Posted by: ckckred | July 6, 2013

The 6 Most Underrated Movies

Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me is one of the five I mention

Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me is one of the six I mention

I haven’t had a list for a while, so I’d thought I’d pick 6 movies I find highly underrated.  What I mean by underrated is that they haven’t received the praise or acclaim they deserve.  These are six great films that audiences have ignored and unfairly maligned.

6. To The Wonder

The most recent of the films I mentioned, To The Wonder has divided audiences like no other movie this year.  Even the biggest Terrence Malick fans were uneasy about the film.  But I loved To The Wonder and found it to be a rather personal film.  While To The Wonder has a repetitive structure, it’s an absolute stunner.

5. The Godfather Part III

The first two Godfather movies are two of the finest films ever made and established director Francis Ford Coppola as cinema’s greatest artist of the 70s.  But when New Hollywood crashed down in the early 80s, Coppola has never quite fully recovered.  The Godfather Part III might have been an attempt for the director to regain his fame and as well pay his debts, but the film as a whole still has a level of intensity missing in a majority of movies.  That’s not to say The Godfather Part III is flawless (with all due respect to Sofia Coppola, she’s not the world’s greatest actress), nor does it match the first two.  But the montage near the end of the film reminded me why I fell in love with the original in the first place.

4. Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me

Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me is the bleakest film director David Lynch has made, which is saying something.  It received incredibly harsh reviews and even the most devoted Twin Peaks fans turned on Lynch.  I, however, think it is a great movie and while not achieving the perfection of Lynch’s best work or the series is a great, suspenseful story.  Perhaps Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me is an unnecessary prequel, but it’s a great piece of artistry.

3. Eyes Wide Shut

Stanley Kubrick is in my eyes the greatest filmmaker in cinema history.  Eyes Wide Shut, his final movie, remains one of the most polarizing movies of the 20th Century, not just for its content (Warner Bros. infamously released a censored version in theaters to secure an R rating) but for its moodiness and surrealism.  But Eyes Wide Shut is a masterpiece and one of the best films of the 90s.  Kubrick’s visual perfection has never been so acute and he offers perhaps his darkest portrayal of humankind.

2. The King of Comedy

Martin Scorsese has made plenty of cinema’s most acclaimed movies, but there’s a great number of films he made that were ignored.  The director struggled commercially in the 80s as consumerism took over Hollywood but the director achieved one of his finest films with The King of Comedy, which could perhaps be described as a late-night show version of Taxi Driver.  Robert De Niro gives one of his performances as Rubert Pupkin and Jerry Lewis devotes himself to his role as a talk show host.  Funny and frightening, The King of Comedy is one of Scorsese’s greatest movies.

1. A. I. Artificial Intelligence

Stanley Kubrick originally envisioned the story of A. I. and Steven Spielberg fulfilled the dream.  The result gave way to a movie that mixed the darkness that stirs behind Kubrick’s films like A Clockwork Orange and The Shining and the childhood innocence in Spielberg’s pictures such as E. T. and Empire of the Sun.  Critics of A. I. declared that this combination destroys the film, but I find A. I. to be the best film the director has crafted.  It’s a movie that’s emotional and yet terrifying at the same time, a beautiful yet repulsive masterpiece.  One of the greatest movies in cinema history.

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Responses

  1. Great selections! Agree with all of these, although I’d say The King of Comedy is pretty well regarded.

    • Thanks! I think The King of Comedy typically gets overshadowed in Scorsese’s catalog but I think it’s one of his best.

  2. Agree with all your choices except Godfather III. I agree its editing is near-perfect, but Coppola directs the films like he’s trying to wrap all three movies into one.

    Nice list!

    • Thanks! The Godfather Part III does have its share of flaws and one major problem is that it acts as a conclusion, but overall I found myself wrapped up in the movie.

  3. Great post, glad to see Godfather III getting a shoutout.

    • Thanks! The Godfather Part III is very underrated.

  4. May I please take time to humiliate myself? I haven’t seen A.I. I need to fix that don’t I?

    • Oh, I highly recommend it. It’s a very decisive film as it splits between Kubrick’s moodiness and Spielberg’s lightheartedness but I absolutely love it.

  5. Good choices! Good shout on Eyes Wide Shut. It seems to get dismissed as boring and just full of sex but I think it’s brilliant. Definitely one of my favourite Kubrick films.

    • Thanks! Eyes Wide Shut’s one of my favorite Kubrick movies as well. I watched it again and it improved more after a second viewing.

  6. Wow. Ambitious topic! LOL 😀

    I’m with you on King of Comedy and AI. I love them both, and neither gets the credit they deserve.

    Godfather III though, CK. Eesh. LOL I think pop culture has it properly rated as being one of the worst sequels ever. It has its moments, but… 🙄

    I owe Eyes Wide Shut a rewatch. Since I started blogging, I’ve discovered it has a cult following…

    • Thanks for the comment. Glad you agree with A. I. and The King of Comedy. I like The Godfather Part III, even though it pales in comparison to the previous two movies. Definitely try giving Eyes Wide Shut another shot. I loved it more after watching it again.

  7. I’m with you on A.I., which is a stunning film. There’s also plenty to like in Fire Walk with Me, which includes some of Lynch’s most surreal sequences. I agree that Godfather III isn’t all bad, though I feel like the great elements get lost within some of the mess. Still, one bad actress doesn’t mean it’s a disaster. No argument from me about Eyes Wide Shut either.

    • Thanks for the comment. Glad you agree with my choices. Godfather III gets a worse rep than it deserves and while it’s structure is a bit cluttered, there’s some great scenes.

  8. Nice list! It always hard loving films that are underrated; they rarely get the recognition they deserve. Definitely agree with you on Eyes Wide Shut and AI. I’m a big fan of both of those films. Still have yet to see To the Wonder and The King of Comedy but I’m looking forward to both of them!

    • Thanks! Glad you agree on AI and Eyes Wide Shut. Both are great and very under-appreciated films.

  9. Fantastic list! (I have to smack myself for not having seen To The Wonder yet.) I was a huge Twin Peaks fan, but when the movie first came out, I was one of those who was SO disappointed and rather vocal about it as well. But I saw it again a few years ago, and I was blown away. I don’t know if it works as narrative, but you’re right, it’s so bleak and so beautifully put together. I was so wrong about this movie.

    A truly excellent post!

    • Thanks! Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me is very underrated and really blew me away. I wouldn’t put it up there with Lynch’s best work but it’s an amazing film for sure.

  10. I agree with you on A.I. How did that not get more cred??? Godfather III had a lot to live up to, but the montage near the end was beautiful, as you said.

    • Thanks for the comment. A. I. is a very underrated movie, I love it. The montage at the end of Godfather Part III is very effective and matches the best moments of the previous two, though it pales in comparison to the others.

  11. Cool list CK. I still can’t believe I’ve yet to see Eyes Wide Shut. Or A.I. Or Part III. Or, well this entire list. LOL!!! You’ve given me some work to do. Thanks. 🙂

    • No problem. You’ve got to see all of these films. I love each and everyone of these movies.

  12. I like your choice of A.I.
    But Godfather 3 I will admit isnt as bad as its made out to be, but I also can’t really say its good.

    • Thanks! Godfather III has many flaws, but I still enjoyed the movie overall.

  13. Oh, i love this list. AI is such an incredible, heartbreaking movie and Eyes Wide Shut is simply fascinating.

    • Thanks! Both A. I. and Eyes Wide Shut are great.

  14. So glad that Eyes Wide Shut is included in your choices! It’s one of my favorite Kubrick films. Great list.

    • Thanks! Eyes Wide Shut’s one of Kubrick’s most underrated.

  15. Have to admit I still need to see Godfather III and The King of Comedy. Agree with A.I., which is an awesome movie.

    • Thanks for the comment. I love The King of Comedy and while Godfather III puts off most people, I really enjoy it. A. I. is a great movie.

  16. I think “King of Comedy” is well rated, just unloved. Most people haven’t watched it, and as a film it doesn’t lend itself to repeated viewing like other Scorsese films.

    “A.I.” is not bad, just too long.

    Good list.

    • Thanks! Unloved is a great way to describe The King of Comedy. Most people just tend to ignore it.

  17. Yeah I liked A.I. as well and glad you included it. It was a pretty creepy sci-fi and I thought one of Jude Law’s better performances.

    • Thanks for the comment. A. I.’s a great film and it’s definitely one of Jude Law’s highlights.

  18. Cool list. I have only seen Eyes Wide Shut and A.I. from it, but that was ages ago. Would love to revisit both of them sometime soon.

    • Thanks! I love both movies.

  19. “To The Wonder has divided audiences like no other movie this year. “ Except for Man of Steel. The discrepancy between critics and audiences on that flick is HUGE.

    I didn’t realize The King of Comedy and Eyes Wide Shut were underrated. I absolutely adore those movies.

    Great post!!

    • Thanks! Both The King of Comedy and Eyes Wide Shut are great. Man of Steel has definitely divided critics and audiences.


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