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artisanal film reviews | by maryann johanson

question of the day: Will Hollywood learn anything from the flopping of ‘Jonah Hex’?

The Hollywood Reporter blog Heat Vision has a few lessons Hollywood might want to consider when contemplating another film like Jonah Hex, which is destined to go down as one of the worst-performing movies of 2010. The lessons seem evident:

Fanboys might not make or break a film, but they need to feel respected.

Pick a release date carefully, and never underestimate Pixar.

Not every comic needs to be movie.

Executives would be wise to not overreact and think nonmarquee comic book titles can’t be worthy of adaptations.

The details Heat Vision writer Borys Kit delves into are wise but, it must be said, obvious (“The movie version of ‘Hex’ should have been rated R, made like a relatively cheap spaghetti Western instead of a PG-13 exercise with a budget said to have climbed to $50 million-$60 million, including reshoots.”) That’s not a criticism of Kit but a smack at Hollywood: Shouldn’t all these points have been obvious before Jonah Hex flopped… like in the preproduction stage? Heat Vision is asking what lessons can be gleaned from Jonah Hex, but really, the question is:

Will Hollywood learn anything from the flopping of Jonah Hex? You know, Is Hollywood capable of seeing the palpable problems with how it works, and is it interested in fixing them?

(If you have a suggestion for a QOTD, feel free to email me. Responses to this QOTD sent by email will be ignored; please post your responses here.)



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  • bronxbee

    according to my nephew, and his cronies, one of the other rules seems to be: “blame it on megan fox.”

  • Biggest problem was Hex got released same Friday as Toy Story 3, most-waited-for sequel this summer (even more than Iron Man 2). Longest line I’d ever been in for a film at Oldsmar was TS3. If Hex had been released the previous week against Karate Kid and A-Team… it still would have sucked but the turnout might have made it third on the list.

    Second biggest problem: Jonah Hex isn’t as big a comic book name as say Green Lantern or Wonder Woman or Justice League. This is like Marvel coming out with a movie for the Texas Tornado guy. And fans are btw still waiting for a Wonder Woman film. C’mon guys, just pick up George Perez’s Gods and Monsters (the post-Crisis reboot) and film it! Just find a 5’8″ busty brunette model from the Czech Republic with good English, get her in the high-heel boots and go with it!

    Third biggest problem: whoever came up with the plotline seriously didn’t think it through, and with little understanding of the classic Hex character (the plot follows the reboot version of the comics published this decade, but the fanboys preferred the classic).

  • Erik

    They’ll most likely miss the point again and fail to recognize the movie’s biggest problem.

    It isn’t very good.

    Instead they will try and blame everything else (release date, stars, genre, etc.) because we all know it can’t simply be because the overwhelming anticipation of this is “Look out, crap coming!!”

    Was it William Goldman who said, “Nobody in Hollywood knows anything”? Whoever it was, they hit the nail on the head.

  • bats :[

    How about at least giving some quantity for the amount of bucks being shelled out to see it. 72 minutes? The thing might be crap, but most/all of the cheesiest, ill-thought-out animated features coming out these days are longer than this!

  • DaveTM

    Since they made alot of the same mistakes with Hellblazer when they made that horrid Keanu movie I don’t see why they’ll learn from them this time.

  • JoshDM

    The biggest problem is that some jackass with pull in the creative department probably said, “Oh, it’s based on a comic book? THEN WHERE ARE HIS SUPERPOWERS???!!!???”

  • CB

    And fans are btw still waiting for a Wonder Woman film. C’mon guys, just pick up George Perez’s Gods and Monsters (the post-Crisis reboot) and film it!

    I saw an animated movie about Wonder Woman recently. Featured the voice of Nathan Fillion. It was awesome.

  • Orangutan

    I saw an animated movie about Wonder Woman recently. Featured the voice of Nathan Fillion. It was awesome.

    Seconded, and linked: http://www.amazon.com/Wonder-Woman-2009-Two-Disc-Special/dp/B001LK8SQ6/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&s=dvd&qid=1277423591&sr=1-4

  • JoshDM

    Animated Wonder Woman was OK. A good animated DC film was Batman Beyond : Return of the Joker, but it required a slight bit of knowledge.

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