This week, we’ll take a look at the movie trends that occur between the summer and holiday movie seasons.
Summer has ended and the holidays are a few months away. So what’s a regular movie-goer to do during this time of year?
Well, there a few things you can expect to be released that always come out courtesy of the grand Hollywood machine.
Starting in late August and during most of September, you can expect three kinds of films that all have the same common thread.
There are the low-budget horror films starring unknown actors. Then there are the low-budget action film starring famous actors that are working for scale, and finally, low-budget “prestige” pictures that are meant to plant an early seed for awards season or to reap the benefits of a film festival victory, and in some cases both.
As you can see, the biggest theme here is low-budget. This is a time of year where smaller studios don’t have to worry about competing with larger studios and franchises for your hard-earned money. That hard-earned money isn’t as plentiful as it is during the summer, making you think that they’d be more aggressive with their marketing, which is rarely the case.
While the summer films shove trailers and online campaigns down your throat with an intensity equivalent to that of a fire hose, most of these films get by with the occasional TV spot, a series of online ads and mostly theatrical trailers.
Sometimes, there are films that will garner cult appeal or are entries into a franchise with a loyal following, but more often than not, they are films with the budget of a can of beets that are mostly funded by product placement.
Things begin to pick up in October, as we see a steady stream of releases in the horror and thriller genres. There are also the occasional family-friendly films released during this time because of content that is linked specifically to Halloween.
While it does pick up, the stream of “big” movies is still but a trickle until we get into November which kicks off the holiday movie season.
In the past, there was a time where many of the larger horror films would be released in October, but that practice began to change, presumably about as early as the 80’s, when studios began releasing highly anticipated horror films during the August through September block. Notable examples being films in the “Halloween” franchise. The irony is beyond words.
In the end, the best way to describe this time of year is by labeling it the “grown-up” time for films. While the summer and holiday seasons are filled to the brim with family-friendly films and hot-blooded, action-packed thrill-rides, the fall movie season is a time for the more seasoned adults and film aficionados to spend time in the theaters.
If only some of the major studios would realize that instead of continuing to cater to the lowest common denominator as if we, the movie-going public, are a bunch of easily-led sheep with holes burning in our wallets.
Next Week: The Weekly Reel will be put on a brief hiatus. Like many of you reading this, I am a student who needs the time to stay caught up in my classes. I appreciate your understanding and hope you continue to support this publication.