20 Underrated Movies From Legendary Filmmakers

By Sophia Maddox | April 7, 2024

Sam Raimi: The Quick and the Dead

Embark on a journey into the lesser-known realms of cinema, where hidden treasures await discovery. Within the vast archives of legendary filmmakers lie forgotten masterpieces that deserve a second glance. From the enigmatic twists of David Lynch's "Lost Highway" to the heartfelt nostalgia of Tim Burton's "Ed Wood," these films defy conventions and offer unique insights into the creative genius of their creators. Amidst the shadows of their more celebrated works, these underrated gems beckon audiences to explore uncharted territories of emotion, imagination, and storytelling. Join us as we shine a light on 20 cinematic treasures that may have slipped under your radar.

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Sony Pictures Releasing

Released in 1995, this Western thriller offers a unique twist on the genre, blending elements of classic Westerns with Raimi's trademark style of kinetic action and dark humor.

The film follows the story of a mysterious gunslinger, played by Sharon Stone, who enters the town of Redemption to seek vengeance in a deadly quick-draw tournament orchestrated by the ruthless outlaw Herod, portrayed by Gene Hackman. With a stellar ensemble cast including Russell Crowe, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Lance Henriksen, "The Quick and the Dead" boasts compelling performances that bring its eclectic characters to life.

Raimi's direction infuses the film with dynamic camerawork, stylized visuals, and a palpable sense of tension that keeps viewers on the edge of their seats throughout. Despite receiving mixed reviews upon its initial release, "The Quick and the Dead" has gained a cult following over the years, with audiences appreciating its inventive approach to the Western genre and its homage to spaghetti Westerns of the past.

Martin Scorsese: After Hours

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Warner Bros.

"After Hours" stands as one of Martin Scorsese's underrated gems amidst his illustrious career. Released in 1985, the film diverges from Scorsese's signature gangster narratives, delving into the surreal and comedic realms of New York City's nightlife. Set over one chaotic night, the plot follows Paul Hackett (portrayed by Griffin Dunne), whose innocent quest for excitement spirals into a series of absurd misadventures.

Scorsese's direction in "After Hours" showcases his mastery in creating tension and unpredictability within the confines of a single night. The film's kinetic energy mirrors the pulsating rhythm of the city that never sleeps, amplified by its eccentric characters and bizarre situations. Despite its departure from Scorsese's typical themes, "After Hours" retains his trademark visual flair and meticulous attention to detail.

The film's underrated status comes from its initial reception, as the film struggled to find a mainstream audience upon release. However, over time, its cult following has grown, with audiences appreciating its dark humor and surreal narrative.