This is one of those weeks where if I’d known it would be like this I might never have done this project at all. Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted versus Prometheus. These are really high stakes and in lieu of my normal breakdown I just want to talk a little about what this has done to me and then talk myself into picking something at the end.
I’m a big Ridley Scott fan. Blade Runner might be my favorite film. I waited entirely too long to see Alien (my mom walked out of a screening and is, to this day, too afraid to watch the movie all the way through) but really dug the crap out of it. I’m not as fond of his later films but I walked out of Gladiator happy and American Gangster is a terrific film for a lazy afternoon watching HBO. Suffice to say I was pretty jazzed that Prometheus was getting made.
I was beside myself when I found out it was coming out across from the latest Madagascar sequel. The first two movies in the series have pumped out money. I have, of course, seen neither of the them. I was raised in a household reverential of animation and my parents always looked down their noses at the Dreamworks productions. Madagascar is the closest thing to a religious evil that my secular upbringing affords me.
The weeks leading up to this have brought out the worst in me. I’ve taken solace in every bad piece of press I’ve heard about Prometheus. I’ve grabbed on to little trends like maybe animated sequels are in decline if you look at how Kung Fu Panda 2 did and held them like gospel truths. I’ve checked theater counts every day hoping for a last minute reversal in numbers. That one ended particularly badly.
Madagascar 3 is getting the 11th widest opening in movie history, 4,258 theaters. Prometheus is in 3,394 good enough for the 10th widest release of an R-rated movie. Madagascar is coming at a time where we might be due for a monster kids movie with schools letting out and The Lorax a distant memory. Prometheus pillaged the international markets last weekend.
I’m picking Prometheus. Not because I think it;s really more likely to win but because it’s what I want to win. I want the sic-fi thriller from the legendary director to beat the third installment of a second-rate kids franchise. I want my faith in the American people to be rewarded by having them choose the good movie. I’ll have my Madagascar 3 write-up finished by Tuesday.