Loving trash films is a strong sign of high intelligence

Science has spoken: put Interstellar back in its case and whack on Sharknado


Enjoying a bad film has been linked to high intelligence, according to a new study.


But – and this is a big but – only if you watch it ironically. Research published in the journal Poetics found that relishing “trash” flicks might mean you’re smarter as your enjoyment of the films comes down to analysing production values, dialogue and plot structure.  

“At first glance it seems paradoxical that someone should deliberately watch badly made, embarrassing and sometimes even disturbing films, and take pleasure in them,” writes Keyvan Sarkhosh, postdoctoral fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Empirical Aesthetics.

“To such viewers, trash films appear as an interesting and welcome deviation from the mainstream fare. We are dealing here with an audience with above-average education, which one could describe as ‘cultural omnivores’. Such viewers are interested in a broad spectrum of art and media across the traditional boundaries of high and popular culture.”

So what actually constitutes a so-bad it’s-ruddy-clever trash flick then? The study says the cheaper the film is, the worse it’ll probably be and the more popular it is with those saddling a tad extra intellectual horsepower.


Interesting news that answers that age old question; yes, Einstein would have been a massive fan of Mega Shark v Giant Octopus.