I already know what you are thinking. This topic has been covered millions of times by much more talented and knowledgeable people. Trust me, I have read just as many underrated films lists as you have. That is one reason why I believe that this will hopefully be a fresh take on the subject. The other reason is because I have limited the list to movies from the current century. That means that many of the usual suspects (Fight Club or any Stanley Kubrick film come to mind) will be absent from this list. Hopefully I can make a case for these misinterpreted, unseen, unappreciated or disliked films. I have blabbed enough; on to the list.
These films will be in alphabetical order. I struggled while trying to whittle the list down to 15. It would take me days to order the list by preference.
1. The Adjustment Bureau (2011) Phillip K. Dick adaptations always fall into two categories: instant classic (Minority Report) or dud (Paycheck). The Adjustment Bureau was liked, but not loved. It had its detractors, but no one hated it. Yes, the ending is cheesy. However, Matt Damon and Emily Blunt’s awesome chemistry cancelled out that cheese.
2. Adventureland (2009) This movie not only brought the laughs, but it did not forget to bring some heart as well. Also, the scene with “Breaking the Law” is pure gold.
3. Attack the Block (2011) This movie revolves around Nick Frost and some British teens fighting aliens. Next, please.
4. Black Dynamite (2009) This is a perfect example of how a spoof should be. It mocks the genre, while also showing vast knowledge of and respect for it.
5. Buried (2010) Somehow Ryan Reynolds and a coffin provided for the most suspenseful movie I have seen in a long time.
6. The Foot Fist Way (2006) Anything that introduces Danny McBride to the world is great in my book.
7. House of the Devil (2009) Quite simply the best American horror movie since The Blair Witch Project.
8. and 9. Layer Cake (2004) and RocknRolla (2008) I included these movies together because they were generally dismissed for the same reason, being clones of early Guy Ritchie movies. RocknRolla was actually directed by Ricthie himself, while Layer Cake was directed by one of his proteges, Matthew Vaughn. Just because a film delves into familiar territory does not mean that it is bad.
10. Observe and Report (2009) Taxi Driver by way of the Apatow generation.
11. Public Enemies (2009) I understand the argument, Johhny Depp + Christian Bale + gangster film should equal greatness. This movie was only very good, but it is still worthy.
12. Shoot ‘Em Up (2007) An American, more insane version of Hot Fuzz. Clive Owen disposes of a villain with a carrot.
13. Unbreakable (2000) What if Superman did not know he was Superman? That is the driving force behind Unbreakable.
14. Warrior (2011) It is a simple formula: Rocky with MMA fighting, but the cast brings their A+ game.
15. The Way of the Gun (2000) This film was unfairly lost in the post-Tarantino glut of hyper-narrative crime films. The end shootout alone was worth the viewing.
Which of the movies do you agree are underrated and deserve a second chance? Which ones do you hate with a passion? What films did I leave out? Respond in the comments section.