SMILE did great this weekend .. in the United States Box office: $22 mil.. Friday alone fetched in $8.2 mil..
Landing the top offshore debut for the studios was Paramount’s Smile with $14.5M from 58 markets, and $36.5M globally. The horror audience grinned in all areas with good word of mouth for the Parker Finn-directed movie that was also tops domestically.
Reinforcing that audiences want to go back to the cinema for something fresh, on a like-for-like basis, the offshore start on Smile is 18% above Truth or Dare, 55% ahead of Hereditary and on par with The Black Phone. Smile, whose first footage intrigued exhibition at CineEurope earlier this year, was led by the UK with $2M from 520 locations at No. 2. France was also a No. 2 debut with $1.4M from 303 sites. In horror-leaning Mexico, the movie scored a No. 1 start of $1.1M from 855 locations. Rounding out the Top 5 were Germany ($1M from 316) and Australia ($800K from 206)
We saw the movie this weekend as well. Amazing cinematic effects–the upside down camera angles.. the dreadful music.. the dark hallways that did NOT have something jump out, and the scenes where something did..
It was all effective.
However there were some less than great things. It felt like a horror movie that turned into a thriller and then back into a horror again, with a twist ending that went right back to the ending that no one seemed to want..
We ended up liking the thriller angle of the film more than the horror. But boy. those jump scares. We thought someone walking down the aisle to go to the bathroom in the theater was going to fall backwards–they chose the scene that featured the jumpiest of the jump scares to walk down the dark steps..
The marketing for the movie was brilliant, with smiling people gracing baseball games and public locations for the past two weeks. Nice move!
But what few are talking about with this is the ‘smile’ concept. It is based on a short horror film.. but it also seems to borrow a lot of the concept of IT FOLLOWS. In that movie, what followed was a sexually transmitted disease and bad reputation. In this film, it is mental illness. We cloud it and hide it with a smile.
I am not sure if the film makers went for a deeper meaning than what we got, but it sure felt like something much more meaningful was hiding under the surface.
THE WOKE CHOKE
But what did NOT do well this weekend was BROS:
Despite glowing reviews for the Judd Apatow-produced film, Bros has not been a hit at the box office and is estimated to only make $4.8M during its opening weekend, half of what Universal was estimating. Eichner acknowledged that the romantic comedy he stars in isn’t tracking within a certain segment of the population in the country.
Homophobia is the excuse for the film doing poorly..
More from the DEADLINE article:
“Even with glowing reviews, great Rotten Tomatoes scores, an A CinemaScore, etc, straight people, especially in certain parts of the country, just didn’t show up for Bros. And that’s disappointing but it is what it is,” he continued.
The comedian stands by the movie and encouraged “everyone who ISN’T a homophobic weirdo” to go watch Bros.