at things, and I'm getting a little tired of hearing it. I mean, we were blessed with Serenity in the first place, no mix about it. A sequel would be icing - really thick, creamy, delicious icing, but icing all the same. If nothing else, at least we had us some cake.

Gossi - Thanks for the review! You're very clear and thorough. Consider my appetite whetted.
Maybe I wouldn't use the word "bombed" but there's no question the box office didn't meet the expectations of the studio or Joss or most of the fans. That's ok. It doesn't reflect on the quality of the movie. It does put into question the future of the franchise, which is the mixed blessing the reviewer talks about.
"Personally, I think it's a pretty half-empty way of looking at things, and I'm getting a little tired of hearing it. I mean, we were blessed with Serenity in the first place, no mix about it. A sequel would be icing - really thick, creamy, delicious icing, but icing all the same. If nothing else, at least we had us some cake."

I totally agree.
I know the BO receits could've been worse, but when a film doesn't make back even it's production costs in theaters and seems to dissapear very quickly... I think that could be very easily interprated as a bomb, although like everything it's easy to spin it.
I cannot speak for others, but these last few days of waiting for *my* piece of cake are making me crazy. I was only able to get out to see it in the theater once, so when the DVD finally arrives, I shall be utterly useless for days due to repeated viewings.
I dunno, I tend to equate bombed with 'made less than half of its production cost back in theatres'. So I wouldn't call our beloved BDM a bomb. To be honest, any genre flick that makes $40 million in the current box office climate is far from a bomb, IMO...
Bomb to me would imply something akin to Howard the Duck proportions. Serenity got exceedingly good reviews but it performed somewhat modestly. But I wouldn't call it a box office failure.
If you want to talk about bombing the box office, ask Kevin Smith about Mallrats, and then ask him how it did on DVD :) Didn't make its $6M back in theatres, but has gone on to do tens of millions in DVD. I bring this up as I suspect that the BDM will make ridiculous money in DVD sales leading to further Firefly box sales, which I think is already happening to some extent.
It's a pretty decent review, but I disagree with two points. First, the idea that westerns and sci-fi have little in common seems to ignore the 'space - the final frontier' theme which has existed in quite a few works of science fiction. Stranger rides into town/ strange crew flies onto planet aren't all that different on a thematic level.

Secondly, I take issue with the assertion that Book's presence in the film was superfluous. Certainly he probably meant more to Firefly fans (the possible mirroring of his life and that of The Operative might not have been readily apparent to newcomers) but his fate highlighted the ruthlessness of The Operative and exemplified the severity of the situation in which our BDHs found themselves.
What do you mean you don't agree that it bombed at the box office???? The movie did bomb at the box office.

The definition: movies for which the box office revenue retained by the movie studio didn't cover production and marketing costs.

We all know Serenity falls into that definition. Ofcourse it could have been worse. However, your talking about the degree of a bomb. The industry considers any movie a "BOX OFFICE" bomb when it doesn't make back the cost. Hence Serenity bombed.

Having said that, that doesn't mean the movie cannot be a success still if things like DVD sales etc go through the roof. So in the end, the movie can still be considered an overall success (which I think it will be) but yet still be considered a box office bomb.

[ edited by DarenG on 2005-12-13 22:52 ]
Wikipedia defines a 'box office flop' as a movie which fails to make back it's production budget at the box office. Serenity is sat at $38m from the box office (which will likely remain the final figure - the international run is basically finished), of a reported budget of $39m so it's actually very, very marginally a 'box office flop'. Less than $1m seperates it.

Obviously, after you look at those figures, Universal have to remove the exhibitors take, and the marketing and distributor costs aren't counted in that. In other words, I'd hesitate to call it a bomb or flop as it's very close, but it's not in the black yet.

Average figures suggest movies tend to earn 40% of their take from the box office, with the remaining 60% coming from DVDs, TV licensing etc. With that logic in tack, Serenity should pull a total of around $100m if it fits into any average performance areas. $100m will have recovered post production, marketing and distribution costs.

Or, in other words, eventually it should break even still. To Universal, it's not a horrible bomb -- it's just not a massive cash cow franchise.
The $39 million does not include marketing costs for the film. The definition is actually Production Budget AND Marketing Costs. Wikipedia further goes on to say that if a movie recoups this cost, then it can be considered a success; otherwise, if it fails by a significant margin (usually 10% short or more), then it is often referred to as a box office bomb. So by no means is Serenity a marginal box office flop.

In the case of factoring if something is a box office bomb, DVD sales, rental and such do not factor into box office takes or if something is considered a box office bomb.

As stated before I think overall this film will be a succuss after all is factored in. However, sticking strictly with the determination of box office bomb...Serenity is.

[ edited by DarenG on 2005-12-13 23:11 ]
ARE THE RIVER TAM SESSIONS ON THE SERENITY DVD?!?!
I haven't seen them mentioned yet which worries me.
... and then everyone agreed to disagree over a largely semantic argument that doesn't really matter all that much anyway. Yay! Numfar, do the dance of joy :)
Wow Zeitgeist! Smooth transition ;-)
I was going for 'Oh, that wacky zeitgeist!' and a freeze frame. Then everyone laughs and forgets what they were arguing about, at which time gossi gets a round of snakebite(s? does that get pluralized or not?) in and we all talk about sillier things.
well, the Lord God does in fact write for Wikipedia (doesn't He?), so I think we can take His word as absolute divine truth. Never send a minion to do a god's work.
Dont get the definition arguement since last time I checked he doesn't write any of them. lol.

What would be silly is not to give everyone you know stocking stuffers with the Serenity DVD in it. Go people...preorder! ;)

[ edited by DarenG on 2005-12-13 23:25 ]
Snakebites AND talking? When I drink I mostly make manly grunting sounds.

Hjermsted - the sessions aren't on the DVD.
Grunting or gurgling sounds? That would be interesting to hear someone grunt and drink at the same time. Though I am sure if a man likes his drink enough it's feasible.
gorramit -- ixnay on the ontfay olourcay for entire posts. Also, sarcasm duly noted, but a bit over the top (see also David Boreanaz's performance in Wicked Prayer).

DarenG -- you are not wrong! Everyone make with the Serenity Stocking Stuffing(tm).

gossi -- well, there you have it, then.
There was a performance??? :\

[ edited by DarenG on 2005-12-13 23:31 ]
DarenG -- when compared to some folks who will go nameless, yes.
lol. Duley noted.
Also, sarcasm duly noted, but a bit over the top (see also David Boreanaz's performance in Wicked Prayer).

This is my new favouritest Whedonesque post ever. Also, I'm so stealing that joke.

Ever since I've seen Tara Reid have sex whilst wearing a bra in Alone in the Dark (the only film I've seen with a 1% rating on Rotten Tomatos) I've always thought 'I've got to see Wicked Prayer now!'. She was a scientist man. A scientist with glasses.
Yes, with glasses, like Denise Richards as the nuclear physicist (Doctor Christmas Jones) in The World is Not Enough?
Oh dear god. I haven't seen that. Think of all the cheese I've missed by not watching Bond films!

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