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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Japan Movies: Hercules Defeats All Comers

I know... the image above seems to have nothing to do with Hercules... despite the effort required for gentleman in the photo to prop up the legs of the very sexy Japanese woman... who may or may not be playing the role of a high school student.

Here's a an interesting tidbit from the shhh-quiet darkness of Japanese movie-goers—manga adaptation Kinyori Renai (aka Close Range Love) beats Hercules on admissions, but loses on revenue.

So… despite the fact that Hercules (starring Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson) opened on top of the Japanese box office with $1.32 million (¥143 million) from 72,000 admissions and 653 screens this weekend, Japanese manga adaptation romance Kinkyori Renai took home $1.03 million (¥112 million) for second place, but was number uno in terms of admissions, with 91,400 - which is important, because in Japan… that is how they really rank a movie—how many people go to see it, rather than how much money it takes in.

It's like how The Avengers sold 50 million tickets and made $380-million… in JUST the first FOUR weeks in JUST the U.S. of A.

Compare that how in 1939, the great classic movie Gone With The Wind took in $221 million.

Cool… so The Avengers is a better movie? Not in the strict sense of the word 'better". So more people went to see The Avengers… no… not really. I think more people 'died' in Gone With The Wind.

Gone With The Wind was in theaters for four years, 60 million tickets sold… and when you compare the $506 million it made in 1939-1943… adjust it to 2014's inflation… and now you have some $3.3 billion.

So… adjust for the higher 3D ticket prices for Hercules (which opened in the U.S. back in July of 2014) and bigger proportion of adult tickets sold, versus the younger audience for Kinkyori Renai... and it's obvious that more people saw Kinkyori Renai than Hercules.

Not the whips and chains Herc! Not the whips and chains!
What the heck is Kinkyori Renai? As far as I can tell it is about a female genius in everything but English… after insulting her English teacher - and he hearing it, she starts getting private lessons from him… which is actually far less nefarious than it sounds.

Except... from the image above - it certainly looks nefarious. That female student - that's as good a reason as any to not offer private lessons - to avoid possible jail time.

I wouldn't give private English lessons to any female under the age of 21 - especially since I taught junior high - probably better to be safer rather than sorry… but apparently the Kinkyori Renai series is for the teens. (Actually... definitely NOT 'probably'.)

I am unsure how anyone could create an on-going comic book/manga - let alone a movie out of such a topic, so I assume that despite the limited descriptions of the manga/anime, I'll bet there's a whole lot more stuff going on.

Denzel Washington's The Equalizer (opened in the US at the end of September 2014) taking the third spot with $722,000 (¥78 million) from only 183 screens.

Further down the Japanese box-office chart, Grace of Monaco, the Grace Kelly biopic starring Nicole Kidman, fell to sixth after opening in the third spot last weekend.

Stand by Me Doraemon dropped to the 10th spot after nearly three months that saw it earn $74 million (¥8 billion) in Japan. The Takashi Yamazaki-directed 3D CG installment of the long-running manga, TV series and theatrical franchise is due for release in an unprecedented 59 overseas territories.

Cool… I've not seen Doraemon in English, but I always did enjoy attaching his antics on Japanese TV back in the early 1990s. I taught myself how to speak colloquial Japanese from watching Japanese cartoons.

Unfortunately, most of my sentence structure involved me, at the end of a sentence, hitting my conversationalist with a fish with X's over its eyes.

Cheers,
Andrew Joseph

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