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Horizon Star Defends Film Passionately Despite Disappointing Debut

One of the stars of Kevin Costner’s Horizon has shared his thoughts on the film’s disappointing box office numbers, attributing the underperformance to audiences not being accustomed to what he calls “real cinema.”

Michael Rooker, who portrays Sgt. Major Thomas Riordan in the film, spoke candidly with TMZ, urging people to set aside their TikTok addictions and experience a genuine movie-going experience. “It’s real cinema, folks,” Rooker emphasized. “Be prepared. We ain’t used to that. We’re used to 90-minute movies. Everything is 90 minutes. Give me a break. Get over that. Let’s watch a movie that actually tells a story where you learn about the people and grow to like them or hate them. It’s not all fast and cut, cut, cut.”

When questioned about whether the public has become TikTok-ified, Rooker didn’t hesitate: “Totally they are. Of course they are. They got to get over that crap. They got to learn how to watch real cinema, please.”

He continued, “Stop hanging and go see the movie. You’ll enjoy it. Go to the bathroom before you go in.”

Currently, Horizon: An American Saga is facing a tough uphill battle at the box office. The Wrap reported that the film was released in 3,334 locations and managed to gross only $11 million over its opening weekend. Considering the movie had a budget exceeding $100 million, this is a significant shortfall. It’s also worth noting that Costner personally invested around $38 million for the film’s first two chapters, with plans for a total of four installments in the saga.

Compounding the box office woes are the movie’s lukewarm reviews. It has a 44% score on the Tomatometer and a 72% Audience Score, alongside a B- on CinemaScore. While this isn’t the worst reception, it falls short of being stellar, which may influence potential viewers.

Sitting through a film that stretches beyond three hours is no easy feat, especially in a theater setting. At home, viewers have the luxury to pause and resume at their convenience, but the cinema demands full, uninterrupted attention. This poses a challenge for a sprawling Western epic designed to be seen on the big screen.

However, it’s worth noting that long movies can still achieve box office success. Take Oppenheimer for instance—it runs for 180 minutes and was one of the biggest blockbusters last year despite its length.

Kevin Costner himself has reflected on the pressures tied to the film’s performance. He told Entertainment Weekly, “I’ve lived with movies and what happens to them on their opening weekend. If we put so much pressure on that, we’re bound to be disappointed. I’m really happy that Horizon looks like what it’s supposed to look like, and that’s the way it’ll look the rest of its life. And that’s really important to me in this process.”

He added, “Would I love that it would be highly, highly successful? Of course, I’d like that. My ego would like that; everyone would like that. But I am happiest that the movie that you and I are talking about looks the way I want it to look.”

With Rooker’s impassioned plea for audiences to give Horizon a chance, perhaps the film may yet find its footing. Costner’s ambitions for three more films in the saga hinge on the reception of this initial outing, so time will tell if audiences heed the call to experience “real cinema.”

Source: The Wrap, Entertainment Weekly