Independence Day Resurgence Review

One of the conversations I keep having with friends this month is how the summer movies this year have been atrocious. The summer seems filled with bad sequels like Independence Day Resurgence, Jason Bourne, and X-Men: Apocalypse, lackluster adaptations like Suicide Squad, Warcraft, The Legend of Tarzan, The Angry Birds Movie and Alice Through the Looking Glass, and even a few original stories like The Secret Life of Pets and The Neon Demon which weren’t that original or entertaining. But was this summer really THAT bad? Let’s take a look at the numbers and find out.

I decided to delve into this by taking a look at the top 10 most-seen movies of each summer for the past decade. I used the analytics from Rotten Tomatoes, which is the biggest sampling of critical scores for films on the internet.

I not only looked at the freshness rating but also the average review rating. For example, Finding Dory is 94% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes because 94% of the 245 reviews accounted for thought the movie was “good” but the average review score was actually a 7.7 out of 10. The Dark Knight and Iron Man both have a 94% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes but Dark Knight’s 8.6 average review rating is almost a full point higher than Iron Man’s 7.7

Obviously, if you look deeper in any of these years you will find highly rated lower budget films. It would have been great to do this with every film released over the summer, but that would have been far too time-consuming. I began by looking at the top 20 films of each year’s summer, but it became apparent that the top 10 would be close enough to that larger sampling. Besides, most filmgoers probably only saw a handful of movies this summer, with the more hardcore mainstream audiences seeing a film a week.

So I thought the top 10 most watched films (domestically) would be a good indication for our purposes — that being, to examine the quality of populist films of the last 10 summers.

summer movie chart - Worst Summer For Movies

So what did I find?

From all the doom and gloom we’ve been hearing about films this summer, I was surprised to find out that this summer is rather typical.

Summer movie season usually produces average movies. The average review rating for the last ten years of summer movies is 6.4 out of 10, at around 67% fresh. The top ten films of the summer season typically includes 6 good (ie “fresh”) movies and 4 bad (ie “rotten”) film.

Summer 2016’s movies have a 6.2 review average with a 65% fresh score. While that is slightly lower than the average, it’s not the worst summer of all time or even the last decade.

The worst summer of the last decade is 2009, which despite having hits like Up, Star Trek, The Hangover and Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince was inundated by bad movies like Transformers: Revenge of the FallenIce Age: Dawn of the DinosaursX-Men Origins: Wolverine, Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian, The Proposal and G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra. Summer 2009 has an average movie review of 6 out of 10, with a 58% freshness rating, making it the only summer of the last decade that was actually considered “rotten.” Only 4 of the top ten films of that summer were considered good (i.e., “fresh”).

While summer 2016 is not the worst summer of recent history, it’s also not the best. Summer 2016 is the third worst of the last decade. The last five summers have a better movie review average rating, and the previous summer as a whole was considered much better with a freshness average of 12% higher but a review average of only 0.7 larger. Eight of the ten films in 2015 were “fresh” compared to 2016’s six.

summer movies by freshness

Here are the numbers for those of you who might be curious:

Summer 2016

Finding Dory 94% 7.7

Captain America: Civil War 90% 7.6
The Secret Life of Pets 74% 6.3
Suicide Squad 26% 4.7
X-Men: Apocalypse 48% 5.7
Star Trek Beyond 83% 6.9
Jason Bourne 57% 5.9
Central Intelligence 69% 5.7
The Legend of Tarzan 36% 5.0
Ghostbusters 73% 6.5

Average: 65% (6 Fresh) 6.2

Summer 2015

Jurassic World 71% 6.7
Avengers: Age of Ultron 75% 6.7
Inside Out 98% 8.9
Minions 56% 5.8
Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation 93% 7.5
Pitch Perfect 2 66% 6.0
Ant-Man 81% 6.8
Straight Outta Compton 87% 7.3
San Andreas 48% 5.2
Mad Max: Fury Road 97% 8.6

Average: 77.2% (8 fresh) 6.9

Summer 2014

Guardians of the Galaxy 91% 7.8
Transformers: Age of Extinction 18% 3.9
Maleficent 50% 5.7
X-Men: Days of Future Past 91% 7.5
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes 90% 7.9
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 52% 5.8
Godzilla 74% 6.6
22 Jump Street 84% 7.0
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 22% 4.2
How to Train Your Dragon 2 91% 7.8

Average: 66.3% (6 fresh) 6.4

Summer 2013

Iron Man 3 79% 7.0
Despicable Me 2 73% 6.6
Man of Steel 55% 6.2
Monsters University 78% 6.8
Fast & Furious 6 69% 6.2
Star Trek Into Darkness 86% 7.5
World War Z 67% 6.2
The Heat 65% 6.2
We’re the Millers 47% 5.5
The Great Gatsby 48% 5.8

Average: 66.7% (7 Fresh) 6.4

Summer 2012

The Avengers 92% 8
The Dark Knight Rises 87% 8
The Amazing Spider-Man 73% 6.7
Brave 78% 7
Ted 67% 6.4
Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted 79% 6.8
MIB 3 68% 6
Ice Age: Continental Drift 37% 5.1
Snow White and the Huntsman 49% 5.6
Prometheus 73% 6.9

Average: 70% (8 Fresh) 6.6

Summer 2011

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 96% 8.3
Transformers: Dark of the Moon 35% 4.9
The Hangover Part II 33% 4.9
Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides 32% 5
Cars 2 39% 5.5
Thor 77% 6.7
Rise of the Planet of the Apes 82% 7.1
Captain America: The First Avenger 80% 6.9
The Help 75% 7
Bridesmaids 90% 7.6

Average: 64% (6 fresh) 6.4

Summer 2010

Toy Story 3 99% 8.9
Iron Man 2 72% 6.5
The Twilight Saga: Eclipse 49% 5.5
Inception 86% 8.1
Despicable Me 81% 6.8
Shrek Forever After 58% 5.9
The Karate Kid 66% 6.2
Grown Ups 10% 3.3
The Last Airbender 6% 2.8
The Other Guys 78% 6.8

Average: 61% (6 fresh) 6.1

Summer 2009

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen 19% 3.9
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince 84% 7.2
Up 98% 8.7
The Hangover 79% 6.8
Star Trek 95% 8.2
Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs 45% 5.4
X-Men Origins: Wolverine 38% 5.1
Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian 44% 5.1
The Proposal 44% 5.3
G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra 35% 4.6

Average: 58% (4 fresh) 6.0

Summer 2008

The Dark Knight 94% 8.6
Iron Man 94% 7.7
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull 77% 6.9
Hancock 41% 5.4
WALL-E 96% 8.5
Kung Fu Panda 87% 7.2
Sex and the City 49% 5.5
Mamma Mia! 54% 5.5
The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian 67% 6.3
The Incredible Hulk 67% 6.2

Average: 73% (7 fresh) 6.8

Summer 2007

Spider-Man 3 63% 6.2
Shrek the Third 41% 5.4
Transformers 57% 5.8
Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End 45% 5.5
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix 78% 6.9
The Bourne Ultimatum 93% 8
Ratatouille 96% 8.4
The Simpsons Movie 88% 7.5
Knocked Up 90% 7.7
Rush Hour 3 18% 4.1

Average: 67% (6 fresh) 6.6

Cool Posts From Around the Web: