Why ‘Pacific Rim’ Might Be the Sleeper Hit of the Summer
(Photo: Warner Bros.)
After an initial wave of enthusiasm for Guillermo del Toro's sci-fi action epic "Pacific Rim," the film suffered from a case of opening weekend blues, bringing in only $37.3 million to offset its massive $200 million estimated budget. But the wave of interest for the giant robot film may be swelling again as interest seems to be increasing overseas.
Studios like their summer tentpole movies to crash across the opening weekend box office like a tidal wave — gradually building momentum for years as it makes its steady journey from script to multiplex before it gathers so much anticipation that it explodes in a frenzy on its first days of release. Instead, "Pacific Rim" has given every impression of a wave that couldn't quite come together — until now. The film topped the international box office over the weekend, bringing in $35.3 million — not a huge amount, but given that those aren't opening weekend figures, the film is starting to show it has staying power.
Early enthusiasm waned as its debut approached. Variety reported that audience tracking numbers showed "Rim" was headed for a "gruesome" opening weekend writing, "The impending doom has been pretty clear ever since 'Pacific Rim' came on tracking early last month."
Media outlets have been consumed by stories claiming this is the summer of Hollywood flops and disappointments, and the knives have been out for the latest sacrificial lamb.
But there are sparks of hope that the reports of "Rim's" death may have been exaggerated. The first ray of light: its strong ticket pre-sales. "Rim" got off to a strong start with its Thursday night screenings, and some experts said the film may thrive on strong word of mouth.
Here are a few reasons why this might just be the epic that fights back:
1. It's Something Different
(Photo: Warner Bros.)
Let's face it, summer blockbusters are becoming more of a chore than a pleasure. How many times can we see the same story? Boy discovers he has a power that makes him different than all the others. Boy rejects power. Boy accepts power in order to stop a massive invasion of space aliens who are on the brink of blowing up L.A. or New York. The sameness of these films, their plots; the same computer generated images of city buses being used as baseball bats while cities crumble seems to be leading to blockbuster fatigue.