Welcome to Boom, Bust, or Meh, ladies and gentlemen! This is where we focus on five films released during the month and have some fun predicting their success! As with every BBoM article, each film receives one of the following scores from each participating GUG film critic:
Boom: A film you’ll remember for the rest of the year.
Bust: A film you’ll regret watching.
Meh: A film that entertains during the moment, but has no lasting impact.
At the end of each month, each of the films will be arbitrarily judged and the critic’s ongoing tally will be updated (the score is written beside their name: correct predictions – incorrect predictions).
Let’s see what June has to offer after we look at last month’s results!
Before we get to our film predictions, let us take a look at the outcome of our May predictions!
1. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness – BOOM!
Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score: 74%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score: 86%
IMDB Score: 7.3
Production Budget: $200 million
Worldwide: $880 million
Juliana: A crowd pleaser, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness was the first true blockbuster to hit the box office since the pandemic.
2. Firestarter – Bust
Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score: 11%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score: 47%
IMDB Score: 4.6
Production Budget: $12 million
Worldwide: $12 million
Juliana: Even though both critics and general audiences found Firestarter to be mediocre and inoffensive, the scores and box office show that not many were in the mood either way.
3. Downton Abbey: A New Era – BOOM!
Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score: 85%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score: 97%
IMDB Score: 7.7
Production Budget: $40 million
Worldwide: $72 million
Juliana: Fans of the show were treated with a wonderful time with their favorite characters, wrapping up some storylines and crafting some satisfying yet bittersweet endings.
4. Top Gun: Maverick – BOOM!
Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score: 97%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score: 99%
IMDB Score: 8.7
Budget: $170 million
Worldwide: $322 million
Juliana: Sporting one of the best sequels in cinema and easily being the best film regarding aerial dog fighting, Top Gun: Maverick proved itself worth the wait and will be remembered as a true Hollywood blockbuster.
5. Bob’s Burgers: The Movie – BOOM!
Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score: 86%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score: 91%
IMDB Score: 7.5
Budget: $60 million
Worldwide: $17 million
Juliana: While it’s still early days, going up against Top Gun: Maverick will no doubt prove disastrous when it comes to recouping its production budget. However, box office issues aside, it’s receiving a warm welcome from fans and newcomers alike, with many appreciating its recipe for low-key summer fun.
Each “Boom, Bust, or Meh” article will include each writer’s current record next to their name. My record is (100-81), Tyler Hummel’s is (79-71), and L.J. Lowery’s score is (4-6).
Jurassic World Dominion
Release Date: June 10, 2022
Synopsis: Four years after the destruction of Isla Nublar, dinosaurs now live–and hunt–alongside humans all over the world. This fragile balance will reshape the future and determine, once and for all, whether human beings are to remain the apex predators on a planet they now share with history’s most fearsome creatures in a new Era. (IMDB)
Director: Colin Trevorrow
Starring: Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, Laura Dern, Sam Neill, Jeff Goldblum
Juliana Purnell (100-81): Meh – Ever since Jurassic Park I think most people deep down want to see a movie where the dinosaurs are running around modern civilisation and causing chaos. We got a taste of it in The Lost World: Jurassic Park, which wasn’t great, so there’s room for improvement. It took a while, and we had to suffer through Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom to get there, but the story is finally in the right position to deliver our guilty little fantasy. Will it be stupid? Possibly. These last few films are a far cry from the wonderfully themed original. I’m not expecting the plot to be terribly intelligent, but will it at least be enjoyable? With most of the main cast of the original returning, I’m hoping the nostalgia and the gimmick will carry us through and distract us from the story’s flaws, although I think most critics will see right through it and call it out for its idiocy.
Tyler Hummel (79-71): Meh – I almost feel an obligation to hate this movie pre-emptively. Few movies are as poorly suited to being a franchise as the original Jurassic Park, which is now on its fifth sequel. All of the sequels are bad, cynical, and have no reason to exist other than to put expensive-looking dinosaurs on screen for two hours. For good measure, they brought back Book of Henry and fired Star Wars Ep.9 director Colin Trevorrow for reasons beyond the logic of mortal men. I wouldn’t pay to see this.
L.J. Lowery (4-6): BOOM! – I personally thought Fallen Kingdom was a weak entry in this series and the ending not a good idea. However, my mind changed when I saw the trailer. Dominion is doing the “old cast returns” thing and looks genuinely intense. This one will be a hit in the box office.
Release Date: June 17, 2022
Synopsis: The story of Buzz Lightyear and his adventures to infinity and beyond. (IMDB)
Director: Angus MacLane
Starring: Chris Evans, Keke Palmer, Dale Soules
Juliana Purnell (100-81): BOOM! – Pixar has always been precious regarding its Toy Story franchise in that they won’t create a film unless they know for certain there’s a story worth telling. So while Lightyear feels weird and left of field, I’m expecting a well thought out plot with a lot of purpose behind its direction. I’m not sure how things are going to work with continuity, given this world is set in a universe where toys come to life, but I’m curious to see it and I feel it’s going to surprise a lot of people with its heart and soul.
Tyler Hummel (79-71): Meh – I guess I see the appeal of doing a spinoff Buzz Lightyear movie. They made Disney Channel cartoons of him back in the day. That said, this movie is too bogged down in politics for my taste. I already feel pretty apathetic to Pixar and I don’t feel more drawn to come back to the studio just because they’re adding LGBT inclusion to spite the state of Florida. Plus keeping Tim Allen out of the production feels like a cheap shot, especially after they minimized his character in Toy Story 4.
L.J. Lowery (4-6): BOOM! – I’m saying boom, simply because it’s a Pixar movie. I personally think that overall reception will be mixed, but many people will go see it. Chris Evans’ performance will likely be the highlight of this movie and it’ll be a fun summer trip to the theater for the whole family.
Release Date: June 17, 2022
Synopsis: After a particularly harsh winter Brian goes into a deep depression; completely isolated and with no one to talk to, Brian does what any sane person would do when faced with such a melancholic situation. He builds a robot. (IMDB)
Director: Jim Archer
Starring: David Earl, Chris Hayward, Louise Brealey
Juliana Purnell (100-81): BOOM! – The spirit of this film reminds me of the likes of Brigsby Bear and Lars and the Real Girl. Unique. Quirky. Funny. Oddly deep. Considering its indie flair, the studio must have faith in this production to give this a national release. Premiering at Sundance to endearing reviews, Brian and Charles has already demonstrated it’s a solid film, it’s just a question whether general audiences are going to give it the time of day at the cinemas. But even though it won’t hit high at the box office, I think it will charm those who do manage to watch it.
Tyler Hummel (71-71): Meh – ‘Tis a bit too quirky and twee for my tastes…
L.J. Lowery (4-6): Bust – This movie looks like it has so much heart but I doubt it’ll go far. It will sadly get slept on by casual audiences but looks to be one of the most wholesome stories of the year.
Release Date: June 24, 2022
Synopsis: A look at the life of the legendary rock and roll star, Elvis Presley. (IMDB)
Director: Baz Luhrmann
Starring: Tom Hanks, Austin Butler, Olivia DeJonge
Juliana Purnell (100-81): Meh – Tough choice. I adore Baz Luhrmann’s style of bringing the stage to the screen. I think it would really suit the story of Elvis. And people have been suckers for these pseudo-musicals as of late, such as Bohemian Rhapsody and Rocketman. It’s Tom Hanks’ casting which gives me pause. I feel his performance is either going to make or break this movie. The production may have also suffered from undergoing filming during the pandemic, where it was famously delayed due to Hanks catching Covid. Elvis will no doubt feature some strong elements, but ultimately I think its weaker creative choices will bring the whole experience down.
Tyler Hummel (79-71): Bust – Everything I’ve heard about Baz Luhrmann’s new musical makes it sound like an absolute trainwreck, and I’m kinda curious about it. I can enjoy a good absolute trainwreck every one and a while! Hopefully it is interesting!
L.J. Lowery (4-6): BOOM! – The name of Elvis is too legendary for this to be nothing less than a boom. It is stacked with quite a cast that could deliver some standout performances. It will do very well in theaters and we’ll likely see it floating around during award season.
Release Date: June 24, 2022
Synopsis: After being abducted by a child killer and locked in a soundproof basement, a 13-year-old boy starts receiving calls on a disconnected phone from the killer’s previous victims. (IMDB)
Director: Scott Derrickson
Starring: Ethan Hawke, Jeremy Davies, James Ransone
Juliana Purnell (100-81): Meh – I feel like I’ve seen subliminal advertising for this film over social media as the mask Ethan Hawke’s character wears look strikingly familiar, and it bugs me that I can’t exactly place it. Aside from already being unnerved, The Black Phone looks like a moderately good horror film. l’m not sold by the idea of the plot including supernatural elements—I think I would prefer this type of plot to remain more within the world of realism as ghosts can give way to lazy solutions for otherwise intriguing dilemmas. I think it’s going to be one of the better and more memorable horrors of the year, possibly due to a great performance by Ethan Hawke, but I’m not expecting this film to have much of a lasting impact.
Tyler Hummel (79-71): Bust – I don’t exactly think highly of Blumhouse in terms of its consistent ability to produce quality. Just last month, Firestarter proved to be a non-starter and now we have this extremely conventional and cheap-looking horror film.
L.J. Lowery (4-6): Meh – I expect horror fans will be checking this one out on opening weekend. It looks rather unique and a more adventurous audience could very well give it a shot. It may receive mixed reviews but I could see its potential for pulling modest numbers in the box office.
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!”