Photo: Underrated Movies, The Nice Guys and Ad Astra
Subheading: There is not a year that passes that excellent films are released and underperform at the box office. Whether it be due to a poor marketing campaign or an unfortunate release date next to a big blockbuster, sometimes the best films of the year go mostly unnoticed by audiences even when critically they are acclaimed. These films, incredible as they may be, do not get the love they should. Therefore, giving the films credit in retrospect is important.
Filmmakers work tirelessly to have their visions shown to audiences yet even when that vision is successfully realized, it is not seen by as many people as it was intended to. Within this article are ten films from the past five years, not including 2021, that were excellent but for one reason or another flew under the radar. In no particular order, here are the ten most underrated films of the past five years.
Related article: The Complete List of 2021 Oscar Nominations Celebrations, Surprises & Snubs | The Show Must Go On
Related article: April Movies Release Schedule: The Most Accurate List of Every Movie Coming Out in April Live Updates
Each and every year, there are films released that do not get the love or shine that they should have. Whether it be due to a poor marketing campaign or an unfortunate release date next to a big blockbuster, sometimes the best films of the year go mostly unnoticed by audiences even when critically they are acclaimed. While Im sure there are excellent films that went under my radar as well, I have compiled what in my opinion are the ten most underrated films of the last five years, not including 2021, in no particular order.
As the directorial debut of actor Joel Edgerton, The Gift released in 2015 to critical praise as well as profitable numbers at the box office yet just five years later, no one talks about it. Starring Jason Bateman, Rebecca Hall, and Joel Edgerton, the film follows a couple who after moving back to the husbands hometown receive unwelcomed visits by an old acquaintance. This mystery-thriller is engaging from start to finish, Edgerton knows exactly how to position his characters to maximize tension. The performances of both Edgerton and Bateman stand out as some of the best dramatic work the two have done and the controversial ending is one that I still think about to this day.
Available for rental on AppleTV+ and wherever digital films are sold.
Related article: MUST WATCH Hollywood Insiders CEO Pritan Ambroases Love Letter to Black Lives Matter VIDEO
Subscribe to Hollywood Insiders YouTube Channel, by clicking here.
Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping is one of the funniest comedies of the last decade. This mockumentary follows popstar Conner4real, played by Andy Samberg, as he launches his follow-up album to his hit solo project, Thriller, also. From the minds behind The Lonely Island, Samberg, Jorma Taccone, and Akiva Schaffer, this mockumentary takes full advantage of its medium and will consistently have you belly laughing at its absurd moments and hilarious songs. The supporting cast in this film is incredible stars from Simon Cowell to Justin Timberlake to Bill Hader all make appearances.
Directed by Taccone and Schaffer, who both also star in the film, Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping has heart to it the film explores friendships and how they evolve, almost mirroring the three friends rise to stardom with The Lonely Island. The film was marketed as a Justin Bieber parody film, against the wishes of the three stars, and was met with lukewarm box-office reception despite performing well critically. I urge any and all comedy fans to give Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping a shot as I did, you will not regret it.
Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping: Available for rental on Amazon Prime Video.
Related article: The Power of Positivity: Ikorodu Bois + Chris Hemsworth + Russo Brothers + Sam Hargrave
Limited Time Offer FREE Subscription to Hollywood Insider
Click here to read more on Hollywood Insiders vision, values and mission statement here Media has the responsibility to better our world Hollywood Insider fully focuses on substance and meaningful entertainment, against gossip and scandal, by combining entertainment, education, and philanthropy.
The Nice Guys feels like a classic 70s buddy cop film that would have supplanted its spot in cinematic history decades prior to its 2016 release. Yet unfortunately, perhaps due to its proximity in release to MarvelsCaptain America: Civil War, it underperformed at the box office.
Starring Ryan Gosling and Russell Crowe as they investigate the death of an adult-film star in smoggy 1970s Los Angeles, the film is a joy from start to finish. Writer and director Shane Blacks quick, smart dialogue keeps you engaged from scene to scene captivated by our two lead characters. This is another film that has consistent laughs and deserves more credit for being the excellent film it was than it got at the time of its release.
The Nice Guys: Streamable on Hulu.
Kathryn Bigelows gripping drama, Detroit, depicting the cities 1967 riots after repeated confrontations between the black community and Detroit police released to box-office failure in 2017. This film is utterly heart-breaking and had my stomach turning throughout as the clear abuse of power and racial discrimination and violence occurs on screen. While it is by no means enjoyable in the traditional sense, Detroit is an important watch. The subject matter of the films true story is unfortunately still scarily relevant to the present day and it is a shame that this film went under the radar of both audiences and the academy. With powerhouse performances from actors such as John Boyega, Anthony Mackie, and Will Poulter, Detroit is a film that needs to be seen, so I implore you to make the time to do so.
Detroit: Available for rental on the Google Play Store.
Related article: Hollywood Insiders CEO Pritan Ambroase: The Importance of Venice Film Festival as the Protector of Cinema
Related article: The Masters of Cinema Archives: Hollywood Insider Pays Tribute to La Vie En Rose, Exclusive Interview with Director Olivier Dahan
From the mind of Aneesh Chaganty, Searching is a mystery film starring John Cho as his character David Kim searches for his missing daughter. What makes this fairly conventional premise so interesting is its creativity in its medium. The film is a screen-life film, meaning it is all shot to look as if it is on screens such as laptops, phones, etc. Searching is one of the most creatively told stories Ive ever seen on the big screen. The amount of information about the plot and characters Chaganty is able to convey visually is incredible.
The opening five-minute sequence is one of the most emotional openings to a film since Pixars Up. The film is heartfelt and emotionally gripping, having something to say about both grief and family. Searching is truly one of my favorite films of all time and while performing well for its budget at the box office, got no love at the Academy Awards and deserves to be seen by all movie fans.
Searching: Available for rental on FandangoNow.
From writers Daveed Diggs, of Hamilton fame, and Rafael Casal comes Blindspotting starring the two writers. The film follows best friends Collin and Miles during Collins last few days of parole. This feel is incredibly intelligent having things to say about race, police brutality, life in underserved communities, the judicial system, and interracial friendships yet with all of these dense thematic elements the film is very fun and upbeat. Diggs and Casal are both excellent in the film and play off each other extremely well.
Related article: Myers-Briggs Personality Goes Hollywood: Which Movie & TV Characters Are the Same As Your Personality Type? | The Complete Guide
Related article: Reliably Hilarious Danny McBride: Give Him the Recognition He Deserves
The way the two writers incorporate rapping in the film is also excellent and effective and had a very distinct Hamilton feel. This is another film that I would implore film fans to see as it is both enjoyable and educational, broadening perspectives on important social issues. The film wasnt seen by nearly enough people and it needs to be.
Blindspotting: Streamable on TNT.
Originally slated to be a part of the Cloverfield anthology series, director Julius Avery proved to producer J.J. Abrams that his zombie-war film, Overlord, was quality enough to stand on its own. Starring talents such as Wyatt Russell and Jovan Adepo as soldiers in World War II deep behind enemy lines, Overlord mixes classic war film action with zombie horror perfectly. The opening plane sequence is one of the most intense openings to a war film since Saving Private Ryan.
The characters are endearing and the effects are visually astounding, yet the film did not blow the doors off of the box office as it could have. Overlord was an original film that found itself overlooked by audiences and that is a shame because it is truly one of the most exciting films of the decade.
Overlord: Streamable on Amazon Prime Video.
Related article: An Analytical Look, and Listen, into 2021 Oscar Nominees for Best Original Score
Related article: Twitter Backlash: Demand An Apology From Esquire UK For Stating Protagonists of Promising Young Woman and Joker Are Alike
Starring Shia LaBeouf, Zack Gottsagen, and Dakota Johnson, The Peanut Butter Falcon is one of the sweetest and most inspirational films Ive ever seen. The film follows Zak, a 22-year-old man with Down Syndrome, as he tries to travel with his new friend, Tyler, to North Carolina to meet his professional wrestling idol. This film, in my mind, is bigger than just a movie. This film is the living proof of its message, do not let anyone tell you what you cannot do.
I will not spoil any of the films wonderfully touching plot, but what I will say is that it carries with it some very valuable and thought-provoking lessons that I think should be heard by everyone. Gottsagen is incredible in the role of Zak and anchors the entire film with his charm as well as his chemistry with LaBeouf. The film didnt receive nearly enough love at the Oscars but did succeed financially, but not to the degree it should have. This is an excellent, touching film and is another important watch for everyone.
The Peanut Butter Falcon: Streamable on Amazon Prime Video.
Ad Astra, set in the near future, stars Brad Pitt as Major Roy McBride, an astronaut, who is on the journey to Neptune to investigate a signal from his fathers space station, a station to which all aboard were believed to be dead. This film bombed at the box office despite it being visually incredible. The cinematography by Hoyte van Hoytema, who also shot Interstellar, is truly an accomplishment.
Related article: Brad Pitts Plan B Entertainment: A Tribute to One of the Biggest Champions of Auteur-Driven Films | Minari
Related article: A Tribute to Brad Pitt: His Greatest Roles & Transformations The Winners Journey
The performances are also very impressive, Pitt is incredibly subdued in his performance which feels very real. His character goes on a significant emotional journey despite his emotionless performance Tommy Lee Jones also appears in the film and is equally as great. While it is understandable why the film did not blow the doors off the box office, despite being aesthetically a blockbuster the film is paced like a slow-burn indie film. This slower, more nuanced pace was something I enjoyed and appreciated, and would highly recommend the film if that is up your alley.
Ad Astra: Streamable on CinemaxGO.
Perhaps the most unlucky film on this list, Love and Monsters was delayed and forced to be released straight to VOD due to the Covid-19 Pandemic. The film stars Dylan OBrien as he traverses the monster apocalypse in search of his high school girlfriend Aimee. This movie has the entire package: thrills, laughs, and heart. Dylan OBrien is excellent in the lead role and elevates the film at every turn. The world of the monster apocalypse is an exceptionally fun and interesting one and I hope to see more of it in the future. The film was dealt a bad hand due to its unfortunate release timing making its financial success underwhelming at best, yet the film still stands out amongst the crowd when reflecting on the films of 2020.
Love and Monsters: Available for rental on Vudu
Happy Watching! Enjoy!
By Sean Aversa
Click here to read Hollywood Insiders CEO Pritan Ambroases love letter to Black Lives Matter, in which he tackles more than just police reform, press freedom and more click here.
An excerpt from the love letter: Hollywood Insiders CEO/editor-in-chief Pritan Ambroase affirms, Hollywood Insider fully supports the much-needed Black Lives Matter movement. We are actively, physically and digitally a part of this global movement. We will continue reporting on this major issue of police brutality and legal murders of Black people to hold the system accountable. We will continue reporting on this major issue with kindness and respect to all Black people, as each and every one of them are seen and heard. Just a reminder, that the Black Lives Matter movement is about more than just police brutality and extends into banking, housing, education, medical, infrastructure, etc. We have the space and time for all your stories. We believe in peaceful/non-violent protests and I would like to request the rest of media to focus on 95% of the protests that are peaceful and working effectively with positive changes happening daily. Media has a responsibility to better the world and Hollywood Insider will continue to do so.
Ways to support Black Lives Matter Movement to end systemic racism
Do you know the hidden messages in Call Me By Your Name? Find out behind the scenes facts in the full commentary and In-depth analysis of the cinematic masterpiece
A Tribute To The Academy Awards: All Best Actor/Actress Speeches From The Beginning Of Oscars 1929-2019 | From Rami Malek, Leonardo DiCaprio To Denzel Washington, Halle Berry & Beyond | From Olivia Colman, Meryl Streep To Bette Davis & Beyond
In the 32nd Year Of His Career, Keanu Reeves Face Continues To Reign After Launching Movies Earning Over $4.3 Billion In Total John Wick, Toy Story 4, Matrix, And Many More
underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies, underrated movies
- Michigan Congressmen and Women Can Work Together, Some Times - wbckfm.com - wbckfm.com - July 11th, 2021
- Netflix's 'Resident Evil' Anime Shows Off Exactly Why People Love the Franchise - Thrillist - July 11th, 2021
- The best TV series to watch on Netflix, Amazon Prime, Now, BritBox and more this July 2021 - iNews - July 11th, 2021
- No Hands Clapping - by Jonah Goldberg - The Remnant - The Dispatch - July 11th, 2021
- 50 Best Zombie Movies of the 21st Century - Cultured Vultures - July 1st, 2021
- Fewer in NJ getting COVID, and most are unvaccinated, Murphy says - New Jersey 101.5 FM - July 1st, 2021
- In Between The Poop And The Pope 105.7 The Point - 105.7 The Point - July 1st, 2021
- How many Halloween movies are there ? The complete Michael Myers timeline to watch before Halloween Kills arrived - Sportskeeda - July 1st, 2021
- Lucifer And Army Of The Dead Top Nielsens As Cruella Debuts On Disney+ - Forbes - July 1st, 2021
- What to watch on Netflix Top 10: Most popular shows May 28 - Tom's Guide - June 1st, 2021
- Box Office is Back Thanks to A Quiet Place Part II and World War Z - Film School Rejects - June 1st, 2021
- Army of the Dead Is One of Netflix's Biggest Hits with 72 Million Account Views and Counting - MovieWeb - June 1st, 2021
- New from Netflix in June: series, films and documentaries Explica .co - Explica - June 1st, 2021
- 10 greatest movie trilogies of all time - The Independent - May 21st, 2021
- Army Of The Dead (2021) - Rotten Tomatoes - May 21st, 2021
- The 10 Best Alien Invasion Movies - Cinelinx - May 8th, 2021
- 40 Years Ago: 'Friday the 13th Part 2' Makes Jason a Killer - Ultimate Classic Rock - May 8th, 2021
- If Browns Take a Wide Receiver in Round 1... - Yardbarker - April 23rd, 2021
- Former Bengals Great Gives His Thoughts on Penei Sewell and Ja'Marr Chase Debate - Yardbarker - April 23rd, 2021
- Ozzie Albies and Dansby Swanson are showing us why early-season stats can be meaningless - Yardbarker - April 23rd, 2021
- Cubs place OF Joc Pederson on 10-day injured list - Yardbarker - April 23rd, 2021
- 3 Browns Players Who Could Be Impacted By Draft Picks - Yardbarker - April 23rd, 2021
- Eagles could move up in first round of NFL Draft? - Yardbarker - April 23rd, 2021
- Steve Kerr weighs in on Kelly Oubre Jr. coming off the bench - Yardbarker - April 23rd, 2021
- Chargers Top 15 Players They Could Take at 13 - Yardbarker - April 23rd, 2021
- Q2 Montana this Morning top stories with Victoria Hill 4-5-21 - Yahoo News - April 5th, 2021
- Every Alice Cooper album, ranked from worst to best - Louder - March 9th, 2021
- Ranking the Live-Action Members of Superman's Supporting Cast - tor.com - March 9th, 2021
- 3 Asian Actors Making Their Hollywood Debut This Year, Thanks To Marvel - Tatler Malaysia - March 9th, 2021
- 20 Best Movies About Viruses and Pandemics - Parade - February 16th, 2021
- Edgar Wright: All Of His Movies, Ranked According To Box Office Gross - Screen Rant - February 16th, 2021
- Horror Fans Reveal The Movie Scenes That Made Them Physically Ill - We Got This Covered - February 16th, 2021
- This week on "Sunday Morning" (February 7) - CBS News - February 9th, 2021
- WandaVision Episode 6 release date and spoiler; Everything we know so far - Republic TV - February 9th, 2021
- The Weird Old West: Horror And Fantasy-Themed Westerns - Looper - February 5th, 2021
- Our 9 favorite war films from the 60s - We Are The Mighty - February 2nd, 2021
- Cinema: top 10 horror and horror in 2021 - Inspired Traveler - February 2nd, 2021
- The Best Disney and Nickelodeon Pop Stars, Ranked - Vulture - January 25th, 2021
- Ten of the Best Recent Horror and Sci-Fi Movies to Stream Right Now - tor.com - January 22nd, 2021
- The Top 10 Horror Movies We're Waiting To See In 2021 - Flickering Myth - January 22nd, 2021
- Cambridge rated the best place to survive a 'zombie apocalypse' - Cambridgeshire Live - January 22nd, 2021
- 10 Post-Apocalyptic Movies That Every Sci-Fi Fan Should Watch in 2021 - OtakuKart - January 15th, 2021
- 'The White Tiger', 'Malcolm & Marie', 'Don't Look Up', 'Red Notice': New Hollywood movies to be streamed on Netflix - DNA India - January 15th, 2021
- Best new movies coming out in 2021: On streaming and (hopefully) in theaters - syracuse.com - January 9th, 2021
- Xbox Live Games with Gold titles for January 2021 revealed - Shacknews - January 9th, 2021
- 2021: Very insightful industry predictions - Property Industry Eye - January 3rd, 2021
- Best Horror Movies of 2020 - Sprout Wired - December 31st, 2020
- The top 10 films of 2020 - CBC.ca - December 28th, 2020
- The 10 Best Horror Games of 2020 | Game Rant - GameRant - December 28th, 2020
- 10 Games that Helped Me Stay In Touch With My Friends During 2020s Lockdown - IGN India - December 28th, 2020
- SwitchArcade Round-Up: 'BIT.TRIP' Series, 'Door Kickers', 'DungeonTop', and Today's Other New Releases and Sales - Touch Arcade - December 28th, 2020
- Peninsula, The Call & more: Here are the top 10 Korean films of 2020 that you should watch - PINKVILLA - December 19th, 2020
- What vets can learn from It's a Wonderful Life - We Are The Mighty - December 19th, 2020
- The Best TV Shows of 2020 - Pajiba Entertainment News - December 19th, 2020
- The 10 best games of 2020: In a pandemic, play was critical - Los Angeles Times - December 12th, 2020
- Emerge from the slog of 2020 and into the promise of tomorrow with these films - Kansas City Pitch - December 11th, 2020
- Research: Millions of smart devices vulnerable to hacking - The Associated Press - December 8th, 2020
- Op-ed: Will audiences return to the movies? They already have, IMAX CEO says - CNBC - November 20th, 2020
- 10 Great Recent Horror Movies from 2020 You Might Have Missed - Bloody Disgusting - November 20th, 2020
- Want to see something really scary? - Dothan Eagle - November 16th, 2020
- Ranking the Friday the 13th Movies | 411MANIA - 411mania.com - November 16th, 2020
- PlayStation 2: 10 Cancelled Games We Wanted To See | Game Rant - GameRant - November 16th, 2020
- Why are there no James Bond games? - GamesIndustry.biz - November 12th, 2020
- 'The Walking Dead: World Beyond' Showrunner Matt Negrete on Expanding the 'Walking Dead' Universe - Collider.com - November 9th, 2020
- Kevin Love invests in first mental health gym initiative - Yardbarker - November 6th, 2020
- Chiefs trade RB DeAndre Washington to Dolphins - Yardbarker - November 6th, 2020
- The 'QBs with the most NFL starts' quiz - Yardbarker - November 6th, 2020
- Bengals unlikely to trade receiver John Ross before deadline - Yardbarker - November 6th, 2020
- Rockets expected to rebuff trade interest in James Harden - Yardbarker - November 6th, 2020
- Seven players the Mets should target in free agency - Yardbarker - November 6th, 2020
- Orioles GM: ownership is not selling the team - Yardbarker - November 6th, 2020
- 10 underrated horror movies to watch on Halloween - The Indian Express - November 1st, 2020
- Brendan Gallagher Means Everything to the Canadiens - Yardbarker - November 1st, 2020
- Seattle Kraken will wait to name head coach - Yardbarker - November 1st, 2020
- Report: Elton Brand, Sixers agree to multiyear extension - Yardbarker - November 1st, 2020
- Report: Seahawks were interested in trading for Aldon Smith - Yardbarker - November 1st, 2020
- Sam Hinkie has no intention of ever returning to NBA - Yardbarker - November 1st, 2020
- 'Babyteeth', 'True History of the Kelly Gang' and 'The Invisible Man' Lead the 2020 AATCA Nominations - Concrete Playground - November 1st, 2020
- Former All-Star PG Jeff Teague on free agency: 'I want to win' - Yardbarker - November 1st, 2020
- The Most Terrifying Scares in Video Games - IGN Southeast Asia - October 28th, 2020
Reviewed and Recommended by Erik Baquero