After failing to match its production budget in the U.S., romantic comedy SEX TAPE is finding new legs here in the U.K.
The film stars Jason Segel and Cameron Diaz as a married couple whose sex tape gets shared with friends and family after it “leaks” to the cloud. And since opening in the States in July, the film raked in only $38.3 million of its $40 million budget, according to Box Office Mojo. However, it’s outside of its home country that the movie is actually making its money. Those same Box Office Mojo statistics point to $47.8 million (so far) from foreign box offices, with a growing portion of that amount stemming from a recent opening in the U.K.
As Cinema Blend notes, SEX TAPE’s opening weekend of $2.3 million isn’t necessarily astounding in any way. However, it’s important to note that it only opened in 441 theatres. Also, it did well enough to hit No. 1 and knock LUCY off of its pedestal, where the film actually sat for three weeks. Can SEX TAPE continue to prosper here or will it see a short-lived reign and fall by the wayside, much like it did in the States? Only time will tell.
While SEX TAPE is seeing this newfound success, it’s impossible to overlook the sheer pummeling it has received by critics. In compiling the scores of 134 reviewers (at the time of writing this article), Rotten Tomatoes posted an aggregated score of 18% for the movie. Yes, that’s out of 100. Users on that site haven’t been too keen on it with their ratings, either, giving it a mere 38%. And in more closely examining the movie, it appears that it could have benefitted from something more. While its premise is timely and ridiculous enough to work, perhaps the cast needed someone more dynamic and even third-wheel-ish like Russell Brand in FORGETTING SARAH MARSHALL. As you may remember, he didn’t so much steal the show but greatly complemented the cast in what was one of Segel’s first hits. While SEX TAPE did have great, laughter-inducing moments from Rob Lowe, Rob Corddry, Ellie Kemper and Jack Black, none of them mat
ches the wit brought by Brand and his role as sex-fiend pop star Aldous Snow.
This point is driven home in a review of FORGETTING SARAH MARSHALL on Picturebox’s movie blog. Writer James King argues in his article that Brand actually did steal the show and overshadowed his cast-mates, but that’s not the point. It’s more so that he delivered such a strong and memorable performance as a (to quote King) “hilariously rambling punk poet … that’s so believable you’d think he’d graced at least three NME covers.” Again, the work of Lowe, Corddry, Kemper, and Black was solid, but none of them brought magic to the film like Brand. To be fair, that’s mostly the fault of the screenplay, which was penned by Segel and writing buddy Nicholas Stoller. Funny enough, they also worked together on FORGETTING SARAH MARSHALL.
Have you seen SEX TAPE yet? If so, what did you think of it? Let us know in the comments!