An over-saturated summer of blockbuster features has killed an otherwise good movie. With all the other big budget sequels and franchise films being released from 2012 to 2014, is anyone surprised that Pacific Rim has performed so badly? This blog called it first last year, stating that this film will most likely sink at the box office during a summer that has been dominated by the likes of Iron Man 3, Man of Steel, Star Trek 12 and World War Z. With a season filled with this many blockbusters, Pacific Rim would need a lot more than the stellar names of Guillermo del Toro (pictured above) and Idris Elba to make this the success it should have been.
On the surface, Pacific Rim has been badly marketed as a monster flick that sees humans engaged in an all out war with sea monster aliens, via the use of giant robots and several other elements that look like it could have been written by me when I was 10 years old and had an overactive imagination. However this is a del Toro movie, so regardless of how silly the synopsis sounds, the actual product itself should still be good. An initial 72% Fresh on Rottentomatoes and 8/10 on IMDb is testament to the quality of this film. However after a summer of space ships, super heroes, fast muscle cars and (on and off-screen) terrorist attacks, there is only so much action the audience can take in in one go. Pacific Rim comes at the tail end of all of those features and at a time when the audience needs a break.
When all is said and done, Pacific Rim finished 3rd place behind a cartoon and an Adam Sandler movie. Ouch. With a budget of at least $191 million, the film unfortunately only generated a disappointing $38.3 million in receipts over its opening weekend. Figures released by the studio showed it doing better overseas and that it may still make back a significant chunk of its budget by the time it is released in all of its foreign markets in addition to its Blu Ray and DVD sales. However it maybe sometime before we get the complete picture given that several foreign markets such as the Middle East, where these genre flicks are popular, have deferred it's release by over a month due to Ramadan. Given its poor domestic showing in the US, plans for a Pacific Rim sequel will be put on hold for now given its 3rd place showing. In a summer dominated by the likes of Fast 6, Oblivion and Now You See Me, it probably would have been best to get your big budget screamer out of the gate before everyone else.
Image Credit: pacificrimmovie.com and thisinfamous.com