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11 Movies Fans Loved and Critics Hated in 2016

We love it when a movie starts a fight.

Warner Bros.

If you like movies and have opinions about them, chances are you have at some point decided that all movie critics must be paste-eating morons unfit to tie their own shoes based on how they reacted to a movie you loved. We've all been there. This year those paste-eating morons [Disclaimer: This article was written by one of them.] collectively decided that the DC Cinematic Universe is no match for Marvel, video game movies still suck, and Madea continues to be a tiresome yet annoyingly successful contrivance.

In our fourth year following this trend, we let the pure math determine this list, which results in some instances of the critics hating a movie and the fans just sort of tolerating it. What we're looking for here are big differences in how critics and fans rated movies, or critically panned movies that still made lots of money. Our full methodology is explained below if you're curious, but if you're just looking for the list, well here you go.

#1. Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice

Critic Rating: 36
Fan Rating: 67
Box Office: $330.4 million

The biggest comic book fight of the year drew a huge audience to the theaters, but Superman and Batman both took a beating from critics left unimpressed by pretty much everything about the movie. While some fans conceded the film had some problems, the faithful rolled their eyes at the reviews and chalked it up to sour grapes.

#2. Suicide Squad

Critic Rating: 33
Fan Rating: 64
Box Office: $325.1 million

This was the year the DC Cinematic Universe finally got off the ground, leading to palpable excitement around the fledgling franchise's third installment. Fans were thrilled to see fan favorites Harley Quinn and the Joker brought to vivid life by Margot Robbie and Jared Leto. The movie struck out again with critics, but DC fans just didn't care. They flocked to the movie, which earned just a smidge less than its predecessor, Batman v Superman.

#3. Warcraft

Critic Rating: 30
Fan Rating: 75
Box Office: $47.2 million

For gamers who've been immersed in the World of Warcraft for years, Warcraft is a perfectly serviceable movie that brings to life a key moment in their favorite fantasy world. But as anyone who's seen the movie without playing the games can attest, it doesn't make much sense if you don't have the history. Critics mostly scratched their heads over Duncan Jones' effects-laden story of orcs and wizards while gamers were just stoked to see their favorite locations and characters in the flesh. It didn't break any box office records, but Warcraft still fared well with gamer fans.

#4. Dirty Grandpa

Critic Rating: 15
Fan Rating: 48
Box Office: $35.6 million

Critics REALLY hated this movie while audiences just sort of thought it was okay, but the huge gulf in their opinions led to its inclusion on this list thanks to the almighty power of math. (See methodology below.) Robert De Niro, for some reason, seems content to be spending his 70s cranking out schlock and hasn't won praise from critics since his supporting role in Silver Linings Playbook. But his antics can still get a chuckle out of a few fans, so sure just toss him in a movie with Zac Efron and let the fireworks happen.

#5. Boo! A Madea Halloween

Critic Rating: 26
Fan Rating: 51
Box Office: $73.2 million

No greater rift exists in the realm of movie opinion than the rift between critics and fans in their estimation of the Madea movies. First off, anything faith-based seems to immediately trigger this rift, and the Madea movies all have that element of faith. Second, Tyler Perry has simply found his audience and will continue to speak directly to them for as long as he's making movies. It doesn't matter what the critics say. No other film franchise has so successfully insulated itself from criticism as Perry's Madea series. So don't expect these to stop anytime soon. Also, if you're a Madea hater, give it up already because at this point, who are you complaining to?

#6. Ride Along 2

Critic Rating: 23
Fan Rating: 51
Box Office: $90.8 million

As much as critics love Kevin Hart's stand-up films, they don't love him enough to give him a pass on the bare bones plotting and lowball jokes of the Ride Along movies. But critics be damned. Ride Along 2 still brought in nearly $91 million, and Hart's standing taller than he ever thought possible.

#7. London Has Fallen

Critic Rating: 27
Fan Rating: 54
Box Office: $62.5 million

Gerard Butler takes his tough guy act across the pond in this eye-rollingly titled sequel to Olympus Has Fallen. The film was knocked for racist stereotyping, cheesy effects, and bad one-liners, but honestly what more would you expect from such an obviously junk script? Audiences apparently felt the same way, turning up in numbers just big enough to give this glorified basic cable blow-'em-up a respectable $62.5 million bow.

#8. Alice Through the Looking Glass

Critic Rating: 32
Fan Rating: 58
Box Office: $77 million

With a script that neither made sense nor made the kind of nonsense that would have made Lewis Carroll proud, Alice Through the Looking Glass stood out as one of the year's most unnecessary sequels. But with a cadre of famous faces and a hugely popular intellectual property at its disposal, the Disney machine still churned out a movie that drew in kids and their parents charmed enough by the first movie to come back for seconds.

#9. The Legend of Tarzan

Critic Rating: 40
Fan Rating: 62
Box Office: $126.6 million

Who needs an interesting or original plot when you've got an amazing supporting cast and the sexiest abs in the business? After this movie marketed itself heavily on Alexander Skarsgard's well-oiled torso, it was no surprise it didn't win over the critics. Fortunately for producers, Skarsgard's fans turned up for the gun show, helping the movie comfortably pass the $100 million mark and all involved thumped their chest like they were raised by gorillas.

#10. The Accountant

Critic Rating: 52
Fan Rating: 77
Box Office: $85.2 million

Good movie or not, Ben Affleck proved this year that he continues to be a bankable leading man. It helps that The Accountant has an irresistible elevator pitch — Rainman meets hitman — and lives up to that pitch well enough that it deserves some credit for execution. In the end, fans appreciated this one far more than critics, giving it strong enough word-of-mouth support to make it one of the year's top-grossing R-rated movies.

#11. The Huntsman: Winter’s War

Critic Rating: 26
Fan Rating: 53
Box Office: $48 million

Another of this year's many unnecessary sequels, The Huntsman at least did its audience the courtesy of lining up an absolutely killer cast featuring Charlize Theron, Emily Blunt, Chris Hemsworth, and Jessica Chastain all trying to out-badass each other. The movie has style and looks great and maybe that would have been enough to win it more favorable reviews in a simpler time, but with theaters saturated with AAA computer-generated blockbusters this year, The Huntsman just didn't live up to most critics' standards.


Here's how we determined the ratings and rankings on this list.

RottenTomatoes and Metacritic both score movies from 1 to 100 by evaluating critics' reviews. The Critic Rating here averages those two numbers.

Metacritic, RottenTomatoes, and IMDb are all popular destinations for users to submit their own ratings. We averaged the three user scores for each movie to get the User Rating.

Domestic box office totals (United States) were factored into the rankings as a metric of how much audiences liked a movie.

We ranked movies on five metrics, and added those rankings together to get a final score for each film we feel best expresses the overall difference in critical and popular opinion.