It was not “all right, all right, all right” for Matthew McConaughey at the box office this weekend, as his latest film “The Beach Bum” suffered the weakest wide opening of the Oscar winner’s career.
Released by NEON on 1,100 screens and directed by Harmony Korine, the nearly plot-free stoner comedy only grossed $1.8 million, ranking 10th among all films this weekend. By comparison, Korine’s previous film, 2012’s “Spring Breakers,” opened to $4.8 million from 1,104 screens, while McConaughey’s previous low for wide releases (1,000+ screens) was the 2017 film “Gold,” which opened to $3.4 million from 2,166 screens.
Even one of McConaughey’s more limited openings had a bigger launch than “Beach Bum.” Back in 2013, the actor starred in the Jeff Nichols drama “Mud,” which earned $2.2 million in its opening on 363 screens.
“The Beach Bum” premiered earlier this month at SXSW, but critics were mixed on the film’s humor and seemingly lack of a cohesive narrative. The film earned a Rotten Tomatoes score of 52 percent.
For NEON, its a disappointing snap to a winning streak it has enjoyed since last summer on the documentary front. The distributor released one of the big hits of last year’s doc craze with the Oscar nominated “Three Identical Strangers,” which grossed $12.3 million. This month, NEON released another critically acclaimed doc, “Apollo 11,” which has grossed $7.6 million so far.
Documentaries could once again get NEON back on the right track, as their Aretha Franklin doc “Amazing Grace” will hit theaters next weekend. This summer will also see NEON release the most risqué doc to come out of SXSW 2018, “This One’s for the Ladies,” which tells the story of a New Jersey community that finds an unlikely place to bond: a children’s karate studio that is transformed on Thursday nights into a male strip club.