Hidden Gems: 15 Underrated Movies You Should Watch

We all know the popular movies that dominate the box office and the awards season, but what about the hidden gems that often go unnoticed or underappreciated? These are the movies that deserve more recognition and attention from the audiences, whether for their originality, creativity, performance, or message. In this article, we will highlight 15 such movies that you should watch if you are looking for something different and refreshing.

Upgrade (2018)

Directed by Leigh Whannell, “Upgrade” is a thrilling sci-fi action film set in a near-future world where technology reigns supreme. The story follows Grey Trace, a technophobe who is left paralyzed after a brutal attack that also claims the life of his wife. Desperate for revenge, Grey undergoes an experimental procedure that implants a cutting-edge computer chip called STEM into his body, granting him superhuman abilities. As Grey embarks on a relentless quest for justice, he must grapple with the moral and ethical implications of his newfound powers. With its slick visuals, pulse-pounding action sequences, and thought-provoking themes, “Upgrade” is a gripping and exhilarating cinematic ride that pushes the boundaries of the genre.

The Prestige (2006)

This movie is a thriller-mystery film directed by Christopher Nolan, who also made The Dark Knight trilogy and Inception. The movie follows the rivalry between two magicians in Victorian London, who compete to create the ultimate illusion, while sacrificing everything they have. The movie is full of twists and turns, as well as themes of obsession, deception, and sacrifice. The movie features an amazing cast, including Christian Bale, Hugh Jackman, Scarlett Johansson, Michael Caine, and David Bowie. The movie is a masterpiece of storytelling, cinematography, and acting, and it will keep you guessing until the very end.

Coherence (2013)

This movie is a sci-fi thriller that follows a group of friends who gather for a dinner party on the night of a comet passing. As strange events and phenomena start to occur, they realize that reality is not what it seems, and that they are trapped in a mind-bending situation that defies logic and explanation. The movie is a low-budget, high-concept film that relies on improvisation, minimal effects, and clever storytelling. The movie is a fascinating and gripping exploration of quantum physics, parallel universes, and human psychology, and it will keep you on the edge of your seat.

The Peanut Butter Falcon (2019)

This movie tells the heartwarming story of Zak, a young man with Down syndrome who runs away from his care home to pursue his dream of becoming a wrestler. Along the way, he meets Tyler, a troubled fisherman who becomes his unlikely mentor and friend. Together, they embark on a wild adventure across the American South, encountering various challenges and characters. The movie features a stellar cast, including Shia LaBeouf, Dakota Johnson, and Zack Gottsagen, who has Down syndrome in real life. The movie is a tribute to the power of friendship, hope, and dreams, and it will make you laugh, cry, and cheer.

A.I. Artificial Intelligence (2001)

Directed by Steven Spielberg, “A.I. Artificial Intelligence” is a visionary science fiction epic set in a future where humanoid robots known as Mechas coexist with humans. The film follows the journey of David, a highly advanced Mecha child programmed to experience emotions and seek love and acceptance from his human creators. With its thought-provoking themes, breathtaking visuals, and emotionally resonant storytelling, “A.I. Artificial Intelligence” is a profound exploration of what it means to be human and the nature of consciousness in a technologically advanced world.

Zodiac (2007)

Directed by David Fincher, “Zodiac” is a meticulously crafted thriller that chronicles the real-life investigation into the notorious Zodiac killer who terrorized San Francisco in the late 1960s and early 1970s. With its haunting atmosphere, intricate plot, and stellar ensemble cast led by Jake Gyllenhaal, Robert Downey Jr., and Mark Ruffalo, “Zodiac” is a gripping and immersive cinematic experience that delves deep into the darkest recesses of obsession, paranoia, and the pursuit of truth.

The Florida Project (2017)

This movie depicts the lives of a group of children who live in a rundown motel near Disney World, seen through the eyes of six-year-old Moonee. The movie captures the innocence and wonder of childhood, as well as the harsh realities of poverty, neglect, and abuse. The movie is a mix of fiction and documentary, as it features mostly non-professional actors and real locations. The movie is a masterpiece of realism, empathy, and imagination, and it showcases the talent of Willem Dafoe, who was nominated for an Oscar for his role as the motel manager.

The Farewell (2019)

This movie is based on the true story of a Chinese-American woman who returns to China with her family to visit her terminally ill grandmother, who is unaware of her diagnosis. The family decides to keep the secret from her and stage a fake wedding as an excuse to gather and say goodbye. The movie explores the cultural and generational differences between the East and the West, as well as the themes of family, identity, and mortality. The movie is both funny and poignant, and it features a brilliant performance by Awkwafina, who won a Golden Globe for her role.

Hunt for the Wilderpeople (2016)

This movie is a comedy-adventure film from New Zealand, directed by Taika Waititi, who also made Thor: Ragnarok and Jojo Rabbit. The movie follows the misadventures of Ricky, a rebellious orphan who is adopted by a loving couple in the countryside. When his foster father dies and his foster mother is deemed unfit, Ricky runs away into the wilderness with his dog, pursued by a relentless social worker and the police. Along the way, he meets Hec, a grumpy old man who becomes his unlikely ally. The movie is a hilarious and touching ode to the beauty of nature, the bond of family, and the spirit of adventure.

In the Mood for Love (2000)

Directed by Wong Kar-wai, “In the Mood for Love” is a visually stunning romance set in 1960s Hong Kong. The film follows the quiet yet profound connection between two neighbors who discover that their spouses are having an affair. Through exquisite cinematography and a hauntingly beautiful score, Wong Kar-wai crafts a mesmerizing portrait of longing, desire, and unspoken emotions. “In the Mood for Love” is a cinematic masterpiece that resonates with viewers long after the final frame fades.

Moonlight (2016)

This movie is a drama film that chronicles the life of a young black man growing up in a poor and violent neighborhood in Miami, struggling with his identity and sexuality. The movie is divided into three chapters, each focusing on a different stage of his life: childhood, adolescence, and adulthood. The movie is a stunning and powerful portrait of the human condition, as well as a commentary on the issues of race, class, and gender. The movie won three Oscars, including Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Supporting Actor for Mahershala Ali.

The Edge of Seventeen (2016)

This movie is a coming-of-age comedy-drama that follows the life of Nadine, a socially awkward and cynical teenager who feels isolated and betrayed when her best friend starts dating her older brother. The movie is a realistic and relatable portrayal of the struggles and joys of adolescence, as well as the importance of family, friendship, and self-acceptance. The movie features a witty and sharp script, a charming and authentic performance by Hailee Steinfeld, and a hilarious and supportive role by Woody Harrelson as Nadine’s teacher.

The Station Agent (2003)

This movie is a drama-comedy that tells the story of Fin, a lonely and introverted dwarf who inherits an abandoned train depot in rural New Jersey. There, he meets and forms an unlikely friendship with Olivia, a grieving artist, and Joe, a talkative hot dog vendor. The movie is a subtle and touching exploration of loneliness, friendship, and acceptance, as well as a celebration of the beauty and diversity of life. The movie features a brilliant and nuanced performance by Peter Dinklage, who won several awards for his role.

The Guest (2014)

This movie is a thriller-action film that follows the mysterious arrival of David, a charming and charismatic soldier who claims to be the friend of a deceased soldier, to the home of his grieving family. As David ingratiates himself with the family and helps them with their problems, he also reveals a dark and dangerous side that puts them in peril. The movie is a thrilling and stylish homage to the 80s action and horror movies, with a synth-heavy soundtrack, a retro aesthetic, and a twisty plot. The movie features a charismatic and menacing performance by Dan Stevens, who plays the titular guest.

The Way Way Back (2013)

This movie is a comedy-drama that follows the summer of Duncan, a shy and awkward teenager who is forced to spend his vacation with his mother, her overbearing boyfriend, and his snarky daughter. Duncan finds an escape and a mentor in Owen, the manager of a local water park, who helps him gain confidence and have fun. The movie is a heartwarming and hilarious coming-of-age story, as well as a poignant and realistic depiction of family dynamics and relationships. The movie features a talented and likable cast, including Steve Carell, Toni Collette, Sam Rockwell, Allison Janney, and Liam James.


These hidden gems and underrated films offer rich and rewarding cinematic experiences that deserve to be celebrated and cherished by audiences around the world. Through their compelling narratives, nuanced performances, and artistic vision, these films illuminate the human experience and inspire viewers to embrace the power of storytelling to connect, inspire, and transform lives.

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