There is often a gap between what films critics pan and what films audiences flock to. All the critical accolades for a film can sometimes fail to sell tickets as much as critical brickbats won’t stop crowds from showing up to see some cinematic turkey.
But this weekend it seems as if critics and audiences were in synch over two films that debuted on Friday – the comedy Bucky Larson: Born To Be A Star and the indie horror film Creature. Critics hated both films and the audiences stayed away in droves.
Bucky Larson, starring comic actor Nick Swarsdon as a hapless idiot who stumbles into the p0rn industry, earned a perfect goose egg, 0% score on Rotten Tomatoes. Not only that, but according to Box Office Mojo, it only grossed $1,450,000 in ticket sales. However, with that spread across 1,500 screens, that averages out (according to Film Drunk) to a whopping 8 admissions per showing! The film finished in 15th place this weekend, right behind The Smurfs, which has been out for seven weeks. (For some perspective, recent stinkers like Jonah Hex, Disaster Movie and Norbit all managed to score higher than 0%.)
The indie horror film Creature fared a little better with critics, earning a 11% on Rotten Tomatoes. However, it did far worse at the box office, opening at 29th place with total ticket sales of $331,000. That’s an average of less than six people per screening. This dismal showing is also the worst-ever opening for a film showing on more than 1,500 screens.
The incredible low box office numbers for Bucky Larson are even more surprising considering the extensive marketing campaign the film got in the preceding weeks leading up to its release. Creature’s box office is a little easier to accept as being an indie release it had very little in the way of marketing.
Now traditionally, the weekend after Labor Day is a slow one at the box office, but even coupling that fact with the aggressively inclement weather in sections of the northeast of the country keeping moviegoers at home doesn’t excuse the poor box office performance seen here. I personally can’t think of a weekend when we’ve seen two complete disasters of this magnitude open simultaneously.
Judge for yourself from the trailers below. Would you have seen either of these films?