This film just was just recently released on store shelves nationwide. It looks kinda cheap doesn’t it? Has the look of a straight to DVD movie about it? Sure it has one big name actor in it but it does look low end, doesn’t it?
Well let me tell you about this film’s troubled background, shall I?
Back in 2014, director James Watkins(Eden Lake, The Woman In Black) was filming his latest film; an action movie starring Idris Elba and some dude from Game Of Thrones.(No, I don’t watch Game Of Thrones, fight me.) As a way to please as many investors as possible, the cast and crew had to relocate to different locations, leading to this film being an American-French-Luxembourgian venture.
Once post-production was complete, the film was scheduled in early 2016. French action movies tend to be successful when released early in the year, take The Transporter and Taken for example. However, then came something unforeseen, something that the filmmakers couldn’t avoid.
After the Paris attacks in 2015, StudioCanal pushed the film back, to avoid negative press and ensure the best financial exposure possible.
Eventually, the film was released in UK cinemas on April 22nd, 2016… as Bastille Day.
The mystery thickens.
Now as a man who watches way too many movies, I of course watched it.
…And it is so much fun. Bastille Day is by no means a perfect movie, but it is a movie that puts a smile on your face and giggle in glee with just how bad ass this movie is, just look at that tagline.
Look at that! It just made me grow a third shoulder blade.
If you need more persuasion of this movie’s merits, take this review from a much more reputable source. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v-XwHwhvz5Q
Naturally, Bastille Day was to be released in France on Bastille Day; who’d a thunk it?
The holiday takes place in mid July, so Bastille Day was released then. Now, for two hundred points, can anyone tell me what happened in mid July in France?
Congratulations. EVERYONE LOSES.
As a sign of respect, StudioCanal pulled Bastille Day from French cinemas after being in release for four days.
Now, with a name tainted by real life events and the film’s main audience now mourning, the film was quickly dragged into obscurity.
To avoid further upset and outrage, StudioCanal changed the name of the film from Bastille Day to The Take.
The American release date was pushed back by a month. The film was originally meant to be released in America in late October by Focus Features, now this film is scheduled to be released on November 18 under a distributor by the name of High Top Releasing.(I haven’t heard of them either.)
In the film industry, there is an un-written rule: A film has to make twice its budget in order to be profitable, this is to cover marketing and advertising.
For example; The Transporter had a budget of $21,000,000. Worldwide, the film made $44,000,000. This covered the expenses perfectly with a little left over for profit. Mind you, The Transporter was not effected by social-political events in real life and didn’t have its French release cut short.
Bastille Day had a budget of $20,000,000. Currently it stands at a gross of $8,800,000 – this is after being released in 31 countries. For Bastille Day to be profitable, it would have to make $32,000,000 in America. For reference, The Transporter made $25,000,000 in America, being distributed by Fox. Do you honestly think that this film with the distribution of a company that no one has heard of can make $32,000,000? My hope is being stretched thin here.
Yes, I am aware that not every good film makes its budget back, but those films are usually either: Independantly financed, have controversial topics, or are targeted towards an arthouse audience. Bastille Day is none of these things, it is a mainstream movie, it had backing from StudioCanal, a large and successful distributor, the story is fairly standard and is very easy to get entranced.
Bastille Day/The Take is highly enjoyable, a few people just had to spoil the fun for everyone else.
That’s more like it.