Journal of Cultural Economics

, Volume 43, Issue 1, pp 145–171 | Cite as

Do consumer and expert reviews affect the length of time a film is kept on screens in the USA?

  • Thaís L. D. SouzaEmail author
  • Marislei Nishijima
  • Ana C. P. Fava
Original Article


We evaluate the effect of critical reviews by consumers and experts on a film’s running time at movie theaters in the USA using survival regression analysis. In addition to the usual expert critics’ reviews, we employ the consumer reviews rating and their affectivity about films as proxies for the consumer influence effect. To provide measures for consumer affectivity, we perform affective computing using mining techniques of sentiment and emotion on consumer reviews. We build a very rich film dataset by collecting information from the Box Office Mojo and the Rotten Tomatoes sites, including all matched films released between 2004 and 2015 that are available on these sites. We find evidences of consumer ratings matter in keeping a film running longer at the theaters, but experts’ ratings have a larger influence on the movie market as a whole. Estimates by genre indicate that the influence of expert reviews on the length of run of widely opening film releases, which include blockbusters, is null, but that their influence on narrowly released films is large. Also, film running times of genres like foreign, drama and action films are greatly influenced by sentiments and emotions spread by consumers through their reviews.


Consumer reviews Movies Film Affective computing Survival Critic reviews 

JEL Classification

L82 D83 



We thank Ricardo Pires, Patrícia R. Oliveira, Adriana Schor, Marcelo Fantinato, Alexandre Brincalepe Campo and Bruno Faria Freitas for their helpful comments and guidance. All errors are our own.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Thaís L. D. Souza
    • 1
    Email author
  • Marislei Nishijima
    • 2
  • Ana C. P. Fava
    • 3
  1. 1.Federal Institute of ParanáLondrinaBrazil
  2. 2.University of São PauloSão PauloBrazil
  3. 3.Federal University of ABC, Alameda da UniversidadeSão Bernardo do CampoBrazil

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