Guardians Director James Gunn Says Knowing Spoilers Doesn't Ruin Movies

Baby Groot Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2

People who read and write about movies have generally become very familiar with the concept of a spoiler alert. Many fans prefer to remain unaware of a film's twists and turns before seeing it, as surprises are a crucial element in storytelling. That said, not everyone feels the same passion for spoiler protection, and Guardians of the Galaxy writer and director James Gunn recently took to Twitter to assert his belief that spoilers do not ruin good movies. Gunn wrote:

If a movie can be ruined by spoilers, it's not a good movie. I'm opposed to spoiling things for folks, but studies show knowing spoilers only very slightly affects the viewer's pleasure, if at all (and sometimes increases the pleasure of a well-crafted film).

So, while some of us may get all worked up over the protection of a movie's secrets, James Gunn has a different perspective altogether. Per his recent social media post, the Marvel Cinematic Universe filmmaker believes that a good film does not need to be intensively mindful of spoilers, and a well-crafted story will still work even if an audience member goes into the theater aware of the big twist or turn that he or she is in for in that particular narrative. Gunn himself is someone who still goes out of his way to protect the secrets of his movies, but this confirms that he doesn't think a spoiler leak will make or break a good project. He even brought receipts on this topic, using another tweet in his thread to link off to the study in question that provided the results for his conclusion.

This idea of spoilers seems particularly noteworthy when we examine the landscape that James Gunn is currently working in as a filmmaker. The Marvel Cinematic Universe has become renowned for its twist and turns in recent years, with a movie like Avengers: Infinity War delivering a genuinely insane ending that has taken many moviegoers off-guard. It's obviously fun to feel surprised by something that you weren't expecting to see in a film, but James Gunn thinks that knowing a spoiler ahead of time will not break the viewing experience if the movie is well made.

There's arguably a certain amount of credence to this side of the debate. After all, as some beloved films with iconic twists age and become more well-known to mainstream audiences, the twists have grown engrained in our collective culture. Going into movies like The Sixth Sense or The Empire Strikes Back with a completely clean slate would obviously be ideal for many audiences, but knowing the legendary spoilers that punctuate those movies doesn't reduce their quality.

With all of that in mind, we will have to wait and see how the folks at Marvel will continue to protect their spoilers and watch how they respond to leaks that surface online. If you are looking to stay up to date on the current happenings in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, then make sure to check out Ant-Man and The Wasp in theaters now!

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Conner Schwerdtfeger

Originally from Connecticut, Conner grew up in San Diego and graduated from Chapman University in 2014. He now lives in Los Angeles working in and around the entertainment industry and can mostly be found binging horror movies and chugging coffee.