… well, okay, I’ll be fair. Not all the time.
Yesterday I watched a movie with my fiancé that was rated 4.8 on IMDb. We steeled ourselves for a pretty bad experience; however, we ended up being pleasantly surprised. The movie was not bad in the slightest, and certainly did not deserve a rating as low as 4.8. It was a good family movie, filled with funny and touching moments. We really enjoyed ourselves, and the movie put us in a good mood.
On a different note, we watched a movie the other week that was rated 7.1 on the same site, but if left up to us, we would’ve given it 5 stars tops. It was bland and uninteresting, and we both ended up feeling quite disappointed. Actually, I can list many movies where the ratings promised a good watch, but left us wishing we could get the last two hours of our life back.
These days it feels like a movie has to have a deep meaning behind it in order to be enjoyed. Or otherwise it should be brimming with crude and sexual content before someone can call it a decent movie. The 4.8 movie we watched had neither, but is that enough ground to give it such a lousy rating? Why is it not okay for the humour to be clean, and why is silly fun not acceptable? Some reviewers expressed their dislike for the main actor, and that baffles me… not because I’m biased, but because if I disliked an actor, I wouldn’t even bother watching their movies in the first place. That just seems counterproductive and unnecessary torment.
These days I never rely on rating. Rather, I hurry for the Parental Guidance section to check if the movie has major inappropriate scenes. Some might say, “Oh, don’t be stupid. You’re a grown-up. You can handle a few sex scenes.” Yes, I can handle them, but I don’t want to. I don’t like movies where sex is thrown in just to sell the movie. I strongly believe that a movie can be just as enjoyable without such questionable material.
Of course this does not just apply to movies. There are several books I read that had such positive reviews and high ratings that I never doubted their excellence for a second… until I started reading them, and then I wondered if I was reading the same books everyone was raving about. I ranted about one such book last year… some of you may remember how vehement I was about it. 😉
At the beginning of 2013 I made a resolution: I will not be lured by pretty covers and glowing reviews. So far I’ve managed to stick to it. Sure I’ve experienced some disappointments this year, both in terms of movies and books, but that was a result of uninfluenced decisions. So yay. Score 1 for me.
What am I trying to say here? I guess… don’t let ratings and shiny stars influence your choice in movies or books. Just pick what you think sounds good. Sure it may backfire, but hey… sometimes watching a bad movie with friends or loved ones can be a highly entertaining experience!
Do you usually trust ratings? Are you weak when it comes to pretty covers? What was the last movie or book you watched/read that didn’t live up to expectations and high praise?