The CinemaScore has finally arrived, which mostly reflects how the general audience feels about a film’s release. Unlike normal ratings, the films are mostly skewed heavily with A being the general goal for any release. Marvel Studios famously stuck around to this area as a “crowd-pleasing” offering but that has changed with Phase 4. Some of their releases have landed the B rating, most notably Eternals being the first to do so. Thor in 2011 also received a B+ rating. Now, Thor: Love and Thunder has also joined the B+ club.
CinemaScore has just released the fact that the general audience has given Thor: Love and Thunder a B+ grade. Now, the internet is already in a panic about this being the sign that Marvel Studios has lost its grace with the general audience, but there’s a lot more at play with this rating. Yes, it is normally a higher rating, anything with a C+, such as Morbius, is a sign that the film may not leg out
Yet, considering that the film currently holds an 84% like ratio from Google Users, stands at 7.1 on IMDb, and even has an 83% Audience Score on RottenTomatoes, you start to see the bigger picture. The only indication this value has is a hint at the legs a film will have at the box office, and if Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is anything to go by, a B+ won’t stop it too much. Yes, it won’t have the same momentum that could push it past its initial release but we may see a harsh drop in the second weekend.
Also, most indie releases end up in this ranking, which generally is a sign of how audiences consume media. If it is mindless fun, they’ll tend to give it a higher ranking and Marvel Studios still has an A ranking for films like Shang-Chi, Black Widow, and especially Spider-Man: No Way Home. Plus, the lowest ranking films also include strong horror and gore elements, such as Doctor Strange with Love and Thunder also includes some “bloody-esque” kills plus LGTB representation that is more dominant than a blink-and-you-miss-it kiss like in Lightyear. And if we want Marvel Studios to experiment (as has been proclaimed by many over the years), they will face a slight disconnect with general audiences at times.