Home Entertainment Midweek Movie Mouth-Off: what’s a tell-tale sign that a movie is going to be bad?

Midweek Movie Mouth-Off: what’s a tell-tale sign that a movie is going to be bad?

1 min read


Despite the best efforts of a movie’s director, producer, stars or marketing team, sometimes a movie is just going to be bad. If you choose not to heed the wise words of reviewers, most of the time you won’t find out until you’re sitting in the cinema. Luckily, there are some telling signs that a movie is going to disappoint, if you know what to look out for.

One of the most obvious I can think of is if a movie doesn’t have a press screening, or has a screening on the day of release. There is the obvious embargo case for high-profile movies like The Force Awakens, but that doesn’t happen very often. Having no critic screenings definitely makes it look like they don’t want the general public to get an inkling of how bad it really is, and they can at least gather some opening day revenue before the word spreads.

Another good tell is if the trailer gives away far too much about the movie. If they’ve put what looks like all their best bits in a three minute trailer, you know the rest of the movie is going to be seriously lacking.

What signs do you pick up on that make you think “that movie’s going to be bad”?

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Critical Hit as an organisation.

Last Updated: June 22, 2016


  1. Kervyn Cloete

    June 22, 2016 at 10:39

    Nicolas Cage is in it 😀


  2. James Francis

    June 22, 2016 at 11:40

    ‘Produced by Michael Bay’


    • elysium

      June 22, 2016 at 22:54

      That originally put me off Black Sails, but that actually turned out to be a really good show. Go figure. It probably was because he had pretty much nothing to do with the making of it ultimately.


  3. Alien Emperor Trevor

    June 22, 2016 at 12:14

    The way characters talk & interact in the trailer. Weird, stilted language and unnatural pauses.


  4. Banie Joubert

    June 22, 2016 at 13:29

    1. When the critics love it but the pleps hate it. Which makes it one of those “arty” movies that only very few people will enjoy.

    2. When the aggregate review rating on imdb.com is low. I used to follow the Rotten Tomatoes reviews, but lately I have disagreed with most of their ratings. Movies they mark down I like and vice versa. I find that the imdb reviews are more balanced and a better reflection of how the movie will be.


  5. Andre116

    June 22, 2016 at 21:25

    Adam Sandler.


  6. Glenn Runnalls

    June 29, 2016 at 22:44

    Directed by



  7. Filmmaker

    September 29, 2016 at 13:19

    Anything made by Tyler Perry. And if Jason Statham’s in it.


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