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'Abdullah Coldwater' of Alexandria leads the campaign demanding closure of film review site

AFP , Wednesday 3 Aug 2016
Rotten Tomatoes
An image used by the petitioner asking to close the Rotten Tomatoes site (Photo from the petition page)

Thousands of furious DC Comics fans are backing a petition calling for the closure of reviews aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes, after a lukewarm response to supervillain blockbuster "Suicide Squad."

A poster calling himself Abdullah Coldwater of Alexandria, Egypt, started the campaign accusing the site of giving "unjust bad reviews... and that affects people's opinion even if it's a really great (movie)."

The petition at had received more than 12,000 signatures as of Wednesday morning.

Rotten Tomatoes works out the percentage of reviews that can be deemed positive, although it does not offer its own critical assessment of movies.

Based on 76 reviews, it currently shows a 34 percent rating for the hotly anticipated "Suicide Squad," which hits cinemas on Friday.

Starring Will Smith, Jared Leto and Margot Robbie as a band of deadly criminals recruited to execute dangerous black-ops missions, the film has an average critical score of 5.2 out of 10.

"If you know someone you really can't stand -- not someone you dislike, not someone who rubs you the wrong way, but someone you really loathe and detest -- send that person a ticket for 'Suicide Squad,'" wrote Mick LaSalle of the San Fransisco Chronicle.

Warner Bros. executives were hoping it would get right what March's "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice" -- its heavily criticized predecessor in the DC Extended Universe (DCEU) -- got wrong, promising a lighter, more fun film.

"'Suicide Squad' boasts a talented cast and a little more humor than previous DCEU efforts," the Rotten Tomatoes critical consensus reads.

"But they aren't enough to save the disappointing end result from a muddled plot, thinly written characters and choppy directing."

The disappointing response to David Ayer's film has piled further pressure on Warner to finally produce a film to match the critical success of rival studio Marvel's superhero universe.

April's "Captain America: Civil War" made more than $1.1 billion worldwide and has a 90 percent approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes, based on 320 reviews.

What the critics think of "Suicide Squad" may not matter, however, if it manages to emulate the financial performance of its predecessors.

DC's "Man of Steel" (2013) managed 56 percent on Rotten Tomatoes while "Batman v Superman" is sitting on a woeful 27 percent rating -- but the films made a healthy $1.5 billion between them.

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