OK, I’m talking about movies where you find it truly difficult to understand the level of hate for and/or dismissal of them. IMHO, the following four movies are examples of a certain pop culture phenomenon, wherein a movie has come to be simply known by the masses as bad even when it’s not. And to me, they are just good movies whose flaws are exaggerated and they get dumped on at a truly excessive level. Here we go:
The hate for this movie has always mystified me. It’s just well-acted, well-made, and nicely paced. It has abundant good and fun action. Colin Ferrell is hilarious as Bullseye. Ben Affleck is great as Daredevil, and he has great chemistry with Jennifer Garner (sorry about that divorce, guys). It doesn’t even take itself too seriously. What’s frustrating is people don’t even come up with specifics when criticizing this flick, other than maybe its imperfect CGI (which is of its time and certainly not terrible). I will say I am also an outlier in that I prefer the original cut to the director’s cut (the extra material was wisely cut IMO). Yes, it’s from a different era of superhero films before things got all dark and serious, but so are the widely praised Tobey McGuire Spider-Man movies. Speaking of which…
Spider-Man 3 (2007)
This one has a few more concrete flaws that people raise: too many villains (I don’t really agree) and emo Peter Parker (I totally don’t agree!). See, the corn of this film is what makes it fun; but that was true of the first two as well–it’s not really any different! I really like the relationship conflicts with Peter and Harry and Peter vis-a-vis Gwen and Mary Jane. The emo scene is hilarious and fun. I understand that Topher Grace doesn’t look like Eddie Brock in the comics, but he is great! All the acting in this movie is great. The action is plentiful and excellent. Visually, it looks great. It’s just a fun, good movie. (I like all three movies, but my order of preference would be 1, 3, 2).
Divergent (2014) and Insurgent (2015)
No one likes these movies. The assumption seems to be that they are a Hunger Games ripoff (true, the books were) and nothing could be good about them. I get the feeling that people dissing the movies haven’t even seen them. Well, I have, and they are awesome! And I’m a 44-year-old dude, probably not in the films’ target demo. No matter, these films are swiftly paced and well-acted with really nice action setpieces. Shailene Woodley is a stone hottie. Jai Courtney is a very effective villain. (By the way, that’s an actor that, like these movies, gets pissed on for no reason. Maybe Hollywood has tried to sell him too hard, but he’s a fine character actor who does action well. End of chat!) Now here’s the thing about these movies: they are pretty cheesy. But I would invite people to watch them through a certain lens that makes them much more enjoyable. You know how Star Wars was intended as a sendup of old space serials from the 30s (Flash Gordon, etc.)? Well, if you watch Star Wars through that lens, it’s actually more enjoyable. And I think if you watch the Divergent movies through the lens of over-the-top MOVIE, they are quite enjoyable. Regardless of whether they were intended that way, they work as cheesy adventures. And not bad-good, just good. Like movies made in a more naive time in which you could have scenery-chewing villains and whatnot (which is what Darth Vader is, writ large).
So tell me what you think of the above, and what are your own movies that fit this category? Thanks!