The 20 Best Films/Shows You May Never Have Heard Of

Sure we all hear about the big titles. Sure we mostly enjoy them, too. However, there are films out there that fly under the radar and never get noticed. Here's some films that, while not WIDELY know, are worth every bit of a look that the big names get.
Log in to copy items to your own lists.
Cashback (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
After a painful breakup, Ben develops insomnia. To kill time, he starts working the late night shift at the local supermarket, where his artistic imagination runs wild. (102 mins.)
Director: Sean Ellis
“ The cover belies just how deep and wonderful this film is. The heart within this film stuck with me well after the film was over, brought to life further by Sean Biggerstaff's wonderful narration. If you have ever had a bad breakup (and who hasn't?), then there is no reason NOT to give this film a chance. ” - shadow_n_shade
It's Kind of a Funny Story (2010)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
A clinically depressed teenager gets a new start after he checks himself into an adult psychiatric ward. (101 mins.)
“ We all know Zach Galifianakis as the lovable idiot. While he is still very oddball is this film, the depth to which we get to see him is nothing short of amazing. This is an awesome, feel-good film that, while not exactly a comedy by the modern idea, is nonetheless a remarkable film. ” - shadow_n_shade
Get Low (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
A movie spun out of equal parts folk tale, fable and real-life legend about the mysterious, 1930s Tennessee hermit who famously threw his own rollicking funeral party... while he was still alive. (103 mins.)
Director: Aaron Schneider
“ All it took for me to be caught up in this film was the idea that Bill Murray and Robert Duvall are in the film. While they are both phenominal in this title, the real surprise is how well the ENTIRE film is. The cinematography, dialogue, music, and supporting cast are all top-notch. If you have the means to see should. ” - shadow_n_shade
Murder by Death (1976)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
Five famous literary detective characters and their sidekicks are invited to a bizarre mansion to solve an even stranger mystery. (94 mins.)
Director: Robert Moore
“ Reaching WAAAY back, this comedy was star-studded gold at the time. Featuring such stars as Peter Falk, David Niven, Peter Sellers, Truman Capote, Alec Guiness (prior to his Obi-Wan role), and MANY others; this whodunnit will keep you laughing with its wordplay, goofiness, and satire. If you enjoyed Clue, this is one for the bookshelf. ” - shadow_n_shade
Psych (2006 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  
A novice sleuth is hired by the police after he cons them into thinking he has psychic powers which help solve crimes. With the assistance of his reluctant best friend, the duo take on a series of complicated cases. (44 mins.)
“ The first TV show on the list, Psych has a loyal following. For those who haven't heard of it, Psych made being a fake psychic cool before the Mentalist came on the air. James Roday and Dule Hill are an excellent duo and support from the rest of the regulars, especially Timothy Omundson and Maggie Lawson, give this show remarkable chemistry. It takes some time, but after a couple episodes, you'll see what the attraction is. ” - shadow_n_shade
The Oxford Murders (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
At Oxford University, a professor and a grad student work together to try to stop a potential series of murders seemingly linked by mathematical symbols. (104 mins.)
“ It is so rare to find a modern mystery that still has the goods to keep you guessing. This one, while not a complete brain buster, had enough suspence, twists, and second-guessing to keep you watching; while the acting made it all a joy. ” - shadow_n_shade
The Good the Bad the Weird (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
The story of two outlaws and a bounty hunter in 1940s Manchuria and their rivalry to possess a treasure map while being pursued by the Japanese army and Chinese bandits. (139 mins.)
Director: Kim Jee-woon
“ The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly is considered by many to be cinema gold. This is a Korean re-imagining of that film that takes the action and goofiness to new heights. While Oriental movies can be hit or miss, this one was a definite hit. ” - shadow_n_shade
Red Cliff (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
The first chapter of a two-part story centered on a battle fought in China's Three Kingdoms period (220-280 A.D.). (146 mins.)
Director: John Woo
“ John Woo is know for some rather cheesy action films, however this 2-part movie about the Battle of the Red Cliffs that happened around the end of the Han Dynasty was an amazing treat. While over-the-top in spots, the acting and visuals are nothing short of amazing. Truly a great film for history buffs or Oriental Cinema fans. ” - shadow_n_shade
Four Rooms (1995)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
Four interlocking tales that take place in a fading hotel on New Year's Eve. (98 mins.)
“ Outside Tarantino's normal vein of over-the-top violence, this comedy features some of the best cameo's from some very surprising actors. Tim Roth is further amazing in a Charlie Chaplin or Abbott and Costello-esque comedy performance. If you fancy yourself a fan of Tarantino and haven't seen this, you should. If you aren't a Tarantino it anyway. ” - shadow_n_shade
The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
A traveling theater company gives its audience much more than they were expecting. (123 mins.)
Director: Terry Gilliam
“ In spite of popular belief, this was Heath Ledger's last film. Terry Gilliam's story of love, loss, dreams, and the Devil is a beautiful trip and delighfully odd. Add to the mix some appearances by some some other REMARKABLE actors and there isn't a single reason not to watch this film. ” - shadow_n_shade
Rome (2005 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  
A down-to-earth account of the lives of both illustrious and ordinary Romans set in the last days of the Roman Republic. (90 mins.)
“ While it only ran for 2 seasons, this historical drama focusing on the times around Julius Ceasar's rise to power and ultimate fall and aftermath was a wonderful treat. While it won't impress those who enjoy the gratuitous everything in True Blood, Tudors, etc; it is nonetheless a remarkable show that discusses a facinating time in history. ” - shadow_n_shade
Moon (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
Astronaut Sam Bell has a quintessentially personal encounter toward the end of his three-year stint on the Moon, where he, working alongside his computer, GERTY, sends back to Earth parcels of a resource that has helped diminish our planet's power problems. (97 mins.)
Director: Duncan Jones
“ In the vibe of 2001: A Space Odyssey, Moon is a quiet and deliberately paced sci-fi film that was a surprising treat considering Sam Rockwell has to basically hold the entire film on his own. Kevin Spacey's soothing voice adds a nice air of creepy to this quiet film. While it isn't Aliens or even 2001.........Moon is an intellectual romp that certainly adds another dimension to an underrated actor. ” - shadow_n_shade
In the Loop (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
A political satire about a group of skeptical American and British operatives attempting to prevent a war between two countries. (106 mins.)
“ Political satire is a lost art. However, this wonderful movie done in a similar style to The Office, does a great job poking fun at the U.S. relationship to England and how problems like the Iraq War probably (albeit scarily) came to be. While satire is not everyone's cup of tea, you'd be doing yourself a disservice if it is and you haven't seen this. ” - shadow_n_shade
The 'Burbs (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
An overstressed suburbanite and his fellow neighbors are convinced that the new family on the block are part of a murderous cult. (101 mins.)
Director: Joe Dante
“ To be fair, this isn't exactly a "hidden gem". However, it is frequently overlooked by alot of people figuring that Tom Hanks only did one or two good films before Forrest Gump. This satirical look at suburban life, while dated, is still funny and I can've know some Klopeks in your life. ” - shadow_n_shade
Live! (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  
A mockumentary following an ambitious TV network executive trying to produce a controversial reality show where contestants play Russian Roulette. (96 mins.)
Director: Bill Guttentag
“ Social commentary abounds in this surprisingly good film starring Eva Mendes. With reality TV reaching viral levels, this movie takes the viewer on TVs natural reality climax..........death. The scariest aspect of this film is the fact that I found myself apalled and intrigued all at once by the idea of Russian Roulette televised. ” - shadow_n_shade
Big Trouble (2002)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
The lives of several Miami denizens, from ad agents to gunrunners to street thugs to law enforcement to school-children, intersect with humorous and dangerous results. (85 mins.)
“ Star-studded films are hard to screw up. However, God knows it takes more than big names to make a film good. This ridiculous comedy has plenty in the star department with Tim Allen, Omar Epps, Rene Russo, Zooey Deschanel, Johnny Knoxville, among MANY others. However, it is the comedic timing and the "so-stupid-it's funny" moments that make this film shine. If you are in the mood for an absolute silly treat.......give this one a watch. ” - shadow_n_shade
Dead Silence (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  
A young widower returns to his hometown to search for answers to his wife's murder, which may be linked to the ghost of a murdered ventriloquist. (89 mins.)
Director: James Wan
“ While not really "scary", this film from the creators of Saw delivers definite creepy. Ventriloquist dummies, tongues ripped out, and a rather surprising absence of stupid people; give this horror film enough clout to make even the most skeptical horror movie watcher give this a chance. Add to the mix a decent, although borderline melodramtic, Donnie Wahlburg and this film is nice addition to those horror nights. ” - shadow_n_shade
Severance (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
During a team-building retreat in the mountains a group of sales representatives are hunted down one by one. (96 mins.)
“ Office Space meets Friday the 13th. If that perks an ear then this quirky British horror/comedy should be on your list. While it falls in to many of the same cliches that horror films often do, this one manages to do it with enough flair and charm that you hardly mind. If there is a weak spot to be had, it would have to be toward the end where it seems to drag its feet. Fear not, though, the doldrums are short lived and hardly detract from an otherwise awesome film. ” - shadow_n_shade
The Last Kiss (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
Michael and Jenna, having been a couple for three years, want to get married and start a family. These... (115 mins.)
Director: Tony Goldwyn
“ Romantic movies are tricky. Most of the time they either come across as saccharin or are so sweet they throw you in to a diabetic coma. This film manages to straddle the line and the end result is a poignant look at relationships and the things that go on inside our minds. Zach Braff is his usual likable self, but it is the writing for his character combined with his acting that makes this film a heart-breaking treat. ” - shadow_n_shade
Sukiyaki Western Django (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
A revolver-wielding stranger crosses paths with two warring clans who are both on the hunt for a hidden treasure in a remote western town... (121 mins.)
Director: Takashi Miike
“ There is one thing to keep in mind, director Miike is influenced by Tarantino. In fact, Quentin Tarantino makes a cameo in this unusual hybrid of samurai movie and western. Rival, rural street-gangs, ridiculous action sequences, and a barely comprehensible plot make this not a movie for everyone. However, not unlike a train wreck, you just can't help but keep watching. If you are looking for something different......something beautiful even if you aren't always sure what is you're watching or why........then this is worth the time. ” - shadow_n_shade