Debuting over the weekend, ‘Blue Beetle’ was supposed to be a big movie for DC, especially considering that James Gunn gave his approval to the film as a potential part of his DCU. Of course, the movie did a lot better in terms of how critics reviewed it, as it received a score of 76% from verified reviews and 92% from audience members on Rotten Tomatoes. In that regard, it goes without saying that ‘Blue Beetle’ is one of the best DC movies in recent memory.
But while ‘Blue Beetle’ is a quality film helmed by Xolo Maridueña’s magnetic acting, the theaters beg to differ. That’s because ‘Blue Beetle’ didn’t do well during its opening weekend as it only got $10 million over the weekend. And that means that the movie is slow to start, especially considering that there are a lot of factors that led to its somewhat subpar opening weekend performance.
The slow start that ‘Blue Beetle’ saw in the theaters can be somewhat surprising. In comparison to what was considered a failure, ‘Shazam! Fury of the Gods’ received over $30 million in box office revenue during its opening weekend. Of course, the second installment of the ‘Shazam’ franchised eventually collapsed as the second movie grossed only around $57 million, in comparison to the $368 million that its first installment received.
So, while a lot of people would agree that ‘Blue Beetle’ is marginally better than ‘Fury of the Gods,’ it comes as a surprise to a lot of people that this film hasn’t been performing well at the box office. And the thing that needs to be considered here is, unlike the previous DC movies, ‘Blue Beetle’ is facing stiff competition in theaters around the world.
The massive success of the ‘Barbie’ movie has made it difficult for movies to perform well over the past month. Despite the fact that it has been a month since ‘Barbie’ was released, it is still making waves in different theaters around the world, as it has grossed over $1.2 billion at the global box office. Billed as a double-header, the ‘Barbenheimer’ phenomenon swept the globe the past month because the second part of this double-header, ‘Oppenheimer,’ is also a huge success as it has grossed over $700 million at the global box office.
‘Barbenheimer’ has already had a month, but it is still performing well because people who watched either ‘Barbie’ or ‘Oppenheimer’ first are still watching the other movie of this ‘Barbenheimer’ double-header phenomenon. And that’s why the movies that were released in the last four weeks since ‘Barbenheimer’ was released have been struggling to attract audiences.
This includes ‘Blue Beetle,’ which is miles ahead of the other movies that were released after ‘Barbenheimer.’ But the fact is that the movie is still struggling to attract fans away from either ‘Barbie’ or ‘Oppenheimer’ because moviegoers are still trying to keep up with the trend of watching both of those films.
In that regard, once the ‘Barbenheimer’ fever dies down, people can expect better numbers from ‘Blue Beetle.’ It’s a good thing that this movie came out a month after ‘Barbenheimer’ because one month should be more than enough for fans to watch either or both ‘Barbie’ and ‘Oppenheimer.’ And ‘Blue Beetle’ should be the next best thing for moviegoers to catch if they’ve already watched ‘Barbenheimer.’
DC’s “bad” reputation
There’s also the fact that DC has developed a “bad” reputation over the past few years due to the fact that the entire DC live-action movie universe hasn’t been quite coherent.
We know that the old universe is now dead, as DC is now set to see a soft reset in the form of James Gunn’s new DCU. That is why films such as ‘Black Adam’ and ‘Shazam! Fury of the Gods’ were seen as a “useless” movies in the greater scheme of things now that the entire DC film universe is set to see a reset. And ‘The Flash’ didn’t even do so well at the box office due to a combination of Ezra Miller’s personal problems and DC’s confusing direction.
This has left a bad taste in the mouths of moviegoers who aren’t too sure of where DC is heading and whether or not ‘Blue Beetle’ is worth the watch, considering that there wasn’t a clear announcement of where it falls in the grander plans of James Gunn. Of course, ‘Blue Beetle’ played things safe by refusing to make any direct connections to past DC movies.
But the fact is that fans are still wondering whether or not it really does have a place in James Gunn’s rebooted universe is one of the things that turned moviegoers off.
After all, what purpose is there to watch a movie with a future that isn’t even certain? Gunn’s DC reboot won’t start until 2025, which means that the DC movies that will be released before the reboot aren’t necessarily part of this universe. Then again, ‘Blue Beetle’ got Gunn’s endorsement as he believes this movie has a place in his DCU reboot.
But not all fans are aware of that, and that means that some people aren’t inclined to watch a movie that may or may not mean something for the future of the DCU.
Of course, once word gets out about Gunn’s endorsement of ‘Blue Beetle,’ the numbers of this movie might improve. We might see a reverse version of what happened in ‘Fury of the Gods,’ wherein the movie saw a somewhat strong opening weekend that ended up slowing down. As such, there’s a chance that ‘Blue Beetle’ might see a second wind in the coming days and weeks, especially if word gets out about Gunn’s endorsement and about how good the movie is.
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