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elcaballero

The Matrix Revolutions (2003)

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One of the most disappointing sequels of all time for many, The Matrix Revolutions was a critical failure and a box office disappointment. Shot back-to-back with The Matrix Reloaded, it was released just six months later in November 2003, and yet failed to gross even half of its predecessor’s domestic total.

While by no means unprofitable, as the closer to The Matrix Trilogy, it simply did not live up to expectations. In fact, its domestic and worldwide totals of $139,313,948 of $427,343,298 are both less than the first Matrix made back in 1999.

Discuss/air grievances here!

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The idea of releasing two sequels in the same year actually sounded really cool at the time, especially given that Reloaded would end on a cliffhanger. Then Reloaded ended up being divisive and this finale felt like an afterthought.

 

I liked it well enough at the time (in my defense, I was also just 13 at the time), but this one has not held up well outside of the still-impressive effects work. At least Reloaded, jumbled as it was, swung for the fences on a storytelling level; this one is just content to run through the motions of a plot with little energy while occasionally dishing out some shallow philosophy.

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I remember the release of Revolutions very well. They had a "same time around the world" release IIRC, and it doesn't mean Day and date, it was literally the same time that the movie showings started everywhere. Midnight in the US and corresponding times in other countries. I was there at 10:30am in India for the first showing.

 

I was disappointed that the ending was basically a brokered peace, but thinking upon it it made sense. Better than Reloaded IMO but that is mainly because there is an actual ending here.

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6 minutes ago, Jay Hollywood said:

Worst release date of ALL TIME for a blockbuster. 

 

You don't put JL out 6 months after BvS you gotta let it breath just a bit.  This pulls in 125m more WW maybe if the waited another 6 months. 

 

They were experimenting. The concept of two-parters released over X amount of time hadn't really been figured out. (I believe BTTF2 and 3 had a similar pattern). And if both RELOADED and REVOLUTIONS had been better received, I think it's probably a moot point -- they'd gross a lot more anyway. In terms of problems, the release date is definitely something to point at, but I'm not sure you can say it's one of the major issues.

 

All that being said, I was a big supporter of RELOADED back when it came out and I still am today. I didn't much care for REVOLUTIONS back then but it's grown on me as well. The Wachowskis were trying to do a whole lot, and they didn't quite pull it off. But they tried, at least.

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12 minutes ago, Telemachos said:

 

They were experimenting. The concept of two-parters released over X amount of time hadn't really been figured out. (I believe BTTF2 and 3 had a similar pattern). And if both RELOADED and REVOLUTIONS had been better received, I think it's probably a moot point -- they'd gross a lot more anyway. In terms of problems, the release date is definitely something to point at, but I'm not sure you can say it's one of the major issues.

 

All that being said, I was a big supporter of RELOADED back when it came out and I still am today. I didn't much care for REVOLUTIONS back then but it's grown on me as well. The Wachowskis were trying to do a whole lot, and they didn't quite pull it off. But they tried, at least.

BTTF2 and BTTF3 had inverse release dates, with Part 2 in November and Part 3 the following May. 

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39 minutes ago, Telemachos said:

 

They were experimenting. The concept of two-parters released over X amount of time hadn't really been figured out. (I believe BTTF2 and 3 had a similar pattern). And if both RELOADED and REVOLUTIONS had been better received, I think it's probably a moot point -- they'd gross a lot more anyway. In terms of problems, the release date is definitely something to point at, but I'm not sure you can say it's one of the major issues.

 

All that being said, I was a big supporter of RELOADED back when it came out and I still am today. I didn't much care for REVOLUTIONS back then but it's grown on me as well. The Wachowskis were trying to do a whole lot, and they didn't quite pull it off. But they tried, at least.

 

 

Of yes you can, no trilogy whose second film has increased over the first has had that large of a drop.

 

 

They put out the 3rd one when the 2nd (a bad reviewed movie) was coming put on DVD. Shit The Dark Knight Rises would have made 450m less WW than TDK if it came out November 2008 

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57 minutes ago, elcaballero said:

BTTF2 and BTTF3 had inverse release dates, with Part 2 in November and Part 3 the following May. 

 

I meant the shorter time between releases (a matter of a few months instead of a year or more).

 

31 minutes ago, Jay Hollywood said:

 

 

Of yes you can, no trilogy whose second film has increased over the first has had that large of a drop.

 

 

They put out the 3rd one when the 2nd (a bad reviewed movie) was coming put on DVD. Shit The Dark Knight Rises would have made 450m less WW than TDK if it came out November 2008 

 

And if they delayed it until the following year it might've gotten the same indifferent shrug, as everyone had already moved on to more current and trendy blockbusters. And more to the point, there was an incredibly small sample size regarding two-parters and their release dates. It looks really obvious now because we have a lot more data (including these movies themselves). But at the time it was basically a no-win situation and WB decided just to push ahead and get it over with. 

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1 hour ago, Jay Hollywood said:

Worst release date of ALL TIME for a blockbuster. 

 

You don't put JL out 6 months after BvS you gotta let it breath just a bit.  This pulls in 125m more WW maybe if the waited another 6 months. 

 

 

Agreed. Reloaded was barely out of theaters when this came out and this one wasn't marketed as much either. While it was always going to drop it would have done better i they had waited about a year to  create more hype and marketing 

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Let's do a little thought experiment. You're WB in say, August of 2003. You get to make the call about whether to push REVOLUTIONS or not. 

 

If you push it to a later date, you take an immediate hit from all the industry press about the movie being a stinker (something that it may not recover from no matter when it comes out). You also run the risk that it simply won't be that big of a deal for people, no matter how hard you push it. And it's debatable whether it's a good idea to distance yourself from RELOADED anyway: after all, that movie still got pretty solid reviews (73% on RT) and made a butt load of money. 

 

On the other hand, maybe there's a chance you can create a bigger splash. 

 

But if you decide to move it, where do you move it to? The obvious thought would be to move it to next Memorial Day, but if you do that not only do you cut off the knees of your upcoming Brad Pitt epic (TROY) but you also face SHREK 2. There's no great place to put it in the summer -- the prime spots are already taken or you'd have to push your own tent poles out of the way. 

 

What about the holidays? Same thing. You've got a big-budget Zemeckis movie in prime spot to capitalize on the holidays, you've got OCEAN'S TWELVE, you've got your exciting Oliver Stone epic. Nowhere to go. 

 

I think WB made the right decision. 

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7 minutes ago, Telemachos said:

Let's do a little thought experiment. You're WB in say, August of 2003. You get to make the call about whether to push REVOLUTIONS or not. 

 

If you push it to a later date, you take an immediate hit from all the industry press about the movie being a stinker (something that it may not recover from no matter when it comes out). You also run the risk that it simply won't be that big of a deal for people, no matter how hard you push it. And it's debatable whether it's a good idea to distance yourself from RELOADED anyway: after all, that movie still got pretty solid reviews (73% on RT) and made a butt load of money. 

 

On the other hand, maybe there's a chance you can create a bigger splash. 

 

But if you decide to move it, where do you move it to? The obvious thought would be to move it to next Memorial Day, but if you do that not only do you cut off the knees of your upcoming Brad Pitt epic (TROY) but you also face SHREK 2. There's no great place to put it in the summer -- the prime spots are already taken or you'd have to push your own tent poles out of the way. 

 

What about the holidays? Same thing. You've got a big-budget Zemeckis movie in prime spot to capitalize on the holidays, you've got OCEAN'S TWELVE, you've got your exciting Oliver Stone epic. Nowhere to go. 

 

I think WB made the right decision. 

I loled.

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21 minutes ago, Telemachos said:

Let's do a little thought experiment. You're WB in say, August of 2003. You get to make the call about whether to push REVOLUTIONS or not. 

 

If you push it to a later date, you take an immediate hit from all the industry press about the movie being a stinker (something that it may not recover from no matter when it comes out). You also run the risk that it simply won't be that big of a deal for people, no matter how hard you push it. And it's debatable whether it's a good idea to distance yourself from RELOADED anyway: after all, that movie still got pretty solid reviews (73% on RT) and made a butt load of money. 

 

On the other hand, maybe there's a chance you can create a bigger splash. 

 

But if you decide to move it, where do you move it to? The obvious thought would be to move it to next Memorial Day, but if you do that not only do you cut off the knees of your upcoming Brad Pitt epic (TROY) but you also face SHREK 2. There's no great place to put it in the summer -- the prime spots are already taken or you'd have to push your own tent poles out of the way. 

 

What about the holidays? Same thing. You've got a big-budget Zemeckis movie in prime spot to capitalize on the holidays, you've got OCEAN'S TWELVE, you've got your exciting Oliver Stone epic. Nowhere to go. 

 

I think WB made the right decision. 

 

 

Well i would

have had  them scheduled a year apart from the beginning. Probably in place of Troy since that is WB as well

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36 minutes ago, Telemachos said:

Let's do a little thought experiment. You're WB in say, August of 2003. You get to make the call about whether to push REVOLUTIONS or not. 

 

I wonder how much you have full control in that seat, movie like that would probably give a 50+% of it's profit to the stars, the filmmakers, village roadshows and the other financiers, moving when the profit is made impact them too. I would imagine they often have Distributor shall release the picture theatrically no later than Date X in the contract, with some form of approval to change it required or consequence if you do not fulfill it. And in that case, those people were swimming in Matrix money like it almost never happened before, if it was part of their artistic desire to present their movie like that even if they do not have as it contractually guaranteed, as a studio you probably take into consideration to keep these new director's that are printing money for you happy, to keep distribute their future movie (like they did).

 

You also have like you said the complication of getting a good wide release date. There is a lot of talk that the studio X made a mistake in term of releasing, as if they had control over theater chain (and/or the competition) to get as many screen the date they want, expend as fast as they want once there is a buzz, etc...

 

P.S. It is impossible for us to make that thought experiment correctly, it is impossible to not take what we know about franchise/sequel into our thinking process. It is a bit like finding it strange that the studio didn't lock anyone for a sequel on the first Twilight, or looking at Harry Potter being a bit of a surprise movie phenomenon (with once again no one locked for more than 2 movie). We cannot really place us back in the shoes of people that didn't saw the early 2000's franchise phenomenon arrive (Potter, Lords of the rings, spider-man and so on)

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The release sequence was reminiscent of what Universal had done with Back to the Future about 15 years earlier: A wildly successful debut film, a four year wait for its anticipated sequel, and then just six months later the conclusion to the trilogy.

 

I think what we saw with the Matrix films was a huge whipsaw effect: "Reloaded" was a bad film that did big box office by riding the wave of goodwill from its beloved predecessor. "Revolutions" was a mediocre film that tanked like a worse one because of the bad taste left in the mouth six months previously by "Reloaded". 

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