At some point, progressives are going to have to figure out what #GetWokeGoBroke actually means. Two weeks ago, I railed against the latest Steve McQueen movie Widows, you can read the review to understand why it is one of the most pathetically ‘woke’ films of 2018. So when I saw an article written by Matthew Jacobs and Zeba Blay of the Huffington Post berating audiences from not spending their money to go see it, my first reaction was…
The movie has been out for two weeks and has only made 24 million of it’s 42 million dollar production budget. It is safe to say the film is going to bomb. In response to this, HuffPo wrote an article entitled: ‘Widows’ Isn’t Making Much Money At The Box Office. What’s Wrong With You, America? Well, maybe America doesn’t want to spend $16 to be lectured on ‘Post Trump America’ for 129 MINUTES. But that is too simple of an answer so let’s listen to some of the gripes. Let’s start with Blay’s point:
“What. The. Hell. I’m so confused because this film has generally received amazing reviews AND it stars … Viola Davis? And Liam Neeson? What more could you want?”
Well, she makes a good point, the film got AMAZING reviews (from critics) so why didn’t that help the box office? It’s because the critics who LOVED the film, loved it for its misandry and political grandstanding on America in the age of Trump. Audiences don’t need to spend $16 a pop for that when they can watch CNN, MSNBC, Late Night Talk Shows (pick one), and well…Huffington Post for free.
“Maybe people don’t know what to do with a female-led, black-woman-led genre film?”
Perhaps, maybe someone’s race and gender isn’t exactly the #1 selling point for audiences looking to see a film. Jacobs then chimes in making the statementst:
“Somehow, people would rather see a bad Freddie Mercury biopic and a Mark Wahlberg comedy over a star-studded heist thriller that deserves a Best Picture nomination? (No offense to “Instant Family,” which I haven’t seen and which has the great Rose Byrne. I just can’t believe Mark Wahlberg is still a draw in 2018.)”
Whoa, easy there Jacobs, your man hate is showing. How can you slam a film you didn’t watch and then turn around and say that it’s great a woman was in the film? The answer to your question, its simple, both of those movies you mentioned…were fun. Audiences still like fun in Post-Trump America. Learn from that. The critics then begin to gush about the nuances of the film but that doesn’t address the reasoning of why people didn’t see it. But there is one more point that Blay brings up”
“Maybe people are getting the feeling that it’s all heavy, heavy, heavy, but I assure you, this movie is pure fun. Watching the heist itself go down is worth the price of admission alone.”
I don’t know if I would call a film about a group of physically and mentally abused women whose lives are threatened by a group of murderous thugs to pull off a heist against their will “fun”, not to mention the heist itself is anything but ‘exciting’. I stole a video game from a Blockbuster 18 years ago and that heist was more exciting than this movie (but besides the point). Jacobs finishes the article saying that:
“You said “Widows” is a metaphor for post-2016 America, and so is the muted attention it’s receiving. Quality is sitting right there in front of us, but the country is ignoring it. Sounds familiar.”
This is the core problem with people who share Jacobs and Blay views (outside of the fact that they can’t get over Hillary losing). What they call ‘quality’ is simply not what people are looking for nor do they want to part with their hard earned money to support. Widows financially is on par with other ‘woke’ releases of 2018 such as Sorry To Bother You (17.5 Million) and The Hate U Give (30 Million). These films aren’t money-making blockbusters because they are only made for a small number of liberal arts students who gush about the thought-provoking subject matter as long as it leans to the left. Films like these are the cinematic version of Ring Of Honor, sure it has it’s niche core audience of radical fanboys but they are largely insignificant in the grand scheme of the industry they represent.
Now that’s not to say that films like this shouldn’t exist but when you make a politically charged content and it disappears faster than Hillary Clinton’s classified e-mails, don’t get upset at audiences who act like James Comey and decide to look the other way.