8 Movies Critics Loved (But Audiences Hated)


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Critics and audiences often watch movies through completely different lenses. The critic has their notepad ready, analyzing every shot and appreciating the nuances of the director’s vision. Meanwhile, the average viewer just wants to be entertained, escape reality for a couple of hours, and not feel like they need a film studies degree to understand what’s happening on screen.

When these two perspectives clash, Rotten Tomatoes scores often reveal the disconnect. Here are eight examples of movies that critics loved but left audiences cold.

Image Credit: Cheapism; Amazon; IMDb.

1. ‘Ghostbusters’ (2016)

  • Critics Score: 74%
  • Audience Score: 49%
  • Critics enjoyed the all-female reboot of “Ghostbusters,” praising Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones for their performances. They noted that the film managed to carve out its identity despite inevitable comparisons to the 1984 classic. Audiences, however, were like, “Where’s Bill Murray?” and “Not my Ghostbusters!” Many felt it failed to capture the original’s charm and was more about ticking diversity boxes than telling a good story.
  • Image Credit: IMDb.

    2. ‘Uncut Gems’ (2019)

  • Critics Score: 91%
  • Audience Score: 52%
  • Critics finally liked something that Adam Sandler made after notoriously hating everything that involved him on a screen, and audiences hated it. Sandler’s frenetic turn as a gambling-addicted jeweler had critics raving about his unexpected range in “Uncut Gems.” They loved the film’s relentless tension and gritty portrayal of New York’s Diamond District. Audiences, though? Not so much. Many found it too chaotic and stressful and were like, “Can we get the Happy Gilmore Sandler back?”

    Image Credit: IMDb.

    3. ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ (2017)

  • Critics Score: 91%
  • Audience Score: 41%
  • Critics thought “The Last Jedi” was a bold, emotional ride, with stunning visuals and deep character arcs. They appreciated Rian Johnson’s daring choices and fresh direction. Audiences, on the other hand, were ready to jump into a Sarlacc pit. They were peeved by the treatment of legacy characters and the plot’s curveballs, calling it a betrayal to the saga’s essence. 

    Image Credit: IMDB.

    4. ‘King Kong’ (2005)

  • Critics Score: 84%
  • Audience Score: 50%
  • Peter Jackson’s remake of the 1933 classic had critics beating their chests in approval, praising the visual effects and the homage to the original. Audiences, though, found it way too long and a bit of a drag.  
  • Image Credit: IMDb.

    5. ‘The Witch’ (2015)

  • Critics Score: 90%
  • Audience Score: 60%
  • Audiences were not bewitched by the slow-burn horror and found the 2015 movie, to say the least, as thrilling as watching paint dry on an old barn. Critics, on the other hand, appreciated the eerie atmosphere, authentic 1600s setting, and Anya Taylor-Joy’s spellbinding debut, as well as the film’s meticulous historical accuracy and unsettling mood, declaring it an intelligent piece of horror cinema.  

    Image Credit: IMDb.

    6. ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’ (2005)

    Critics Score: 83%Audience Score: 51%

    Tim Burton’s quirky take on Roald Dahl’s classic split opinions upon the movie’s release in 2005. Critics enjoyed Depp’s eccentric take on Willy Wonka and the film’s visual flair. Burton’s signature gothic style and imaginative set designs brought a new, eerie dimension to the beloved story. Audiences, though, missed the warmth of Gene Wilder’s original portrayal, finding Depp’s performance creepy rather than charming. 

    Image Credit: Amazon.

    7. ‘Mother!’ (2017)

  • Critics Score: 68%
  • Audience Score: 51%
  • The more ambiguous a movie, the more critics seem to love it. Directed by Darren Aronofsky, “Mother!” is a symbolic, chaotic ride that critics found thought-provoking and audacious. They appreciated its bold storytelling, rich allegory, and Jennifer Lawrence’s intense performance. However, moviegoers left the cinema scratching their heads and feeling disturbed rather than entertained. 

    Image Credit: IMDb.

    8. ‘Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull’ (2008)

  • Critics Score: 77%
  • Audience Score: 53%
  • Critics found some nostalgia and fun in Indy’s return in 2008 “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull”, appreciating the familiar adventure vibes and action sequences. They gave it a pass despite the over-the-top plot. Audiences, however, were less forgiving, slamming it for its ludicrous storyline (hello, fridge-nuking and aliens) and feeling it tarnished a beloved franchise.
  • This article was produced and syndicated by MediaFeed.
  • Image Credit: IMDb.

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