‘Ambulance’ scores the worst opening weekend of Michael Bay’s career

michael bay ambulance

Proving that you can’t have your cake and eat it, too, the critical success of Michael Bay’s Ambulance has been instantaneously offset by a disastrous box office performance.

The fast-faced combination of heist thriller and chase film is currently tied with undisputed action classic The Rock on a 68% Rotten Tomatoes score to rank as the joint best-reviewed feature of the director’s entire career, but a disappointing opening weekend has seen Ambulance land the filmmaker’s worst theatrical debut.

In fact, not only has it usurped the $12 million brought in by interminable sci-fi blockbuster The Island back in 2005, but it’s the first Bay-helmed effort that’s failed to hit double figures during its first three days playing on the big screen. Once again, the results have shown that mid budget fare geared towards older audiences continues to struggle with the lingering effects of the pandemic.

That’s a huge contrast to chart-topper Sonic the Hedgehog 2, which set several notable records after exploding out of the blocks to nab $71 million, the highest first frame for any video game adaptation ever. Even though Ambulance cost a minuscule (by Bay’s standards) $40 million to produce, the entertaining thrill ride is already being predicted to lose money for Universal in the long run.

A return to the smaller scale arena yielded Bay’s best work behind the camera in a long time, but with Ambulance on its way to bombing, he might seek refuge in a more expensive (and thus potentially more profitable) sandbox whenever he settles on his next project.