Voices of the Syndicate: Are There too Many Summer Blockbusters this Year?

So far we’ve had Iron Man 3, Man of Steel,Star Trek Into Darkness The Lone Ranger,Pacific Rim, World’s End with more still come. Are there too many of these big films being released in too short of space or are things just right? I put the question to the rest of  the Geek Syndicate team  to get their answers to this perplexing question.

Luke  – I’m not sure whether there are actually more than there used to be just that they are all spread out now. Back in the day they would have all been released around the same time if not on the same day. I think that this worked better because these days if your film doesn’t get to top the box office for its week you know you have really made a mistake. My big thing is that summer now stretches from April to September in Hollywood. But a long as they are good films I don’t think it’s a problem.

Nuge – Hmmm my first instinct was to say no simply because there’s so much stuff on in such a short space of time that I can’t afford to see everything. On further thought seeing as I do a lot my watching these days by waiting for things to come out on blu-ray or on demand it doesn’t really effect me that much. It is getting tougher though with so much choice to decide what films I will venture out of my cave to actually see in the cinema.

Laura-Jane – Asking if there are there too many Summer Blockbusters is like asking is there too many types of ice cream or enough episodes of Firefly. The answer is a resounding NO! Big, bold and brash, the summer blockbuster is often the only time when geeks are well catered for at the movies. I want more explosions, more aliens and more fantasy! The sheer number and scale of these behemoths means that more people are exposed to the fantasy/sci-fi worlds we all adore. Someone takes the mickey out of you for being a geek? Just ask them what the last movie it was they saw at the flicks. The answer will no doubt be ‘Iron Man 3’ or ‘Star Trek Into Darkness’. This allows you to say ‘you’re welcome’ and then swan off knowing that if it wasn’t for your fandom, these films wouldn’t be getting made. More blockbusters please!!

Dean –I’m only interested in quality, rather than quantity. If we are getting loads of great movies then I’m fine with it.

Ian Simpson – I’m not bothered about the quantity or even the quality of summer blockbusters. It it the word summer I have a problem with. Who wants to sit in a cinema for 3 hours watching trailers and adverts and Man of Steel when the sun doesn’t set until 9pm? I would happily sit in a cinema once a week in the winter and early spring but not when the weather is good. I don’t understand the idea of summer blockbusters. I’ve yet to see Man of Steel or World War Z for this very reason, although Pacific Rim and The Wolverine will probably tempt my into the cinema. Unless it’s a warm and sunny evening.

Matt Farr – I think it’s getting worse – the big films start to come in earlier and then seem to hit almost every week. Which is great if you can go to the pictures every week, but it means that these films don’t stick around unless they’ve developed a “long tail”. It’s also daft of the studios, I think, because they’re cramming these films in and some are doomed to fail, irrespective of their actual quality – there isn’t any opportunity for a film to spread through word of mouth and it encourages “franchise syndrome”. A lot of these films are great and so far it looks like the good films are doing well and the poor ones are tanking, but I worry that won’t always be the case.

Leo Johnson – I’m really not one of those people who goes to the theatres, except when absolutely necessary. Case in point: the last three movies I’ve seen in theatres are Iron Man 3, The Avengers, and Dark Knight Rises. But, I don’t think having a ton of high budget, action-packed blockbusters during the summer season is a bad thing, just so long as most of them tend to be good.

Vichus Smith – Oh HELL no! This may surprise we the geeks, but not everyone is ordering tickets for every single blockbuster premiering this summer. Some people may have totally skipped Man of Steel, or will skip Pacific Rim. Even I am skipping some of the blockbusters. I wont be seeing Lone Ranger, but I think I will have seen a majority of the summer tent poles in a theater. Why should the kids have all the fun once school’s out?

Steven  – It’s a good thing. In fact it’s the only thing that can keep cinema alive. Prices for tickets are ridiculous and combine that with the concessions charges – also extortionate and you have no reason to go otherwise especially with today’s mobile phone living chav audience. Why wait to release one or a couple if films on the 4th July for the Americans when you can releases plenty of decent films over the spring and summer?

If they don’t do it, the cinema will die.

Casey – I think yes, there are too many blockbusters coming out far too close together. I do enjoy blockbusters, I just don’t like seeing “lesser” films bumped off the cinema listings in such short periods of time. Films like Hummingbird and Byzantium have all but vanished two weeks after release in my local cinemas. That makes me very sad.

Ant – Yes and no. I don’t see a problem with having a torrent of excellent, feel-good, action type movies – unless of course it means the river runs dry for future years. It’s a bit of an issue for the punter, of course who has to either fork out a small fortune to see them on release or miss them on initial release. This year, I’ve only watched Star Trek Into Darkness and Iron Man 3 and have no idea if I’ll be catching others…

Phil – You know what? I don’t care. And that isn’t meant to sound flippant. It’s not a case of too many blockbusters, not enough indies or other films. The debate is even more simple than that – I just care if as long as they are good. Just because it’s a blockbuster doesn’t mean they can’t be quality films or entertaining or even intelligent (see Inception for all three of these) If I can get a year when there are fifty massive films all of the quality of a Dark Knight or Inception or Even Iron man 3 then I’d be a very happy man.

As for “lesser” films being bumped? Bollocks. This is the argue of wannabe filmmakers bemoaning their inability to make a film that is seen by others (read: no one WANTS to see) If a film is really great, truly great then regardless of the actors, budget or director history has shown that film can break through and do well.

Paranormal Activity? Blair Witch? Open Water? Kill List? Clerks? El Mariachi? Primer? Pi or even the more expensive but still cheap by Studio Standards like 28 Days Later?

If a film is good, breaks new ground then it WILL get seen.

So in short: I don’t care whether it’s a blockbuster, indie, art house or TV drama – make it good and I’ll watch it.

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