Don't Look Up Has Already Become Netflix's Third Most-Viewed Film Ever

Adam McKay's satirical film about a government and general public that doesn't take the inevitability of their own destruction seriously, "Don't Look Up," has been the most-watched film on Netflix for the last two weeks, and in just 12 days has reportedly become the third most-viewed film in Netflix history. McKay is arguably most well known for his films starring Will Ferrell like "Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby," "Step Brothers," and "Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy," but has more recently pivoted to comedic dramas like "Vice," "The Big Short," and now, "Don't Look Up." The latter was one of the most anticipated releases of 2021 thanks to its star-studded cast of Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Lawrence, Meryl Streep, Cate Blanchett, Ariana Grande, Jonah Hill, Tyler Perry, Melanie Lynskey, and Timothée Chalamet.

Since the film's release, the discourse surrounding it has been relentless. It seems like people fall into three camps where the options are believing the film to be the most brilliant and important satire of the 21st century, a heavy-handed lecture aimed at people who are already fully aware of how dire our future looks, or completely uninterested in the debate because the film was "fine." "Don't Look Up" has already surpassed the viewing hours of films like Martin Scorsese's "The Irishman" (which is a full hour longer) and the Russo Bros. produced "Extraction," sitting only behind "Red Notice" and "Bird Box."

A Meteoric Rise Up The Charts

The former boasts a cast featuring some of the biggest global superstars while the latter exploded in popularity due to a viral TikTok challenge. Of all three, "Don't Look Up" has the largest roster of easily recognizable names, which has definitely influenced the film's success. Whether it was getting a better look at Jennifer Lawrence's red Gale Weathers-in-"Scream 3" bangs, tuning in for another DiCaprio freak out, Ariana Grande returning to acting, or seeing Queen Meryl finally rule America, there were plenty of entry points for a wide variety of audience members.

The success of "Don't Look Up," whether we enjoy the final product or not, is also a strong argument for the return of the mid-budget film. Something like "Don't Look Up" would have likely been swallowed whole by the theatrical competition of something like "Spider-Man: No Way Home," but its accessibility on Netflix has brought the film to homes across the globe, completely dominating the cinematic discourse as of late. Had the film gone theatrical, I don't think it would have such an insane vice grip over us all, because people wouldn't have been willing to risk facing off with Miss Omicron Variant to watch a staggering reminder that our government prioritizes profits over lives. Regardless, people can't stop watching "Don't Look Up," and the science denial satire is reportedly responsible for over 263 million watch hours. The most-watched list calculates on a standard of the first 28-days of availability, so at this rate, "Don't Look Up" is easily poised to take over the top spot over the next two weeks.