Will Smith‘s latest movie, Focus, releases to theaters nationwide today, and the reviews for it are coming in. So far, critics seem to like it more than they did After Earth, which is, so far, the worst-reviewed movie of Smith’s career.
At the time of this publication, Rotten Tomatoes has Focus listed at 56 percent, with 75 of the 130 reviews being positive. After Earth only had 20 positive reviews of the 188 that were included on the site.
Another thing about Will Smith’s new movie is that it cost a lot less to make than After Earth. Variety reports that Focus cost $50 million. After Earth cost $130 million, and only brought in $60 million in the U.S., according to Box Office Mojo.
Richard Roeper, of the Chicago Sun-Times, noted that the movie is predictable, but it’s an entertaining watch. Roeper also praised Smith and his Focus co-star, Margot Robbie.
“Smith and Robbie are terrific together. At various points along the way, he’s playing her, and then she’s playing him, and then we’re almost positive they’ve let their collective guard down and they’re really in love … Or are they?”
Peter Travers from Rolling Stone also praised the performances by the movie’s two leads.
“It’s a game that shows its hand way too early to take us in. But the two stars, looking glam as they traverse glam locales like New Orleans, New York and Buenos Aires, are dazzling distractions. Robbie is a wow and then some… Even when Focus fumbles, Robbie deals a winning hand.”
But Kyle Smith of the New York Post is one critic who really did not like the movie.
“Will Smith explains in the grifter flick Focus that the ultimate con-artist gambit is ‘the Toledo panic button.’ That’s when you shoot your partner to prove you’re not in cahoots. So woeful is Focus, though, that one wonders how many times the pair of writer-directors who made it contemplated going all Toledo panic on each other, if only to kill their project before it could damage their reputations.”
Even with split reviews, Focus is on track to topple the hugely successful Fifty Shades of Grey from the number one spot at the box office. According to Variety, Focus brought in $900,000 during its special Thursday night showings. The movie is predicted to earn around $21 million.
With all the news of plummeting movie ticket purchases, 2015 has been off to a strong start with Fifty Shades of Grey and American Sniper. But Variety reports that Focus will not continue that streak, and neither will the other new release, The Lazarus Effect. The latter is predicted to bring in less than $15 million.
Are you planning on seeing Focus?
[Image credit: Warner Bros. via Teaser Trailer]