10 Movies That Are Popular And We Don’t Understand Why

Gone Girl
Image Credit: 20th Century Fox.

It never feels good to be left out, but sometimes there’s a pop culture craze you just can’t get on board with. So in the spirit of ensuring people they aren’t alone in not enjoying things, one movie fan takes to an online forum to ask what extremely popular movie people never got the hype about. Unsurprisingly there are many, and even better, none of the people calling out bandwagons they missed are alone. 

1. Mean Girls (2004)

Mean Girls Lacey Chabert, Lindsay Lohan, and Amanda Seyfried
Image Credit: Paramount Pictures.

The original poster and several others agree that Mean Girls is an important but ultimately overhyped movie. One says it’s just a lighter version of Heathers, while another says it’s a movie that had to catch you at the right time because the humor hasn’t aged very well. 

2. Napoleon Dynamite (2004)

Napoleon Dynamite Jon Heder
Image Credit: Twentieth Century Fox.

A phenomenon that, unlike Mean Girls, has all but petered out in 2023, Napoleon Dynamite’s references were inescapable for years after the movie came out. Some film fans say it’s not that good of a movie and was far too overhyped by fans who loved wearing their “Vote for Pedro” shirts. 

3. The Notebook (2004)

The Notebook Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams
Image Credit: New Line Cinema Productions.

Many of the films mentioned in the conversation are acknowledged for their importance or at least given the “it’s not for me” treatment. But people have some strong feelings about The Notebook. Based on the book of the same name by Nicholas Sparks, multiple people say that the two lead characters are actively “awful.” One even says they’ve “never been able to watch the entire thing.” 

4. Toy Story (1995)

Toy Story (1995)
Image Credit: Walt Disney Pictures

The concept of Toy Story, that toys come to life when humans are not around is generally seen as whimsical and fun, but one person says that the idea just freaked them out. Other commenters are delighted to discover they aren’t alone in disliking the widely loved movie. 

5. Elf (2003)

Elf Will Ferrell
Image Credit: Warner Home Video.

Elf proves that some people’s Christmas classic is others’ most hated movie. One respondent says they “find Will Ferrell incredibly obnoxious,” and another agrees, saying, “I find him aggressively unfunny.”

6. The Lord of the Rings Trilogy (2001-2003)

The Lord of the Rings Trilogy (2001-2003)
Image Credit: New Line Cinema

A few movie lovers say they just can’t get invested in the intense world-building of The Lord of the Rings trilogy. But it’s not just a bunch of different fantasy names, races, and locations that keep them at arm’s length from the movies; there’s also the fact that each film is at least three hours long, if not longer. 

7. Gone Girl (2014)

Gone Girl Rosamund Pike
Image Credit: Twentieth Century Fox and Regency Enterprises.

One of the most surprising movies someone says they didn’t enjoy is David Fincher’s much-lauded adaptation of Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl. They say they “didn’t like it one bit,” and judging by the comment likes, they aren’t alone. 

8. Parasite (2019)

Parasite (2019)
Image Credit: CJ Entertainment

Sneaking my own “I just don’t get it” overhyped movie in here, Parasite took the world, and the Oscars, by storm in 2019, but I can’t help feeling like it’s just fine. The home invasion black comedy thriller feels like it ultimately fails as either a comedy or a thriller because it can’t quite commit fully to either. 

9. Titanic (1997)

Titanic Leonardo DiCaprio, Kate Winslet, Billy Zane, and Frances Fisher
Image Credit: Paramount Pictures

James Cameron is not only one of the most influential figures in cinema history for creating the Terminator franchise and reinventing the Alien franchise as an action movie but also for making the highest-grossing movie in the world… twice. The first time was with Titanic, a melodrama romance that turns into a massive-scale disaster movie in its back half. Most people love the film, but some find it overlong and uninteresting in both halves. 

10. Avatar (2009)

Avatar Zoe Saldana and Sam Worthington
Image Credit: Twentieth Century Fox

It’s become a meme that Cameron’s Avatar, the other (and current) highest-grossing film of all time Cameron wrote and directed, had no cultural impact, but the receipts tell a different story. It’s a movie with ardent fans and ardent detractors, so it’s not universally beloved. But it’s undoubtedly a massive phenomenon that missed a lot of people. 

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The Usual Suspects
Image Credit: Gramercy Pictures.

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Katherine Heigl
Image Credit: Shutterstock.

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Best in Show
Photo Credit: Castle Rock Entertainment

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Image Credit: Columbia Pictures.

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Tropic Thunder Ben Stiller
Image Credit: Dreamworks.

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Source: Reddit.

Written by Kyle Logan

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