Are we still talking about 2013? Well, yes, now is actually the best part of the year in review. You've seen the top 10 lists and a lot of the announcements of awards winners and nominees. It's time to chime in with what you think is missing from all those professional tabulations. It's time to talk about the underseen, underappreciated and underprized. In short, the underrated -- movies either nobody is discussing at all or that too many are discussing as being among the worst of the year.
In the former corner we've got tons of little movies that were little seen in spite of some passionate champions. You've also got the usual indies, foreign films and documentaries that have gone undernoticed amidst all the junk that tried harder (or paid more) to get kudos and critical coverage. And in the latter corner you've got divisive titles like Only God Forgives, Stoker, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty and Pain and Gain.
The conversation about the most underrated movies should actually go on much longer than those about the best of the year, as we take our time warming up to this, or finally seeing that. There sure has been a lot of talk lately about how decent The Lone Ranger is now that it's on video and more people are giving it a chance. Maybe once About Time arrives on DVD or cable it'll eventually become as popular as another of Richard Curtis' movies: Love Actually.
Before you add to this discussion, remember that underrated tends to mean those movies that few critics loved, not those that few people went to see. It's fine to suggest something like Before Midnight, but only if you think it deserves a 100% Rotten Tomatoes score instead of its 98%.
My picks for most underrated include Riddick, which is simply an entertaining little space-Western B movie. I also think Beautiful Creatures and Warm Bodies were more interesting than they were given credit for, since they're YA adaptations. So is Ender's Game, one of the smartest sci-fi blockbusters in some time, which I think is the most underrated of the year on both critic and audience fronts.
What is the most underrated movie of the year?
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