Although films tend to get their positive or negative reviews across the board, there are times when things don’t totally add up. That has happened quite often with comedy movies, as there are more than a few that have great scores on Rotten Tomatoes but not elsewhere.
In fact, one look at IMDb will often tell a totally different story. A movie might be certified fresh by critics on Rotten Tomatoes but the users at IMDb found it to be a middling film at best. These aren’t all movies with completely opposite views, just ones where the Rotten Tomatoes side is a fair amount higher.
Obvious Child (2014) – RT: 90%/IMDb: 6.8
Stream On Showtime, Kanopy & Hoopla
It certainly feels like almost anything starring Jenny Slate will be met with strong acclaim from both critics and audience members these days. That was mostly the case with Obvious Child where she plays a stand-up comedian who gets pregnant after a one-night hookup and chooses to have an abortion.
Reviews were strong across the board but the Rotten Tomatoes score is significantly higher. Praise was thrown at the cast and the work of writer/director Gillian Robespierre on the RT consensus, though the IMDb rating seems to depict a good but not great movie.
The Unicorn (2018) – RT: 91%/IMDb: 5.2
Stream On Hulu, The Roku Channel & Hoopla
There are just some movies out there that critics seem to get in a way that casual viewers don’t. The Unicorn appears to fall in that category as the score on Rotten Tomatoes (though there aren’t a ton of reviews) suggests this is one of the better comedies of the 2010s while the IMDb rating is way lower.
The Unicorn centers on a couple (Lauren Lapkus and Nick Rutherford) who look to spice up their relationship by engaging in a threesome, only for their night to run into all sorts of problems. Critics appreciated the awkward comedic moments but users ultimately said it was just a bit too odd at points.
The Parent Trap (1998) – RT: 87%/IMDb: 6.6
Stream On Disney+
This is a movie that is surprising to find that critics seemed to like it more than everyday viewers. The Parent Trap is often seen as a guilty pleasure for millennials but the critics on Rotten Tomatoes gave it overwhelming praise while the IMDb score suggests a solid at best movie.
A remake of the 1961 film of the same name, this take on The Parent Trap marks Lindsay Lohan’s debut as a pair of twins who find each other after never knowing the other one existed and they come up with schemes to get their parents back together. Although the difference isn’t massive, it is interesting that the Rotten Tomatoes score is higher here.
Knocked Up (2007) – RT: 89%/IMDb: 6.9
Rent On Apple TV
When Knocked Up came out, it seemed like everyone was showering it with praise. Some even felt it was better than Judd Apatow’s previous film, The 40-Year-Old Virgin and it was successful enough to spawn a spin-off sequel five years later in This is 40.
Although critics seemed to adore this story of a man (Seth Rogen) and a woman (Katherine Heigl) who have a one-night stand result in a pregnancy, most users on IMDb appeared to rank this as a good but not great comedy. Either way, it’s still a movie that is clearly worth seeing but critics seemed to like it more.
Piranha 3D (2010) – RT: 74%/IMDb: 5.4
Stream On Starz
This is another film that you might be shocked to find did better with critics than casual audiences. It feels like the entire idea of Piranha 3D was meant to cater to those just looking to have goofy fun in the theater and enjoy some over-the-top uses of the 3D effects that were popular in the decade.
However, it looks like the critics seemed to grasp that concept and appreciate it in a way that many viewers didn’t. The horror-comedy focusing on absurd attacks by piranhas is certified fresh on RT for going all-in on the gratuitous nature, though IMDb users were far less pleased with it.
In A World… (2013) – RT: 92%/IMDb: 6.7
Stream On Hulu, Paramount+ & Epix
Most people know that Lake Bell is a talented actress who has shined in shows like How to Make it in America and Harley Quinn but she has also worked as a writer and director. Bell was a true triple threat with In a World… as she starred, wrote, and directed this indie comedy.
The title is a reference to the famous line often heard in movie trailers and the film follows a vocal coach who lives in the shadow of her father, who is the world’s most famous trailer voiceover actor. The RT score makes this one of the better-reviewed comedies of the decade, though IMDb sees it as more of a slightly above-average one.
Undercover Brother (2002) – RT: 78%/IMDb: 5.9
Stream On Starz
The early 2000s was the hottest time for spoof films thanks to Not Another Teen Movie and Scary Movie. While Undercover Brother makes sure to parody blaxploitation and James Bond films, it doesn’t do it with such a heavy hand, instead working in the same vein as Austin Powers.
Starring Eddie Griffin, Denise Richards, and so many other actors who were notable in the decade, Undercover Brother received praise for the talent involved and the sharp satire. Alas, looking at the IMDb rating, you might end up avoiding this due to the score being under 6.0
I Used To Go Here (2020) – RT: 84%/IMDb: 5.6
Stream On HBO Max, Max Go, Kanopy & Hoopla
Judging by a lot of the ratings seen, critics have a greater appreciation for awkward comedy than typical audience members. There are awkward scenes all over the place when it comes to I Used to Go Here, which centers on a novelist who returns to her alma mater over a decade after graduating.
While at her old college, the protagonist gets mixed up in the lives of the students around her even though she doesn’t totally fit in. Although those on IMDb didn’t seem to really get into the film, critics were drawn in by Gillian Jacobs’ lead performance and the charm of the screenplay.
High School Musical 2 (2007) – RT: 83%/IMDb: 5.1
Stream On Disney+
While it’s clear that High School Musical was something of a phenomenon that is still impactful today thanks to a spin-off TV series, many people wrote it off. They just felt it was another Disney Channel original movie that would be something of a fad but they were wrong.
The original spawned sequels, including this second installment that some critics found enchanting thanks to the energy of the young cast and the snappy songs to come from it. Despite having a large fanbase, those who gave out ratings on IMDb were clearly not big on it.
House Party (1990) – RT: 93%/IMDb: 6.5
Stream On HBO Max
The sequels were mostly met with a negative response from everyone from casual viewers to renowned critics but the original House Party is actually kind of a classic. Led by Kid n’ Play, the movie is just a really fun comedy that makes you want to throw your own party.
It’s another one of those movies that nearly every critic found to be pretty great, though most users on IMDb only rank it as something average. Obviously, a 6.5/10 rating isn’t bad at all but it feels like a pretty far cry from the 93% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
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