×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Rotten Tomatoes Dismisses Claim ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ User Ratings Were Skewed by Bots

Did an alt-right fanboy group — supposedly unhappy with “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” over its alleged “feminist agenda” — game Rotten Tomatoes’ user ratings to push down the score? The website says the claim is hogwash.

“The Last Jedi” currently has a 92% aggregate critics’ score on Rotten Tomatoes, making it “Certified Fresh” — but registers a score of just 54% among users. Out of nearly 135,000 ratings tabulated by the site as of Thursday, the average user rating was 3.2 out of 5. The marked discrepancy between critics and audiences was already apparent when the rankings first were released last week.

Now, someone affiliated with a Facebook group called “Down With Disney’s Treatment of Franchises and its Fanboys” has claimed that he enlisted bots to spam Rotter Tomatoes with negative reviews of “Last Jedi,” according to a report by the Huffington Post. That’s allegedly because he was angry about “Star Wars” producers emasculating characters like Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) and Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac).

“I’m sick and tired of men being portrayed as idiots,” the unnamed alt-righter told HuffPost. “There was a time we ruled society and I want to see that again. That is why I voted for Donald Trump.”

But it’s far more likely that thousands of disgruntled “Star Wars” fans are actually responsible for the weak Rotten Tomatoes user score. Asked about the claims outlined in the HuffPost piece, Rotten Tomatoes said the security team tasked with managing the scores hasn’t seen any unusual user activity that would indicate its scores have been successfully tampered with.

“For ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi,’ we have seen an uptick in people posting written user reviews, as fans are very passionate about this movie and the franchise,” a Rotten Tomatoes rep said, but the number of written reviews being posted by fans is comparable to 2015’s “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.”

“The authenticity of our critic and user scores is very important to Rotten Tomatoes and as a course of regular business, we have a team of security, network, social and database experts who closely monitor our platforms,” the rep added.

In any case, the low Rotten Tomatoes user rating hasn’t slowed down “The Last Jedi” at the box office: The Disney-Lucasfilm movie was poised to top $600 million worldwide Thursday, after just six days in wide release.

Rotten Tomatoes is part of NBCUniversal’s Fandango, which acquired the movie-ranking site in 2016 from Warner Bros.

More Film

  • 'Changing the Game' Documentary

    Watch the First Trailer for Trans Documentary 'Changing the Game' (EXCLUSIVE)

    Another hurdle for trans rights could quite literally be the track and field hurdle. Transgender student athletes are put in the spotlight in the forthcoming documentary “Changing the Game,” set to premiere at 2019 Tribeca Film Festival. Variety has the world premiere of the doc’s first teaser trailer, which gives an in-depth look into the [...]

  • 'Curse of La Llorona' Box Office

    Box Office: 'Curse of La Llorona' Conjures $2.8 Million on Thursday Night

    “The Curse of La Llorona,” the latest entry in Warner Bros. and New Line’s “Conjuring” universe, conjured $2.75 million from Thursday preview showings, while “Breakthrough,” a faith-based offering from Fox-Disney, brought in $1.5 million from its second day of screenings. “La Llorona’s” haul tops recent horror counterparts “Pet Sematary” and “Escape Room,” which each took [...]

  • Chinese Films Make the Cannes Lineup,

    Cannes: Chinese Films Make the Lineup, but Will They Make It to France?

    Cannes has chosen two mainland Chinese titles for its official selection: Diao Yinan’s “Wild Goose Lake,” in competition, and Zu Feng’s “Summer of Changsha,” for Un Certain Regard. Both films appear to have received the necessary official approvals from Chinese authorities to premiere overseas. But their journey to the Cote d’Azur is by no means [...]

  • Festival director Thierry Fremaux speaks to

    Cannes: Thierry Fremaux on the Lineup's Record Number of Female Directors, American Cinema and Political Films

    The Cannes Film Festival has unveiled a lineup for its 72nd edition that includes some high-profile Hollywood titles, genre movies and films from 13 female directors. The official selection has been applauded by many for mixing established auteurs like Pedro Almodovar (“Pain and Glory”), Terrence Malick (“A Hidden Life”) and Xavier Dolan (“Matthias and Maxime”) [...]

  • RUDOLF NUREYEV 1961

    Film Review: 'Nureyev'

    It would be absurd to say that Rudolf Nureyev lived, or danced, in anyone’s shadow. He was a man who leapt and twirled and flew onstage, all muscle but light as a feather, with a freedom and force that reconfigured the human spirit. There’s no denying, though, that over the last few decades, and especially [...]

  • Die Kinder Der Toten review

    Film Review: 'Die Kinder Der Toten'

    The hills are alive (or rather, undead), with the sound of music (also mastication and the moaning of zombies) in Kelly Copper and Pavol Liska’s experimental, dialogue-free, home-movie-style riff on Elfriede Jelinek’s “Die Kinder Der Toten” (The Children of the Dead). A seminal text in Jelinek’s native Austria, the 1995 book has never been translated [...]

  • Idol review

    Film Review: 'Idol'

    How many twists can a plot undergo before it snaps? This, more than any of the many political, moral and personal conundrums that snake through “Idol,” seems to be the question writer-director Lee Su-jin is most interested in posing with his extravagantly incomprehensible sophomore feature. A seedy political thriller by way of grisly revenge movie [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content