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film criticism by maryann johanson | since 1997

how not to be gracious

So, the remake of A Nightmare on Elm Street earned just under $33 million over its debut weekend. Since it cost only $35 million to make, it’s unlikely that anyone involved is sweating the most crappy reviews the film has garnered: it’s currently 15 percent Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes. (I haven’t seen the film — I was invited to a screening last week but then almost instantly uninvited, which was odd. But it looks like I dodged a bullet.)

Instead, the film’s director, music video guy Samuel Bayer, is sweating the fans. Regarding the most passionate members of his audience, which will, of course, include many of those who plunked down hard cash to see the film this weekend, Bayer tells Fangoria:

Look, I’m gonna catch a lot of heat for this. But some of these fans on the web should just get up, stretch, breathe, go outside and get some fresh air, maybe get a girlfriend and just get a life. They should see the movie and make up their own minds.

This was posted today on Fangoria’s site, so it’s hard to know for sure whether this quote from Bayer was collected before the film opened, when presumably his intended audience was debating the merits of remaking the film at all, or after, when presumably those potential audience members on the fence about seeing the film were being swayed by critics and unhappy fans to perhaps not see it at all.

Either way, though, if Bayer really wants to suggest that serious fans of slasher movies get a girlfriend and get a life, he should consider whether that would include not paying money to see his movie at all. Is that what he wants?

(As part of my revamping of the site, I’ll no longer be doing a weekly box office report. But I will find something about the weekend at the multiplexes to comment on, with a link to the full numbers if you care to check them out for yourself.)

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