The Last Stand stumbles in the US

News Simon Brew 21 Jan 2013 - 06:38

The weekend US box office has seen the return of Arnold Schwarzenegger. But it's not quite gone to plan...

Hyped as his first big screen leading role since he left politics, The Last Stand opened at the US box office over the weekend, and instantly will have given those funding Arnold Schwarzenegger's future movies a lot of cause for concern.

Once upon a time, Schwarzenegger films were a shoo-in for top of the box office. The Last Stand, on a generally solid weekend for box office returns in the States (Mama, starring Jessica Chastain, topped the charts with an impressive $28.1m), opened at number ten in the chart. What's more, it did it with a gross of just $6.3m. That's about half of what had been predicted going into the weekend.

The film reportedly cost around $30m to make, and as it rolls out around the world, we'd expect it to enjoy more success that it has done in the US. But there are nonetheless serious question marks now over the box office pulling power of its once-bankable leading man.

His rusty performance in The Expendables 2 won't have helped, and truthfully, even though this is Schwazenegger's first leading role since Terminator 3, he's only been off cinema screens for five months. Furthermore, question marks are being asked over the direction of some of the promotional work in the States. The last time hand-drawn posters were used to promote a Schwarzenegger film was for, if our memory serves, Last Action Hero.

Arnie has The Tomb, alongside Sylvester Stallone, due out later this year. He's also set to start shooting The Legend Of Conan. We wonder, though, if he may be inclined to fast-track Terminator 5, given that it's arguably the most bankable role he's got left in his locker.

The Last Stand opens in the UK on Friday. It's better than its US take may lead you to believe.

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He should never have returned to acting..he's WAY to old and I'm sure the training and prep needed before his kind of movies is pretty dangerous to his health.

Surely there's a generation of cinema goers who're wondering why that groping politician's now in a film.

I when it comes out in the cinemas over here, I will be there. I for one cannot wait.

I was up for seeing this when I first saw the trailer......right up to the point where Knoxville showed his gurning face mugging to the camera. After that, no way.

Nothing to do with the fact that the movie looks dogshit??

His last few films in the run up to politics were hardly setting the box office on fire so I couldn't understand all the hype about his return.

It's hardly surprising that this film did not do well, even if it is just good fun.

There are three types of people when it comes to this film:

1. People who love Arnie - wont want to see him as an OAP in action films, thus ruining their genuinely good memories of him and feel he should give up gracefully. (this is where I fit in).
2. People who hate Arnie - Wont go to see it at all.
3. People who didnt know he was even an actor - will have no interest in seeing an ex governor of California in a film.

From alot of comments on other websites it seems like it is not showing in many cinemas in the states.

I was really planning on seeing this film because I'm a big fan of the director. Unfortunately, it seems as though every time the wife and I plan a night out to a restaurant and the cinema we always just end up going to Best Buy and picking up a Blu-Ray of a film we havent seen and just staying home. It's sad, but it just seems like the experience of going to see a movie is just such a crap shoot as to whether you're going to have a good time or not.

That's one ugly film poster. What were they thinking?

I think the movie will be a success even if it doesn't do well in the States. Movies tend to focus on international markets rather then the domestic. I don't think the USA is as important market as it used to be, with cinemas being arguably more popular in Asia than they were before. However, I haven't seen the movie yet, but it seems to me that Arnie should stay from any film with Knoxville in it. What I'd love to see is Arnie working with talented directors that know how to get the best out of him. Shane Black directing a sequel to Last Action Hero would be awesome.

Honestly did not think it would be a big hit, but I'm downright amazed at just how poorly it did. YIKES!

Actually the Schwarzenegger movie i'm most looking forward to is David Ayer's Ten , that's the movie i think he should have marketed as his come-back.

What i think it went wrong here i think is the tone of this movie. For a come back Arnold should have opted for a serious action movie, where he is the lead and he kicks ass as he used to, and forget the "i'm too old for this stuff" jokes, it feels like he is apologizing for something and it's been done to tiresome levels already in The Expendables II.

A movie like Rambo IV is what i would have gone for, a serious kick-ass bad ass violent movie with him, as the action hero he is, for the lead. This one with the jokes and Knoxville practically reprising is funny sidekick role of The Rock's Walking Tall doesn't look our sound nearly as solid a movie like he Arnold needed for his comeback.

And yes, that poster is terrible, it looks like amateur "art" tracing over a photograph, something for a low budget movie trying to look cool.

They were thinking that movie geeks hate Photoshopped posters and appreciate hand painted artwork.

May I posit a suggestion as to why it's tanked in the US:

One word ---- guns.

Now i'm not about to start a debate that guns in movies are bad etc etc etc. Just that given the current arguments and high-run feelings that are going on in the US at the moment (not to mention another shooting of kids at the weekend in New Mexico), I think people are just wary of films that are positively bristling with them.

However, a film showing young kids in supernatural peril seems to be a winner. Hmmm, well nowt as queer as folk.

pppfffft. The kind of training needed before this kind of movie is probably the best thing possible for this old geezer. It can help whip him back into shape. In the realm of triathaletes and martial arts grand masters, he isn't even that old.

I think the poster is pretty awesome, but then I'm old enough to remember when most most movie posters looked like that...

As for the movie... meh.

Tomb might be a bit better and Conan >could< be awesome, but only if someone has the balls to get Milius on board.

R-rating for Last Stand and Broken City. PG-13 for Mama. That's why the BO differential.

I am surprised with these results. I went and saw the film in a nearly empty theater. But that wasn't the biggest surprise. The movie is actually good. Very good. I hope audiences give it a chance. It is funny, and it has great action scenes and likable performances, even by Arnold.

Only $30 million for a movie starring a (former?) A-lister? That I did not expect.
Maybe it's the gun-sensitive issues of the times, or maybe it's got the feel of a movie from a previous age, like those early 70s Westerns John Wayne made before he died.
Or maybe it's crap.

The movies John Wayne made before he died were much better than the ones he made after he died.

I'm glad this article mentioned his stilted performance in Expendables 2. He just looked...confused most of the time.

hasn't it just come out in the U.S.? It hasn't even come out in a lot of countries yet. Bit early to say it did poorly. It'll most likely make make twice it's budget on the world market.

There seems to be alot of guessing about why this film has failed but no one has pointed out the most important thing. it has had no promotion i the US. its not any harder then that.

In Terminator 5, will we meet the scientist who decided to build a powerful robot that has a thick Austrian accent and a turkey neck? Will it be Peewee Herman?

Except for that one where they cloned him to go after Lo Pan in Little China.

Here in the Sates it did very poorly. Like the article said, it wasn't made for much and will do better overseas. But America is Arnie's stronghold, barely making the top ten is not a good sign.

It was a fun action movie, well shot and pretty dang cool.

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