Fantastic Four didn’t really live up to the adjective in its name. It took second place at the box office last weekend, managing only $26.2 million. Now if I made $26.2 million in one weekend I would be ecstatic. Fox, however, has to be fairly disappointed. Fantastic Four had a reported budget of $120 million and doesn’t look like it’ll come close to recouping that. The production was plagued by rumors of backstage turmoil, rumors that turned into fact when director Josh Trank tweeted his own displeasure with the film.
I didn’t see Fantastic Four and, at this point, don’t think I will. It seems like a flop and I’d rather not waste $13. Here are some other fantastic flops that I wish I hadn’t spent money on.
I’ve never been more upset in a theater than when the credits rolled after Ultraviolet. Director Kurt Wimmer made an incredibly awesome science fiction movie in Equilibrium. Equilibrium was about a dystopian future where it was illegal to have emotions. The movie had a smart story and incredible action. I was so excited for his follow-up, Ultraviolet, that I went to see it on opening night. That excitement turned to rage, though, because Ultraviolet was easily the worst movie I’ve ever seen. It takes a lot for me to not like a movie, I enjoyed Tomb Raider, but Ultraviolet was irredeemable. I would have rather buried the money I used to buy a ticket. At least then I would have had a sermon illustration.
Batman & Robin
I love Batman Forever. It’s probably my fourth favorite Batman movie after The Dark Knight, Batman and Batman Begins. I didn’t mind Joel Schumacher’s neon vision of Gotham or that there were nipples on the Batsuit. Everything I loved about Batman Forever, though, turned sour with Batman & Robin. Instead of casting a pleasant glow, the neon in Batman & Robin gave me a headache. Arnold Schwarzenegger was terrible as Mr. Freeze and Uma Thurman’s Poison Ivy made me long for Batman: The Animated Series’ version of the character. The only good part about seeing Batman & Robin in 1997 was that I probably spent my parents’ money and not my own.
I wish I had spent my parents’ money to see Superman Returns in 2006. Instead I spent my hard-earned EB Games money to see Bryan Singer’s tribute to Richard Donner’s classic. Superman Returns was just plain boring; a movie about the most powerful super hero ever shouldn’t be boring. Instead of fighting a bunch of super-powered villains, we got Superman stopping bank robbers and going toe-to-toe with Kevin Spacey. Also, the plot of the movie pretty much mimicked that of Donner’s Superman. Except instead of getting real estate via an earthquake, Luthor got real estate via kryptonite islands. The most upsetting part about Superman Returns, though, is that it led to X-Men 3. Instead of sticking with the X-Men franchise, Singer decided to make a Superman movie. That choice sunk the X-Men franchise for years and, even though X-Men: First Class and X-Men: Days of Future Past were better, it hasn’t fully recovered from X-Men 3 and X-Men Origins: Wolverine.
I’m pretty easy to please when it comes to movies. For the most part I can measure my expectations and find a way to be entertained. However, with these three flops even my generosity reached its limits. Hopefully Fox will stop making Fantastic Four movies so the rights revert back to Marvel. Perhaps in the hands of its creators, the Fantastic Four can finally be more fantastic than flop.
What was one of the biggest movie flops you ever saw?