Sometimes, not every movie can be generally liked. But these are the ones that have its fans and haters. Coming out with my list of the top 10 divisive movies I enjoy didn’t take me long to think of. These are the ones I feel a large majority of people have leaned on being great or scrounges in disappointment from critics and audiences alike. Though it’s not always fun with these opinions are constantly viewed on the internet, more annoying on YouTube.
This shows that movies are subjective, but it also means many people have become annoying in talking about the films that might’ve pushed buttons and started heated debates online or in person. Most of the movies I’ve chosen are what I have loved from the beginning, while a few are those I liked.
It’s interesting to see a movie well-liked by critics but audiences can’t seem to understand, certain entries in a franchise that most though derailed, or the ones that have gotten unnecessary backlash after they’ve been out. Divisive as they may be, these are the ten I might’ve liked more than others.
10) ‘Jurassic World’ (2015)
There’s no denying that the original Jurassic Park is one of the greatest films ever made, thanks to Steven Spielberg’s direction and making audiences believe in dinosaurs with unbelievable visual effects. But it looked like a long time for the fourth installment to bring true until director Colin Trevorrow brought fans back with the park finally open and a new, dangerous dinosaur on the loose. The film itself was a box office smash becoming the second highest-grossing film of 2015. Yet, there have been detractors for the film saying that it relied too much on nostalgia and felt like a complete copy of the first movie. Some people even straight-up hate it. What I’ll say is that there are some dumb moments (not excluding Bryce Dallas Howard outrun a T-Rex in heels), but this was the type of return I was expecting to the franchise.
Jurassic World captured that wonder and excitement that would be in a monster movie that revived this series. Chris Pratt as Owen was an awesome hero, and the dinosaur action was what I expected, even if it’s all CGI. Unlike the last two sequels, this had fun with its premise without being silly but not take itself seriously as well. This was meant to be the kind of summer blockbuster to throw popcorn in your face. If I have to say the hottest take about this, it is the best sequel in the franchise we will ever get at this point.
9) ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ (2018)
We’ve all been waiting a very long time for a Queen biopic to grace the big screen. In the fall of 2018, we finally got it with Bohemian Rhapsody. As one of the most anticipated movies of the year, it surprisingly got mixed reviews from fans and critics, as some called it out for being a dull biopic, containing factual moments wrong, or the fact Bryan Singer’s name was still associated, while the positives came from Rami Malek’s performance and its musical sequences, primarily the entire Live-Aid sequence. After re-watching it to see if my opinion changed, I still can’t get over the inaccuracies that’s for sure, but I now see it as a fun biopic that celebrates the legacy that Freddie Mercury and Queen brought to fans all over.
Compared to other musical biopics, it’s at least in the bottom ten for some, but I ain’t on the bandwagon saying it’s terrible because it isn’t. Nonetheless, the Fox biopic became the tenth highest-grossing film of 2018 and earned itself four Academy Awards, including a Best Actor win for Malek. The fact that Bohemian Rhapsody has supporters and actually love the movie is a good enough reason no everybody has to bash someone’s opinion to take a liking to this. And if you’re on Film Twitter, this is one of your least favorite movies that you can’t stop complaining about.
8) ‘Ghostbusters’ (2016)
Oh, how the internet loves trashing any movie with female leads. 1984’s Ghostbusters is one of the best movies to come out of the ‘80s. But I was excited to see what director Paul Feig brought to this female reboot of Ghostbusters, with a talented cast that includes Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones. Like with any remake or reboot, many believe it ruined their childhood, disliking the trailers for “not being funny and mis-marketed for thinking it takes place in the same universe as the previous two movies.”
Compared to the original classic, it doesn’t come close to being great. But this reboot got mixed-to-positive reviews, holding a 74% on Rotten Tomatoes with an undeserving audience score of 50%. For me, I know it isn’t perfect, and I acknowledge some problems that kept it from being really awesome. I liked the performances, the action was cool, and it had hilarious moments. There are people out there that thought it was passable, and there are a bunch of dislikes on YouTube? I guess we can’t grow up. Believe me when I say I’m one of the good people in this world that doesn’t trash Ghostbusters for trying to do something different and setting a part of the original two movies. I do believe that people who hate this have clearly never taken the time to see it or they hate women. Probably one of the main reasons it didn’t do well at the box office. It’s a good movie, guys, give it a chance.
7) ‘Man of Steel’ (2013)
2013 was the year that was going to bring us Superman in a new light in Man of Steel, Zack Snyder’s newest take on the legendary DC Comics superhero. After the disappointment that was Superman Returns, fans were anticipating a new story with Henry Cavill in the lead. But it took us back that it received mixed reviews when it came out. Some thought the dark take was unneeded, and lack of fun was nowhere to be found.
Is Man of Steel my favorite movie in the DCEU? It isn’t, but I have understood why many others consider it their favorites and one of the best superhero movies of the last decade. Nothing can compare against the first two movies with Christopher Reeve, but this is one of Snyder’s better movies he has ever directed. This was an origin story that’s rooted more into Superman’s past that made this a misunderstood comic book movie from the last decade. Part of me wanted this to be great, but I can see why some thought the romance between Clark Kent and Louis Lane wasn’t the greatest and the destruction of Metropolis rubbed people the wrong way.
6) ‘Avatar’ (2009)
With Avatar and even Titanic, many people will bag on anything James Cameron does after he puts out something. Before it came out, nobody thought this was going to be the highest-grossing movie ever made at the time. This was groundbreaking for its revolutionary visual effects and making perfect use for 3D technology.
But a decade after its release, everybody has suddenly come out of the woodwork and bully the film. Besides the positive reviews and box office success, many complained that it lacked an original story and saying there’s a lack of memorable characters to care about.
Does it get compared heavily with Dances with Wolves, FernGully, and/or Pocahontas? Sure, but every movie borrows plot elements from previous movies. As much as my anticipation for the upcoming sequels have lost my interest due to not knowing if they’ll ever come out, let’s not forget that Avatar brought audiences to a new world, Pandora, filled with wonder and beauty that can be explored the adventure Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) and becoming part of the Na’vi culture. Do I believe it should’ve been #1 movie when it came out? Not necessarily, but I’m not complaining about it now. The only thing that I didn’t like about it is that studios made their movies post-converted 3D because of its major success.
5) ‘Napoleon Dynamite’ (2004)
If you looked at what Jared Hess has done as a director, the only comedy that’s the most successful is 2004’s Napoleon Dynamite. This hit from Fox Searchlight, Paramount Pictures, and MTV Films came out of nowhere, that is until it premiered at Sundance and became very popular as the year continued, making $46 million worldwide on a budget of just $400,000. This made Jon Heder a breakout star in the making, and the screenplay contains some of the most quotable lines to come from a comedy.
The naysayers might complain that this doesn’t contain an actual story in following a geek that might be seen as unlikeable. But isn’t that the point of making a comedy this deadpan hilarious? How could you not enjoy that dance sequence or Pedro? “Gosh!” To me, Napoleon Dynamite is one of my favorite comedies, and I’m happy it has developed a cult following. If there’s anything that shouldn’t be liked about the movie is the animated television show that luckily ended after one season.
4) ‘Juno’ (2007)
Juno was one of the best movies to come out in 2007. Jason Reitman’s comedy-drama about a teenage girl (Ellen Page) who ended up getting pregnant was well-received by critics for its direction, performances, and Diablo Cody’s script, which earned her the Oscar for Best Original Screenplay. It is a movie that touched on teen pregnancy, around the time it was becoming popular in the media, in a way that’s equally heartwarming and hilarious.
As of lately, Fox Searchlight’s sleeper hit isn’t well-liked by others out there with Cody’s script just having unrealistic slangs that some new use and its main character making wise-cracks whenever she can. Some might think it’s made for “hipsters.” This works that only as a dramedy, but as a relatable teen movie to a certain group of people. I love Juno, and I will not take kindly to those trashing it, home skillet.
3) ‘Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom’ (1984)
I love Indiana Jones. There’s only one movie from the franchise that divided audiences, and that is Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. I could’ve talked about Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, but it’s pretty obvious that it stinks. This prequel, in which we see Indy (Harrison Ford) on a new adventure to locate these Sankara stones to save this small village, still brought what we all thought Steven Spielberg would do. Though not many took a liking to this when it came out in 1984, with criticisms aiming at a darker tone that differs from Raiders of the Lost Ark.
Because nothing says PG fun like someone ripping a man’s heart out of its chest. Besides Kate Capshaw’s annoying performance as Willie Scott, I have always enjoyed this film from beginning to end. Because of Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (and Gremlins), we got the PG-13 rating. While I don’t think it’s better than the first or third movies, I personally believe it’s one of the more underrated adventure movies we’ve gotten.
2) ‘Interstellar’ (2014)
After Christopher Nolan completed his amazing Dark Knight trilogy, fans, including me, were wondering what his next project would be. Interstellar was going to be the director’s latest take in the sci-fi genre. We didn’t know what to expect. Was it going to involve time-travel or something better? When it came out, it received favorable reviews from moviegoers. Some complaints that I’ve heard in the past was that that it was too long, contained plot holes of sorts, or it’s not scientifically accurate as some would expect. Nolan took liberties that inspired him directing this in the same vein as 2001: A Space Odyssey or Contact. There’s an existence into how our lives play out and we must discover everything at some point.
Many have cited this as their favorite from his filmography as it showcases beautiful visual effects, Hans Zimmer’s empowering score, and a powerful story about the human connection that binds us together. Interstellar didn’t crack my best of 2014 since the minor issues I had were that I didn’t fully understand the scientific exposition, and the third act had some elements that conflicted with me. Other than that, take all the problems away and see this as an ambitious and thought-provoking sci-fi film.
1) ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ (2017)
As soon as I was making this list, this was number one from the start. I think it’s easy to say Star Wars: The Last Jedi takes the cake for being the Star Wars movie that divided every single fan in the universe. While the film got positive reviews from critics with a high 91% on Rotten Tomatoes, this has gotten experienced a massive fan backlash, holding a ridiculous 43% audience score. A few years later its release, why is everybody still complaining about it like it ruined their lives? The common complaints about the eighth installment in the saga are that there’s too much humor, the way they portrayed Luke, how Snoke was ultimately handled, or how it didn’t meet certain expectations. Honestly, I still love this after three years and appreciated what Johnson did because he took risks. The pointless petitions to remake this? Some people need to get a life.
Nothing thing to complain about the visuals, the performances, and the amazing action. The only thing that can improve the film is completely removing the Canto Bight side plot since it would make it less slow. I know people who either love or hate The Last Jedi. After The Rise of Skywalker met with mediocre reviews after its release, those who have constantly complained about this sequel should give this more credit. And it might be controversial for those calling it great, but it is. Personally, I think those saying it’s the absolute worst movie in the series are just exaggerating. For us fans of the long-lasting sci-fi saga, we will defend this until the day we die.