Summer Box Office Predictions 2011

1. Transformers: Dark of the Moon

Release date: June 29

Plot summary: The Autobots are back in action after discovering a Cybertronian spacecraft hidden on the Moon. They find themselves racing with the Decepticons to reach it and learn its secrets in order to ultimately save the human race in some form.

Why it will rule: The first Transformers movie was a $320 million hit and the second skyrocketed to a $410 million hit. Both of those movies were without the third dimension however, which is likely to add somewhere near an additional 25% to box office receipts. Dark of the Moon will enjoy a few of the finer luxuries summer has to offer: an IMAX slot and the Fourth of July weekend it usually dons. Director Michael Bay promises to not necessarily make the third film bigger than Revenge of the Fallen, but darker and more emotional, getting into the mythos and character development, something Nolan has faired well from at the box office.

Why it will fail: Michael Bay has never made a dark, emotional movie with character development in his career. Audiences saw what a car wreck Revenge of the Fallen was and it was panned by every known critic. Given what information is known about the plot and teaser, we have no reason to believe Dark of the Moon will be any different from the first two, except that it will be sans Megan Fox, the eye candy that seemed to bring in salivating young males by the droves. Another critical disaster and story-less film may not be a box office pounding for Bay, but it also isn’t going to be the same out of the world hit unless the trailer is another Linkin Park jammed visual trip.

Estimated box office: $120 million OW / $385 million domestic

2. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part II

Release date: July 15

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It’s the Most Wonderful Posts of the Year

It hasn’t been a full year quite yet here at CyniCritics. With only ten and a half months of existence recorded, it’s still been one hell of a year for us. Our own domain name, a feature on IMDb’s Hit List, increasing viewership, some new friends and a growing appreciation for the art of cinema all make the cut of our accomplishments this year.

To celebrate the New Year and kick off the end of the year goodie posts, Matt and I would like to thank everyone for stopping by, reading our work and taking part in the discussion. Here is a list of a few of our favorite posts from CyniCritics over the past year and ones from other sites that caught our eyes and wracked our brains. Happy New Year, everyone!!!

Favorite Posts on Friend Sites


Are Hollywood Actors Overpaid? by Anomalous Materials– The brilliance of Castor is his ability to create an amazing dialogue among film enthusiasts. The tagline on his site summarizes it all, “where movie lovers come to mingle.” In this post, as with many, he starts by asking us a question, seeking our answer, not seeking us to learn his. The question is great and so is his exploration of it. Continue reading

State of the Summer Box Office: The Worst Summer in Years

The Situation

Just one year ago Hollywood was partying like it was 2009. For second or third straight summer in a row, studios were rolling out films that pleased audiences, critics and their pocketbook alike, which is an extremely rare feat for the industry to do these days. In 2008, Wall-E, Iron Man, and The Dark Knight topped the box office (with The Dark Knight tumbling new records) and were garnering staggering reviews, then received a slew of Oscar nominations down the road. All were happy.

The year 2009 followed suit. Transformers 2 opened to be the largest grossing movie of the summer, crossing the $400 million mark even if it did get annihilated by critics. Up, Star Trek, The Hangover, The Proposal and more had taken box office expectations and blew them away into becoming monster blockbusters. All were reviewed above fair, many dominated come awards season. Best Picture winner The Hurt Locker had just been released. The State of the Box Office was in the best shape ever, and 2009 would go on to gross over $10 billion, a new record.

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May Box Office in Review

May in Review

In a way the month as a lot like the movies that filled it, big, bloated, fairly predictable and a little underwhelming. The box office, in recent months, has been on a record breaking streak until it hit this May, one of the worst starts to summer in years. Overall business was down 11% from last year. There were no surprises or break outs like last year’s Star Trek or Up. Then again this year did boast more big pictures, but outside a couple of big (but still under-performing) opening weekends, there wasn’t a whole lot of money to be made.

As I predicted in my box office predictions earlier this summer that Shrek Forever After would open significantly lower ($70 million and I was right on the money) than previous installments and that Iron Man 2 would fizzle out after the opening weekend and prove to have not-so-iron legs. Although I did not predict the box office for the rest of the month, my predictions for Sex and the City and Prince of Persia wouldn’t have been too far off. Here is a weekend by weekend highlight of the month. Continue reading

TRAILER: The Twilight Saga: Eclipse

The Twilight Saga: Eclipse
Directed by: David Slade
Written by: Melissa Rosenberg (screenplay) Stephen Meyer (novel)
Starring: Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner

The third installment is finally here. Not like the wait was long from lasts November’s New Moon, but non-Twihards are anxious for this franchise to get wrapped up so we don’t have to hear about it from the news, tabloids, and endless marketing campaigns by the studios who are doing a great job on cranking out these half rate movies while the blood is fresh in the franchise. A summer release will be interesting for Summit, to see whether it can pick up movie goers, or if fans will abandon it with so many other better options out there.

Despite the eager fans the franchise has, the franchise shows up with a little less enthusiasm. The trailer looks much of the same old Twilight we’ve already seen in the first two films. People fight over Bella. Bella has to pick a man. Men go around tearing each other up over a bony pale virgin Arizona. Not much else happens. Ever. Continue reading