movies that people still don't understand


The conflict in this alien invasion film is different than you might expect. The aspects of time travel and communication barriers confused many people who saw "Arrival" in theaters.

batman v superman dawn of justice

The entire premise behind "Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice" could provide an explanation as to why Marvel has consistently outperformed DC in the eyes of critics and fans. The Flash is all over the place, Bruce Wayne is an elitist, and that thing with Martha also happened.

only god forgives

Ryan Gosling and Nicolas Winding Refn reteamed after "Drive" for this incredibly abstract movie about a ton of aimless wandering through Thailand. There's karaoke along the way but you'll never fully grasp what's happening.

inland empire

It wouldn't be a confusing list without David Lynch's name. His most recent film combines Hollywood curses and sex workers to make as close to a straight-up horror film as anything he has done.


Very few people understood what they saw in "Bug," giving it an "F" on Cinemascore. This movie shows what happens when two people get wrapped inside their own heads while occupying a small hotel room.


You had to do some research to know that "Prometheus" was definitely a prequel to "Alien." Viewers were so put off by the plot that the sequel ditched the new title and switched back to "Alien: Covenant."

The butterfly effect

Asking questions about a bonkers premise never ends well, but that's mostly what people did for "The Butterfly Effect." The time travel element only added to the confusing possibilities.

The prestige

In the cast of "The Prestige," it's better if you don't know what's happening. The truth of Angier's clones is horrifying enough to make people want to stay in the dark.

cloud atlas

How do you make sense of six stories that are supposedly unrelated? You don't, but that didn't stop people from trying to make logical sense of independent tales.


Danny Boyle's film about the perception of reality is an easy target for people who like to pick apart movies. The use of hypnosis and memory implantation doesn't help things.

upstream color

"Upstream Color" is abstract to the highest degree. Viewers need to go into this film expecting to do some mental gymnastics to comprehend its themes of shared consciousness and how humans connect with each other.

under the skin

"Under the Skin" has very little dialogue, which is only the first thing that threw off viewers of this Scarlett Johansson vehicle. It's an unexpected take on a visiting alien was completely unexpected.


There's a fine line between bad acting and great performance. The two leads in this film convinced everyone that they were seeing a horror movie when it's actually a deep analysis of a bad relationship.

synecdoche, new york

There's a little bit of everyone in "Synecdoche, New York," which is probably why people were put off. The film is almost too relatable and that made everyone uncomfortable and confused all at once.


Prepare for a whirlwind trip with two characters sharing the same name who put each other down at every opportunity. Unfortunately for viewers, they resemble everyday people, which makes this uncomfortably relatable. 


You can chalk up the confusion over "Filth" thanks to the marketing department. Those who went in expecting a mean-spirited comedy were in for a rude awakening by the time the film was over.


How exactly did "Solaris" end for humanity? It's a question that people still ask to this day, and it begs or a discussion about whether or not humans are better off addressing their own world problems before discovering others.


Countless analyses have been written about "Eraserhead" and what's really going on in David Lynch's fever dream. Lynch specifically meant for people to interpret the movie in their own way, but that's easier said than done.

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Movies That People Still Don't Understand