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5 most underrated films of 2024 (so far), ranked

Two men look at a spider in Sting.
StudioCanal

So far, 2024 has been another tumultuous year for cinema. While modern classics like Dune: Part Two and Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes have made an impact in theaters, other films have been overlooked by too many audiences.

The year is nearly half over, so there is much more to come out of the world of cinema in the next six months. But now that we’re at the halfway mark, it’s as good a time as any to look back at some of the most sorely underrated films of 2024.

5. Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga (2024)

Anya Taylor-Joy stands on a dusty road and glances over her shoulder in a still from "Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga."
Warner Bros. / Warner Bros.

Set years before she met Max on the Fury Road, Furiosa depicts the titular warrior (Anya Taylor-Joy) as she is taken away from the Green Place and tries to return home and exact vengeance on her kidnapper, Doctor Dementus (Chris Hemsworth). Despite outstanding reviews and two A-listers leading the cast, Furiosa surprisingly fell behind box office competitors and has yet to recoup its $160-plus million budget.

Fury Road wasn’t exactly a runaway commercial success either, but the praise and influence it garnered since its 2015 release should have led more people to check out this long-awaited prequel. The tragic roads Furiosa and Dementus go down make for one of the most fascinating hero/villain dynamics in recent cinema. Though Furiosa doesn’t reach the overwhelming highs that its predecessor did, it is still a thrilling and breathtaking movie in its own right that will undoubtedly be analyzed for years to come.

4. The Fall Guy (2024)

Ryan Gosling wears sunglasses in "The Fall Guy."
Eric Laciste / Universal Pictures

The Fall Guy took a much-needed look at the film industry’s unsung heroes. The story follows a retired stunt man (Ryan Gosling) hired to work on his ex-girlfriend’s (Emily Blunt) film. However, he gets caught up in a deadly conspiracy when the film’s star (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) goes missing.

Directed by John Wick and Deadpool 2‘s David Leitch, The Fall Guy was always guaranteed to be an exciting and well-executed action-comedy. Similar to 21 Jump Street, this film takes an old TV series and reinvents it for modern audiences. But its heartfelt story, terrific acting, and meta-satire of Hollywood have made it one of the year’s most unique motion pictures. While this movie failed to compete against the more popular Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes, the former will likely go down as a cult classic that many cinephiles will want to return to.

3. Late Night With the Devil (2024)

David Dastmalchian and Laura Gordon speak to a possessed Ingrid Torelli on the set of a talk show in a still from "Late Night with the Devil."
IFC Films / IFC Films

Late Night With the Devil centers around a struggling talk show host (David Dastmalchian) who tries to boost ratings by interviewing a possessed girl (Ingrid Torelli) on live television. It’s a unique concept that parodies 1970s talk shows while paying homage to classic horror movies.

While the film earned stellar reviews upon release, it also garnered more than its fair share of backlash for its brief use of AI-generated art. Controversy aside, this movie should be appreciated by far more audiences, as it puts a fresh spin on both demonic possession films and found-footage pictures. It also presents a deep story that explores exploitation by the media and the lengths to which some people will go to make it big.

2. Rebel Moon: Part Two – The Scargiver (2024)

A woman points a gun and stares in "Rebel Moon: Part Two - The Scargiver."
Clay Enos / Netflix

The Scargiver expands the world and story set up in the first Rebel Moon film, exploring the heroes’ histories and the tragedies they faced at the hands of the Imperium before they fight to protect Kora’s village on Veldt. Yes, the film may overindulge in its slo-mo artistry, and the plot may leave something to be desired. But for those seeking a thrilling and bombastic sci-fi epic, look no further.

The Rebel Moon franchise may not have wowed everyone with its first two films, but what they’ve seen was but a taste of director Zack Snyder’s true vision. And with the three-hour director’s cut arriving this August, revisiting The Scargiver may help audiences appreciate what’s coming even more.

1. Sting (2024)

A girl and a giant spider in "Sting."
Screen Australia / Screen Australia

If readers aren’t scared of spiders, they probably will be after watching this Australian horror film. Sting follows a young girl (Furiosa‘s Alyla Browne) who discovers an alien spider and keeps it as a pet, only for the latter to grow larger and wreak bloody havoc throughout her apartment building.

The film’s premise may not be that original, but the overall execution makes for an entertaining creature feature. The story takes its urban setting and turns it into a gothic funhouse reminiscent of Aliens or Evil Dead Rise. While this scary sci-fi story doesn’t take itself too seriously, it features enough humor and deep family drama to make it a well-balanced fright fest.

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Anthony Orlando
Anthony Orlando is a writer/director from Oradell, NJ. He spent four years at Lafayette College, graduating CUM LAUDE with a…
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