"It's as close to a laboratory environment as you can get. For one thing, the two films' subject matter and intended audience couldn't sit on further ends of the gender spectrum... It's also a near-perfect test-tube case because the movies are similar in so many other key respects. Both are mid-budget studio films coming out in the dog days of August. Both were made with the goal of pleasing crowds more than critics. Both pictures are driven by one huge-name star accompanied by a host of smaller ones. And the two are going head-to-head with very little competition. Given all this, the film that wins the weekend will provide a given gender with bragging rights (and perhaps, also, hand a few ideas to demographic-minded studio executives)."— L.A.TimesClose to a laboratory environment — or "a near-perfect test-tube case" — except for one thing: quality. Could be we have a rotten Julia Roberts flick against a top-end Stallone movie. Could be we have a lousy Stallone movie up against the next Pretty Woman. Could be we have two lousy movies, going head to head. Or one that is marginally lousier than the next, or quite a bit lousier than the next, or lousier by a degree that is, in its possible iterations, potentially infinite. Apart from that, yes, it's test-tube perfect text conditions.