10 Movies That Aren't About What You Think

There's more going on under the surface with these movies.

Drag Me to Hell

Subtext is a wonderful thing, and though many movies have other things percolating beneath the surface of a seemingly simple, straightforward story, occasionally the subtext is sly enough that you might end up missing it entirely.

And that's absolutely possible with the following ten movies, each of which could easily be taken at mere face value as crowd-pleasing genre films where what you see is pretty much what you get. However, each is nevertheless suffused with a wealth of other meaning that might only become apparent on repeat viewings, if at all.

In each case, the filmmakers clearly had far more on their mind than the movie's meat-and-potatoes story, even if many only recognised this years after the fact. These movies are all indeed about something else entirely, though given how ingeniously each filmmaker hid this meaning in plain sight, you certainly shouldn't feel bad if you missed them.

Such is the beauty of filmmaking, where artists can make what appears to be a superficially simple, familiar piece of work, only for it to have a far more subversive undercurrent which only some audiences will ever actually pick up on...

10. It's About Jon Favreau's Disappointment With Iron Man 2 - Chef

Drag Me to Hell
Open Road Films

Jon Favreau's Chef may seem like a pretty surface-level movie about an elite chef, Carl Casper (Favreau), who builds his own food truck business after growing frustrated with cynical restaurant owners and obnoxious critics. But look beyond the admittedly gorgeous food porn and Favreau's film is really a thinly-veiled reflection of his own time directing 2010's superhero blockbuster Iron Man 2. 

The sequel to the hit superhero flick received middling notices from critics and reportedly suffered from serious executive interference behind-the-scenes, in turn stymying Favreau's creative vision for the project. And so, Chef was a pure reaction to this - using food as a tight allegory for Favreau's attempts to "cook" in Hollywood.

The food truck is really a metaphor for Chef, the movie, itself - a comparatively inexpensive enterprise full of heart, following on from a soulless big-money exercise that left the creative in question feeling burnt out.

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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.