KICK-ASS: “A Box Office Disappointment”

Posted: April 19, 2010 by Brian in movies, Review, RoundUp
Tags: , , , ,

Can’t say I didn’t tell you so…well, sort of. Last Friday’s Movie-Round-Up Title went to The Joneses, which left KICK-ASS, not in second place, but in third after the Death at a Funeral remake.  Over the weekend, the most anticipated movie of the weekend, KICK-ASS, couldn’t even take the top spot away from four-week old, How To Train Your Dragon, which made $20 Million.  That means KICK-ASS, couldn’t even break the $20 million mark?  I was definitely not surprised.  Looks let at‘s” Top 5 Reasons why KICK-ASS Failed at the Box Office”, shall we?

  1. Muddled Marketing: Outside of a few very vocal nerds on the internet, I’m not sure most people really had any idea what the movie was supposed to be. It’s not that they had no awareness of it, Lionsgate’s marketing campaign was huge, it’s just that it never made any sense. The trailers were full of bright colors and snappy one-liners. It seemed kind of like a cartoon, some of the TV spots even made it look like a family movie. But the movie was rated-R, the title contains a borderline curse-word, and most of the talk around the project centered on how violent it is. The film’s title and rating never seemed to fit the bright, friendly looking images and poppy music playing through the ads. To the average moviegoer, none of this really made any sense.
  2. 2002 Called, It Wants Its Movie Back: Another side effect of all those bright colors was that Kick-Ass looked dated. To anyone without an existing familiarity with the comics the movie looked bright and silly, almost like The Fantastic Four. That style of superhero movie is so out of vogue that Sony killed its entire Spider-Man franchise just to get more dark and gritty like The Dark Knight. Of course the big secret of Kick-Ass is that it is dark and gritty, but to anyone who knows nothing about the movie all they see it bright, neon colors and a bunch of kids running around acting like Peter Parker. They’ve seen that movie and it’s now so out of sync with what people are looking for in a superhero movie, that audiences ignored it.
  3. Aaron Whathisname Can’t Carry A Movie: One look at the posters for Kick-Ass should tell you where they went wrong. The movie only has one legitimate star and on the posters he’s hidden behind some sort of silly Batman mask. Nic Cage didn’t even bother to show up to some of the film’s bigger events and I strongly suspect a lot of people didn’t even realize he was in it. For instance, he wasn’t with the rest of the cast for the film’s premiere at SXSW. Instead it’s the kids of Kick-Ass who got all the attention and, no matter how good they were or weren’t, nobody’s showing up to see a movie for Aaron Johnson or Chloe Moretz.
  4. What Happened To My 3D Glasses?: Like it or not audiences seem absolutely addicted to 3D. As Clash of the Titans proved, they don’t even care if it’s good, as long as they have to pay extra for glasses. That’s especially true of action movies. Nobody expects Date Night to be in 3D, but right now moviegoers expect nothing less from a superhero flick. Ticket-buyers show up to the theater looking for an experience, and right now they’re convinced that buying 3D is the way to get that experience. It should be no surprise then that How to Train Your Dragon, almost inarguably the best 3D release still in theaters, would steal most of Kick-Ass’s thunder.
  5. It Never Had An Audience: Kick-Ass creator Mark Millar made it pretty clear from the start that most of his motivation for coming up with the thing in the first place, was to shock people. Normally controversy can help carry a movie, increase interest, and get bodies in seats . And while there’s plenty in Kick-Ass that might be shocking, none of the people who might have been shocked by it were paying any attention because they had no interest in it. They’d already dismissed it as the domain of a few, lonely, comic book lovers. It’s the same way Anime gets away with tentacle porn and schoolgirl fetish fantasies. It’s so far outside the norm that anyone who’d be offended by it simply pretends it doesn’t exist.

    The thing is, Kick-Ass never had an audience outside of those who were already predisposed to love it. Its appeal, from the start, was tremendously limited. You can’t have controversy unless someone bothers to see the movie, but the only people who were ever going to see this movie were hardcore geeks who embrace what it’s doing. No one else cared, they were never going to care, and advertising it was both a waste of money and time. Kick-Ass didn’t really fail, Hollywood simply expected too much from it.

So there you have it.  I’m telling you, that fake Batman just wasn’t gonna cut it for anybody. Looks like would agree with Brian had to say about the film on Friday’s Movie Round-Up.

  1. Crazy RN says:

    I still wanna watch it when its out on netflix!

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