Several movies and books that we love require suspension of disbelief. The plot of Double Jeopardy, which was #1 at the box office for 3 weeks and made a huge $116M, would never hold up in court. If Ashley Judd killed her presumed-dead husband for real, she would still go to jail. In one of my favorite movies, My Best Friend's Wedding, why did Julia Roberts have NO idea that her best friend was dating someone, proposing to someone, engaged, and planning a wedding? Did she really not receive an invitation? Book tour, my butt. She had a brick-sized cell phone. Dermot Mulroney could've called her.
But still, this was a beloved romcom, and still one of my favorite movies.
I think many aspiring writers get caught up in the plot details. To make sure every plot point and their world makes sense, they get lost in researching. However, audiences have proved time and time again that they will ignore plot holes or take flimsy excuses
People will buy stretching the plot, as long as the characters remain real. Listen to someone the next time they explain why they hated a book or movie. They will talk about how "that character would never do that," or "that character was so stupid," or simply "it made no sense." You need to always make sure that no matter what happens plotwise, your characters remain genuine with believable actions, reactions, and motivations. While people love Sandra Bullock, they hated All About Steve. Her character was unnaturally obsessed with Bradley Cooper, to the point where she was no longer a believable character. Audiences loved The Sixth Sense, but hated The Happening. The former was primarily a story about a boy yearning to be a normal kid and a man learning to move on from his failed marriage. The Happening had no such compelling character arcs; it just had evil plants. That's why people hated those films. Audiences liked Double Jeopardy because they identified with Ashley Judd's woman done wrong. All of her actions made sense in the context of reuniting with her son. People overlooked the plot holes in In & Out and The Rock because they didn't effect the characters' motivations or emotional journeys.
What was the last movie you watched/book you read that you hated? Why did you hate it?