Colin Trevorrow Still Wants You to Go See ‘The Book of Henry,’ Despite ‘Heartbreaking’ Reviews
Colin Trevorrow’s The Book of Henry did not exactly make Jurassic World money in its first week, and the reviews have mostly been a combination of critics wondering how this movie got greenlit, other critics wondering why Trevorrow chose this for his follow-up to the highest-grossing film ever made, and the rest wondering if they’d accidentally ingested some form of edibles before their screening. There’s no getting around the fact that it’s a pretty terrible movie, so bad that many are still wondering how long Trevorrow will remain director of the final Star Wars Episode.
The director appeared on Empire Magazine’s podcast to talk books, Henrys, and audience vs. critical reactions to the film. Yes, he’s read the reviews, and yes, he’s pretty sad about them.
It’s a little heartbreaking, without getting too personal, and I think it’s just because it came to us as a bit of a shock. We screened this movie to so many people, and we’d had reactions from so many people that we felt we knew what we had and we knew how it was affecting the audiences. And that actually hasn’t changed. It affects audiences in the same way that we thought it would. We did not anticipate that level of vitriolic dislike for the film. And in the end, do I want to be somebody who can please both audiences and critics? Absolutely. So is that hugely disappointing? It is.
The movie does currently have a pretty weird critics-to-audience ratio, and of the meager audience turnout, 71% of them reacted favorably to the movie. (These are folks who would actively choose to see this movie, I’m just saying.) To his credit, Trevorrow didn’t pull another one of those "I made it for the fans” arguments, and he still hopes that the rest of us will go see it despite the reviews.
I’m not going to say this is some kind of movie of the future. It’s not that. But I do believe in what I did, and I hope as people see it some of that will become evident.
If you do decide to shell out for a movie that involves Naomi Watts aiming a sniper rifle at Dean Norris in the middle of a dance recital, good luck to you.