I got BROS in different area codes
Long-awaited gay rom-com BROS finally landed last week, and its reception was a mixed bag of highs and lows.
Billy Eichner wrote and stars in the movie, making the comedian and four-time Emmy nominated actor the first openly gay man to ever write and star in his own major studio film.
Not only that, BROS also makes history as the first major studio film to have an entirely LGBTQ+ principal cast, including Luke Macfarlane, Amanda Bearse, Harvey Fierstein, Bowen Yang, Ts Madison, Symone, Miss Lawrence, Guillermo Diaz, and Guy Branum.
Even the straight parts are portrayed by LGBTQ+ actors.
And yet, for some, the movie didn’t quite land as well as we had all hoped.
Many found the marketing angle of ‘first ever’ a touch off, given (the brilliant) Fire Island had been released just months earlier.
For some, the lack of acknowledgment for Joel Kim Booster’s Pride and Prejudice-inspired queer rom-com, made by an indie studio, cemented a lack of enthusiasm for BROS from the offset.
“i’m disappointed by the continual lack of acknowledgment of the accomplishments of Asian and other BIPOC communities Fire Island deserves better“, said one Twitter user.
BROS. which had a $22 million production budget, came in 4th overall on opening weekend, taking $4.8 million at the box office.
So not the worst result, but not what we all hoped. Especially given the reviews for BROS have mostly been super enthusiastic – an excellent 97% score on Rotten Tomato’s and Roling Stone hailed it one of the best comedies of the 21st century.
EVEN QUEEN MARIAH CAREY was telling folk to go see BROS (tweet below).
Eichner took to Twitter to address a lot of talk online, saying:
“That’s just the world we live in, unfortunately. Even with glowing reviews, great Rotten Tomatoes scores, an A CinemaScore etc, straight people, especially in certain parts of the country, just didn’t show up for Bros. And that’s disappointing but it is what it is.”
Rolling Stone already has BROS on the list of the best comedies of the 21st century. What’s also true is that at one point a theater chain called Universal and said they were pulling the trailer because of the gay content. (Uni convinced them not to). America, fuck yeah, etc etc.
— billy eichner (@billyeichner) October 2, 2022
Everyone who ISN’T a homophobic weirdo should go see BROS tonight! You will have a blast! And it *is* special and uniquely powerful to see this particular story on a big screen, esp for queer folks who don’t get this opportunity often. I love this movie so much. GO BROS!!! ❤️🌈
— billy eichner (@billyeichner) October 2, 2022
Gay Twitter was, and continues to be, somewhat divided. Although it’s perhaps worth noting that many of the negative comments appear to be from folk who haven’t seen the movie.
Here are some comments – good and bad – from folk online:
Lots of reasons to go see Bros this weekend not least of which I WILL KMS IF YOU DONT MAKE THIS MOVIE A BOX OFFICE SMASH.
— Joel Kim Booster (@ihatejoelkim) October 1, 2022
Billy.. if we keep wearing each other’s shirts, people will undoubtedly find out about our secret love affair!! 😜❤️
but also.. WATCH BROS, EVERYONE!!!! OUT NOW!!! 🏳️🌈🏳️🌈🏳️🌈 https://t.co/QzNC61qskH
— Mariah Carey (@MariahCarey) September 30, 2022
Very much enjoyed @billyeichner‘s ‘BROS’; a frank, funny, emotional film which walks a high wire act from gleefully subverting the rom-com genre to making a beautifully sincere entry. Big big guffaws throughout. Billy & Luke Macfarlane are beyond charming in the leads. Go see x pic.twitter.com/8ugjTulGQD
— edgarwright (@edgarwright) October 2, 2022
Congratulations to my longtime pal @billyeichner for the fantastic film he produced, wrote, starred in, and probs did costumes for too: #BROS is hilarious, I loved it and promise that anyone with a pulse will laugh out loud at this film! 🎥
— Nia Vardalos (@NiaVardalos) October 2, 2022
Don’t let the low box office deter you from seeing Bros. This is one of the great delights I’ve had at the movies in YEARS. It’s wonderful! pic.twitter.com/brHAcqviwX
— Brian Rowe 🏳️🌈🍿🎃 (@mrbrianrowe) October 2, 2022
I accepted this challenge and did not regret it! GO SEE BROS! https://t.co/8jaYAd7n6f
— Seth Meyers (@sethmeyers) October 1, 2022
Billy Eichner invented his own lane of comedy and shoehorned in an entire gay sensibility previously missing from pop culture. His movie BROS relocates that sensibility to a romcom that's both acidic and whimsical. What's queerer than that? Congrats to the amazing @billyeichner. pic.twitter.com/n4SLhdvQ29
— Louis Virtel (@louisvirtel) October 1, 2022
the thing about marketing BROS as “groundbreaking” is that FIRE ISLAND came out four months ago https://t.co/PGfD74Xovb
— robert kessler (@kesslertakes) October 2, 2022
No, Billy Eichner. I’m a fäg and even I don’t want to see a movie about a bunch of annoying gays in NYC. https://t.co/99YhjBzlgE
— NYCHomoCon (@NYCHomoCon) October 2, 2022
gay and straight people joining forces to shit on billy eichner and bros is the closest we'll ever get to unity
— texas chainsaw yassacre (@sicksadchris) October 2, 2022
I get people trying to clown on Bros underperforming but the message studios take away from this is always “we’ll never let another gay person make a film for us” which sucks because the future of gay cinema shouldn’t be riding on a fucking Billy Eichner film but what can you do
— Jane Altoids (@staticbluebat) October 3, 2022
BROS: truly one of the funniest rom-coms I have seen in a really long time. @billyeichner you have created something really special here. See it on the big screen because this one is great with a crowd. #BrosMovie pic.twitter.com/8hLRaIQNV1
— Anthony (@antmaz95) September 30, 2022
not to kick a 🚬 while he's down, but i think we're just tired of so many queer stories being overwhelmingly yt and male. like fire island was a breath of fresh air bc of the diversity; Bros looks like it's for straight yt "i'd have voted for obama a 3rd time" ppl https://t.co/cDQpsTWoaT
— bad bunny’s silly rabbit (@chernobyldenier) October 2, 2022
Went to a movie theatre for the first time in almost 3 years last night & saw Bros. I LOVED IT. The movie is wonderful. So funny, so smart, so sweet…Billy knocked it out of the park. Go see it!! https://t.co/4PtfmNKM3H
— Elizabeth Gillies (@LizGillies) October 2, 2022
I fckn loved #BrosMovie . An actual classic. It has all the things I want in a romcom: great jokes, cynicism, earnestness and horniness. 🥵
— jana (@janaunplgd) October 3, 2022