Monday, April 26, 2010

What Box Office Sales are Really Saying

For the past three years there has been a noticeable trend in box office sales: fantasy and the supernatural world are taking over.

Audiences all over the country have been demanding movies that take them out of "the real world," and Hollywood has been supplying the escape. Since 2007, viewers have been showing favorable responses to movies that take them to a 'galaxy far, far away'-- literally.

Avatar crushed all the records in a matter of weeks in 2009 (and still going strong in 2010). Followed by Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince, Twilight Saga: New Moon and Up.

In 2008, The Dark Knight was the number one movie at the box office. Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull was second: Kung Fu Panda was third: Hancock was fourth: Iron Man was fifth.

So what does this really all mean?

In my opinion, the box office sales are saying the American people are looking for an escape--and they are finding it in theaters.

Allow me to explain....

Since what seems like forever, the U.S. has been depressed. The TV displays Tsunamis, earthquakes, a dying economy and wars on every news channel. You don't need to pay for a ticket to see action and destruction, just turn the channel.

As a result, Americans have turned to the theater as a means of escape. They would rather spend $8 for a ticket or $18 to see a movie in 3d.

For those two hours--or sometimes more--audiences can find themselves in another world, listening to another language and seeing things they couldn't even imagine.

Lately, movies are producing situations, conflicts, issues and circumstances that we wish we had.

For example, kids, teenagers and even grown women accept and envy the situation Bella Swan is in with the Twilight Sagas. Girls wish they had the difficult choice choosing between an overprotective Vampire or a tanned, built Werewolf. Because today, in reality, they have the difficult decision choosing between a partner in the same sex, religion, culture ethnicity etc.

People wish that there really was a hero that could save our cities like in The Dark Knight. If only it were so easy. If only we relied on one man who we really could count on.

Avatar's success speaks volumes. A decade ago, movies like Independence Day portrayed "the enemy" as aliens. Today, we know better.

Now we know that the enemy is our own species. We know the enemy doesn't have to travel a galaxy away to attack us; they simply need to get on a plane or walk into a train station to attack us. In Avatar, the aliens were the humane ones and the humans were corrupt.

Audiences don't want the heart ache; they don't want the disaster. We see it every day on the news. We hear it every day on the radio. We read about it in the newspapers.

People are looking for and finding an escape from our world's state of terror and depression in the movies. That's what box office sales are really saying.


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