Attack of the Rotten, Rotten, Tomatoes

This year, Hollywood has bit the big one. Box office gates have plummeted this summer, potential blockbusters are becoming money sucks for investors, and the entire movie industry is freaking out about it.

Why is this happening? What is the cause of this downward slide in profits?

Well, Rotten Tomatoes of course.

A recent NY Times article came out that states Hollywood executives are pointing the blame finger squarely at Rotten Tomatoes for the decrease in profits this summer, stating that a low Rotten Tomato score is highly correlated to box office death.


First off, blaming others is never a good look. This is like Yugo blaming Consumer Report for their awful sales. Or like Pepsi blaming taste buds for the failure of ‘Crystal Pepsi’. No no no no! Stop it! The reason why your shitty products failed is because they are shitty. And the reason why people didn’t clamor to see Chips, Ghost in the Shell, King Arthur, Power Rangers, Rock Dog (whatever that movie was), or The Mummy is because they are shitty. Shitty, shitty,. shitty. No one likes your crap, Hollywood. Stop blaming Rotten Tomatoes. If anything, they are acting as our FDA, warding the hoi polloi away from possible harmful effects of your shitty movies.

Secondly, this claim by Hollywood isn’t even true. A recent study done by USC showed there in no substantial linear correlation between a Rotten Tomato rating and box office success. Click here if interested.. And this is rather obvious to see on the surface. Anyone who follows Rotten Tomatoes knows the average ratings for all movies are escalating over the years. Why? Probably due to the increased amount of ‘movie critics’ that are included in the final rating. And many of these new critics are internet guys who are younger and less snobby about what they see. Regardless, this rise in the RT ratings is a fact. But what is even easier to see is that the majority of very highly rated movies are Oscar bait, indie films, with some smatterings of blockbusters. Average to lower ratings tend to be attempted blockbusters or just sorry-ass efforts. Let’s look at this week’s top 10 box office draws:

10) The Emoji Movie (9%)

9) Logan Lucky (93%)

8) Dunkirk (93%)

7) Spider-Man (92%)

6) Leap! (35%)

5) Wind River (86%)

4) Annabelle: Creation (68%)

3) The Hitman’s Bodyguard (38%)

2) Home Again (34%)

1) It (86%)

From this list, you can see a healthy dose of highly rated movies (so not all movies are getting killed on Rotten Tomatoes) and a sorry dose of garbage ratings (so poorly rated films are still making the top 10 list….even the Emoji Movie???).

See any correlation? Of course not!

So Hollywood, stop blaming anyone else for the trash you create. Maybe if you spent more time thinking about creating quality stories, ala many TV shows right now, and stop concocting ways to extend the Transformers series or better yet stop figuring out how to fit Will Smith’s creepy son into a role, maybe your industry wouldn’t be in so much trouble.

Oh yeah, through a few more hobbits in there as well. That always helps.