The two highest-grossing movies at the worldwide box office are, predictably, Avengers: Endgame ($2.1 billion) and Captain Marvel ($1.1 billion). The Marvel Cinematic Universe is unstoppable, Disney will soon own us all, etc. The rest of the top-10 is filled with other expected titles — How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World, Shazam!, Dumbo — with one exception: The Wandering Earth.
The Chinese film, dubbed the country’s “first full-scale interstellar spectacular,” made $349 million during its initial seven days of release and nearly $700 million overall. The Wandering Earth received a limited release in the United States, but now it’s available for everyone with a Netflix account. “A looming collision with Jupiter threatens Earth as humans search for a new star. The planet’s fate now lies in the hands of a few unexpected heroes,” is how the streaming service describes the film, which is the second highest-grossing non-English film of all time (behind only Wolf Warrior 2, also from China).
“Netflix is committed to providing entertainment lovers with access to a wide variety of global content. With its high-quality production and story-telling, we believe that The Wandering Earth will be loved by sci-fi fans around the world,” Jerry Zhang, Manager of Content Acquisition at Netflix, said when the streamer acquired the film in February. And yet, it was made available this week with no advance notice. Is The Wandering Earth the Beyoncé of Chinese sci-fi movies about the Earth leaving our solar system? Sure, why not. Watch the trailer below.