10 Movies WAY Darker Than Originally Advertised

The unexpectedly depressing comedies, bleak superhero movies and tragic blockbusters.

Mila Kunis Great And Powerful

Sometimes, the movie you watched a promising trailer for isn’t what arrives at the cinema some months later.

Blame a misleading ad campaign. Blame a studio scared to stand by its own artistic endeavour. Blame a trailer editor who has no idea what the movie they’re pushing is even about. Often times, what's missing from the finished product is a particularly promising scene glimpsed in the film's trailer.

Hell, on occasion producers have even been known to shoot footage solely for the trailer so they can mislead audiences and make the film out to be something completely different (hi, 2006's Black Christmas). But more often than not, misleading marketing makes dark movies out to be lighter fare.

Often studios will balk at the idea of releasing a challenging movie with mature themes. But in these cases, they've already made the investment. As such, the studio will attempt to use everything in their marketing department's power to make the film out to be far more lighthearted and fun than the finished product actually ends up.

That’s the phenomenon we’re here to discuss today, as this list takes a look at the films which seemed like a bit of good fun until they actually arrived at the multiplex and proved to be unexpectedly bleak, mature, or just straight up grim.

10. Kick Ass 2

Mila Kunis Great And Powerful
Universal Pictures

Released in 2013 and directed by future Blumhouse stalwart/ multiplex menace Jeff Wadlow, Kick-Ass 2 ambitiously promised to be funnier, more action packed, and even more outrageous than its predecessor.

Where the 2010 Matthew Vaughn film saw its characters grapple with the real-life consequences of super heroism, its foul mouthed and bloody action did eventually lead to a conventional happy ending. It was a violent and hilarious romp, but one whose gory action never slid into mean-spirited nastiness.

And the sequel claimed to offer more of the same, with a punchy trailer which emphasized its comedic elements and intense action.

But instead, the future Fantasy Island reboot-er bungled the potential of another beloved property as this ill-considered sequel was both meaner and less funny than its predecessor. In trying to amp up the action, the film ended up unintentionally depressing instead, with a string of misjudged moments putting off most viewers.

Teenage girls projectile vomiting thanks to our heroine’s “prank”? An attempted rape scene played for laughs? A supposedly romantic kiss between the hero and his fifteen-year-old friend? The early, gruesomely brutal death of fan favourite Jim Carrey?

Wow, Kick Ass 2, why wasn’t all this fun in the trailer?


Cathal Gunning hasn't written a bio just yet, but if they had... it would appear here.