Red v. Blue. Again.

R

Brokeback Mountain is about gay cowboys.

Capote is about Truman Capote, the weird author.

Transamerica is about a man who intends to undergo surgery to become a woman.

These movies are leading the field in the Golden Globes. These are movies that probably play well in blue America. They don’t play well in red America, where conservative traditions reign supreme.

I think it is notable that these movies are being praised in Hollywood, which marches further and further out of step with the country and wonders why box office revenue continues to decline.

About the author

Erick Erickson

13 comments

  • You’ll note that Brokeback Mountain wasn’t really a Hollywood production, was made for less than $14 million, and has already made over $30 million in limited release, posting the highest per-theater averages in the country.
    My husband and I saw it in Nashville a few days ago, which is clearly red america, and the theater was sold out, and everybody was crying afterwards. I can’t stop thinking about it now. It’s not being praised for because it’s about homosexuals, it’s getting praised because it’s exceptional.

  • I recently had the misfortune of seeing “The Family Stone” and “Grandma’s Boy” – I had no luck relating to the characters in either movie. “The Family Stone” attempted to portray straight WASPs as freaks, and “Grandma’s Boy” was about a bunch of pothead video game testers. I’m not going back to the movie theater until Hollywood gives me something I can relate to.

  • Esther writes: “My husband and I saw it in Nashville a few days ago, which is clearly red america, and the theater was sold out, and everybody was crying afterwards.”

    Maybe they were crying because they realized the money spent on a ticket would have been put to better use in heating their home this winter. Ha!

  • You are just wrong Erick. Red America is eating up Brokeback Mountain. It’s total take and its per screen average just keeps getting higher and higher as it expands out of the “blue” states into the “red” states. Or if you’re theory is true, America is just becoming much bluer, which, if I were you, would worry me.

  • If America becomes bluer, sure I’ll pay more in taxes, but the cheese! Blue states have better cheese selections, so it won’t all be bad. And beer selections, come to think of it.

    In all seriousness, I think it is great that actors starring in a movie like Brokeback Mountain have not become the social pariahs they would have become had the movie come in the 80s. But, outside of urban areas (red and blue), I don’t see it getting that much traction.

    I would like to see a map comparing box office sales of Brokeback Mountain to the Kerry-Bush election margins. I would suspect there would be a close overlap.

  • I think that anyone that thinks America is getting bluer is engaged in wishful thinking. America is getting more and more toward a constitutional party like that which Pat Buchanan will most likely be a big player in 2008. It is time to see a new voter revolution in the United States.

  • “Pat Buchanan will most likely be a big player in 2008.”

    Now that would be wishful thinking!

    No, really, I would like to see that map as well Erick. But based on where the film opened last weekend (medium sized heartland cities and the outer suburbs of major cities) and the gross take and per screen average went way up(from when it was just playing in blue state inner cities), I’d have to think that it has been pretty sucessful in Red State America.

    Where did the film open last weekend? Abilene, Allentown, Atlantic City, Augusta, Cedar Rapids, Charleston,Dayton, Everett, Flint, Jacksonville, Lafayette, Lancaster, Lawrence, Little Rock, Lowell, Memphis, Modesto, Ogden, Pittsburgh, Provo, Reading, Riverside, Shreveport, Sioux Falls, Southbend, and Tucson.

    Most of these places are not exactly exactly the capitol of blue state America.

  • Knowing Pat Buchanan, let me just say that if Pat Buchanan is a big player in something, I don’t hold out much hope for that something. He’s a great guy personally, but I say “ugh” to his politics du jour.

  • It comes down to this decision, which is do you align yourself with the neocon agenda, the liberal agenda (I would personally shoot myself in the foot first) or do you want to help move America toward a paleoconservative stance. Paleoconservatism is what our forefathers envisioned for the United States. Is it too late to change our direction? Perhaps we cannot turn back, but not trying to turn our country around is going to be our demise for sure.

  • Paleoconservative? Does that mean dinosaurs and stuff? Because, man, would that ever be cool! And I’d even club a couple of dinosaurs. Because nothing would make my Haliburton stocks more valuable than getting a jump start on that entire oil thing, 16 million years early. Either that or clubbing a couple of dinosaurs might just be fun…

  • Actually, you can find the definition online. Paleoconservatism means nationalism and minding your own business when it comes to foreign countries. The term also means limiting immigration,of course to maintain a stable economy for our own homegrown Citizens. It is what our Country was supposed to stand for after the American Revolution, and has absolutely nothing to do with dinosaurs.

  • Wow. A “moving narrative” there of assumptions you pulled out of your a**, with absolutley nothing of any kind of “real, factual” natural to back it up. Just, “Hey this movie is obviously playing poorly in red states because I want to say it is; and I think Hollywood is out of step with America, that’s why box office sales are declining. What? You want me to ree-search? What do you mean box office sales are down because of changing technology/ social shifts/ economic downturn/ a movie business that has rewarded low-quality films for too long? (or any of the many reasons that are more likely to be contributing) That’s not what I WANT to say the reason is.”

    Do you do this all the time, just make up what you think is going on in the world without actually looking to see if what you’re saying has any validity outside of your pretty lil’ head?

    I’m neither red nor blue, but sick of the american conservative commentators who are always twisting the truth. (Say what you will, but the left doesn’t do it AS much or as badly)

By Erick Erickson

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