Ranked: Every Summer Movie Season Since 1980 – Part 1

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What is the best summer movie season ever? Which one was the worst? Join us as we compare every summer movie season since 1980!

On January 20th, 1975, Steven Spielberg and Universal Studios released Jaws. The movie landscape would be forever changed from that date. Jaws is widely credited as being the first blockbuster film because it was the first movie to make over $100 million (non-adjusted). The fact that the film had a meager $8 million budget meant that it was a huge cash cow for the studio and rocketed Spielberg to the the forefront of a new generation of filmmakers for a new era of movie mass-consumption. George Lucas followed up in 1977 with Star Wars, which became a sensational and very profitable hit. It helped to convince production studios that audiences wanted movies that allowed them to escape into new worlds and be entertained like never before. Jaws and Star Wars convinced studios that by investing more money to increase production values and scope, audiences would reward them with their money.

movielinx

Each month the Cinelinx staff will write a handful of articles covering a specified film-related topic. These articles will be notified by the Movielinx banner. Movielinx is an exploration and discussion of our personal connections with film. This month we’re mourning the end of the 2014 summer movie season and discussing our favorite summer movie seasons of the past! Be sure to vote in our 2014 Summer Movie Awards. 


While technically a blockbuster can happen any time of the year, it is the summer months when studios have decided to load up on the releases of their biggest films. The logic behind this business decision is solid. During the summer months kids, teens, and college students don’t have school. They are the ones who studios target with their big-budget spectacles, and during the summer months they have the freedom to visit the movie theater more often. Furthermore, many people take vacations in summer, and therefore less people are at work in general. What better way to enjoy your time away from the stresses of work than to get lost in a movie?

2015 and 2016 may just be the most over-the-top summer movie seasons yet. It seems like nearly every movie slated for a summer 2015 or 2016 release is heavily anticipated. Because of these impending summers of movie awesomeness, we’ve decided to take a look back at summer movie seasons of years past. The idea of the summer movie season is currently in full swing, but it didn’t catch on immediately. Hollywood had to do its fair share of experimenting to determine what types of films would be most successful. As a result, some summer movie seasons have been better than others. We’ve reviewed them all for you and ranked them from worst to best. This week, we’ll take an in-depth look at the worst summer movie seasons since 1980. 

Click Here for Part 2!

To rank the summer movie seasons, I created an algorithm that utilizes several criteria. The algorithm looked at 4 criteria to determine how to rank the summer movie seasons:

  1. Average Quality of the Movies Released
  2. Quantity of Movies Released
  3. Variety of Movies Released (Genres)
  4. Popularity of Movies Released (Box Office Data)

Here is a diagram that explains all of the data that is listed below:

 Data Overview copy

Now that we have all this data, let’s put it to good use! Here’s our ranking of summer movie seasons, from worst to best:                                                                 


 #35 (The Worst) – 2013

At first it might not seem like 2013 is the worst season ever, but when you look at the stats, it makes sense. 2013 had the second most flops of any year, one of the lowest average movie ratings, there’s not much variety among the hit films, and features two of the biggest flops in the last few years (Lone Ranger, R.I.P.D). On top of this, it features the most sequels yet released during the summer months. Now sequels aren’t necessarily bad, but historically they are more likely to be less successful than the original film. Finally, it doesn’t have a breakout smash hit nor do any of its hits have a significantly high rating.  

            Studs:

  • Iron Man 3 – May 2013 – $408m (78%)
  • Star Trek Into Darkness – May 2013 – $228m (87%)
  • Fast and Furious 6 – May 2013 – $238m (68%)
  • Man of Steel – June 2013 – $291m (56%)
  • Monsters University – June 2013 – 268m (78%)
  • World War Z – June 2013 – $202m (68%)
  • Despicable Me 2 – July 2013 – $368m (74%)

            Duds:

  • The Great Gatsby – May 2013 – $144m ($190m) (49%)
  • After Earth – May 2013 – $60m ($113m) (11%)
  • The Internship – June 2013 – $44m ($58m) (34%)
  • White House Down – June 2013 – $73m ($150m) (50%)
  • The Lone Ranger – July 2013 – $89m ($213m) (31%)
  • Pacific Rim – July 2013 – $101m ($190m) (72%)
  • Turbo – July 2013 – $83m ($135m) (67%)
  • RED 2 – July 2013 – $53m ($84m) (42%)
  • R.I.P.D. – July 2013 – $33m ($130m) (13%)
  • The Smurfs 2 – July 2013 – $71m ($110m) (14%)
  • Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters – August 2013 – $68m ($90m) (41%)
  • Elysium – August 2013 – $93m ($120m) (68%)
  • Kick Ass 2 – August 2013 – $28m ($28m) (29%)
  • Paranoia – August 2013 – $7m ($40m) (5%)
  • The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones – August 2013 – $31m ($60m) (12%)

            Notables:

The Hangover 3 (19%), Epic (64%), Now You See Me (50%), The Purge (38%), This is The End (83%), The Heat (65%), Grown Ups 2 (7%), The Conjuring (86%), Blue Jasmine (91%), The Wolverine (69%), 2 Guns (64%), We’re the Millers (47%), Disney Planes (26%), Lee Daniels’ The Butler (73%), The World’s End (89%)


#34 – 2003

Finding-Nemo-2

2003 has 3 standout films: X2, Finding Nemo, and Pirates of the Caribbean. Besides those films, it’s very forgettable. In fact, almost all of the other films released are downright terrible. Only Finding Nemo and Spy Kids 3-D have good ratings. 2003 has one of the worst ratios of hits vs. misses, and has fewer films released than those years around it, and a low variety among hit films.

            Studs:

  • X2 – May 2003 – $214m (87%)
  • The Matrix Reloaded – May 2003 – $281m (73%)
  • Bruce Almighty – May 2003 – $242m (48%)
  • Finding Nemo – May 2003 – $242m (99%)
  • Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl – June 2003 – $305m (79%)

            Duds:

  • Dumb and Dumberer: When Harry Met Lloyd – June 2003 – $26m ($30m) (10%)
  • Hollywood Homicide – June 2003 – $30m ($75m) (30%)
  • Hulk – June 2003 – $132m ($137m) (62%)
  • Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle – June 2003 – $100m ($120m) (44%)
  • Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines – July 2003 – $150m ($170m) (70%)
  • Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas – July 2003 – $26m ($60m) (46%)
  • The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen – July 2003 – $66m ($78m) (17%)
  • Johnny English – July 2003 – $28m ($45m) (33%)
  • Lara Croft: Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life – July 2003 – $65m ($90m) (24%)
  • Gigli – August 2003 – $6m ($54m) (6%)
  • The Medallion – August 2003 – $22m ($41m) (18%)

            Notables:

Daddy Day Care (28%), The Italian Job (73%), 2 Fast 2 Furious (36%), Legally Blonde 2: Red, White, and Blonde (38%), Bad Boys II (23%), Seabiscuit (77%), Spy Kids 3-D (93%), American Wedding (55%), Freaky Friday (88%), Freddy vs. Jason (41%), Open Range (79%)


#33 – 1997

1997 is the year of two Nicholas Cage movies released in a month, the Batman nipple suit, and Vince Vaughn playing a major role in an adventure film. If those things aren’t enough to make you cringe, then consider that 1997 features one of the biggest flops of all time (Speed 2), the fewest number of films released during the summer season, and the second lowest average movie score overall.

            Studs:

  • The Lost World: Jurassic Park – May 1997 – $229m (52%)
  • Con Air – June 1997 – $101m (55%)
  • Face/Off – June 1997 – $112m (91%)
  • My Best Friend’s Wedding – $146m (71%)
  • Men in Black – July 1997 – $250m (92%)
  • Contact – July 1997 – $100m (63%)
  • George of the Jungle – July 1997 – $105m (56%)
  • Air Force One – July 1997 – $172m (79%)

            Duds:

  • Warriors of Virtue – May 1997 – $6m ($35m) (18%)
  • Father’s Day – May 1997 – $28m ($85m) (25%)
  • The Fifth Element – June 1997 – $63m ($95m) (71%)
  • Speed II: Cruise Control – June 1997 – $48m ($125m) (3%)
  • Batman & Robin – June 1997 – $107m ($125m) (11%)
  • Conspiracy Theory – August 1997 – $76m ($80m) (52%)
  • Event Horizon – August 1997 – $26m ($60m) (24%)
  • G.I. Jane – August 1997 – $48m ($50m) (55%)

            Notables:

            Austin Powers (70%), Spawn (19%), Money Talks (16%)


#32 – 2010

Inception-Wallpaper-inception-2010-12396931-1440-900

2010 has the second most flops of any year. It features 3 films that lost over $100 million, and has the third lowest average movie score. It also features a $150 million movie that has a rating of less than 10%, and Marmaduke in case your forgot that it existed.

            Studs:

  • Iron Man 2 – May 2010 – $312m (73%)
  • Shrek Forever After – May 2010 – $238m (58%)
  • Toy Story 3 – June 2010 – $415m (99%)
  • The Twilight Saga: Eclipse – June 2010 – $300m (49%)
  • Despicable Me – July 2010 – $251m (81%)
  • Inception – July 2010 – $292m (86%)

            Duds:

  • Robin Hood – May 2010 – $105m ($210m) (33%)
  • Sex and the City 2 – May 2010 – $95m ($95m) (15%)
  • Prince of Persia: Sands of Time – May 2010 – $90m ($200m) (36%)
  • Killers – June 2010 – $47m ($75m) (11%)
  • Marmaduke – June 2010 – $33m ($50m) (9%)
  • Splice – June 2010 – $17m ($30m) (74%)
  • The A-Team – June 2010 – $77m ($110m) (47%)
  • Jonah Hex – June 2010 – $10m ($45m) (12%)
  • Knight and Day – June 2010 – $76m ($117m) (53%)
  • The Last Airbender – July 2010 – $131m ($150m) (6%)
  • The Sorcerer’s Apprentice – July 2010 – $63m ($160m) (41%)
  • Salt – July 2010 – $118m ($130m) (62%)
  • Cats and Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore – July 2010 – $45m ($85m) (14%)
  • Scott Pilgrim vs. The World – August 2010 – $31m ($85m) (82%)
  • Nanny McPhee Returns – $29m ($35m) (76%)

            Notables:

Get Him to the Greek (73%), The Karate Kid (66%), Grown Ups (10%), Predators (64%), Dinner for Schmucks (42%), The Other Guys (79%), Eat Pray Love (36%), The Expendables (31%), The Last Exorcism (72%)


#31 – 2004

2004 featured a Spielberg movie that flopped (Terminal), a comic book film with a rating less than 10%, a Will Smith action flick that didn’t make a lot of money, and all of the hits except one were sequels. Those things are rare occurrences on their own, but together they make for one unfortunate summer movie season.

Studs:

  • Shrek 2 – May 2004 – $441m (89%)
  • The Day After Tomorrow – May 2004 – $186m (45%)
  • Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban – June 2004 – $249m (84%)
  • Spider-Man 2 – June 2004 – $373m (94%)
  • The Bourne Supremacy – July 2004 – $176m (81%)

            Duds:

  • New York Minute – May 2004 – $14m ($40m) (11%)
  • Van Helsing – May 2004 – $120m ($170m) (23%)
  • Troy – May 2004 – $133m ($150m) (54%)
  • Raising Helen – May 2004 – $37m ($50m) (23%)
  • The Chronicles of Riddick – June 2004 – $57m ($120m) (29%)
  • The Stepford Wives – June 2004 – $59m ($100m) (26%)
  • Around the World in 80 Days – June 2004 – $24m ($110m) (31%)
  • The Terminal – June 2004 – $77m ($75m) (61%)
  • Two Brothers – June 2004 – $19m ($72m) (78%)
  • King Arthur – July 2004 – $51m ($90m) (32%)
  • Catwoman – July 2004 – $40m ($100m) (9%)
  • The Manchurian Candidate – July 2004 – $65m ($80m) (81%)
  • Thunderbirds – July 2004 – $6m ($55m) (19%)
  • Exorcist: The Beginning – August 2004 – $41m ($78m) (11%)

            Notables:

Napoleon Dynamite (71%), Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story (70%), Fahrenheit 9/11 (83%), White Chicks (15%), The Notebook (52%), Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (66%), I, Robot (58%), Collateral (86%), The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement (25%), AVP: Alien vs. Predator (21%)  


#30 – 2014 (So Far)

Godzilla THUMB

2014 has had an unusual number of high-rated summer releases (5 above 90%), yet it still left us wanting more. It had the fewest releases of any film year since 2007, and a lack of variety among the hits. Perhaps the production studios let up a little bit this year in order to focus on 2015. Let’s hope it’s worth it.

            Studs:

  • The Amazing Spider-Man 2 – May 2014 – $202m (53%)
  • Godzilla – May 2014 – $200m (73%)
  • X-Men: Days of Future Past – May 2014 – $233m (91%)
  • Maleficent – May 2014 – $238m (48%)
  • Transformers: Age of Extinction – June 2014 – $244m (18%)
  • Dawn of the Planet of the Apes – July 2014 – $205m (90%)
  • Guardians of the Galaxy – August 2014 – $284m (92%)

            Duds:

  • Legends of Oz: Dorothy’s Return – May 2014 – $8m ($70m) (16%)
  • Blended – May 2014 – $46m ($45m) (14%)
  • A Million Days to Die in the West – $42m ($40m) (33%)
  • Edge of Tomorrow – June 2014 – $100m ($178m) (90%)
  • Deliver Us From Evil – July 2014 – $30m ($30m) (27%)
  • Sex Tape – July 2014 – $38m ($40m) (18%)
  • Hercules – July 2014 – $71m ($100m) (60%)
  • Into The Storm – August 2014 – $43m ($50m) (21%)
  • The Expendables 3 – August 2014 – $34m ($100m) (34%)
  • Sin City: A Dame to Kill For – August 2014 – $12m ($65m) (46%)

            Notables:

Neighbors (73%), The Fault in Our Stars (80%), 22 Jump Street (84%), How to Train Your Dragon 2 (92%), Think Like a Man Too (25%), Earth to Echo (48%), Tammy (24%), The Purge: Anarchy (58%), Lucy (66%), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (20%), The Giver (33%)


#29 – 2005

2005 gave birth to a number of different long-living franchises, and ended the Star Wars prequel trilogy. Unfortunately, that wasn’t enough to push it further up this list. It has the second most number of flops, and more importantly, the lowest average score. It features no films above a 90% rating.

Studs:

  • Star Wars Episode III – May 2005 – $380m (80%)
  • The Longest Yard – May 2005 – $158m (31%)
  • Madagascar – May 2005 – $193m (55%)
  • Mr. and Mrs. Smith – June 2005 – $186m (59%)
  • Batman Begins – June 2005 – $205m (85%)
  • War of the Worlds – June 2005 – $234m (74%)
  • Fantastic Four – July 2005 – $154m (27%)
  • Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – July 2005 – $206m (82%)
  • The Wedding Crashers – July 2005 – $209m (75%)

Duds:

  • Kingdom of Heaven – May 2005 – $94m ($110m) (39%)
  • Danny the Dog/Unleashed – May 2005 – $24m ($43m) (65%)
  • Mindhunters – May 2005 – $4m ($27m) (25%)
  • Cinderella Man – June 2005 – $61m ($88m) (80%)
  • The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl in 3-D – June 2005 – $39m ($50m) (20%)
  • Bewitched – June 2005 – $63m ($80m) (25%)
  • Rebound – July 2005 – $16m ($45m) (13%)
  • Dark Water – July 2005 – $25m ($60m) (46%)
  • The Island – July 2005 – $35m ($120m) (40%)
  • Stealth – July 2005 – $32m ($138m) (13%)
  • The Great Raid – August 2005 – $10m ($60m) (37%)
  • Valiant – August 2005 – $19m ($35m) (31%)
  • The Brothers Grimm – August 2005 – $37m ($80m) (38%)
  • The Cave – August 2005 – $15m ($30m) (11%)

            Notables:

Monster-In-Law (16%), The Dukes of Hazzard (17%), The Skeleton Key (38%), The 40-Year Old Virgin (85%), Red Eye (79%), The Constant Gardener (80%)


#28 – 2012

ted-2-movie-plot-will-not-include-jupiter-ascending-star-mila-kunis-according-to-director-seth-macfarlane-because-of-creative-reasons

Besides Avengers, 2012 was a year of underperforming films. Nothing else seemed to live up to expectations. The large number of flops and low ratings among those flops are proof that audiences weren’t very impressed. It also has the most flops of any year. Move on to the next one…  

            Studs:

  • Marvel’s The Avengers – May 2012 – $623m (92%)
  • Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted – June 2012 – $216m (79%)
  • Brave – June 2012 – $237m (78%)
  • Ted – June 2012 – $218m (68%)
  • The Amazing Spider-Man – July 2012 – $262m (73%)
  • The Dark Knight Rises – July 2012 – $448m (88%)

            Duds:

  • Dark Shadows – May 2012 – $79m ($150m) (37%)
  • The Dictator – May 2012 – $59m ($65m) (57%)
  • Battleship – May 2012 – $65m ($209m) (34%)
  • Men in Black 3 – May 2012 – $179m ($215) (70%)
  • Snow White and the Huntsman – June 2012 – $155m ($170m) (48%)
  • Rock of Ages – June 2012 – $38m ($70m) (41%)
  • Prometheus – June 2012 – $126m ($125m) (73%)
  • That’s My Boy – June 2012 – $36m ($67m) (20%)
  • Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter – June 2012 – $37m ($67m) (35%)
  • Savages – July 2012 – $47m ($45m) (51%)
  • The Watch – July 2012 – $34m ($55m) (17%)
  • Total Recall – August 2012 – $58m ($125m) (30%)
  • The Bourne Legacy – August 2012 – $113m ($125) (55%)
  • The Expendables II – August 2012 – $85m ($100m) (65%)
  • ParaNorman – August 2012 – $56m ($60m) (87%)
  • Premium Rush – August 2012 – $20m ($35m) (76%)

            Notables:

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (78%), Moonrise Kingdom (94%), Magic Mike (80%), Madea’s Witness Protection (21%), Ice Age: Continental Drift (37%), Hope Springs (74%), Lawless (67%)


#27 – 1985

Unlike almost every other year in the 80’s, 1985 is mostly devoid of films that would later become classics. Sure, there’s Back to the Future and The Goonies, but everything else is either forgettable or downright terrible. A View to A Kill might be one of the lowlights of the James Bond franchise, The Wizard of Oz didn’t need a sequel 46 years later, and The Black Cauldron represented everything that was wrong with Disney in the 1980’s.

            Studs:

  • Rambo: First Blood – Part II – May 1985 – $150m (29%)
  • A View To A Kill – May 1985 – $50m (36%)
  • The Goonies – June 1985 – $61m (67%)
  • Cocooon – July 1985 – $76m (80%)
  • Back to the Future – July 1985 – $210m (96%)

            Duds:

  • Lifeforce – June 1985 – $11m ($25m) (67%)
  • Return to Oz – June 1985 – $10m ($27m) (55%)
  • The Black Cauldron – July 1985 – $21m ($44m) (55%)
  • Explorers – July 1985 – $9m ($25m estimated) (77%)
  • American Flyers -August 1985 – $1.5m ($8.5m) (63%)

            Notables:

Brewster’s Millions (38%), Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (81%), European Vacation (38%), Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure (92%), Better Off Dead… (82%)

 


#26 – 1993

2013-Jurassic-Park 612x380

Jurassic Park may have spawned the modern era of blockbuster films where the focus is on amazing visuals, but 1993 didn’t do anything else to inspire audiences to go to the movie theater. Besides The Fugutive, 1993 is lacking any sort of excitement.

            Studs:

  • Jurassic Park – June 1993 – $395m (93%)
  • The Firm – June 1993 – $158m (75%)
  • Sleepless in Seattle – June 1993 – $126m (72%)
  • In The Line of Fire – July 1993 – $102m (95%)
  • The Fugitive – August 1993 – $183m (96%)

            Duds:

  • Excessive Force – May 1993 – $1.5m ($13m) (35%)
  • Super Mario Brothers – May 1993 – $20m ($42m) (16%)
  • Last Action Hero – June 1993 – $50m ($85m) (38%)
  • Another Stakeout – July 1993 – $20m ($30m) (14%)
  • So I Married an Axe Murderer – July 1993 – $11m ($20m) (52%)
  • The Meteor Man – July 1993 – $8m ($30m) (29%)

            Notables:

Dave (94%), Menace II Society (85%), Cliffhanger (69%), Free Willy (57%), Hocus Pocus (33%) , Coneheads (34%) 


#25 – 1990

1990 doesn’t have that many flops, but it doesn’t have many hits either. In fact, it doesn’t have a whole lot of anything. Without much quantity, there isn’t much variety. For this reason, Ghost ended up being the highest grossing film of the year besides Home Alone. I guess you can’t blame audiences too much.

            Studs:

  • Total Recall – June 1990 – $112m (84%)
  • Dick Tracy – June 1990 – $103m (64%)
  • Die Hard 2 – July 1990 – $117m (66%)
  • Ghost – July 1990 – $217m (74%)

            Duds:

  • Gremlins 2: The New Batch – June 1990 – $41m ($50m) (69%)
  • Navy Seals – July 1990 – $24m ($21m) (19%)
  • Air America – August 1990 – $31m ($35m) (13%)

            Notables:

Back to the Future Part III (73%), Bird on a Wire (32%), Robocop 2 (32%), Days of Thunder (39%), Arachnophobia (91%), Flatliners (48%), Darkman (82%)


#24 – 1996

independence-jpg 224331

1996 gave audiences a lot of variety (and explosions), but not much quality. This year is tied for the lowest average movie rating. The only film to have a rating above 80% is Courage Under Fire. This hit with the highest rating is The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Yep.

            Studs:

  • Twister – May 1996 – $241m (58%)
  • Mission: Impossible – May 1996 – $180m (61%)
  • The Rock – June 1996 – $134m (66%)
  • Eraser – June 1996 – $101m (36%)
  • The Hunchback of Notre Dame – June 1996 – $100m (73%)
  • The Nutty Professor – June 1996 – $128m (65%)
  • Independence Day – July 1996 – $306m (60%)
  • Phenomenon – July 1996 – $104m (50%)
  • A Time to Kill – July 1996 – $108m (67%)

Duds:

  • Flipper – May 1996 – $20m ($25m) (32%)
  • Dragonheart – May 1996 – $51m ($57m) (50%)
  • The Phantom – June 1996 – $17m ($45m) (42%)
  • Striptease – June 1996 – $33m ($50m) (12%)
  • Multiplicity – July 1996 – $20m ($45m) (44%)
  • Fled – July 1996 – $17m ($30m) (14%)
  • The Adventures of Pinnochio – July 1996 – $15m ($25m) (27%)
  • Kingpin – July 1996 – $25m ($25m) (50%)
  • Chain Reaction – August 1996 – $21m ($55m) (16%)
  • Escape from L.A. – August 1996 – $25m ($50m) (53%)
  • The Fan – August 1996 – $18m ($55m) (38%)
  • The Island of Dr. Moreau – August 1996 – $27m ($40m) (23%)

            Notables:

            Spy Hard (8%), The Cable Guy (54%), Courage Under Fire (85%)


#23 – 2009

This year gave us one of the most loves Pixar films to date (Up), and a well-loved reboot (Star Trek) but it also gave us some forgettable additions to some popular franchises (Terminator, Transformers, Ice Age), and saw some missteps by filmmakers who had been reliable up to this point (Public Enemies, Angels & Demons, Funny People).  

            Studs

  • X-Men Origins: Wolverine – May 2009 – $179m (38%)
  • Star Trek – May 2009 – $257m (95%)
  • Night at the Museum – Battle of the Smithsonian – May 2009 – $177m (44%)
  • Up – May 2009 – $293m (98%)
  • The Hangover – June 2009 – $277m (79%)
  • The Proposal – June 2009 – $163m (44%)
  • Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen – June 2009 – $402m (19%)
  • Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs – July 2009 – $196m (45%)
  • Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince – July 2009 – $301m (84%)

            Duds:

  • Angels & Demons – May 2009 – $133m ($150m) (37%)
  • Terminator: Salvation – May 2009 – $125m ($200m) (33%)
  • Land of the Lost – June 2009 – $49m ($100m) (26%)
  • Imagine That – June 2009 – $16m ($55m) (40%)
  • The Taking of Pelham 123 – June 2009 – $65m ($110m) (51%)
  • Year One – June 2009 – $43m ($60m) (14%)
  • Public Enemies – July 2009 – $97m ($102m) (68%)
  • G-Force – July 2009 – $119m ($150m) (22%)
  • Aliens in the Attic – July 2009 – $25m ($45m) (31%)
  • Funny People – July 2009 – $51m ($72m) (68%)
  • G.I. Joe: Rise of Cobra – August 2009 – $150m ($175m) (35%)

            Notables:

Bruno (68%), The Ugly Truth (13%), Julie & Julia (85%), District 9 (90%), The Hurt Locker (97%), The Time Traveller’s Wife (37%), Inglorious Basterds (88%), The Final Destination (29%)


#22 – 1992

Batman-Returns-batman-8663413-852-480

Unforgiven is really the only notable movie to come out in the summer of 1992. There’s not much more to say.  

            Studs:

  • Lethal Weapon 3 – May 1992 – $144m (56%)
  • Sister Act – May 1992 – $139m (71%)
  • Batman Returns – June 1992 – $162m (81%)
  • A League of Their Own – July 1992 – $107m (76%)
  • Unforgiven – August 1992 – $101m (95%)

            Duds:

  • Alien 3 – May 1992 – $54m ($55m) (43%)
  • Far and Away – May 1992 – $58m ($60m) (50%)
  • Cool World – July 1992 – $14m ($30m) (4%)
  • Death Becomes Her – July 1992 – $58m ($55m) (43%)

            Notables:

Encino Man (16%), Patriot Games (76%), Unlawful Entry (75%), Universal Soldier (18%), Honey I Blew Up The Kid (41%), Buffy the Vampire Slayer (33%)


#21 – 2008

2008 started off the world domination of Marvel Studios with Iron Man, Pixar came out with another hit (WALL-E), Dreamworks Animation showed that it wasn’t that far behind (Kung Fu Panda), and The Dark Knight needs no introduction. So why is this year not higher on this list? There are a lot of flops. From the cringe-worthy (Don’t Mess With the Zohan, The Love Guru, Meet Dave), to the franchise-ruining (The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull), to the downright terrible(Babylon A.D., The Happening). This is one of those years where the misses drown out the hits.

            Studs:

  • Iron Man – May 2008 – $318m (93%)
  • Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull – May 2008 – $317m (78%)
  • Sex and the City – May 2008 – $150m (50%)
  • Kung Fu Panda – June 2008 – $215m (87%)
  • WALL-E – June 2008 – $223m (96%)
  • Hancock – July 2008 – $227m (41%)
  • The Dark Knight – July 2008 – $533m (94%)

            Duds:

  • Speed Racer – May 2008 – $43m ($120m) (39%)
  • The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian – May 2008 – $141m ($225m) (67%)
  • The Happening – June 2008 – $64m ($60m) (17%)
  • The Incredible Hulk – June 2008 – $134m ($137m) (67%)
  • The Love Guru – June 2008 – $32m ($62m) (14%)
  • Hellboy 2: The Golden Army – July 2008 – $75m ($82m) (87%)
  • Meet Dave – July 2008 – $11m ($60m) (19%)
  • Space Chimps – July 2008 – $37m ($30m) (34%)
  • X-Files: I Want to Believe – July 2008 – $20m ($35m) (32%)
  • The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor – August 2008 – $102m ($175m) (13%)
  • Death Race – August 2008 – $36m ($64m) (43%)
  • Babylon A.D. – August 2008 – $22m ($45m) (6%)

            Notables:

What Happens in Vegas (27%), The Strangers (45%), Don’t Mess With the Zohan (37%), Get Smart (51%), Wanted (71%), Journey to the Center of the Earth (61%), Mamma Mia! (54%), Step Brothers (55%), Pineapple Express (68%), Tropic Thunder (83%), The House Bunny (41%)


#20 – 2006

DI-Pirates-of-the-Caribbean-The-Curse-Of-The-Black-Pearl-2-DI-to-L8

2006 was the year of sequel missteps. The X-Men trilogy ended unconvincingly, the Pirates of the Caribbean sequel left more to be desired, Mission Impossible III failed to get people into theaters, and Bryan Singer’s attempt to continue the Superman franchise ended up being an expensive experiment only. Poseidon was one of the biggest flops of the last decade, and M. Night Shyamalan’s freefall from significance began.

            Studs:

  • The Da Vinchi Code – May 2006 – $217m (25%)
  • Over the Hedge – May 2006 – $155m (75%)
  • X-Men: The Last Stand – May 2006 – $234m (58%)
  • Cars – June 2006 – $244m (74%)
  • Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest – July 2006 – $432m (54%)

            Duds:

  • Mission: Impossible III – May 2006 – $133m ($150m) (70%)
  • Poseidon – May 2006 – $60m ($160m) (33%)
  • The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift – June 2006 – $62m ($85m) (36%)
  • Superman Returns – June 2006 – $200m ($232m) (76%)
  • A Scanner Darkly – July 2006 – $5m ($20m) (69%)
  • Little Man – July 2006 – $56m ($64m) (12%)
  • Lady in the Water – July 2006 – $42m ($75m) (24%)
  • Monster House – July 2006 – $73m ($75m) (74%)
  • The Any Bully – July 2006 – $28m ($45m) (63%)
  • Miami Vice – July 2006 – $63m ($135m) (47%)

Notables: 

The Break Up (33%), The Omen (27%), Nacho Libre (32%), Click (40%), The Devil Wears Prada (79%), You, Me, and Dupree (21%), Little Miss Sunshine (91%), Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby (72%), Step Up (19%), Snakes on a Plane (68%), The Illusionist (74%)


#19 – 2011

2011 was a year lacking summer hits. With only three “Blockbusters” and thirteen flops, this year didn’t really captivate audiences too much. There were four superhero films that you would usually expect to have done well, but that wasn’t the case this year. The two released by Marvel didn’t do well enough to end up among the “Studs”. The two not released by Marvel both ended up as flops. Pixar released their worst film to date. That, if anything, should make you want to forget about this year.

            Studs:

  • The Hangover: Part 2 – May 2011 – $254m (35%)
  • Transformers: Dark of the Moon – June 2011 – $352m (36%)
  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 – June 2011 – $381m (96%)

            Duds:

  • Priest – May 2011 – $29m ($60m) (16%)
  • Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides – May 2011 – $241m ($250m) (33%)
  • The Tree of Life – May 2011 – $35m ($13m) (84%)
  • X-Men: First Class – June 2011 – $146m ($160m) (87%)
  • Green Lantern – June 2011 – $116m ($200m) (26%)
  • Cars 2 – June 2011 – $191m ($200m) (39%)
  • Zookeeper – July 2011 – $80m ($80m) (14%)
  • Cowboys and Aliens – July 2011 – $100m ($168m) (44%)
  • The Change-Up – August 2011 – $37m ($52m) (25%)
  • Final Destination 5 – August 2011 – $42m ($40m) (61%)
  • Conan the Barbarian – August 2011 – $21m ($90m) (24%)
  • Fright Night – August 2011 – $18m ($30m) (72%)
  • Columbiana – August 2011 – $36m ($40m) (27%)

Notables: 

Bridesmaids (90%), Thor (77%), Midnight in Paris (93%), Kung Fu Panda 2 (81%), Super 8 (82%), Mr. Popper’s Penguins (48%), Bad Teacher (45%), Horrible Bosses (69%), Captain America: The First Avenger (79%), Friends With Benefits (70%), Crazy Stupid Love (78%), The Smurfs (22%), Rise of the Planet of the Apes (82%), The Help (76%), The Debt (77%)


 

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