Avocado Weekly Movie Thread (11/29)

Welcome to the Weekly Movie Thread, your place on the Avocado to discuss films with your fellow commenters. Want to make a recommendation? Looking for recommendations? Want to share your opinions of movies, both new and classic? 

Last week saw the release of Glass Onion, Rian Johnson’s follow-up to Knives Out. The film was anticipated at least by the folks here at the Avocado, and the box office numbers seem to show that general audiences were pretty hungry for a new Who Done It mystery as well.

However, there’s a good chance you haven’t seen it because you couldn’t. The movie was released in less than 700 theaters. By comparison, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever was released in over 4,000. Also, chances are that after today you won’t be able to see this movie until it drops on Neflix late December. Glass Onion is supposed to be only in theaters for a week.

The advent of streaming has made things complicated for movie studios. Netflix is the studio that for years has been banking that the home experience is just as good as watching a film in theaters. Stay at home and watch the latest Scorsese or Snyder film with a motion picture budget! Netflix has spent a ton of money on high profile directors and Academy Award campaigns to prove their point.

Of course, being a person who does not have a big screen TV or surround sound or comfortable chairs, I can’t say it’s exactly the same experience. My wife and I saw Glass Onion in theaters, and there really was a magic to seeing a film projected on a giant screen and witnessing strangers’ reactions to all of the film’s twists and turns.

The advent of streaming have all these services scrambling on what exactly is the right symbiotic relationship between theaters and streaming. For a while there, HBO released Warner Brothers films in theaters and on streaming the same day. Disney would only release Pixar films on Disney Plus…. and given the performance of Lightyear in theaters it will likely stay that way. (And it’s not like Pixar is the only one. You’d think the Zemeckis Pinocchio and Disenchanted would make it to theaters. Instead they’re Disney Plus exclusives in the bid to sign up more and more new subscribers.). From what I can tell, no one has hit upon a consistent strategy.

Netflix’s strategy of putting a movie out for a week in theaters and on streaming a month later? It may end up being the right one. Shoot, I remember in the Philippines it was pretty standard practices for films to only have a two-week release window (probably because theaters had to share blockbuster releases with locally filmed Tagalog-language movies that don’t get theatrical releases outside of the Philippines). Maybe that was the way of the future?

But how about you? Bonus prompt: Do you prefer same day theatrical and streaming drops? Or do you like it when movies are in theaters for a while before going to streaming? What do you think of movies that go direct to streaming?