Boom, Bust, or Meh: September 2016 – Geeks Under Grace

Hello, GUG followers, film lovers, and cinephiles alike! Welcome to the September edition of Boom, Bust, or Meh!  For those who are new readers, BBoM is a monthly article series dedicated to predicting five films each month, from playful animations to sophisticated dramas. As with every BBoM article, each film receives one of the following scores:
Boom: A film that keeps you entertained from beginning to end.
Bust: A film entertaining only for nitpicking.
Meh: A film that yells, “Are you not entertained?!” when it is just okay.
Before we get into today’s predictions, we would like to humbly apologize for lateness of this article due to the changes we have been going through on the site. With that short introduction, let us rack up the votes for 2016’s September films!


The Results

Before we get to our film predictions, let us take a look at the outcome of our July predictions!

1. Suicide Squad – Meh…

Rotten Tomatoes
Critic Score: 26%
Audience Score: 67%
Box Office
Production Budget: $175 million
Worldwide: $700 million
Trey: If it had not been for the financial success, this movie would have gotten a bust. Being a DC fan, this was a major disappointment. 
Our Review!

2. Pete’s Dragon – BOOM!

Rotten Tomatoes
Critic Score: 85%
Audience Score: 81%
Box Office
Production Budget: $65 million
Worldwide: $102 million
Trey: Another success with Disney! Keep it up! 
Our Review!

3. Southside with You – BOOM!

Rotten Tomatoes
Critic Score: 91%
Audience Score: 80%
Box Office Production
Budget: $1.5 million
Domestic: $6 million 
Trey: For film on a small budget, they did pretty well. 

4. Ben-Hur – Bust.

Rotten Tomatoes
Critic Score: 27%
Audience Score: 65%
Box Office
Production Budget: $100 million
Worldwide: $65 million
Trey: Called it when I saw it. Some things are never meant to be remade. 
Our Review!

5. War Dogs – Meh…

Rotten Tomatoes
Critic Score: 60%
Audience Score: 73%
Box Office Production
Budget: $40 million
Worldwide: $66 million
Trey: I personally enjoyed this film and to see it gain a “Meh…” is the best it could get. 
Each “Boom, Bust, or Meh” article will include each writer’s current record next to their name. My current record is (26-23) and Jonathan is at (4-1). 



Rating: PG-13
Release Date: August  9, 2016
Synopsis: On Jan. 15, 2009, Capt. Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger tries to make an emergency landing in New York’s Hudson River after US Airways Flight 1549 strikes a flock of geese. Miraculously, all of the 155 passengers and crew survive the harrowing ordeal, and Sullenberger becomes a national hero in the eyes of the public and the media. Despite the accolades, the famed pilot now faces an investigation that threatens to destroy his career and reputation (Google). 
Director: Clint Eastwood
Starring: Tom Hanks, Aaron Echkhart, Laura Liney

The Prediction

Trey Soto (26-23): BOOM! – I believe I remember reading something about this when the actual story took place. I was intrigued by the first trailer. Solid cast, well-known director, interesting plot, why not give it a chance? While Tom Hanks has been nominated and has won at the Oscars, it has been a while and I believe this could get him back on track!
Jonathan Tefft (4-1): Meh… – I’m rather unsure about Sully. I’m excited to see it. I’m hoping to see good performances from Tom Hanks and Aaron Eckhart, and Clint Eastwood is a good choice to direct it. The only thing I’m concerned about is the release date. Many people tend to not go to the theater in early September because of the summer ending and school starting back up. Often times studios will release a movie that they’re not fully confident about during that time because they know they can’t compete against the Oscar contenders or blockbusters. So since Sully is releasing during this time I have a feeling that it won’t be anything too spectacular, but it won’t be a disappointment either. I think the movie will be just fine. It will make its money back and receive okay reviews.

 screen-shot-2016-09-16-at-8-43-52-amThe Magnificent Seven

Rating: PG-13
Release Date: August 23, 2016
Synopsis: Looking to mine for gold, greedy industrialist Bartholomew Bogue seizes control of the Old West town of Rose Creek. With their lives in jeopardy, Emma Cullen and other desperate residents turn to bounty hunter Sam Chisolm (Denzel Washington) for help. Chisolm recruits an eclectic group of gunslingers to take on Bogue and his ruthless henchmen. With a deadly showdown on the horizon, the seven mercenaries soon find themselves fighting for more than just money once the bullets start to fly.
Director: Antoine Fuqua
Starring: Denzel Washington, Chris Pratt, Ethan Hawke, Lee Byung-hun, Vincent D’Onofrio

The Prediction

Trey Soto (26-23): Meh… – I have said this before and I will say it again, certain classics are not meant to be remade. Have we already witnessed unnecessary remakes enough this year with Ben-Hur and Ghostbusters? Where does it end? I give a “Meh…” simply because of the cast and the idea that a western is back on screen. Again, this is not to say that I am against all remakes because the 2007 western remake 3:10 to Yuma was great, but the way this film is executed just by the trailer really is not saying much. 
Jonathan Tefft (4-1): BOOM! – There is no doubt in my mind that this will be a big BOOM! Magnificent Seven will win September and be one of the best action blockbusters of the year. We just got through a relatively disappointing summer in my opinion. Lots of the movies that I thought would be big hits turned out to be lackluster with both critics and the box office. I want Magnificent Seven to be a great way to cap off the summer and just be a blast to watch. It has a great cast and a great director. The trailers have sold me on it, and I’ll be there opening night!



Rating: PG
Release Date: September 23, 2016
Synopsis: Storks deliver babies–or at least they used to. Now, they deliver packages for a global internet retail giant. Junior (Andy Samberg), the company’s top delivery stork, lands in hot water when the Baby Factory produces an adorable but wholly unauthorized girl. Desperate to deliver this bundle of trouble, Junior and his friend Tulip (Katie Crown), the only human on Stork Mountain, race against time to make their first baby drop before the boss finds out (Google). 
Director: Nicolas Stoller and Doug Sweetland
Starring: Andy Samberg, Kelsey Grammer, Jennifer Aniston Keegan-Key, Jordan Peele

The Predictions

Trey Soto (26-23): BOOM! – At first I was confused by the teaser of what was going on but the idea that Storks no longer deliver babies and one is delivered by accident? That actually sounds really interesting for an overall plot! Hopefully, the execution succeeds but the way it appears, I believe this will make a great family friendly Friday movie night!
Jonathan Tefft (4-1): BOOM! – Literally the opposite of The Wild Life. When I saw the first teaser I was mildly interested but didn’t see it as anything too spectacular. Now after a couple trailers I’ve slowly come around to Storks and might even go see it. I don’t think it will be mind-blowing but it does look better than your average kid’s movie. Also, this is from the same studio that brought us The Lego Movie, which I loved! I think Storks will do quite well at the box office, both in its opening week and in the following weeks through good word of mouth and lack of competition. I see this movie also surprising quite a few critics.


screen-shot-2016-09-16-at-8-45-22-amThe Wild Life

Rating: PG
Release Date: September 9, 2016
Synopsis: Times are good for Mak the parrot, Scrubby the goat, Carmello the chameleon, and the rest of the wildlife that inhabit a tropical island. Their day-to-day routine gets shaken up when a mysterious creature washes up on shore. He’s a sailor named Robinson Crusoe, and he’s the only human survivor of a terrible storm that destroyed his ship. As the animals get to know their peculiar new guest, they find him to be a useful ally when two conniving cats try to seize control of their exotic paradise (Google).
Director: Ben Stassen, Vincent Kestleloot
Starring: Ilka Bessin, Dieter Hallervorden, Aylin Tezel 

The Prediction

Trey Soto (26-23): Bust – Wasn’t really impressed just by the poster and not impressed by the trailer. I’m just not feeling it as an animation flick. It really is devastating to be animation lacking this year. 
Jonathan Tefft (4-1): Bust – I had to look this one up to remind myself of it, and I was shocked by the trailer. It looks bland, unfunny, and forgettable. This movie is going to have to rely on kids begging their parents to take them to see it. This movie is also going up against Storks later this month, which looks a million times better than it. Storks has cleaner animation, a better cast, and has also had a better marketing campaign. The Wild Life will come, go, and be forgotten instantly.



Rating: R
Release Date: September 16, 2016
Synopsis: In 2013, NSA contractor Edward Snowden leaked a large number of classified documents to the media, exposing the U.S. government’s covert surveillance activities. Some called the whistleblower a hero, while others called him a traitor. Based on the books The Snowden Files: The Inside Story of the World’s Most Wanted Man, by Luke Harding and Time of the Octopus by Anatoly Kucherena (Google). 
Director: Oliver Stone
Starring: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Shailene Woodley, Nicolas Cage, Scott Eastwood, Zachary Quinto

The Predictions

Trey Soto (26-23): BOOM! With everything that has been circling around the actual Snowden let alone the cast and director, it will not surprise me that this film will pull through in the end as a great hit and possibly an Oscar nominee. Who knows? Only time will tell. So far, the reviews are pulling through, so I firmly believe that Snowden is destined for great reviews and box office results!
Jonathan Tefft (4-1): BOOM! – I am beyond excited for this movie! Snowden has been through an interesting development history. First, it was supposed to release last December but was delayed to May this year, due to it not being finished in time. Then it was delayed again to September because the producers feel it has the chances of being a serious Oscar contender. It’s already been getting good reviews from various film festivals and had a good response from its private screening at Comic-Con. I think this movie will be a hit with critics and be a big hit at the box office for its first couple of weeks, but it’s going to be a tough battle against movies like The Magnificent Seven and Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children.


Thanks for reading this month’s edition! Let us know your predictions in the comment section. Join us next month for another edition of “Boom, Bust, or Meh!”

Are you looking forward to any of these films? What are you predictions? What film are you looking forward to most in September?

Trey Soto

Trey Soto holds a B.A. in Communication Studies from Biola University, emphasis in Interpersonal/Rhetorical Theory. He has been a Film Critic/Analysis for over a year at Geeks Under Grace and other websites such as Temple of Geek. In his spare time, he enjoys comic book literature, screenwriting, production assistant freelancing, photography, cosplay, and hosting his own film podcast T.V. Trey on Podbean and iTunes.

1 Comment

  1. John Canary on September 19, 2016 at 1:02 pm

    I’m hoping to go see the Magnificent Seven with my dad, since his dad lives in Reno, NV and is a cowboy preacher.

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