Baywatch opens to mixed responses in the US; what will be its fate in India?
Sometimes in life, things exist just to provide you with a good laugh.
They don't need to have a formulaic backing for their theories. They don't need to be verified and substantiated. They don't even really need to make sense.
Sometimes, things just are.
Perhaps the best example of this would be movies like Dhamaal. Or Welcome. Or Charlie's Angels, American Pie, The Hangover or the Home Alone franchises. All these movies have two things in common. They make little sense, or provide no stimulation to the intelligent individual — but we are all guilty of enjoying them.
So why is it that we have become so harsh in today's day and age? Does the 'millennial' generation not know how to take a joke? Are we so tightly wound up that we just don't know how to unwind?
Baywatch and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales were two such movies recently released, whose sole purpose seemed to be to provide a sense of escapism and entertainment to their audience. They were not meant to be relegated with tales of a beautiful screenplay and brilliant cinematography (we assume).
However, both have made a dismal $77 million (Pirates 5) and $23 million (Baywatch) at the US and Canadian box offices respectively, and according to this Quartz analysis, Rotten Tomatoes seems to be the reason behind it. The piece claims there is a massive divide between what audiences feel after watching these entertaining films, versus how critics are describing them,
Rotten Tomatoes — we've all heard of it.
We love it — but we also hate it, because there was that one movie you had heard about that you really wanted to watch, but a quick Google search and a 1.5 Rotten Tomato score later — all your hopes have been dashed.
Rotten Tomatoes forces a critic to assign a film with either a rotten or fresh tomato as they submit their movie review, and the film's credibility is finally calibrated according to how many tomatoes they have. This phenomenon however, mostly proves to be poisonous for the average 'popcorn flick'.
In a series of passive aggressive tweets, Baywatch star The Rock (Dwayne Johnson) personally replied to the movie reviews of some critics that he felt have no credibility and do not understand how cinema works, after Baywatch received below average reviews from most critics.
— Dwayne Johnson (@TheRock) May 25, 2017
— Dwayne Johnson (@TheRock) May 26, 2017
😂😂 Whaa? Who taught you economics? 35-45% of your budget in just one territory (US) is excellent. Our worldwide rollout begins next week. 👍🏾
— Dwayne Johnson (@TheRock) May 28, 2017
Despite many negative reviews from across the board, The Rock may have some cause for reason here.
On the same site the audience reviews show that the film has fared pretty well — with 70% of Baywatch viewers saying they liked the movie.
So the question here is — do we go and decide for ourselves whether we liked a film or not? Or do we let a robotic movie-review site advice us not to watch cinematic classics like White Chicks? (Remember, to each their own).
As Baywatch is set to release in India on 2 June, let's see how Indian audiences react to the movie.