The Worst Fantasy Movie of 2024 Just Catapulted to #1 on Netflix's Top 10, Defying All Logic

The Worst Fantasy Movie of 2024 Just Catapulted to #1 on Netflix's Top 10, Defying All Logic
Image credit: Netflix

Despite abysmal reviews, a new fantasy romance has garnered a colossal audience.


  • A few days ago, a new Italian romantic drama was released on Netflix.
  • It is the story of two teenagers from the same orphanage who fall in love when they are adopted by the same family.
  • It has received mixed reviews but has made its way to the top of the most watched movies on Netflix worldwide.

Netflix never ceases to amaze. Although its library is filled almost weekly with a huge number of high-octane movies and TV shows, even more turn out to be mediocre at best (and downright awful at worst). But in the case of Netflix, you can never predict which releases will really take off and be embraced by audiences and critics alike. However, it does happen that a movie or TV series unexpectedly rises to the top of the global charts while receiving very unfavorable reviews from the public.

And the recently released Italian romantic fantasy film The Tearsmith is a good example of that. It's basically a shallow Twilight rip-off, with Edward not being a vampire, not being so affectionate, and growing up in the same orphanage as Bella who was bullied by the headmistress. Naturally, the movie got terrible reviews, but to everyone's surprise, that didn't stop it from making its way into Netflix's Global Top 10. Let's take a closer look at what this movie is all about.

What Is This Italian Movie About?

The Tearsmith was directed by Alessandro Genovesi (7 Women and a Murder), who also co-wrote the screenplay with Eleonora Fiorini. The story is based on the novel of the same name by Italian author Erin Doom.

The plot follows two teenagers, Nika and Rigel, who lived in the same orphanage but were quite estranged from each other: Nika, like the other children, was abused by the headmistress, while Rigel was the only one who was never hurt because he was the warden's favorite. But one day they were both taken in by the Milligan family, and it was then that Nika and Rigel felt the irresistible flame of passion for each other.

Poor Reviews vs. Skyrocketing Ratings

While the film garnered an impressive number of views, the criticism was less than stellar. On Rotten Tomatoes, for example, the movie's audience rating is only 58%, divided between those who were pleased with the story, visuals, and music, and those who couldn't help but cringe, comparing The Tearsmith to fanfics on Wattpad (which is absolutely true, as the original story by Erin Doom was published on Wattpad before winning the Wattys Awards).

However, this is by no means comparable to the opinion of professional critics, as their score was a mere... 0%! In their opinion, The Tearsmith is nothing more than an uninteresting collection of all the tropes of young adult novels, unlikely to appeal even to teenagers themselves.

But despite such abysmal reviews from both critics and general audiences on Rotten Tomatoes, the new movie's popularity is surprisingly high, providing a huge counterbalance.

The Worst Fantasy Movie of 2024 Just Catapulted to #1 on Netflix's Top 10, Defying All Logic - image 1

In fact, the film was released on April 4, and two days later it was already number two in the Global Top 25, according to What's on Netflix. It made its way into many regional Top 10s, including Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Mexico, the Netherlands and Spain. What's more, just one day later, the movie climbed to number one on the global chart, also appearing on the most-watched lists in the US, UK, Australia and India, and topping most of the other countries mentioned.

All this suggests that the new Italian movie is getting a lot of attention, but after watching it, many people are rather disappointed. But for many of us, sometimes a movie full of campy moments is literally what we need. After all, despite all the flaws, it's still an entertaining gothic romance with good chemistry and dynamics between the leads. Although the rushed and somewhat confusing plot doesn't live up to expectations, The Tearsmith promises to be a new guilty pleasure for many teen romance fans.