It seems Square's magnum opus, Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within, has performed well under the company's expectations. The film opened in fourth place, pulling in $11.5 million on its opening weekend. Both the comedy LEGALLY blonde and the heist film The Score, each new this past weekend, almost doubled that amount, and with Jurassic Park III opening this Friday, Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within might not be able to remain in the top five.
All of this must come as a sharp blow to Square. As previously reported, the company needs Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within to finish in the top 20 to 30 films of the year to be deemed successful and to help take a chunk out of the film's $112 million budget.
Some well-known critics such as Roger Ebert and his partner Richard Roeper enjoyed the film, giving it two thumbs up, with Ebert even calling the look of the film "revolutionary...a technical milestone, like the first talkies or 3-D movies." RPGamer staff member Alex also had numerous postive statements in our review. Unfortunately, the majority of critics saw the film in a negative light, harping on perceived faults such as poor dialogue, lifeless characters, and a plodding script.
Whether or not Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within will hold firm, or fall prey to the next onslaught of summer movies still remains to be seen. Perhaps Square should start reaching for that Pepto Bismol.