June Begins Something New

This post ushers in a new series of monthly posts for this blog. For the last two posts of each month I’ll be previewing the next month on the movie calendar. The first post will take a broad look at general trends for the month, using the data analysis you’ve grown accustomed to seeing on these pages

This post ushers in a new series of monthly posts for this blog. For the last two posts of each month I’ll be previewing the next month on the movie calendar. The first post will take a broad look at general trends for the month, using the data analysis you’ve grown accustomed to seeing on these pages. The second post will take a look at the specific movies being released during the month with an eye to identifying the best prospects for “really like” movies.

June has 8.2% of all of the days in the 2016 calendar and over the last five years 8.0% of all of the movies released have been released in June. Nothing startling there. What is noteworthy is that 11.3% of the annual movie theater gross box office sales is from June moviegoers. June generates above average revenue per movie released.

Who are the primary June moviegoers? College students home for summer vacation, with the stress of exam week behind them, are one source of movie traffic unique to June.. In the second half of the month, high school students, celebrating the end of another school year, and parents with younger children, trying to fill the extra hours available to spend with their kids, are another source.

So given the fact that June generates high revenue per movie driven by an influx of under 30 year olds, it shouldn’t be surprising that movies released in June have above average budgets and are targeted at young adults and children. In 2015 the top grossing June releases were:

Top Movies Gross (000000) Budget (000000)
Jurassic World $652.30  $                150.00
Inside Out $356.46  $                175.00
Spy $110.83  $                   65.00
Ted 2 $81.48  $                   68.00
Insidious Chapter 3 $52.22  $                   10.00

These five movies generated a gross box office of $1,253,290,000 against a combined budget of $468,000,000. Can you spell p-r-o-f-i-t-s?

The target audience in June is further reinforced by the IMDB demographic ratings for these five movies:

Under 30 Over 30
Top Movies Votes Rating Votes Rating
Jurassic World               165,019 7.1                 126,828             6.8
Inside Out               145,611                              8.4                   88,683             8.1
Spy                 67,352                            7.2                   53,304             6.9
Ted 2                 50,579                            6.5                   31,434             6.2
Insidious Chapter 3                 22,555                            6.2                   15,109             5.9
 All Five  $           451,116                            7.4  $             315,358             7.1

Under 30s rate these movies consistently higher than over 30s. Both demographics liked Inside Out and neither group was high on Ted 2 or Insidious: Chapter 2.

As a representative of the over 30 group, is June a good month for “really like” movies?  I’d say it’s a below average month. Based on the 168 June movies in my database, there is a 36.1% probability I will “really like” a movie released in June. Of the Top 50 IMDB movies, only 6% were released in June. Of the 43 Academy Award nominated movies for Best Picture over the last five years, only 2 were released in June.

It is just not a great month for adult-oriented movies. That being said, it isn’t a wasteland either. There are a number of movies that qualify as “really like” movies that were released in June. You might recall that movies recommended by all five of the websites I follow qualify as a “really like” movie. Here are five June “really like” movies:

Bourne Identity, The
Raiders of the Lost Ark
Apollo 13
Spider-Man 2
Cinderella Man

These five terrific movies offer up some hope that my search for June gems won’t result in a blank page when I return on Monday.



According to IMDB, Do We Get More Conservative as We Age or Just Smarter

We are in the midst of a hotly contested election season in which the pundits attempt to place groups of people in defined boxes. Two of the boxes are the liberal youth vote and the conservative Senior Citizen vote. Some pundits argue that as Senior Citizens die off the country will become more liberal. Others argue that young people will become conservative as they age, maintaining the status quo. Do we become more conservative as we age? There are studies on both sides of the issue as evidenced in this 2012 article and this 2014 article.

I won’t attempt to resolve this issue here but, instead, use it as a backdrop for another interesting finding in my demographic study of IMDB’s Top 250 Movies. Age does appear to factor in IMDB voting. Take a look at these results by Age Group:

Avg. IMDB Rating
Age Group All Male Female
Under 18             8.7             8.8                       8.6
18 to 29             8.5             8.5                       8.4
30 to 45             8.3             8.4                       8.3
Over 45             8.2             8.2                       8.0

As IMDB voters get older, the average rating for the same group of movies is lower. It doesn’t matter whether the groups are male or female. The pattern is still the same. The fact that the avg. ratings for the female groups is consistently lower than the male groups is probably due to the bias towards male-oriented movies in the Top 250. Is this further evidence that we get more conservative as we get older?

I’ll offer up a counter-argument, maybe we get smarter as we get older. There are scientific studies that support this including those cited in this 2011 article. There is some IMDB support for this argument, as well. One of the demographic groups that IMDB captures data for is the Top 1,000 IMDB voters. These are voters who have rated the most movies on IMDB and presumably have watched the most movies. The avg. IMDB rating from this group for the Top 250 Movies is 7.9. Perhaps, the more movies that you watch, the smarter you get at differentiating one movie from another. If so, then maybe the lower average ratings for the older age groups are more representative of the experience gained from watching a greater number of movies. Whether we get more conservative or smarter as we age, it would be wise for the older moviegoer to recognize that the avg. IMDB rating is heavily influenced by males aged 18 to 29. You’ll need to apply a Senior Discount to the rating. What do you think?