Boom, Bust, or Meh: November 2019

Welcome to November’s 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:

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.

With that introduction, let’s crank open the month of November vault!

The Results

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

1. Joker – BOOM!

Rotten Tomatoes

Critic Score: 69%

Audience Score: 89%

Box Office

Production Budget: $55-70 million

Worldwide: $856 million

Juliana: Proving wildly popular with general audiences, the critical scores actually started to dip, suggesting that this film may lose its appeal over time. But for now, it’s a certified BOOM!

Our review!

2. Gemini Man – Meh

Rotten Tomatoes

Critic Score: 25%

Audience Score: 83%

Box Office

Production Budget: $138 million

Worldwide: $149 million

Juliana: It’s a bust at the box office, but a surprising amount of love from general audiences is keeping this film from being a total flop. 

Our review!

3. The Addams Family – Meh

Rotten Tomatoes

Critic Score: 41%

Audience Score: 70%

Box Office

Budget: $40 million

Worldwide: $86 million

Juliana: Critics were bored with the film’s trite message, though it still pleased the movie’s intended audience.

Our review!

4. Maleficent: Mistress of Evil – Meh

Rotten Tomatoes

Critic Score: 41%

Audience Score: 95%

Box Office

Budget: $185 million

Worldwide: $300 million

Juliana: Yet another massive split between the critics and general audiences. 

5. Zombieland: Double Tap – Meh

Rotten Tomatoes

Critic Score: 67%

Audience Score: 89%

Box Office

Budget: $42 million

Worldwide: $66 million

Juliana: On the cusp of booming, its sluggish performance overseas is what’s really hindering this comedic horror’s success. 

Each “Boom, Bust, or Meh” article will include each writer’s current record next to their name. My record is (81-56), and Tyler Hummel is at (63-45).

Terminator: Dark Fate

Rating: R

Release Date: November 1, 2019

Synopsis: Sarah Connor and a hybrid cyborg human must protect a young girl from a newly modified liquid Terminator from the future. (IMDB).

Director: Tim Miller

Starring: Linda Hamilton, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Mackenzie Davis, Natalia Reyes.

The Predictions

Juliana Purnell (81-56): Meh – This one has me divided. The Terminator franchise has been steadily going downhill for a while now (though upon reflection, the slope really isn’t as bad as some people make it out to be). The timeline has frustratingly folded in on itself, with this new instalment supposedly wiping out every event after Judgment Day. The first trailer also attracted a lot of ire from a portion of the public, interpreting the female leads as a shallow appeal to woke culture.

Yet if anyone can create authentic female characters, it’s James Cameron. He’s not the director, but as Alita: Battle Angel demonstrated, he can still have a positive influence on the film as a producer (and writer). Though ultimately I feel the franchise has lost too much goodwill, even amongst fans. Its uphill battle against the story’s history and preconceived ideas from the audience will prove too difficult, turning this potential BOOM into a pithy meh.

Tyler Hummel (63-45): Meh – I’m so utterly torn about the sixth entry in the Terminator franchise. On one hand, there hasn’t been a legitimately good entry in this series since the second movie. On the other, James Cameron has a hand in this and he’s currently coming off the success of similarly producing Alita: Battle Angel to solid effect. It could go either way.


Rating: PG-13

Release Date: November 8, 2019

Synopsis: The story of the Battle of Midway, told by the leaders and the sailors who fought it. (IMDB).

Director: Roland Emmerich

Starring: Woody Harrelson, Ed Skrein, Patrick Wilson

The Predictions

Juliana Purnell (81-56): BOOM! – Thanks to Christopher Nolan’s Dunkirk, war movies are back on the map. They bridge a demographic divide between people looking for action, and others who are looking for more biographical/historical stories. A lot of critics are waiting with baited breath as to whether this film deserves an Oscar nomination, with some pundits already putting it amongst the Best Picture list. Is it truly deserving? Only time will tell. It’s possible this could rate as highly as the much-derided Pearl Harbour. But for now, it has its reputation intact. 

 Tyler Hummel (63-45): Meh – I don’t trust Rolland Emmerich movies. He’s one of our most consistently schlocky mainstream action directors and his last film was Independence Day: Resurgence. Then again this also looks quite honorable and well meaning so who knows?

Doctor Sleep

Rating: R

Release Date: November 8, 2019

Synopsis: Years following the events of “The Shining,” a now-adult Dan Torrance meets a young girl with similar powers as his and tries to protect her from a cult known as The True Knot who prey on children with powers to remain immortal. (IMDB).

Director: Mike Flanagan

Starring: Ewan McGregor, Rebecca Ferguson

The Predictions

Juliana Purnell (81-56): Meh – This seems to simultaneously give homage to Kubrick’s famous film, whilst also stepping into its own territory. I’m keen for it. I’m sure a lot of other cinephiles are curious as well. However, horror films typically attract young adults; a demographic that is unlikely to have had the time to visit The Shining or appreciate it, unless they are big on the genre itself and not simply casual viewers. I’m also a little wary of the antagonists seen in the trailer–this seems to be a story that could easily turn silly. I want this film to succeed, but I think its appeal is too narrow for general audiences.

Tyler Hummel (63-45): BOOM! – I haven’t heard good things about the book version of Kubrick’s follow-up to The Shining but this adaption being both a followup to the controversial book and film versions is being helmed by Mike Flannigan (House on the Haunted Hill, Gerald’s Game, Oculus) got bumped up several months into awards season. It seems the studio is confident in it.

Frozen II

Rating: PG

Release Date: November 22, 2019

Synopsis: Anna, Elsa, Kristoff, Olaf, and Sven leave Arendelle to travel to an ancient, autumn-bound forest of an enchanted land. They set out to find the origin of Elsa’s powers in order to save their kingdom. (IMDB).

Directors: Chris Buck, Jennifer Lee

Starring: Kristen Bell, Josh Gad, Idina Menzel, Jonathan Groff

The Predictions

Juliana Purnell (81-56): BOOM! – It’s a sequel to a ridiculously popular kids film. A worldwide catastrophic event that prevents people from going to cinemas would have to occur in order for this film to not make money (unless it stupidly pulls a Show Dogs). But just because it’ll break the box office doesn’t necessarily mean it’ll be any good, right? Disney’s had a good track record as of late, and instinctually knows when a story is best left to home release. They’re confident in this project, and so am I. It’ll boom, and BOOM big!

Tyler Hummel (61-45): BOOM! – What is there even to say about this sequel at this point? Six years on from one of the largest Disney princess films EVER we now have a fully formed, non-straight-to-DVD sequel that the studio seems to have thrown their full force behind. Last year’s Ralph Breaks the Internet suggests that Disney animation may have trouble with direct sequels but this is going to be one of 2019’s biggest films by default.

A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

Rating: Currently not rated

Release Date: November 22, 2019

Synopsis: Based on the true story of a real-life friendship between Fred Rogers and journalist Tom Junod. (IMDB).

Director: Marielle Heller

Starring: Tom Hanks, Matthew Rhys, Susan Kelechi Watson

The Predictions

Juliana Purnell (81-56): Meh – As an Australian, I have no idea who Fred Rogers is. I didn’t grow up with him. I don’t know his backstory, or why he’s famous. I have no cultural connection with him whatsoever. The danger with this film is that it’s going to rely on that nostalgia–those fuzzy feelings–which simply isn’t present within the international community (unless Fred Rogers made it big in the UK; I have no idea). So international critics are going to view this film with absolutely no preconceived ideas, using an unbiased lens, and without the reminiscent feel-good vibes.

What they risk uncovering is a shallow, twee story used as a blatant Oscar grab for Tom Hanks, who seems to make a desperate dash for the little golden man this time every year. I’m sure Fred Rogers is a lovely man, but unless this film has the foresight to go a little deeper in order to cater for newcomers, then it won’t engage international audiences or the box office.

Tyler Hummel (61-45): Meh – Tom Hanks as Fred Rogers is too saccharine and lovely a pitch to ignore. Granted, this looks like obvious Oscar-bait centralized on one magnificent lead performance. I fear the rest of the film will be somewhat vapid.

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 your predictions? What film are you looking forward to most in November?

Juliana Purnell

After obtaining a Bachelor of Dramatic Arts, Juliana Purnell has enjoyed a successful acting career, working within theme parks, businesses, and on film sets. She has also taken on crew roles, both in film and theatrical productions. When Juliana isn't working, she enjoys watching movies of all genres at the cinema, writing, and playing with Samson, her pomeranian.

1 Comment

  1. PassRusher on February 7, 2020 at 1:14 pm

    I feel like I am the only one who enjoyed Terminator 3 and Terminator Genisys. I loved the way Terminator 3 was very poignant and totally made the movie for me. Terminator Genisys worked for me…I do get the argument and complaints about **SPOILER** John Connor being turned into the bad guy **END SPOILER** and I can grant them that complaint. But if you just take it is it is, the is a fun and exciting film with shades of Back to the Future 2.

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