It is much more common to see big-budget blockbuster movies reach a billion dollars nowadays. What was once a rare feat has become a common occurrence since so much stock is invested in the movie industry. Fans go to the movies more often than ever and tickets cost much more than they used to. But how much value is truly in being a billion-dollar movie?
In theory, a lot of people going to the same movie suggests that the movie must be pretty good, but as the Tomatometer of a lot of billion-dollar movies on Rotten Tomatoes goes to show, some of the highest-grossing movies can sometimes be the worst in terms of quality.
10 Minions Overstay Their Welcome – 55%
When the Minions became the most beloved and talked about characters in Despicable Me (as well as the sequels that followed), it only felt inevitable for them to eventually get their own self-titled spinoff movie. Minions hit theaters in 2015, making $1.159 billion in the process, and currently ranks among the top five highest-grossing animated movies of all time.
The general critics’ consensus suggests that while it does have its funny moments, dedicating an entire movie to the Minions may have forced them to overstay their welcome for the most part.
9 Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest Parodies Jack Sparrow – 53%
Captain Jack Sparrow instantly became one of the most endearing aspects of the original Pirates of the Caribbean. Worldwide love for the character is why the first sequel was able to cross the billion-dollar mark at the box office. The first movie established Sparrow as deceptively silly, while hiding a clever savviness behind a wit that keeps him two steps ahead of his opposition.
The second movie practically retcons who Sparrow was established to be, highlighting his silliness as a defining trait rather than a character trait. Critics didn’t take too kindly to Sparrow becoming a parody of himself.
8 Critics Don’t Hate The Phantom Menace As Much As Fans Do – 52%
For as much hate as The Phantom Menace continues to get from casual fans of the Star Wars franchise, critics never ragged on the movie nearly as much as the average moviegoer. Yes, 52% isn’t a flattering score and still makes it a rotten movie by definition, but critics seem to have had more love for it upon release than the average fan.
Still, critic or non-critic, most viewers can agree that while the movie’s visuals are breathtaking and characters like Darth Maul are the right kind of memorable, characters like an annoying Anakin and Jar Jar Binks put the prequel trilogy on a rocky start.
7 The Rise Of Skywalker Is The New Phantom Menace – 52%
It’s almost ironic to think that The Rise of Skywalker and The Phantom Menace both share the same Tomatometer rating, considering that both movies have been hated venomously by fans since they hit theaters. While Rise of Skywalker was another case of generally mixed reactions from critics, die-hard fans had a lot to complain about.
Most complaints that can be found across social media seem to be directed at the movie retconning the message of the previous movie whilst also introducing ideas at the end of the sequel trilogy that seem to come out of nowhere – namely, Rey being a Palpatine and in love with Kylo Ren.
6 The Lion King (2019) Is Unsurprisingly A Retread – 51%
As has been the case for a lot of remakes (particularly remakes based on Disney’s past animated works), The Lion King is a copy-and-paste retread of the original 1994 movie. It’s not necessarily bad, and surely viewers not familiar with the 1994 original found some enjoyment from it. However, as reviews suggest, viewers who have seen the 1994 version struggled to sit through the exact same thing 25 years later in live-action form.
Still, a voice cast that boasts the likes of Beyoncé and Donald Glover wasn’t going to turn anyone away from seeing this, hence why it became the highest-grossing animated movie of all time.
5 Alice In Wonderland 3D Is A Visual Marvel, Even If It’s Unoriginal – 51%
Alice in Wonderland isn’t quite a remake, though it does have the 1951 animated movie running through its veins. At the same time, it is still very much an adaptation of the Lewis Carroll fantasy novels Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass.
The movie was released at the height of both the 3D moviegoing craze and the remake craze that ran rampant throughout Hollywood at the time of release. Critics had tired on both crazes by this point, but they still couldn’t deny the tremendous visual effects that the movie had to offer. It won Best Art Direction and Best Costume Design at the Oscars, with a Best Visual Effects nod in the mix.
4 Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom Met Expectations Financially, Not Critically – 47%
The first Jurassic World was something of a surprise hit. Not to say no one expected a box office hit out of a sequel to Jurassic Park, but few expected it to become one of the highest-grossing movies of all time. As a result, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom had enormous expectations on its back.
To an extent, those expectations were met by a movie that peaked as the 12th highest-grossing movie with 1.3 billion in the bank. Still, that didn’t stop critics from pointing out that five movies deep into a franchise that’s existed now for almost 30 years, the series has finally run out of ideas.
3 Transformers: Dark Of The Moon Is Out Of Ideas – 35%
Transformers: Dark of the Moon rounds out the initial trilogy by placing everyone’s favorite car robots into space. As franchises like Friday the 13th, Leprechaun, and most recently Fast and the Furious have gone to show, a series has finally run out of ideas when the latest sequel puts its characters into outer space.
It took nine movies for this to happen to the Fast franchise and 10 for Friday the 13th, but the Transformers were in space by the third movie. Truthfully, the movie just offers more of the same, except in space.
2 Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides Kills The Captain Jack Character – 33%
No, not literally – but this movie killed whatever enjoyment fans had for the character. If Captain Jack Sparrow became a self-parody by the time the second movie rolled around, the fourth movie takes the fun out of him. Just as the Pirates franchise at the time ran its course, so did Captain Jack.
Johnny Depp sleepwalked through a plot that ran itself into the ground until it was shipwrecked without a paddle. The plot feels uneven and so does Depp’s performance that stopped feeling enjoyable after the first movie.
1 Transformers: Age Of Extinction Is Uneventful – 17%
Transformers: Age of Extinction serves as the fourth Transformers movie and the first to star Mark Wahlberg, replacing Shia LaBeouf as the franchise’s leading man for at least the next two movies.
Admittedly, the Transformers franchise has never been the biggest critical darling. Critics and casual audiences alike all recognize that these movies are bad, but fans overlook the bad long enough to recognize the fun time. Age of Extinction is bad without the fun, dumb silliness that usually comes with these action romps. It feels more grounded, and as a result, uneventful without being memorable.
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