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How to tell if a movie or video game will suck

Updated on March 22, 2011

Have you ever gone to the movies only to be so disappointed that words just can’t express it? Have you ever played a video game and then a disk shredder seemed like a really good purchase? Well we have all been down that road and I’m here to help.

I’m cynical, if you ask me about movies I’ll tell you only about 10 are worth seeing a year, many are okay for DVD purchase but the rest should never have seen the light of day. Video games have long be going off in the wrong direction focusing on graphics, presentation, or whatever over fun and enjoyment, hence game play.

Over the years I’ve noticed some things to pay attention to know whether or not you should risk it but my methods are not full proof or 100 percent accurate but may indeed help you.

Method 1 Over Advertising

This method mostly applies to movies rather than games since video games are rarely advertised on TV. It just isn’t a profitable medium for advertising games because if the TV is on something is being played most of the time so instead video games are advertised on information and gaming related websites.

For movies though this method is the best and it works simply. IF you notice a movie is being advertised every ten freaking minutes before a launch the movie will probably suck. You see the reason for is because it is a trick to get you to go see the movie on day one and afterward you won’t go see it again because it was ether 1)lame 2)Bad or 3)Just not worth it. These movies typically will only be number one for one week and then fade to obscurity.

A further note on this is that if after the movie comes out if the advertisement comes to a dead halt, yeah it sucked. They stopped because word of mouth has now killed any chance of making more money and there is no more reason to advertise the movie since at this point it would be a waste of money on their part. If the advertisement continues and positive word of mouth is heard then the movie is worth a shot at the very least.

Video games cannot be determined the same way because normally the ones advertised are from big publishers who have a lot of money.

Method 2 Who is Making/Publishing it

This method will save you a lot of time and money as it works for both games and movies. Now a quick note as some of you will say Phas the developer is what determines if the game or movie is good and yes this is true but developers can often time produce both hits and flops and it is always better to give something a chance rather than miss out on something great. Unless you know someone can’t make crap for crap (I’m talking about you Paul W.S. Anderson).

Now for movie companies like the Weinstein Company and certain video game publishers like to get involved in the process of making the video game or movie and often a similar influence can be felt across all of their products. In the end you need to figure out who you like and who you don’t like and this will aid you greatly.

For movie use it is a great resource.

Method 3 The people behind and in it

Now I’m not talking about acting capabilities with this one but rather trends. Both with video games and movies certain individuals if they are involved in the make of the movie or game it has a way better chance of being independent from the publisher and actually worth it.

Take Jason West and Vince Zampella the men that made Medal of Honor great and then EA screwed up they fled to form Infinity Ward and made the game Call of Duty and now they are gone from that. History will repeat itself but that is not important. These guys made great shooters and there are other great names in gaming like Tim Schafer who made Brutal Legend and Psychonauts.

Actors and Directors can have the same effect for movies as anyone who watches anime will attest. Certain actors movies will have a better vibe and less propaganda (look it up) than others or the entertainment value will be higher.

Now this is not fool proof since their work largely depends on your opinion of which you should never let someone put down. Trust it for if you can’t trust yourself, who can you trust?

Method 4 Appearances

There is something to be said about how things look. This is especially true for trailers they show on TV for movies. Once you look past the glamorous explosions and interesting or none interesting whichever the case may be back drop just take a look at how the actors look.

Each scene in a movie is made to convey a message just like a book. An exorcise is to ask what is the writer or director trying to get across with this scene, what are the publishers trying to get across with this trailer. Once you recognize the subtle sense of feminism (a plague in most movies) you can easily tell if the movie will suck.

Method 5 Selling Points

This is a great way to tell if the movie or game for that matter is going to suck and is best used in previews of each. Though more applicable in video games than movies this will save you time and money.

What is important about both Video Games and Movies? Entertainment and if they are selling on concepts that are, none conductive with this then it will have a higher capacity to suck. Take Uncharted 2 and its foray with Hollywood writers. The story was horrendous (and a rehashing of the first game). Are they trying to sell you on the game or the fact that a certain someone is writing the for the game. Now this can work both ways, Homefront it didn’t work out for but Shadow Complex on the other hand was a great game but if you look it was sold also on its game play and what they wanted to do rather than this famous writer wrote it.

This can be adapted to use for movies. Once you figure out what your buying you will be much better off and waste much less time but always try new things because stagnation never helped anyone.

Method 6 Good old Fashion Word of Mouth

Yes my cynicism rubs off on my friends and who better to know what I like (other than myself of course). Your friends will be able to tell you if a movie sucked or if it was good. The important part is to ask just more than if it was good. Your friend and you may have a different definition or expectation of a movie or video game but these people are invaluable resources when it comes to knowing whether something sucks or not.

Well I hope these help you save both time and money. In this economy (the economy sucked upon when this was written people from the future) one’s money is tight and wasting it on a bad movie or game is just plain unacceptable. Plus who wants to sit through a bad movie or game, I mean really now.


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    • top-bannana profile image


      7 years ago from England

      Some great hints but again its down to personal choice, many a movie people have raved about I just found drab and vice versa. So it kinda is about personal choice but your hub could help narrow it down a little.

    • Phasmatis profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago

      I think it all comes down to personal tastes and like Optimus said mood. I mean the argument of Personal opinion VS real value is one for a different day.

    • optimus grimlock profile image

      optimus grimlock 

      7 years ago

      It depends on your mood when you see a movie and I think its the same with games. if you get to excited to see or play a movie or game you could be setting yourself up to a let down.

    • Emmyboy profile image


      7 years ago from Nigeria

      Good. The only problem i foresee here in these criteria is that whether a movie/game is good or bad still depends on individual opinion. One man's know?


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