Why’d it Bomb?/Why’d it Hit?: Rough Night and Girls Trip
Kevthewriter examines the fates of two similarly themed summer comedies. Why did one hit and the other bomb?
There were two movies that came out this year that were about a group of girls going on vacation; Rough Night and Girls Trip. One of these movies was a critical and box office success while the other was a critical and box office flop. Weirdly enough, while both didn’t appeal to me, I’d think Rough Night would be the critical and box office success of the two because, while I didn’t think it looked great, it at least had a plot. Girls Trip looked like one of those vacation movies you’d see the Happy Madison crew make, which made its critical success all the more surprising. But why did that movie do well at the box office while Rough Night did not?
2. The critical reviews probably had something to do with it
With the advent of Netflix and other streaming services, people don’t go to the movies as much as they used to. But that’s not to say no one is going to the movies anymore and there are still many box office successes out there. Yet with the advent of streaming services, it seems like people are putting more stock in reviews than they used to and movies with good to great reviews are more likely to do well at the box office while those with terrible reviews are more likely to flop. I mean, how else do you explain the last Transformers movie being a domestic flop? When Rough Night got bad reviews, it might’ve made a lot of people stay away. On the other hand, when Girls Trip got good reviews, it might’ve made people curious if the movie was as good as the critics said and they went to see the movie.
However, even though I think people put more stock in reviews than they did before, not all movies that are well reviewed do well nowadays nor are all movies that get panned box office flops. I think the biggest reason one flopped while the other succeeded was…
1. One’s a lighthearted comedy while the other is a dark comedy
The trailer of Rough Night basically spoiled that the girls killed a stripper. That element might’ve turned off audiences from seeing the movie. On the other hand, Girls Trip looked like a lighthearted comedy through and through, which audiences probably found more appealing and, therefore, they saw the movie.
While both movies had similar premises, one movie won out and that was Girls Trip. I can’t say I’ll see either anytime soon but it’s still interesting to see why one flopped and the other didn’t and, for it’s more lighthearted nature and better reviews, I think I can see why Girls Trip ended up winning out.