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Dagny Taggart Bombs Miserably: Ayn Rand 'Atlas Shrugged' Heroine Victim of Free Market or Censorship?

Atlas Shrugged Part 2 censorship box office

Atlas Shrugged Part 2 box office: Still (barely) there on weekend no. 4

Nov. 4, '12, update: Atlas Shrugged: Part II, the critically panned second installment in a planned movie trilogy based on Ayn Rand's novel, is still playing in North America. (Image: Atlas Shrugged Part 2 Samantha Mathis as Dagny Taggart.)

Last week, I'd predicted that after plunging 85 percent on its third weekend out the John Putch-directed sociopolitical melodrama would be completely gone by now. I was wrong. At 70 locations, Atlas Shrugged Part 2 added $35,200, down 62 percent after losing 77 theaters, according to studio estimates found at Box Office Mojo. But here's another prediction: Atlas Shrugged Part 2, which averaged a dismal (estimated) $500 per venue this weekend, will be irretrievably gone by next weekend.

Worshiped by Libertarians and the American Far Right (which blithely chooses to ignore Ayn Rand's dismissal of religion and blind religious faith), the two Atlas Shrugged movies have failed to catch on at the box office – and, in the case of Atlas Shrugged: Part I, in terms of DVD sales as well. Each movie was budgeted at a reported $20 million.

Four weekends ago, Atlas Shrugged Part 2 had one of the worst domestic debuts ever for a movie in wide release (600-2,000 theaters). The following weekend, the anti-altruism, anti-government melodrama suffered the worst box office drop (65 percent) among the top 15 movies on Box Office Mojo's domestic weekend box office chart.

Atlas Shrugged Part 2 has to date collected a paltry $3.28 million at the North American box office. As I've mentioned before, the film's international prospects, much like those of its predecessor, are nonexistent. The critically massacred box office bomb Atlas Shrugged Part 1 finished its domestic (i.e., worldwide) five-weekend run with $4.62 million.

Atlas Shrugged Part 2: Censorship-induced box office bomb?

Right-wingers should accept the fact that Atlas Shrugged Part 2 bombed in the “Free Market” of their nightmares – the one that doesn't behave according to (idealized) ideological thought. In fact, using the Free Marketers' own ideology, it's easy to explain the frigid reception for the Ayn Rand movie adaptation at the box office.

The market rejected Atlas Shrugged Part 2 because distributor Atlas Distribution failed to come up with the required capital, the marketing know-how, and the necessary “product quality” (in the eyes of the market) to stir up interest for its release. (Read the comments section in this site's other Atlas Shrugged articles; many fans of the book have been very disappointed with the movie adaptations.) It's pure insanity to blame Atlas Shrugged Part 2's disastrous box office performance on the Barack Obama administration or some conspiracy of silence by the (imaginary) “Liberal Media.”

Remember Dinesh D'Souza and John Sullivan's 2016 Obama's America? Distributed by Rocky Mountain Pictures – the same company that released Atlas Shrugged Part 1the 2016 movie became a sleeper hit (for a political documentary) this past summer, cuming at $33.44 million at the domestic box office.

Poor marketing strategies, an apparent lack of cash flow to plug their film, and a widely derided product – not anti-right-wing censorship by the Obama White House or conglomerate-owned media entities – are the reasons for the abysmal commercial failure of both Atlas Shrugged movies.

Atlas Shrugged Part 2 cast

In Atlas Shrugged Part 2, Samantha Mathis plays the enterprising Dagny Taggart (incarnated by Zac Efron's The Lucky One leading lady Taylor Schilling in Part I). Other cast members in the second (and quite possibly last) Atlas Shrugged feature includes Jason Beghe as Henry Rearden and Esai Morales as Francisco d'Anconia, plus Richard T. Jones, Kim Rhodes, and Patrick Fabian. The screenplay is credited to Atlas Shrugged Part 1's Brian Patrick O'Toole and TV writer Duke Sandefur.

Samantha Mathis as Dagny Taggart Atlas Shrugged Part 2 photo: Atlas Distribution.

Oct. 29

Atlas Shrugged Part 2 movie Dagny Taggart Samantha MathisAtlas Shrugged Part 2 box office: Down 85 percent on weekend no. 3 after losing nearly 800 locations

Atlas Shrugged: Part II, the second installment in a planned movie trilogy based on Ayn Rand's cult novel, plunged 85 percent on its third weekend out after losing 798 locations. The (reportedly) $20 million-budgeted drama about the moral and intellectual superiority of the rich and well-dressed has to date collected a dismal $3.2 million at the North American box office, after taking in $91,418 from 147 sites according to figures found at Box Office Mojo. Atlas Shrugged Part 2's international prospects, of course, are nil. (Image: Atlas Shrugged Part 2 Samantha Mathis as Dagny Taggart.)

Three weekends ago, Atlas Shrugged Part 2 had one of the worst domestic openings ever for a movie in wide release (600-2,000 theaters). The following weekend, the John Putch-directed drama suffered the worst box office drop (65 percent) among the top 15 movies on Box Office Mojo's domestic weekend box office chart. Following its 85 percent plunge and dismal $622 per-theater average this past weekend, chances are that Atlas Shrugged Part 2 will have disappeared next Friday.

For comparison's sake: the critically lambasted, nearly-as-disastrous box office bomb Atlas Shrugged: Part I – also made for a reported $20 million – pulled in $4.62 million over five weekends in North America last year. Atlas Shrugged Part 2, which stars Samantha Mathis as the enterprising Dagny Taggart (played by Zac Efron's The Lucky One leading lady Taylor Schilling in Part I), will be lucky if it reaches $3.4 million. In other words, prospects for an Atlas Shrugged: Part III movie don't look too promising.

Atlas Shrugged Part 2 to perform better on DVD?

Could Atlas Shrugged Part 2 find an audience on DVD? That doesn't seem all that likely if Atlas Shrugged Part 1's DVD sales are any indication. As per The Numbers, the first Atlas Shrugged movie brought in only $2.97 million from DVD sales in its first two weeks of release, sinking 67 percent on week no. 2.

In addition to Samantha Mathis, the Atlas Shrugged Part 2 cast features Jason Beghe, Esai Morales, Richard T. Jones, Kim Rhodes, and Patrick Fabian. The screenplay is credited to Atlas Shrugged Part 1's Brian Patrick O'Toole and TV writer Duke Sandefur.

The second Atlas Shrugged movie currently has a 0 percent approval rating and 2.2/10 average among Rotten Tomatoes' top critics. “Like a soap opera,” writes the McClatchy Newspapers' Roger Moore, “[Atlas Shrugged Part 2 is] a tale set in the posh boardrooms, swank hotels, first-class passenger rail cars and limos of the super-rich. And just as in a soap opera, they're a bunch of put-upon crybabies, railing about 'government creeps' holding them back and 'moochers' and parasites who aren't working in a time of global depression.”

Samantha Mathis as Dagny Taggart Atlas Shrugged Part 2 photo: Atlas Distribution.

Oct. 25

Atlas Shrugged Part 2 DVD Samantha MathisAtlas Shrugged Part 2 box office: $3 million mark finally reached, but DVD prospects look Dim

The second installment in a planned movie trilogy based on Ayn Rand's anti-altruism, anti-government epic Atlas Shrugged, the John Putch-directed Atlas Shrugged: Part II had one of the worst domestic openings ever for a movie in wide release (600-2,000 site). Things got so bad, that the following weekend weak-at-the-knees Atlas collapsed, suffering the steepest box office drop among the top 15 movies on Box Office Mojo's domestic weekend chart – a whopping 65 percent. (Image: Atlas Shrugged Part 2 Samantha Mathis as Dagny Taggart.)

The critically lambasted sequel to 2011's box office bomb Atlas Shrugged: Part I, Atlas Shrugged Part 2 stars Samantha Mathis as the enterprising Dagny Taggart (played by The Lucky One's Taylor Schilling in Part I). Although Ayn Rand's novel is a sort of bible for American Libertarians and the American far right (who choose to focus on the topic of government-imposed taxes while ignoring Rand's derision of religion and blind faith), the film has found little favor in the United States. (Atlas Shrugged Part 2 has no international audience; with luck, the film will end up as a DVD curio outside of the U.S.)

Anyhow, here's some (sort of) good news: after 13 days out, Atlas Shrugged Part 2 has finally surpassed the $3 million mark at the North American box office. After adding $62,306 on Wednesday, Part 2's cume reached $3,042,201. Now, another bit of bad news: Atlas Shrugged Part 2 had the lowest per-theater average on the top 15 box office chart: $66. That means fewer theaters this coming weekend, and a quick-as-lightning disappearance from theaters.

Atlas Shrugged Part 2 to have better luck on DVD?

Some have raised the possibility that Atlas Shrugged Part 2 will do better on DVD. Though not impossible, that doesn't seem all that likely if the performance of its predecessor is any indication. Atlas Shrugged Part 1 grossed $4.62 million at the box office (five weekends), but according to The Numbers the film earned only $2.97 million on DVD sales in its first two weeks out, plummeting 67 percent on week no. 2.

Atlas Shrugged Part 2's production budget was a reported $20 million. The film currently has a 0 percent approval rating and 2.2/10 average among Rotten Tomatoes' top critics.

Samantha Mathis as Dagny Taggart Atlas Shrugged Part 2 photo: Atlas Distribution.

Oct. 21

Atlas Shrugged Part 2 Samantha Mathis Dagny TaggartAtlas Shrugged Part 2 box office plummets

Last weekend, Atlas Shrugged: Part II had one of the worst domestic openings ever for a movie in wide release (600-2,000 venues). If that wasn't bad enough, the widely derided sequel to last year's major box office bomb Atlas Shrugged: Part I suffered the worst box office drop among the top 15 movies on Box Office Mojo's domestic weekend chart. (Image: Atlas Shrugged Part 2 Esai Morales as Francisco d'Anconia, Samantha Mathis as Ayn Rand's businesswoman Dagny Taggart, Jason Beghe as Henry Rearden.)

Starring Samantha Mathis as individualistic entrepreneur Dagny Taggart (The Lucky One's Taylor Schilling in Part I), Atlas Shrugged Part 2 was down an alarming 65 percent, raking in a comatose $613,000 at 945 venues (67 fewer than last weekend), according to studio estimates found at Box Office Mojo. Among the top 15 movies, the closest to Atlas Shrugged Part 2's drop-off rate was Trouble with the Curve's: the Clint Eastwood / Amy Adams baseball flick was down 53 percent – but after losing 887 sites.

For comparison's sake: on weekend no. 2, Atlas Shrugged Part 1 was down 48 percent despite the addition of 166 locations. That's a terrible performance, of course, but even after the first Atlas Shrugged began shedding theaters on weekend no. 3, it never suffered as steep a drop as the sequel. In fact, Part 1's worst drop-off rate was 58 percent on weekend no. 3 – after losing 143 venues. Three weekends later, the film was gone.

After ten days, Atlas Shrugged Part 2 has yet to reach $3m; its box office cume currently stands at an estimated $2.9 million. And as mentioned in my previous post about Atlas Shrugged Part 2's box office performance, the John Putch-directed sociopolitical drama will likely end its run with less than $4 million at the domestic box office. And that means less than $4 million at the box office, period. Reportedly budgeted at $20m, Atlas Shrugged Part 2 will find no international following.

And, U.S. presidential elections or no, expect even fewer theaters screening Atlas Shrugged Part 2 next weekend. On weekend no. 1, the film averaged a disastrous $1,731 per venue. This weekend, the estimated average is a catastrophic $649.

Atlas Shrugged Part 1 has a 6 percent approval rating and 3.2/10 average rating among Rotten Tomatoes' top critics. That's about as low as it gets. True, Atlas Shrugged Part 2 currently has a 0 percent approval rating and 2.2/10 average, but that's because only ten top critics have been listed so far (vs. 17 reviews for the first movie). Someone will eventually post a positive review at Rotten Tomatoes.

A mind-boggling flop

Atlas Shrugged Part 2's dismal box office performance is quite surprising, considering the fear in the hearts of so many Americans that the United States government is about to be taken over by those who want to destroy their civil liberties. As a reflection of author Ayn Rand's views, Atlas Shrugged Part 2 is a cinematic depiction of the dangers of government control, dictating what choices people are allowed to make for themselves.

In my understanding, that would encompass what to produce, what to create, what to read, what to watch, which gods (and/or goddesses) to believe or not believe, whom people are allowed to marry (and/or divorce), taking away women's (and men's) control over their own bodies and sex lives, allowing the megarich and the megapowerful to usurp democracy, and higher taxes to finance disastrous military operations. Watching the news, those seem to be clear and present dangers the United States is currently facing; so, it's truly mind boggling that Atlas Shrugged Part 2 has been unable to reach a broader audience.

Atlas Shrugged Part 2 cast

Besides Samantha Mathis, the Atlas Shrugged Part 2 cast features Jason Beghe, Esai Morales, Kim Rhodes, Richard T. Jones, and Patrick Fabian. The screenplay is credited to television writer Duke Sandefur and Atlas Shrugged Part 1 and Cemetery Gate's Brian Patrick O'Toole.

Esai Morales, Samantha Mathis, Jason Beghe Atlas Shrugged Part 2 photo: Atlas Distribution.

Oct. 17

Atlas Shrugged Part 2 Samantha Mathis Esai Morales Jason BegheAtlas Shrugged Part 2 box office: One of the worst opening weekends ever

Atlas Shrugged: Part II, the story of free-enterprising heroine Dagny Taggart (Taylor Schilling in Part 1, Samantha Mathis in Part 2), suffered one of the worst domestic openings ever for a movie in wide release (600-2,000 theaters), according to data found at Box Office Mojo. This past weekend, the sequel to last year's box office bomb Atlas Shrugged Part 1 debuted with a dismal $1.75 million at 1,012 locations, averaging a disastrous $1,731 per venue. (Image: Esai Morales as Francisco d'Anconia, Samantha Mathis as Dagny Taggart, Jason Beghe as Henry Rearden, Atlas Shrugged Part 2.)

Adjusted for inflation, Atlas Shrugged Part 2 is no. 98 on the Worst Openings Ever chart, and despite a much wider release than its predecessor will quite possibly end its run with less than $4 million at the domestic box office – or rather, at the box office, period. Reportedly budgeted at $20m, Atlas Shrugged Part 2 will find no following internationally, as Ayn Rand's Tea Party-embraced views (minus Rand's derision of religion and the blindly religious) are a purely American phenomenon.

Atlas Shrugged Part 2 vs. Atlas Shrugged Part 1

For comparison's sake: Atlas Shrugged Part 1, the first part of a projected movie trilogy based on Ayn Rand's sprawling 1957 novel opened with $1.68 million in mid-April 2011. Oh, but wait! What's the problem with your math? Isn't Part 2's $1.75 million more than Part 1's $1.68m?

Well, of course it is. But another obvious fact is that Atlas Shrugged Part 1 opened at 299 locations vs. Atlas Shrugged Part 2's 1,012 venues. As a result, Atlas Shrugged Part 1's first-weekend per-theater average was a not unimpressive (for a little known small movie) $5,640 per site.

Atlas Shrugged Part 2's $1,731 per-theater average, on the other hand, leaves the film no room for any further expansions, unless multiplex owners are looking forward to screening the movie to mostly empty seats. For comparison's sake: Last year, Atlas Shrugged Part 1 distributor Rocky Mountain Pictures added 166 locations on weekend no. 2, but to no avail. Despite its decent opening, the Tea Party crowd favorite's per-theater average plummeted to $1,280. Atlas Shrugged Part 1 was gone after three more weekends, cuming at $4.62 million.

In the last two days, Atlas Shrugged Part 2 added $253,000 at the North American box office. Its cume after five days stands at $2 million.

Atlas Shrugged movies vs. the critics

Atlas Shrugged Part 1 was massacred by North American critics. The film has a putrid 6 percent approval rating and 3.2/10 average rating among Rotten Tomatoes' top critics. Fearing another such critical reception, Atlas Distribution opted to keep critics far away from their release.

Now, that approach may work well for some horror movies, whose moviegoers don't (or can't) read; but one key problem for a “small movie” such as Atlas Shrugged Part 2 is that no reviews often means no audience awareness. Admittedly, not that reviews would have helped much: the Dagny Taggart movie currently has a 0 percent approval rating and 2.2/10 average rating at Rotten Tomatoes. (“A disaster as a film,” wrote the Philadelphia Enquirer's Tirdad Derakhshani, “Atlas also is laughable in its presentation of Rand's ideology.”)

Atlas Shrugged Part 2 cast

The Atlas Shrugged Part 2 cast includes the aforementioned Samantha Mathis, in addition to Jason Beghe, Esai Morales, Kim Rhodes, Richard T. Jones, and Patrick Fabian. John Putch directed, from a screenplay credited to television writer Duke Sandefur and Atlas Shrugged Part 1 and Cemetery Gate's Brian Patrick O'Toole.

Esai Morales, Samantha Mathis, Jason Beghe Atlas Shrugged Part 2 photo: Atlas Distribution.

Oct. 13 p.m.

Atlas Shrugged Part 2 Dagny Taggart Samantha Mathis'Atlas Shrugged Part 2': Sequel is second Ayn Rand box office bomb

Atlas Shrugged Part 2, the sequel to 2011's box office bomb Atlas Shrugged Part 1 about free-enterprising heroine Dagny Taggart, opened to considerably worse numbers than its predecessor. At 1,012 locations, Atlas Shrugged Part 2 took in $692,000 according to studio estimates found at Box Office Mojo. That represents a disastrous $684 per site. (Image: Samantha Mathis as Dagny Taggart Atlas Shrugged Part 2.)

For comparison's sake: The first part of a projected movie trilogy based on Ayn Rand's mammoth 1957 novel, Atlas Shrugged Part 1 debuted with a better than expected – though still quite modest – $674,000 on Friday, April 15, 2011, going on to gross $1.68 million over the weekend. But wait! Isn't $674,000 less than $692,000? Well, yes. But bear in mind that Atlas Shrugged Part 1 opened at 299 theaters – that's about 30 percent of the number of theaters showing Atlas Shrugged Part 2.

Atlas Shrugged Part 2 box office: One of worst opening weekends ever?

With luck, the Atlas Distribution release Atlas Shrugged Part 2 will collect $2.2-2.5 million by Sunday evening. More likely, the John Putch-directed sociopolitical drama will finish the weekend with $1.8-2 million. If the latter possibility becomes a reality, Atlas Shrugged Part 2 will be included among the bottom 200 (adjusted for inflation): the movies with the worst opening-weekend grosses at the North American box office.

Even it reaches $2.5 million, Atlas Shrugged Part 2 will have a per-theater average below $2,500 – which means no chance of any further expansions unless movie-theater owners are eager for near-empty houses. For comparison's sake: on its first weekend out, Atlas Shrugged Part 1, a favorite among the then-thriving Tea Party crowd, averaged an acceptable (for a small movie at 299 locations) $5,640 per venue. The following weekend, however, the film's per-theater average plummeted to $1,280.

The $20 million-budgeted Atlas Shrugged Part 1 lasted all of five weekends on North American screens, cuming at a dismal $4.62 million. And since Ayn Rand and the Tea Party philosophy are intrinsically American, Atlas Shrugged Part 1 found no distribution overseas.

Rocky Mountain Pictures, which usually handles movies with “conservative” and Christian themes – i.e., the anti-Barack Obama documentary 2016 Obama's America, the Christian drama End of the Spear – distributed the first Atlas Shrugged in North America. (Ironically, Ayn Rand was no fan of religion: “Blind belief, belief unsupported by, or contrary to, the facts of reality and the conclusions of reason,” she told Playboy magazine. “Faith, as such, is extremely detrimental to human life: it is the negation of reason.”)

Atlas Shrugged Part 2: No chance of recovering its budget

Much like its predecessor, Atlas Shrugged Part 2 cost a reported $20 million. Also like its predecessor, the Atlas Shrugged sequel will find zero interest overseas. In other words: Atlas Shrugged Part 2 is a box office disaster in the making.

The Atlas Shrugged Part 2 cast includes Samantha Mathis (replacing Part 1's Taylor Schilling, who has moved on to bigger things such as the Zac Efron romantic drama The Lucky One), Jason Beghe, and Esai Morales.

Samantha Mathis Atlas Shrugged Part 2 picture: Atlas Distribution.

Oct. 13 early a.m.

Atlas Shrugged Part 2 Samantha MathisAtlas Shrugged Part 2, Kevin James Bomb at the North American box office

Atlas Shrugged Part 2, based on Ayn Rand's renowned / derided novel, and the Frank Coraci-directed Kevin James comedy Here Comes the Boom are about to become the weekend's box office bombs. (Image: Samantha Mathis Atlas Shrugged Part 2.)

Swept away to fifth place, Here Comes the Boom is expected to gross approximately $12 million over the weekend after bringing in an estimated $3-4 million on Friday at 3,014 theaters, as per early, rough box office estimates found at Deadline.com. (Official Friday estimates come out Saturday morning.) For comparison's sake: The Dilemma, Kevin James' most recent box office bomb, opened with $17.8 million.

By Sunday evening, the eagerly anticipated – by the red-white-and-blue far-right crowd – Atlas Shrugged Part 2 should collect a disastrous $2-2.5 million at 1,012 locations after taking in an equally disastrous $650-850,000 on Friday.

Atlas Shrugged Part 2, a sequel to the box office bomb Atlas Shrugged Part 1, cost a reported $20 million. Much like its predecessor, the Atlas Shrugged follow-up will find zero interest overseas. The cast includes Samantha Mathis (replacing Part 1's Taylor Schilling, who has moved on to bigger and better things), Jason Beghe, and Esai Morales. Actor-turned-director John Putch handled the proceedings.

Box office: Sinister, Seven Psychopaths open modestly

And here are a couple of other new releases: At 2,527 North American locations, Summit Entertainment's horror flick Sinister, directed by Scott Derrickson and featuring Ethan Hawke, scored an estimated $5-6 million on Friday, including $1 million from late-night Thursday and Friday midnight screenings.

By Sunday evening, Sinister should rake in at most $15 million. If so, its opening-weekend box office take will turn out to be quite a bit below the high teens some had been expecting. And even if it reaches the high-end of expectations, Sinister will likely still trail Hotel Transylvania's expected $16 million at no. 3 (behind Taken 2 and Argo).

See also: “Weekend Box Office Argo or Taken 2 on Top?”

Martin McDonagh's Seven Psychopaths will also open more modestly than some had expected, with only $3-4.5 million at 1,480 locations over the weekend, after collecting $1-1.5 million on Friday. That's a disappointing opening for the $15 million action comedy, which has garnered mostly enthusiastic reviews. The Seven Psychopaths cast includes Colin Farrell (who hasn't had much luck at the North American box office of late, e.g., Total Recall), Sam Rockwell, Christopher Walken, Woody Harrelson, Olga Kurylenko, and Abbie Cornish.

Samantha Mathis Atlas Shrugged Part 2 picture: Atlas Distribution.

Note: This post initially had Here Comes the Boom listed as Here Comes the Broom. A better title, but the wrong one.

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104 Comments to Dagny Taggart Bombs Miserably: Ayn Rand 'Atlas Shrugged' Heroine Victim of Free Market or Censorship?

  1. Nuclear Submarine Officer

    My wife decided to finally come over to watch the second half of the movie with me. She knew nothing of Aynn Rand. The impact that this movie (part I) had on her was profound. She immediately wanted to watch the whole movie. I cannot wait to see part II via Netflix in a few days.

    Read the book. Think for yourself and realize that the bleak future portrayed in the movie is NOT fantasy. It could happen. Parts of it are already happening.

    It is beyond alarming how visceral and hateful the reviews are of this movie. I do not recall any movie reviews of any type that were laced with such unvarnished hatred towards a movie or the book upon which it was based. How does one instantly lash out at Tea Party members when they are supposed to be reviewing a movie? It's not really that hard to understand the myopic views of those who embrace what it is that this movie warns us so strongly of.

    It's not easy being the one who gets singled out. All of my life I have had to work hard to get where I am today. Others should realize the value of hard work and embrace the concept. Bravo Zulu to the people dedicated towards making these movies a reality. In time the trickle of sales, royalties and continuing interest in the series will help to soften the financial shortage incurred during the releases.

  2. Pamela Blair

    This is an excellent movie. I can't wait for Atlas Shrugged III. The entertainment is the philosophy but the script, screenplay, direction bring it to life. Perhaps naysayers are looking for another type of movie.

  3. Sr. Carom

    Great movie, the story gives us a pic through the smoke glass of what the feature may be if we do not take card our country. I can wait for episode III

  4. b

    I feel bad for those who criticize this film even if the acting or cgi is not the best because the substance i.e, plot is one that is thought provoking. It is one of the few movies that is thought provoking and not mind numbing!!!!! Hollywood sucks these days. So do people.

  5. Atlas Shrugged Part 2 is now available on DVD and Blu-Ray.

  6. Moe

    I thought this film hit the nail on the head! Of all the futuristic, apocalyptic scenarios that Hollywood has produced recently, it is the most terrifying and horrific I have seen yet because it is happening everyday, right before my eyes. I believe that's why so many people didn't like it, they just don't want to know.

    A GREAT film and the critics lack of enthusiasm and peoples avoidance at the box office is proof that sometimes the truth hurts. Not those who hear it, but those who tell it. I'm sure Socrates didn't get good reviews from the industry critics of his time and there were only a handful of people who got what he was trying to say. But thankfully there are those who are willing to fore go fame and fortune, life and limb for truth and justice.

    I agree with DMG on many points especially government participation. If more intelligent and rational people were willing to take up the cause of protecting our land and it's people from hypocrisy, mediocrity and duplicity we would be in a better place right now.

  7. Linda Kay

    Rand lived her experiences which is more than can be said for the anti business pro “corrupt” government (really aren't they all?) crowd can say. Neither government nor business have exclusivity on moral corruptness. The thing is, we can make a personal choice to have dealings with businesses or not while we are just stuck with government oppression with nothing we can do about it,. NO CHOICE For example, all those people who whine and complain about wall street big cats can simply shut it down but not investing, but they don't do that. They just scream for the government to control them when really they have full control. And the government passes meaningless legislation to look like they are doing something for all the whiners while they are not. Where do you think they put their money. But of course they have all their friends in high places that offer them insider information. They aren't going to cut off their right hand are they?

    Fortunately everything as we know is coming to an end with violence and chaos and no business or governmental agency will be left to stand . I for one will be happy to see it all end.

  8. DMG

    I found the film to be all right - not a masterpiece, but certainly not terrible. IMO, if Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie had managed to make the film when they were looking to do so, they probably could have done better, given the kind of talents their industry clout could have helped them assemble for the project (and I still think Jolie would have made an excellent Dagny).

    But let's face it. Many people would hate this film regardless of whether it was a low-budget piece of mediocrity or one of the most well-produced and well-acted pieces in the history of cinema, just on principle. There a few things people resent more than having their illusions shattered. They will vociferously denounce anything that threatens to rouse them from the dream of a world where government can benevolently look after everyone with an endless supply of money that comes from some giant, magical ATM machine. (Which means from the rich, who they assume have a literally limitless amount of money to be appropriated by government force to fund their charitable intentions.)

    Yes, a lot of people ARE afraid of Rand's ideas. They're afraid of others waking up to the fact that it's not the rich and “evil” businessmen to blame for our economic ills, but rather government's hamfisted meddling with the economy (like government pressure on mortgage companies to give out a boatload of high-risk loans, causing an artificial housing bubble that eventually burst with disastrous consequences). They're afraid of being made to face the reality that you really CAN'T consume more than you produce and that there IS a limit to how much government can spend before the country is driven into financial ruin. Clearly a lot of people haven't woken up, like those misguided college hippie-wannabees “occupying Wall Street,” when they should have been on the Capitol steps protesting against the REAL villains robbing them of their futures.

    We had a fine example of the impotence of government spending in creating prosperity a few years back. Obama went on a mutli-trillion-dollar spending spree like a giddy teenage girl who just found daddy's debit card (trying to reverse a financial mess that government set in motion in the first place). If government spending is the ultimate answer to everything, we ought to be living in a new age of prosperity right now after a history-making expenditure like that. But we're not, are we?

  9. MikeA

    Why don't you see it and make that determination for yourself? Instead of making a fool of yourself on the Internet by commenting negatively about a movie that you didn't even bother to watch.

  10. MikeA

    Hmmm, a liberal media that does not give the movie any airtime and, if anything, discourages the movie with highly biased negative reviews. An opening to a scant few theaters (the nearest theatre near me in Long Island was over 50 miles away). Then political pressure for the theaters to drop the movie before the people that do know about it can even get to see it. Let's get real here, any movie would have collapsed under that pressure. The problem is that the small and weak minded in this country are incapable of coming to an unbiased conclusion and would rather laud in a failure that they created instead of creating the “even playing field” that they so often espouse.

  11. Yabeen Sees

    The movie wasn't lauded by the public, though, according to the box office numbers, or the user ratings at Rotten Tomatoes.

  12. Or maybe it's actually a legitimately terrible movie. But conspiracy theories are easier to believe, so you roll with that, Sunshine.

  13. Moviegoer

    I don't know about anyone else, but I was waiting for Part II, but it didn't come to my local theatres, so now I'm anxious for it to come out on DVD/Blu Ray. Since I missed seeing Part I at the theatre, I was looking forward to being in the know when Part II came out. Yes, I would agree that there is clearly a definite effort to suppress this movie from those who are actually interested and crush box office sales.

    But if there are many other folks like myself, then DVD/Blu Ray sales will (maybe) make up for this effort. In any event, I'm still waiting and hope this doesn't derail Part III.

  14. Ayn

    I agree wholeheartedly with Ashley Nov 4.
    The movie like any movie does no book justice. The philosophy is not well directed.
    The article above only confirms that there was censorship to this movie because of the fear and mentality which is portrayed in the book of the looters in society.
    Unfortunately, I see the world being played out exactly as Ayn predicted. The best thing the Republicans could do is to strike and leave for Atlantis and let the Democrats bring it all down with no-one to blame but themselves.
    Ayn

  15. DewD

    You know this movie must be a total dog when you absolutely can't find a bit torrent download of it anywhere…

    Objectivism and a free market only work when you have a product people actually want. Guess AS II is not worth squat.

  16. Norman

    No, you can't truthfully say that some kind of “liberal censorship” killed “Atlas Shrugged II.” What probably did kill it was the censorship of the miseducated ignorance of the american public.

  17. I don't care if it was well acted or well directed. It was made. It was made against the current. It was made with all the politics described in Atlas Shrugged fighting against it. The people that liked it said it was true to the story and that is good enough for quality. I never expected it to be entertaining. Done well, it should leave a person with a cold empty feeling. I can't wait for episode three. It will be a trilogy box set I might order in advance. It doesn't matter if it does well at the box office. It doesn't even matter if it makes money in the first few years. It matters that it is made and finished. It will live forever.

  18. Terry

    Much like you have witnessed in the most recent election, the majority of people in the USA lack critical thinking abilities. Like the book and film depict, people have become so inept in creativity that they prefer someone take care of and think for them. For one to be unable to draw the parallels in the movie to what is transpiring right now at this moment in this country shows how society has been dumbed down. It is being presented from a perspective written over fifty years ago and yet the public has a blind eye as to what they are sacrificing. The film follows the book very closely and amazingly captures the insincere altruism being displayed in the current social and political environment. Ayn Rand lived through the same phenomena at the turn of the century and witnessed what is happening first hand. Liberals hate the book and have distain for anyone that sees this as plausible. But then again, these are the people I am talking about. WHO IS JOHN GAULT - HE'S US!

  19. The Real Howard S

    I first read “Atlas Shrugged” as a teenager in the 1960's. At the time I believed in the philosophy espoused by Ms. Rand and I could not put it down, even when slogging through John Galt's three-hour polemic. I haven't subscribed to Rand's economic theories for decades, but I still find (most of) the book to be a good read. I wanted to see Atlas Shrugged Part 2 on its initial release, but it wasn't scheduled to play anywhere within 50 miles of my hometown. Then, on November 23, there it was. One of our old movie house was being shellacked by a new multiplex, and in desperation for bodies to fill its seats, reduced ticket prices to $1.50 and began screening the films it could get most cheaply.

    I preferred this film to its predecessor for two reasons: First, this film is set in the very near future. The time setting in both the original novel and in Part 1 of the film series was ambiguous, and I found this to be a distraction. Secondly, the casting of Part 1 was so poor that the producers were able to to replace every member of the cast without skipping a beat. Part 2 has one actor, Esai Morales (Francisco) who will be missed if he is not cast in Part 3.

    I look forward to watching Part 3, but from what I saw at the theater I have little confidence that it can be produced. The theater I was in has approximately 200 seats. I looked around to estimate the occupancy rate, did some back-of-the-envelope calculations, and I determined with a fair degree of confidence that the gross revenue received by the theater operator was $1.50.

  20. Geo

    Dan, Here Comes the Boom had a budget of $42 million. It did bomb. I think it's made $45 million to date (worldwide). After RedBox/DVD, and after theater costs are tabulated, it MIGHT break even but I doubt it. If it does break even, it still is a bomb.

  21. Ron

    I have NEVER seen a movie that did a written story “Justice”… It always seems that too much stuff is either left out or just “glossed over”… Having read The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged, I was indeed a little let down by the first movie but, I will purchase the Second AND the Third movie if it is made and releasd to DVD… Movies made from books are NEVER as good as the BOOKS!!! It's a hell of a story and deserves a decent telling!!!!

  22. Dan McCloud

    Interesting dichotomy here——-MSM engaging in censorship

  23. nwzimmer

    I wanted to see this in the theatre in downtown Austin, but the closest place showing it was way out in in the suburbs.

    I'll most definitely be buying it on DVD/Blu Ray, and I've been buying fewer movies than ever recently…

  24. Barb

    I couldn't agree more, Ashley. Very well stated

  25. private citizen

    The book similarly was panned by mainstream critics and lauded by the public, eventually arriving second only to the Bible in hard-cover sales. The content is threatening to the powers that be.

    It would appear that the mainstream media has more influence on otherwise uninformed movie goers now.

  26. Matthew

    Nice hit piece. Enjoy yourself>

    Now, you may take a couple of days and READ Atlas Shrugged. You may find that the book (not the movie, it was okay but it would have taken a movie four times as long to do the book justice) teaches you something about how regulation and excessive taxation will destroy business.

  27. John galt

    Is this article supposed to be about the movie, or a virtual soap box for the author? Albeit somewhat humorous there is no mention of the movie content.

  28. Ashley

    I will say that the movies dont do the book justice. I will also say that the left is delusional. They live in a fantasy world. They want this “utopian society” that is utterly ridiculous. Just as is this idea that there are no losers in the schools now. No winners. Not everyone is equal. Its just a fact, and despite these arbitrary ideas that the left is trying to force down our throats, that will never change. We may not all be equal but we do all have the same opportunity to better ourselves. Those who chose to work hard deserve everything they have. While those who chose to sit back and rely on handouts and the “poor me” mentality deserve the little that they have. This country would be in shambles if we didnt have those hard workers and free thinkers. So to those on the left that say “everything should be fair,” they have obviously never heard the expression “who ever said life was fair? You want something, you work for it?” All of this free stuff is an abomination and is leaving the young people today with no work ethic. The liberals are making our youth into lazy, useless, pathetic, drones. Its infuriating. And Ms Rand saw the path we were on and chose to publish her work to try and inform the world. But as usual, only some of us understand reality.

  29. Swordbeater

    Ayn Rand's works are a guilty pleasure of mine… recently finished listening to the 26 hours unabridged AS audiobook as driving background sound just to refresh myself on original text (lots of road time and radio today? … well, there it is.) having been longtime since reading it cover 2 cover. Think she did a better work of it with Fountainhead, more concise and still the same ethos… but regardless, like Peyton Place, the works of Leon Uris and other novels where the ideas overwhelm the writers' talents, they can be a fun read. I mean, take a character like Mouch: cardboard would be overstating his depth… more like colorform deep. All this to say that I'm not unfamiliar with the work, nor unsympathetic to those who respond strongly to it regardless of pretty piss poor novel-craft.

    BUT… why do those who appear to be “True Believers” find any excuse to reject the pragmatic reality at hand and turn to fantasy prisms to interpret the facts around them. In the case of comments surrounding films I & II, it appears more delusional than Jim Taggart at a board table.

    Movies in 2012 represent the most “free market” sales-to-availability model around. Marketing is everything. Theater operators have to make their rent on soday and popcorn… ticket sales go back to the distributors. If they've got it booked in a big auditorium (say, 500) and sell a dozen tickets, well, that film is going to be dumped to a smaller room, it'll run fewer times during the day (following, say, a family kids film during afternoon run)… so the reason the folk have trouble finding it is pure market driven. And the weekend revenue numbers are public record by Sunday afternoon, followed religiously hour by hour by producers.

    However. in this day of “un-skewing polls” (how would you like your doctor to 'unskew' lab findings because they didn't match anecdotal information?) “conspiracy and MSM bias,” seem to be the first refuge of conservative believers when presented with raw data indicating their beliefs, or movies, aren't as popular as they think they should be.

    BTW, saw the first AS on Netflix, likely watch the second when its available, doubt the third will be released in theaters at all, but you never know: the producers are approaching this as a “labor of love,” appear to have no expectation of recouping their investment (what, maybe $60m by the time III is post produced? and net revenues at maybe $7m for both, and declining at this point?) But doesn't that all seem a little at odds with the core message?

  30. Diane

    This whole thing is just sad.

  31. Has anyone stopped to consider that the reason the movie has bombed is that it is NOT true at all to the original book or to Objectivism?

  32. Leslie Fish

    Are you quite sure of your facts here? The film's producers actually contracted with theater chains to show the movie for the first week; it wouldn't have lasted for the second two without audience support. What I found remarkable was the serious lack of advertizing for the film, and the even more remarkable tendency of movie-announcement websites to mysteriously “lose” all references to the film. As I can tell you from personal experience, people who knew in advance about the film and wanted to see it had a hard time even finding it. This smells strongly of political censorship, don't you think? Given that, one has to wonder if AS2's supposed poor boxoffice showing has been “misstated” too.

    Of course critics either carefullly ignored the film, or denounced it in the same purely political terms that you're using here. This is also what happened to AS Part One. Nonetheless, despite some mysterious problems with printing, shipping and so on, Part One got enough DVD sales and rentals to make its nut and gain funding for Part Two. Given the better production values of Part Two, I have no doubt that it will gain enough to fund the making of Part 3.

    No, Rand's masterpiece — and the film trilogy made from it — are just not going to go away.

    -Leslie < Fish

  33. Kim Southern

    I don't have the best taste and I don't watch a lot of movies but I really liked it. I guess because I am comparing it to all the crap out there that makes money such as South Park and American Reunion and stuff. I read Atlas Shrugged and when I saw there was a movie I was so excited. I just wish they had made a Titantic long movie instead of making us wait because I don't think there is any way in the world part 3 will come out.

    Also I am sad that there are so many right wing nuts who support anti-abortion all this crazy religious stuff but there are not even 30M worth of nuts who support entrepreneurial spirit and having real productivity in industry and shutting down all the nonsense that the federal government funds. I know Atlas Shrugged phrases things harshly. I guess it is harsh and boring because I think South Park and American Reunion were just nasty but people love it.

  34. Kim Southern

    I enjoyed both Atlas Shrugged movies. I never would have known it was in the theater if my daily commute does not require me to walk next a movie theater that happened to play it.

    I am not surprised if most people hate it and it didn't do well though because it seems like the number of people in this country who value hard work and the entrepreneurial spirit is drastically decreasing.

    And I am not even Dagny. In that movie I would be Eddie. I would be fiercely loyal to Dagny because I think she is smart and business-like and would expect her to take care of me because I would do my job well but I don't have the confidence yet to be her. I still need to be someone's sidekick.

    I don't think the message is that the 1% should have all the wealth I just think the concept of creating useful products and services like transit, food, raw materials and necessary goods should be more of an important than analyzing policy or non-profits and making up a bunch of stupid laws that help lazy or helpless people that the other things the government is so focused on in Washington DC. I am all about helping people but the number of people who need help should be a small minority so that in the grand scheme of things it wouldn't be that expensive to fully help all of them.

    That is why I am in the construction industry because every day I can look around my jobsite and see exactly what we accomplished just like a factory owner would know exactly how much steel he had produced that day.

    Maybe I am just jaded because I live in DC but it seems like all these people that work for the federal government and for the non profits, consulting firms , and defense contractors don't have clear objectives and they spend so they spend a lot of time on facebook and on-line shopping and it eventually it makes them lazy because they get out of the habit of real production deadlines and hard work. And I am talking about 20 somethings. Maybe older people in the government are actually busy but probably not.
    My dad spent his career in the government. In the last few years he worked at night and was actually allowed to set up a cot and sleep if there wasn't anything to translate and the stuff he did translate probably was only relevant back in the Cold War which was a really long time ago. So I have a lot of doubts if the government is really thinking hard about how they are spending their money.

    Could be completely wrong and the movie is definitely way extreme on some concepts but so much more refreshing than anything else I have seen come out. I am sorry it costs 20M to make it.

  35. just like in theory (in book) so in real life. intellect and logic doesn't ever sell anything. thats why her theory is flawed in many ways because it deliberately ignores and even more - puts down emotions, feeling, human aspect of life in people. any great marketer knows people buy on emotions not facts. and the results of this movie not selling is a result in what capitalists or objectivists value most - money. it made none, because whoever is after it knows nothing about advertising and fails to take into account simple fact that in this day and age there isn't too good of an image of the 1%-ers, let alone a movie that sells their ideals that Ayn wanted to impose onto everyone. her theory is slanted and I dont know how she was reasoning, but to me it seems its based on faith even more than buddhism in the sense that it hopes to create a laissez-faire society, which never existed and probably never will. I think its a mental illness to be grounded in a domain of thought alone(all the time). there are 5 more senses besides it that always represent reality. so too much of identification with only one is a very very small world you choose to live in. there is just so much more to life than that.

  36. John

    There is no mystery as to why the movie failed to bring in the numbers it should have. I do not recall seeing but a few advertisements on TV and that was on a FOX channel. Why did the other networks not have ads for it? Why were the critics slashing at it so mercilessly? I can only believe that politics has truly crept into even the cash cow of the media: advertising. The critics were so unified in their criticism of it and yet I thoroughly enjoyed both movies. Not far from now the censorship will eventually turn to book bans as we are programmed by the “thoughtful and educated” people who clearly believe they know better than what history teaches us.

  37. Bill

    I have to say I find the screenplay in many ways superior to Rand's book but it is not the book.
    The movie starts with the idea of an energy crisis that is pulling the economy down and that the Leninist moochers are a result. Rand clearly had Galt in the role of the motor stopper all by himself — a reaction to the socialist, or communists, who were taking over the government — not some other economic crisis.

    The entrepreneurs of her day, men and women who created and ran their own companies, are very different than the modern CEO character.

  38. BFurey

    One of my favorite books. And, no it's not about the “rich.” It's about being responsible and productive and not sucking off the government tit. What happens when productive people drop out and leave the “moochers” to fend for themselves. Huh? Find out “Who is John Galt.”
    Stop your b*tching and open your mind people. Remember what Kennedy said, “Ask not what you're country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.” How quickly we forget in our meme culture. Working hard and being responsible for yourself and your family is the key to survival. If cave men didn't hunt and cave women didn't forage, their neighbor would not have shared their bounty. The “gimme” gang would starve. The bible says, “if you don't work, you don't eat.” Get it yet.

  39. Vanlinez

    I thought there was enough of a cult following to do more box office then this. Either Ayn Rand is not nearly as “popular” as the right wing crazies want to believe she is or this movie must have really been bad. Or both.

  40. Jango Davis

    “the moral and intellectual superiority of the rich” That is exactly what the movie, book, and Rand where all about.

  41. “the moral and intellectual superiority of the rich” - That has nothing to do with the theme or message of the novel or the movie.

  42. Patricia Kayden

    Dying for “Atlas Shrugs Part 3: Who the hell cares?”

  43. Thomas Austin

    It showed up in theaters but did not stay long. And it was in mostly liberal towns where it would not draw an audience. The nearest it came to Jacksonville, NC was Greenville which is an hour drive. It was in Greenville for only a few days and in Wilmington for less than a week. I will get the DVD when it comes out.

  44. Dick

    I thought the movie was quite good — better than Part 1. However, it is not a comedy or a chick flick. It is intended to convey a message and be thought-provoking. In that regard, it succeeds.

  45. Sumerian Man

    Poor turnout at the theaters isn't due to this being a bad movie, it's only due to the usual intellectually challanged movie goer. Part 1 and Part 2 so far were great! Like the book, it may take some time for the masses to understand and appreciate. Please don't stop now!

  46. phyllis

    Is Atlas Shrugged playing anywhere in new Jersey? If it is I would like to see it. Tell me the town and theatre where it is playing.

  47. Bob

    I just saw Part 2 and did not think it was that bad. I have see a lot worse. Argo was supposed to be great but I thought it was only fair. Ben Affleck seems to have a limited range of facial expressions.

    Only 3 people in the theaters, but that is not surprising since the mainstream media would never talk about it since it is counter to their political views. It is amazing to me that journalism has taken such a left leaning approach to everything.

    I am going to go back and see Part 1.

  48. aj

    Very strange tone in this “article”… trying to celebrate a perceived failure of a film that deals with some cause you don't approve of. If you ask me, $3 million in less than two weeks is pretty good for a independent film. Not quite the $20M it took to make it, but oh well… looks like they spent the money on special effects instead of good actors.

  49. Dejah

    I thought Atlas Shrugged Part 2 was a good movie and also part 1.
    Hope part 3 comes out since I have never read the book, I would like to
    know the ending. Every rotten review the movie got was mostly political crap from the
    reviewer — they were throwing out “their” political views not caring if the movie was
    good or bad. Since I enjoyed it and don't trust reviewers I would hope it comes out on DVD for the people who will not be able to see it after next week in the theaters.

  50. Florian

    Can you Randroid dummies just face reality? The movie SUCKED.

    Don't blame the media or the critics…blame the genius who produced it who stands to lose $40 million if they make three of them.

    When you make a crap movie, it gets panned and won't make any money back. Duh.

  51. Bill

    I saw it second night at a local theater. There were four people in the audience and the other three left early.

    I thought it a nicely acted and plotted movie but it has so little of Ayn Rand that it is really its own story.

    I'll buy the DVD.
    Bill

  52. Cat

    I love this novel and really was looking forward to the movie.

  53. Matthew

    The first movie was released to nearly no theaters. DVD release was extremely limited - and major stores, Target, Wall-Fart did not carry it at all - although online sales have been reporting “Out of Stock,” for months.

    Granted, after the media assassination of the movie, and the nasty reviews that were released before the movie was even seen, it's not surprising that it's done poorly.

    But even though this movie was given a wider release, it was shown in the lousiest theaters imaginable. What I mean, is that most stadium theaters have one or two at the very end of the hallway that are smelly, have bad seats, and generally make you feel as if you've been relegated to the back of the bus. But I still saw it three times. The theater was full, then as well.

    But the movie itself had some really bad flaws. For instance, in the book, Dagny found the motor - not Hank. The movie swapped that around. The second movie continued that storyline even though it was already annoying the people who wanted a strong female lead. They writers also tried to bring the movie to today and then to the future, and that doesn't work… I wish they had stuck to the alternate earth that Rand wrote - it would have given the filmmaker a lot more flexibility.

    Did it do badly? Yep, sure did.

    Was it worth seeing? For the most part, yes.

    I do want to see part three.

  54. Rebecca

    I saw both 1 and 2 and am waiting for 3. It is a shame that people aren't going to see the movies as this is what is going to happen to this country if they don't wake up I will certainly read the book!

  55. DVD/Blu-Ray/VOD deal already inked with 20th Century Fox.

  56. Dienekes

    The American public is collectively just too stupid for words. Cartoons and trite formula films do well, and intelligent cinema flounders. Unlike most of the public, I enjoyed the film as it was true to the novel. The real problem is that many of the people who would enjoy Atlas Shrugged do not attend theaters. The DVD release should do better, and could engender a part 3. I hope John Aglialoro remains true to his vision and finishes his project. If you didn't enjoy it, you just might be a liberal.

  57. bill and wanda

    Could not leave my seat! Wonderful. we look forward to and hope there will be a part III.
    There was very little press for it. we could have missed it.

  58. Bertie

    The movie was quite good; the only bad part about this movie was that Part 1 was so horribly directed. The actors, particularly Rearden, did a much better job in this one, but the most credit for a good part 2 was the director. It's a crime the director for part 1 screwed up so bad, and hired the wrong actors, bc this would have been a pretty good series of movies, and the continuity is ruined. I liked Dagny's actress too, but jeeze, she's a professional actress and she was out of shape or severly lacking sleep or something, and I'm giving her credit for being curvy too. She's a good actress, but she did no favors for the director whom hired her showing up looking like she hasn't slept in a few days. Maybe she'll take part 3 more seriously, assuming the producer makes enough to get it made. After seeing how much better II was than I, I now wish they'd remake part I with II's actors. The Hank Rearden actor should get more acting work, he's fantastic in this and Californication.
    Note to director of Part I: with complete silence in the house and netflix, I still couldn't here half of what the actors were saying, your damn background music, which sucked, was blaring louder than the actors mikes. That's just dumb direction or editting. The Producer should spend the damn money and re-edit part I for sound, the movie on Netflix is nearly unwatchable. But even worse for Part 1, the screenplay sucked it badly. Too many characters introduced in the begginning leading to audience confusion (even for those who read the book), and a complete lack of character development thanks to flitting around scenes so fast you start to forget the characters before you see them next. Part 2 was much better written, and LEAGUES better directed, and better acted. Part 2's biggest flaw was Dagny's actress looking like she spent the night sleeping in the Dead Sea River.

  59. Ivar

    When I saw it on Thursday, there were about 10 people in the theater. which I was not surprised.
    The movie was very good, but of course it was not enjoyable, for it demanded that people take care of themselves and not expect it from others.
    Slightly on a side. the minister in our church, never said that You have to do the good deeds, she only said that God will do the good deeds. That means that you don't have to do anything, which everyone likes. And that is in the church
    It is the same for the average person. They don't want the responsibility. And if someone demands it of you they are evil people.

  60. Ed

    The movie is very bad

  61. Norman

    So Shaun walked out after 45 minutes and didn't stay for the second half. The second half possibly could have redeemed the film for him. Maybe the theme was just too far over his head.

  62. Vanlinez

    I didn't expect this movie to do very well, but this is really, really bad. I thought there would be enough right wing nuts out there to get 20 to 30 million anyway.

  63. The movie was terribly done and the acting wasn't all that great either. Stick to the moral message of the book. Why should Atlas Shrug? What is Atlas to shrug off? The moral code of altruism. You wouldn't get that by watching this movie. As usual it's much better to read the book. But, this movie doesn't give you much incentive to do that.

  64. rw

    I just saw the film today. I thought it was awesome! That said, most Americans don't know that they have an option other than the traditional two party system. In addition to this many Americans simply don't care that their country is dying & won't care until it is too late. Maybe after they elect Romney or Obama & see a directive like Directive 10289 instituting martial law passed in their country they'll wake up & realize that both Atlas Shrugged movies were terribly true about their prophecy of what would happen in the US if things didn't change.

  65. whayr

    yes it was a terrible movie, left me feeling nauseous. fat self-conscious actors/actresses. embarrassed for them. all the lines were off, nobody had any idea what they were saying

  66. John Galt for President

    No wonder most people don't it - Ayn Rand predicted our current politics so perfectly that it hits home in a painful way. Socialism is a rationalization for tyranny that has failed everywhere it has been tried, and we seem bound and determined to join in the other global failures.

    And, no wonder Film Critics don't like it. It is a painful reminder that they contribute nothing of real value, and that their only fame comes through their sarcastic ridicule of those who actually create things of value to our society.

    For those who HAVE actually read Rand's book, the movie is at least as well done as made-for-tv movies, and better than many Hollywood releases. It fairly is faithful to the original book, and the updates to make the “advanced technologies” actually better than what we have today are far more believable than the theory that we can spend our way into prosperity. Yes, I was disappointed that they changed actresses for Dagney - but the new actress is more realistic, looking a bit beaten down by the ever growing forces of despotism falsely proclaiming themselves the stewards of the “common good.”

    This movie is a great reminder that America can still be Great again - if we simply eject the worst of the parasites from Washington.

  67. Coracii

    Despite being released in about 2.5 times more theaters at opening than the first one (1012 theaters versus 465), the sequel has made about 10% less through ten days and is crashing at a faster rate. Guess that officially qualifies it as a box office bomb, yet again.

  68. Coracii

    So, for all the delusional that claimed the theaters were packed or the movie wasn't a box-office bomb how's it feel to see it making a meager $80 per day on average per theater after the first week. Cost more than $20 million plus advertising costs and has barely broken $2 million total in a week and crashing fast (just like the first one did). Selling about 8 tickets per day per theater, yep that's raking in the audiences…

  69. Shaun Patterson

    Part two was the WORST movie EVER, so bad I walked out after 45 minutes. I watched part one a month ago and yes it started dry buy getting to know the characters and how the actors played their part was what drew me in. Yes it is a low budget film and actors aren't top notch but the storyline was interesting and the cast really grew on me.

    When I sat down in the theater for part two I was eager to see a continuation from the last…. at least somewhat, but I was met with new faces, new acting styles, and could not get into the movie at all. I am very disappointed with this waste of a movie, I never walk out of movies…. I even sat through the Mexican . This is one waste of a theater

  70. wes

    i cried after i saw this movie

    why?

    i didn't realize why till 5 days later: it was a horrible movie

    thank you, david kelley

  71. Kate Gladstone

    How is this “one of the worst movies ever” getting 81% audience approval at rottentomatoes.com ?

  72. DONALD SHERER

    Your contempt for the message comes through. Are you afraid of actually saying something good about a point of view you don't agree with? I watched the movie and it's not bad, for a low budget indie it's actually good. If you really want to review movies step back and look at a bigger world.

  73. Berryman1

    Why should a conservative work of individualism be critiqued by the liberal media? Hollywood isn't going for anything with appeal to the mind but rather the emotions only.
    Atlas Shrugged is 55 years old and the theme of the novel is being played out today in close proximity. The sheep haven't figured it out since they sit before the one eyed monster that keeps them entertained until the jack booted thugs tear down their doors and enter without a warrant or even due cause.

  74. rjf

    We get it: you really, really dislike Atlas Shrugged! This is the third article in one week saying so.

    A single article would be one thing, but honestly at this point it isn't even amusing to point out the bias, because it has been thoroughly demonstrated already. Gearing up for negative article number four, I'll wager.

  75. gokmorgan

    Oh wait a minute. Your assessment is based on the political rally of the Tea Party group attendance? What a weak evaluation.

  76. gokmorgan

    We nejoyed it and thought it well made. We didn't go to first night opening and the movie theater was full.
    As far as number of openings etc. etc., since the movie is not a product of mainstream Hollywood with the fancy stars and Chinatown opening, I say it did very well.

  77. agh

    just read the book… how can anyone understand a philosophy properly from a movie…

  78. Lucette

    Watch out America it could happen for real.can not wait to see # 3

  79. Chris Walker

    The movie only ran in one theatre in our town and on one screen, it was sold out an hour in advance. IDIOTS! Anyone who does not see this is a LOOTER and should get everything they deserve.

  80. Brad

    Atlas Shrugged a really Bad Book made a really bad movie Surprize!
    Hope this proves that there is NO virtue of selfishness

  81. So Atlas Shrugged is disrespected by the “Alternative Film Guide,” for being different and not making millions of dollars? Alternative = Mainstream. Chant the chant! Follow the trends! Dreamworks is the new alternative!

  82. You really should read the book to fullyappreciate the movie and fill in some of the backstory the movie can not touch on. Be preparred all new cast from Atlas Shrugged Part I . The new Dagney seems old and tired but the new Hank Reardon is an improvement. All in all cast change does not hurt story. Big dissapointment I thought this would be the end of the story…but NO there is going to be a Part III or at least I hope just to finish the movie off. Part II leaves you about three quarters into the book. If I had known this I would of waited till Part III came out and just see them all at once.

    Even though book and movie never mentions Liberal or Conservative the story could be ripped from the headlines of today even though book was conceived in late 40's and not finished till early 50's. The “takers” and the “looters” of the world is aptly put as Ayn Rand stated so well in her novel but she is probably turning over in her grave with the movie as if you did not read the book it only touches on her thoughts.
    .
    Both movies are really not that good, and I would of loved to seen this done as a Mini Series on TV which might of been more well received.

    For all Ayn Rand lovers get the DVD of interviews of Ayn Rand and other notable people discussing thoughts behind the writing of the book as it is well worth the time.

  83. VodkaGoGo

    Wow, the bitter righties on this thread sure hate the free market when it's pointed at them! Yes it's true, right wingers are immune to irony. Did you ever stop to think that Rands philosophy falls apart because it's childish and absolutely bankrupt of any practical understanding of how the world works? Go Galt all you want, the real world still needs people to build shit. Seriously, I whole heartedly encourage all the Randians to find a special magic snowflake island and fap to their own inflated sense of self regard, whatever it takes to get you people out of the fucking way. We've got shit to build.

  84. terry dudas

    I liked it; more than part one. I'm looking forward to part three,

  85. William Workman

    I loved this movie. Not only did I love it, everyone I know who actually saw it loved it. While you can still enjoy it without seeing Part 1, I suggest you watch Part 1 first to fully comprehend what's going on. Part 1 is available now on Netflix if you have it and is itself a very good movie. Part 2 is better. I can only conclude all the bad ratings have nothing to do with the film and everything to do with the film's message. I suppose the powers that be figure us sheep can't handle a movie like this and they need to kill it before it catches on. I can only hope we don't let them do that because I'm now really looking forward to part 3. I must have heard at least 100 people tell me Atlas Schrugged the book changed their life. I guess a book powerful enough to change lives could also be powerful enough to change nations. No wonder they don't want us to see the movie!

  86. SG

    The whole purpose of Ann Rand Philosophy is to help you to think “out side of the box”. The fact is humans tend to like or show favor to things that are no good to them. I wasn't surprised to be the only one sitting in front of the screen when Part 2 of Atlas Shrugged playing at the movie theater. Even though the book is more power full and convey accurately its message, the movies have also the power of telling the nation what's gone happen soon. When you flash a toilet the water circle around until it shrink down and clean up every thing on its way…..right But the real John Galt Gulch will not shrink…

  87. Dave

    Aw, it's all a lefist conspiracy that everyone thinks Ayn Rand is a dimwitted simpleton that only children and pinheads think ever had an intelligent thought.

    Welcome to the REAL world, Randroids. Your type isn't strong enough to survive among reality.

  88. KKB

    The market has spoken, no one is buying this supply side slop anymore. It's not the critics, it's not the audience, it's the material. Ayn Rand's fantasies are overwrought and mindnumbingly simplistic about how the real world works. That's not only why those who share her ideas fail, but those who try to make movies about those ideas fail.

    The fact that the first film flopped and, yet, they still made a second film proves that apparently Randians have no problem with welfare and wealth redistribution when it comes to promoting their failed ideology.

  89. Woody

    Great movie! Outstanding job! Can't wait for Part 3. There were about 100 people in the theatre at the 1:55 p.m. showing in Baton Rouge. Not bad at all. Although written in the early 1950's, this movie is right out of today's headlines. Beautifully done. But let's face it, if you're a whacked out leftist who is helping to cause the problems America is facing, you will hate this movie.

  90. Adrian Luca

    When will Randroids just face objective reality and accept that the film, just like its predecessor, sucks and no one wants to pay money to see a film that sucks? It's obvious from the numbers that those who saw the first film mostly avoided the sequel.

    If the first film had been any good and its failure had been due negative reviews, DVD sales and word of mouth would have assured a respectable first weekend for part 2.

    No amount of whining about evil leftist critics will change that.

  91. exboyracer

    The only response. LOL

  92. Retired Chief Petty Officer

    One must also consider the venues competition when assessing success. Part I was a spring movie without significant sports competition; PartII came out against the ALCS and NLCS of MLB, the College football season, and the National Football League.

    Watch it improve as more screens come on and the retired people get a chance to go during the week when the kids and others are not packing the theaters.

  93. rjf

    Very good! Now that you've rewritten your earlier hack job to focus solely on Atlas Shrugged, your bias is MUCH easier to see. Well done.

  94. Matthew

    I think two things most amazed me about the movie.

    That they did it on nearly no budget yet it was as good as it was…

    That the book was kept intact for the most part, at least the highlights. After all, it is a 1000 + page novel and it would be impossible to get it all in a two hour movie.

    Two things did not surprise me….

    That the theater put the movie in the dungeon theater, the little one in the back that they normally don't even use, and,

    That the people who saw it were the last of the remaining business owners. The ones that the government haven't managed to execute yet. The 99%'ers were not there, you know, the occupy crowd… they are too wrapped up in envy because someone has something that they are not willing to work for - and the liberals because they want the rich to be taxed into jelly so that they can take their checks and gloat.

    I don't hold out hope anymore. I'm done.

  95. Dan

    I was very disappointed in Part 2. Why? Where did the atmospheric cinematography of Part 1 go? With that missing it was hard to connect with the characters in a cohesive manner (though I very liked Samantha Mathias's take of Dagny) . Ironically, Part 2 went Hollywood (e.g. dull, inartistic movies). Since Part 1 did so bad in the theater due to critic review assassination, it was going to make a-go of Part 2 hard either way. I loved Part 1 where audience members clapped after the final scene. There was no clapping at final scene of Part 2. Did committee-think strike Part 2?

  96. budmin

    Media blackout maybe. Anti leftist message definitely. Now go back to reading 50 shades of gray.

  97. Indiana Mike

    I just saw Shrugged 2 and enjoyed it very much. The plot line and dialog seemed taken from this years election campaign. Atlas Shrugged 2 is well directed and acted and contains elements of conflict and tension that will be easily recognized as being a microcosm of current American society. Of course, I fully expect left wing loons to hate the movie, even before seeing it. Their political hatreds will not allow their accepting the message this movie espouses.

  98. Adrian Luca

    “Atlas Shrugged” Part 1 grossed $670,000 on its first day of release and ended up making a bit over 4 million dollars against a 20 million dollar budget. It was a financial disaster.

    Part 2 opened on twice as many screens on Friday and still only pulled in $690,000.

    These are objective facts. No matter how often Ayn Rand's acolytes regale us with anecdotes of watching the film in crowded theaters, Part 2 is a box office bomb.

  99. Nelbert

    I don't know how well it has really done at the box office. Plenty of great films did poorly on release only to gain in critical acclaim later on. The theater where I saw it had a reasonable crowd - as large as one might expect for a film with a targeted audience.
    Frankly, I thought the message powerful - frighteningly so. I'm sure there are plenty of “99%”ers who would be irked, but it sure seems to speak to the other 53% think its message is timely.

  100. Mark

    How can you write an article about how the movie has bombed BEFORE the movie has bombed. And you go on to say Atlas Shrugged is eagerly anticipated by the red white and blue, far right crowd, but Atlas Shrugged is neither far right nor far left. It is most similar to libertarianism, neither espousing government support for big business like the right nor state-sponsored Christianity like the FAR right. On the other hand, Ayn Rand did support individual rights including a woman's right to choose an abortion which is hardly a position of the far right.

    Go read a book, any book. Learn something before you make these arrogant pronouncements.

  101. rjf

    So every movie opened very low this weekend, but only two of them bombed? Biased much?

  102. John Galt

    Interesting to show your leftist colors in your review of Atlas Shrugged II. You already panned it, as expected, since ideology trumps reality in your world. Box office will be much higher Saturday/Sunday — Friday is always down since the core audience who will see the film are WORKING at their businesses/jobs (unlike certain movie reviewers.) Note: you may want to wait until Actual box office numbers are released Sunday evening before posting your drivel. (See, now I've posted MY drivel; now I'm going back to work to help others and rebuild this country/economy.)

  103. Steven Miller

    This article seems disingenuous me. Atlas Shrugged II was sold out at the first two theaters we tried to watch it at; we had to buy tickets two hours ahead of time to get in to a later showing. We really enjoyed the movie; it was thought provoking and relevant to the situation this country is now facing. The effort by some people to discourage others from seeing it is way too obvious. Judging from the crowds of people trying get in to see the movie where we went to watch it… the effort is having the opposite effect. It is a little like what happens when you tell your teenage daughter to stay the hell away from some nasty little pervert.

  104. Dan

    Here comes the boom only cost between 10 and 20 million so it didn't bomb.