10 Awesome Recent Movies That Didn't Deserve To Bomb

These movies deserved all the commercial success.

The Northman
Universal Pictures

There's no denying that the theatrical movie landscape is in a major state of flux right now - the pandemic dealt a major blow to box office revenues around the globe, and though the ongoing recovery is encouraging, it seems unlikely we're ever returning to the full "normality" of 2019.

While mega-budget tentpoles - especially superhero films - family movies, and horror flicks continue to perform well, the theatrical future is looking less certain for movies aimed at older audiences and also mid-budget fare which many may now feel isn't worth a trip to the cinema.

With theatrical windows shrinking down massively over the last two years, movies generally have a shorter time to make an impression with audiences, and so it's little surprise that so many great films have tanked commercially.

These 10 films, each of them largely acclaimed by critics, failed to make a dent with mainstream viewers for a multitude of reasons.

While they may fare better on streaming, it's a damn shame that so few people shelled out to watch them on the big screen, because they absolutely deserved to do so, so much better...

10. The Last Duel

The Northman
20th Century Studios

Budget: $100 million

Box Office: $30.6 million

Ridley Scott's historical action-drama The Last Duel received predominantly positive reviews from critics, with much praise for its cast - especially an Oscar-buzzed Jodie Comer - and the nuanced means through which it examined its delicate subject matter (sexual abuse).

Despite a first-rate director and A-list cast, the film ended up tanking catastrophically at the box office, grossing less than half of initial projections on its opening weekend, and going on to nab a total of $30.6 million - a mere fraction of its hefty $100 million price tag.

The Last Duel was a great movie caught in a perfect storm of bad circumstances: older cinemagoers were still staying away from theaters, and at a time where cinema audiences were largely craving escapist spectacle, a two-and-a-half-hour drama about rape wasn't going to get many out of the house.

On top of that, it released in an extremely crowded slot, hitting screens a week after No Time to Die in the U.S., the same day as Halloween Kills, and a week before Dune.

In light of the film's poor commercial performance, a frustrated Scott blamed millennials who, "do not ever want to be taught anything unless you're told it on a cellphone."

Unsurprisingly Scott's comments didn't go down too well, though considering the high quality of the movie and its maddening lack of success, it's easy to sympathise with him.

The Last Duel has reportedly been a solid performer on streaming, though, seemingly ensuring it's enjoyed something of a second life at home.


Stay at home dad who spends as much time teaching his kids the merits of Martin Scorsese as possible (against the missus' wishes). General video game, TV and film nut. Occasional sports fan. Full time loon.