×
Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Shia LaBeouf's Man Down - 5 facts you may not know

Shia LaBeouf's Man Down hasn't exactly been burning up the box office. The action thriller only opened in one theater in the United Kingdom, where it sold a whopping three tickets during its opening weekend (via Variety), a big failure for the former Transformers star. Here are five fast facts you need to know about Man Down.

What's the movie about?

Man Down stars LaBeouf as former U.S. Marine Gabriel Drummer, who struggles with PTSD after returning from his tour in Afghanistan and realizing that his home is not the same after seeing the violence of the battlefield. Drummer enlists his best friend Devin, a former Marine who prefers to shoot first and ask questions later, to help him search for his estranged wife and son. Along the way, the two encounter a mysterious man named Charles who has important information about Drummer's family. The movie deals with Drummer's fragile mental state and questions whether what he sees is real or not real.

Who stars in it?

Man Down has a pretty impressive cast in addition to LaBeouf, a once big-name star responsible for launching Michael Bay's Transformers franchise and for starring as the de facto next Indiana Jones in Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. House of Cards Emmy nominee Kate Mara plays his estranged ex-wife, while Captain Fantastic child actor Charlie Shotwell plays his young son. Suicide Squad and Divergent star Jai Courtney plays Devin, and Star Trek's Clifton Collins Jr. plays the mysterious Charles. At the forefront of the experienced cast is legendary actor Gary Oldman, who plays Drummond's captain in Afghanistan.

How have the reviews been?

Man Down has not fared well with critics, earning just a 15 percent on Rotten Tomatoes. Glenn Kenny of The New York Times wrote that the movie is "neither a viable work of art nor an effective call to action" and instead called it "a sadistic and ghoulish spectacle." Ian Freer of Empire gave it two stars and wrote that the film is "a heartfelt misguided attempt to showcase the poor treatment of America's returning war vets," adding that it is "mired in a dumb lack of finesse." Ignatiy Vishnevetsky of A.V. Club was particularly harsh: "Calling it manipulative isn't accurate, since that implies a degree of success."

Has it made money in other markets?

Man Down has not been a complete box office failure. According to Entertainment Weekly, the film brought in $454,000 in North America after it debuted in December. Although budget information has not been released, it did at least turn some sort of profit in the United States, which should help to offset a bit of its awful U.K. sales.

Man Down also has a bit of hope for box office success through its screenings at SSVC Forces Cinemas, a chain of eight theaters across the U.K. that specializes in providing entertainment to military personnel and their families. According to Variety, the film grossed £79 on Monday and Tuesday through Forces' Forum Cinema in Blandford, with future screenings scheduled at the chain's other branches.

Has this ever happened before?

Movies with big names attached flopping in the United Kingdom isn't completely unheard of. According to Variety, some films are released in just a small number of theaters in order to help video on demand or DVD sales, something which Man Down may be an example of. (This theory is further compounded by the fact that there are Man Down posters advertising that the movie is available on iTunes and VOD in the London Underground, even though the film is not playing at any theaters there.) Some previous examples of films that flopped in their U.K. theatrical releases include Emma Watson's The Colony and Al Pacino's and Anthony Hopkins' Misconduct.