|About a Boy|
|Rotten Tomato Meter||45%||42%||94%|
|Run time||120 min||113 min||102 min|
|Budget||$37 mill||$180 mill||$30 mill|
|Opening weekend||$70 mill||$26 mill||$9 mill|
|Domestic gross||$145 mill so far||$70 mill||$41 mill|
|Foreign gross||$35 mill so far||$302 mill||$89 mill|
Golden Compass had a $180 million budget?? And only made $26 mill its opening weekend?? Wow. And it got about the same critical reception as Twilight.
Qualitatively, here are some of the mixed opinions on Golden Compass:
One reviewer blamed Weitz: "I realize that when you make a book into a movie you cannot include every single detail, but it seems like Weitz purposely tried to take all of the magic out of the story." (rt)
While another praised him: "This plot may sound somewhat ludicrous on paper, but Pullman has created a logical, well-thought-out world that Weitz has brilliantly translated to the big screen." (rt)
Weitz himself seemed to apologize for not being true enough to the book: "If sequels are produced, Weitz has said that he intends to "protect [their] integrity" by being "much less compromising" in the book-to-film adaptation process." (wikipedia)
But on the other hand, a couple reviewers say that he was too true to the book and rushed: Manohla Dargis of the New York Times said that the film was "hampered by its fealty to the book and its madly rushed pace." And James Berardinelli of ReelReviews shared the sentiments, "criticizing the first hour for its rushed pace and sketchily-developed characters." (wikipedia)
As for About a Boy, box office numbers aside, there were only great things to be said from the critics: (all from rt)
"The Weitz brothers succeed mostly because they are smart enough to let Grant be Grant and Hornby be Hornby. As in "High Fidelity," the script brims with pungent, quotable dialogue."
"These are characters we care about and relate to; the fact that they speak with flair and wit makes them funnier, but no less human. The movie is a gem."
"To see a comedy with such warmth and tenderness offered up by the directors of American Pie is surely a welcome bit of news."
"About A Boy is a great love story… love of parent to child and child to parent, love of self, the platonic love of someone you never saw coming and ultimately, the love you thought you could never have and would never want, which changes you forever."