NEW YORK - The National Board of Review of Motion Pictures gave its best-picture award Monday to "Good Night, and Good Luck," George Clooney's sparse, black-and-white depiction of Edward R. Murrow's on-air battles against Sen. Joseph McCarthy. The group spread the awards around, naming Ang Lee as best director for the cowboy romance "Brokeback Mountain."I've predicted that these would be flops with the public. Nobody wants to see movies that idolize commies and gay cowboys.
A reader writes:
Rating movies on political ideology makes you sound like a communist. Also, you are factually wrong. Million Dollar Baby made over $100e6. The public did not hate it. Good Night made $22e6. It probably cost half that to make. These numbers are US and Canada box office gross. Foreign and DVD often match the domestic box office numbers. What conclusions can you draw from the comparison of popular success to the critical acclaim? Whatever you come up with I'll bet I can find lots of counterexamples.Let's look at the gross for recent Best Picture Oscar winners.
Million Dollar Baby (2004) $100,492,203
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) $377,027,325
Chicago (2002) $170,687,518
A Beautiful Mind (2001) $170,742,341
Gladiator (2000) $187,705,427
American Beauty (1999) $130,096,601
Shakespeare in Love (1998) $100,317,794
A lot of people read rave reviews of Million Dollar Baby, and went to see it thinking that it would be a female Rocky. Instead it was a euthanasia movie.
I don't doubt that movies can make money based on good reviews from critics. But leftist ideological movies never do as well as you might expect from the reviews.