It happens all the time. In this day and age where nobody is ever lacking in content to watch, there's bound to be more than a couple of instances in which underrated gems pass you by. There are only so many hours in the day after all, yet all of these streaming services and back-to-back movie releases say otherwise.
While this is something that is (mostly) good for audiences and viewers, it's not so good for those unlucky projects that don't find the fanbase that they sought. It's a shame too, because each of these offered something(s) particularly memorable and great, at least for those who saw them. For many of them, that something great is a notably stellar performance that elevates the movie far beyond what they would've been without it.
Whether they're central roles, scene-stealing support, or something more villainous, the on-screen work being put out in these under-watched gems is such a delight to behold. Everyone on this list put forth truly outstanding work, and it's a terrible shame that what they did may end up lost in the noise of other high-profile releases or other components of their films.
With that said, hopefully, this list motivates you to check out these movies and help you appreciate these entries even more.
12. Ben Affleck - The Way Back
Many are keenly aware of Ben Affleck's unfortunately much-publicized struggles with addiction, which is why seeing his recent growth and personal rejuvenation lately has been so heartwarming. This is what makes The Way Back such a deeply personal experience to watch, especially with Ben Affleck's immensely effective performance.
Affleck plays a struggling alcoholic who finds a new sense of purpose through a high school basketball team coaching position. With the prompt shutdown of movie theaters worldwide, The Way Back found itself, like many other films, at a loss with its audience outreach. It's a shame too because it was clearly a deeply personal story for director Gavin O'Connor and Ben Affleck. That said, for those who do check it out, they'll have a wonderfully authentic leading performance to appreciate.
It's not flashy, it's not dramatic, and that's why it works so well. Affleck's fully invested in giving you a portrayal of an addict that's honest. He's not a bad person, he doesn't have constant violent outbursts, he's a man quietly killing himself and it feels like you're helplessly watching him do so. The terribly unfortunate timing of release may have shut down the movie's momentum, but hopefully, Affleck's work here doesn't get forgotten.