Top 3 Best and Worst Films, According to Rotten Tomatoes

According to their website, Rotten Tomatoes is an “American review-aggregation website for film and television.” After recently relying on the website to depict what movie I choose to watch next, I’ve decided to delve deeper into the best and worst-rated films on the website. Here are the top three best and top three worst movies based on ratings from Rotten Tomatoes. 

How does Rotten Tomatoes work?

Rotten Tomatoes uses something called the “Tomatometer” to rate movies and television shows. According to their About page, “the Tomatometer score — based on the opinions of hundreds of film and television critics —  is a trusted measurement of critical recommendation for millions of fans.” The higher the rating on the Tomatometer, the fewer tomatoes figuratively thrown at the act. With a lower rating, more tomatoes are used to figuratively throw and boo the movie off the radar. Therefore, in simpler terms, a high percentage (more than 60%) is reputable and considered “fresh,” while lower than that is considered “rotten.” 

Top 3 Worst Films on Rotten Tomatoes with 0% Ratings

1.“Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever” (2002) 

Courtesy of Warner Bros,

This film follows the conflict between the enemies named DIA Agent Sever (Lucy Liu) and FBI Agent Jeremiah Ecks (Antonio Banderas). As time goes on throughout the movie, they realize a bigger enemy and task is at hand. Based on the movie’s trailer, the plot looks pretty unoriginal and attempts to be up the alley of “The Matrix.” However, fans and reviews on Rotten Tomatoes can agree how much the mark was missed when trying to create a futuristic action film. It’s so bad that it’s even described as being like a video game promotion, according to Rotten Tomatoes. If you’re thinking about watching this, it would be safer and more entertaining to watch films like “The Fifth Element” or “Se7en.” 

2.“One Missed Call” (2008)

Courtesy of Warner Bros.

This thriller is described by critics as “One of the weakest entries in the J-horror remake sweepstakes.” The plot starts with the death of two friends of Beth Raymond (Shannyn Sossamon). But before they die, each victim gets two voicemails from what seems like their future selves, sealing their fate by telling them their death is near. Raymond has to work hard to convince law enforcement that something is wrong with these phone calls since they include very specific details about the time, location and cause of death. Time is ticking as she and her partners work hard to crack the case before they receive the same calls. While it seems like a fairly good and suspenseful plot, the reviews bash the outcome of the movie. One critic review on Rotten Tomatoes even says “For a would-be fright fest built around a supernatural premise, One Missed Call is so glum and businesslike that it’s not nearly as much pulpy fun as it should be.” It’s safe to say that horror lovers should just skip past this one and go for similar films like “The Black Phone” or “Scream.” But if you’re still interested, you can watch the trailer here

3.“Left Behind” (2014)

Courtesy of Entertainment One.

As a big fan of Nicolas Cage, it pained me to see this with a 0% rating. “Left Behind” is a mystery thriller starting with the planet in an unknown chaos. Millions of people have disappeared due to some sort of disaster. Airline pilot Ray Steele (Nicolas Cage) works hard to keep his passengers safe while also dealing with the anxiety of not knowing where the rest of his family is down on earth. His daughter (Cassi Thomson) teams up with Steele to look for their remaining family. Although Cage is known for wonderful acting in films such as “National Treasure,” critics had nothing but negative comments about “Left Behind.” One of the top critic reviews says “The effects are hilarious, the sets are rinky-dink, and the character names are funnier than a full season of ‘Big Bang Theory,’ and the “narrative arc” of our heroine is laughably predictable.” While it falls flat, some might still want a new Cage film to add to their list. You can watch the trailer here

Top 3 Best Films on Rotten Tomatoes with 100% Ratings

1.“Leave No Trace” (2018)

Courtesy of Sony Pictures.

In this suspenseful drama, a father named Will (Ben Foster) and his daughter named Tom (Thomasin McKenzie) are nomadically living in Forest Park, an off-the-radar area in Portland, Oregon. Their existence is minimal in comparison to the new world, as they rarely come in contact with anyone else throughout their lives. However, suspense builds as authorities are notified and they are forced to flee and find a new place they can call home. The reviews are extremely positive, given the film has the rare 100% Rotten Tomatoes rating, as people gush over the pair’s acting and underlying themes of real-world danger. One critic review says “a truly superb drama that offers no answers and just takes viewers along for the ride.” If this seems up your alley, you can watch the trailer to “Leave No Trace” here

2. “Toy Story 2” (1999)

Courtesy of Toy Story.

This sequel to “Toy Story” (1995) clearly surpasses its predecessor when it comes to critic reviews. In this second coming of the “Toy Story” franchise, Woody (Tom Hanks) gets stolen from his home by Al McWhiggin (Wayne Knight), which leaves Buzz Lightyear (Tim Allen) to save him. The conflict rises as Woody eventually learns his worth as a rare toy and meets his companion cowgirl named Jessie (Joan Cusack), making him not want to go back home to mediocrity. Based on the reviews, the animation is much better, the plot is thicker and is all-around better (not to say that the original is bad by any means). This is personally my favorite of the franchise, and it is not surprising that it gained a perfect score on Rotten Tomatoes. If you have not seen this yet, or forget its significance, you can watch the trailer here

3. “Man on Wire” (2008)

Courtesy of Magnolia Pictures.

This movie is based on the true story of French high-wire artist Philippe Petit’s stunt that took place in 1974, in which he walked and performed acrobatics on a wire between the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York City. Though already a suspenseful story to reenact, the film uses actual footage from the event to add to the realness. Not only was this stunt a crime, but it was extremely original and dangerous; it was a trick that had to be pulled off with such accuracy and safety to ensure the success and survival of Petit. The reviews are predictable, such as one that says “Man on Wire is 80 minutes of white-knuckled suspense followed by a surprisingly emotional climax.” It’s raw, suspenseful and creates such a wonderful story with impact you might not think of when talking about such a crazy stunt. You can watch the trailer and learn more about Petit’s journey here

Although everyone has their own opinions on films, Rotten Tomatoes has been around since 2000, cumulating reviews from about 3,000 critics. It’s reliable, shows raw reviews and creates lists to depict what movie or show you should add to your watchlist or avoid altogether.

By Amena Ahmed

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