Look, a List: Why people on IMDb are stupid (I might be one of those people)

Yeah, I’m feeling really lazy today. So I’m going to rant about how everybody is stupid, except for me, because that’s what people on the internet do: make lists about why everyone else is stupid.

The IMDb logo.

If you’re a movie fan, and even if you’re not, you’ll have no doubt accessed the Internet Movie Database sometime in your life. It’s one of the most popular and, honestly, one of the greatest resources for films (and television shows, too). Their message boards, on the other hand, are populated by people who you can only wonder are actually twelve years old or are literally uneducated. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve seen plenty of great discussions on their sites, but let’s face it, the amount of idiocy usually outweighs actual discussion by about 1000 to 1 [citation needed]. I mean, it’s no YouTube, but it’s pretty bad a lot of the time. And there are probably some movies you want to avoid the discussion boards altogether (The Expendables 2, The Hunger Games). Unless you’re looking to troll or just want a good laugh from some of the insane things people will say, most of their “discussion” boards aren’t really that resourceful.

Here’s a short list of reasons why IMDb posters are stupid idiots. Obvious criticisms towards trolls, blatant idiocy, etc., are not included. This is all I could come up with in about twenty minutes before the letters I, M, D, and B started pissing me off:

1. If your criticism of a movie is too short, you are a troll and ultimately your opinion means nothing. If your criticism of a movie is too long, they will not read it, tell you to shorten what you say and ultimately your opinion means nothing.

2. Apparently any criticism of a movie will be met with derision by its fans, who demand you explain your opinions. And, yet, when it comes time for these people to explain why they like a film, their reasons are shallow, flimsy, and unexplained. ‘I like the acting, directing and writing!’ they’ll exclaim. Thank you for that in-depth analysis, random internet person.

3. If you say that a film was so bad that you stopped watching partway through, they will tell you that you cannot criticize a film if you have not watched all of it (as if all these terrible films suddenly switch directors or production crews halfway). However, if you actually sit through the entire length of a bad film, they will ask you, if it was so bad, why you sat through the whole thing.

4. If you criticize a dumb movie for being dumb, some ‘smart’ (IE dumb) person will inevitably tell you that the filmmakers intended for it to be dumb (sidenote: I doubt most filmmakers set out to create something ‘dumb’; something ‘terrible’, maybe). This somehow nullifies your criticism that a film is dumb even though they, themselves, admitted that the film was dumb and that the filmmakers meant for it to be dumb. In any case, it’d still be dumb.

5. Apparently there are just some films that ‘cannot be compared’ to each other, as if universal standards for filmmaking (like writing, direction, acting, etc.) and judging films do not exist. You can’t compare films from different genres, they say. I guess anyone who ranks Aliens (1986) above Superbabies: Baby Geniuses 2 (2004) has no reason to do so, right?

6. Apparently the bigger and ‘more epic’ a film is, the better it is.

7. They will equate box office numbers with quality of a film, and not with marketing, popularity, or even the obvious fact that studios pretty much only release big, dumb films into theaters that they’re sure big, dumb audiences will flock to see.

8. They think IMDb discussion boards means IMDb fan boards. People who like a film seem to be unable to fathom that another might not like it, and will constantly wonder why you will show up to a discussion board to discuss your criticisms of a movie.

9. They will frequently appeal to authority or, even moreso, appeal to nothing. Apparently the number of Oscar nominations and wins is a big deal. Even more, the IMDb Top 250 is a really accurate gauge as to the best films, and people will take it really seriously, often creating multiple accounts to vote up/down movies (and I thought I had no life). They’ll even appeal to authority as a means of telling you that they’re not going to take you seriously. This poster must be an Academy Award winner.

10. They will say you have ‘no life’. I do not know why. This is, of course, a massively hypocritical thing to say since these people are doing the exact same thing that you seem to be doing (making message board posts and watching movies).

11. They will constantly turn to the ‘it’s my opinion’ argument to justify their liking a film. Yet, few of these people will actually express their opinion to argue why they like a film, or make arguments to actually validate their opinions. If you cannot do so, you are wrong. Listen up, guys and girls, nobody wins debating contests by saying ‘it’s my opinion, therefore I am right’.

12. Apparently there is a poster on every message board who must, for some inexplicable reason, proclaim that said film is the ‘worst film ever’ (multiple exclamation marks often follow said statement), like this guy on the Punisher: War Zone board.

13. Adversely: there is always a poster on every message board who must defend a film, no matter how bad it is, or the poster who will proclaim that a less-than-reputable film is their most favorite film ever (again, multiple exclamation marks follow said statement). This poster will often reach for absurd justifications for why the film is ‘good’. Sometimes I wonder just how many films these people have seen, or what they’ve been smoking.

14. There is always a poster who will proclaim that the rating for a film is too low, and will attempt to rally others to vote the film up, as if their crusade actually means anything. It is as if a decent IMDb rating will somehow justify their liking of a film rather than, you know, just liking it.

15. If you don’t like a film you apparently don’t understand it or you missed the point. Admittedly, I’ve used this one a couple of times in the past, but only when I genuinely thought the reviewer had no idea what he was talking about (and, more often than not, I turned out to be right).

16. Furthermore, if you didn’t like a certain film, usually a more ‘in-depth’ film, they’ll tell you to go watch [insert name of ‘bad’ film here]. And while I’m sure he’s creaming his pants thinking he got you, you can take solace in knowing that even if you liked [aforementioned film here] it still doesn’t negate the fact that you didn’t like the other film. Something these idiots can’t seem to comprehend.

17. Everyone is a troll. Fans of films will often ridicule a poster who derides a film for no reason as a troll; and then they’ll turn around and troll another poster who actually makes an argumentative case why a film sucks. If you don’t want to hear other people’s opinions, go live in a hole.

18. The “it’s a kid’s movie” / “it’s a summer blockbuster” / “[insert something similar here]” defense. There are really good family movies. There are also really good summer blockbusters. Just because your film is either of those, doesn’t mean it has to be bad.

19. The “it was written that way!” defense. People write these movies? Gee, I had no idea. It’s even funnier when you actually criticize a movie for having bad writing, actually describe a scene or two to back that criticism up, and someone will respond with said defense.

20. The “it’s a movie!” defense. This has to be one of the dumbest things people constantly bring up over and over. I know it’s a movie. I just spent an hour and a half watching it, genius. Or, the similar “otherwise there wouldn’t be a movie!” defense. Thanks for pointing out the obvious, guys. Let me tell you guys something: as soon as you resort to the “otherwise there wouldn’t be a movie!” defense, you’ve automatically admitted that there’s a problem, most likely in the form of a plothole big enough that not even light can escape it.

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