FML Prognosticating — Fall Season Week 08

Each week Jacob mines the Fantasy Movie League chatter for all the data that matters. Listen to the podcast to find out how to join our listener league and compete with other Midnight Warrirors for the coveted FML Champion coffee mug.


This week looks like flop central. I’ve seen news stories already calling The Snowman a massive failure. One review called it the “cinematic equivalent of hypothermia.” Yet, it does star Michael Fassbender, who commands a cult following due to his incredible acting skills. Also, the movie is called The Snowman, which is totally dumb in any month except October. All that being said, this might not even be the main bomb for the week.

Geostorm has already been declared the loser to Boo 2! A Madea Halloween before the first person has entered a screening of either. Geostorm cost $15 million in reshoots alone, or what we like to call “the cost of Get Out and Split and Happy Death Day put together.” is reporting first weekend earnings of $10-$12 million, or what we like to call “10-12% of what those three movies opened at put together.”

But, none of that really matters in Fantasy Movie League terms. The only thing that sets expectations is the price as determined by the guys behind the scenes at FML. So let’s dive in and find out if you should trust any of these bombs to anchor your cineplex.


  • Boo 2! A Madea Halloween ($411 bux) – Last year’s sleeper hit and multiple time BP winner is price very highly this week. I think it’s going to win the box office outright, and I think it’s going to make a run at the Best Performer bonus again, but I don’t think it will reach the bonus bar against some of the other releases this week. I’m calling a weak pass on this one.
  • Only the Brave ($201 bux) – Carrying good reviews and a larger screen count than Boo 2!, this movie about fighting wildfires lands will try to take advantage of a timely release. The bar is much lower for this one, and I could see it potentially competing for Best Performer, but it doesn’t pass the eye test for me. The movie looks good, but it doesn’t look like it can make $14.1 million. I’m passing, but I won’t fault you if you play it.
  • Geostorm ($186 bux) – This bomb-in-the-making actually has a large theater count. It won’t matter, however, if they’re all empty. Bad reviews, bad word of mouth, and a few bad trailers means you just have to avoid this one unless the previews come back way higher than expected. Pass.
  • The Snowman ($167 bux) – The theater count is too low for reviews to be this bad. The Fassbender effect won’t carry this one high enough. I really thought it could make it with the low price, but the low theater count is the nail in the coffin. Just don’t do it, ok?
  • Same Kind of Different as You ($53 bux) – If this would have 1,500 theaters I’d say the price for a new release makes it attractive enough. As is, I think it’s on the borderline. The trailer doesn’t appeal to me, and I don’t know what market it’s trying to grab. I think it’s counter-programming to all the horror films, and if you think there’s some reason families are looking for a feel-good movie this weekend then play it. I think that IT offers much better value at only a slightly higher cost, so I have to avoid.


Cost RT Score RT Audience Bonus Bar Phil’s Fandango Check TC
Boo 2! A Madea Halloween $411 N/A 76%* $28.8 $607 2,388
Happy Death Day $202 67% 71% $14.1 $287 3,296
Only the Brave $201 90% 95%* $14.1 $371 2,577
Geostorm $186 33% 91%* $13.0 $245 3,246
The Snowman $167 13% 95%* $11.7 $437 1,812
Blade Runner 2049 $128 88% 82% $9.0 $195 3,203
The Foreigner $105 58% 78% $7.4 $220 2,515
IT $57 85% 86% $4.0 $90 2,560
Same Kind of Different as You $53 N/A 84%* $3.7 $192 1,362
American Made $50 87% 80% $3.5 $127 2,548
The Mountain Between Us $49 43% 53% $3.4 $125 3,151
Kingsman: The Golden Circle $47 50% 70% $3.3 $125 2,318
The LEGO Ninjago Movie $42 53% 51% $2.9 $138 2,102
My Little Pony: The Movie $35 46% 85% $2.5 $135 2,301
Victoria & Abdul $31 68% 71% $2.2 $184 1,057


So I can’t endorse any new film this week. I wanted to go 7x Blade Runner 2049, as I think that’s a sleeper hit. I couldn’t do it, because I think IT is going to win the Best Performer bonus. I think Happy Death Day is going to have a nice hold as I don’t think Boo 2! does enough damage to overcome this competitive price.

If you really want to trust Boo 2!, I still don’t think you can double up and play the blank screen. You have to go 1x Boo, 1x Happy Death Day, and 6x IT. It’s not an electrifying play, and you’re still just betting on IT, but that’s the way I see it.

If you want to wear a muumuu and channel Madea and give me a talking too about why I should double up on Boo 2!, tell me about it on Twitter @jakerg23.

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