(Daily360.com) – The new live action version of “The Little Mermaid” is getting more of the wrong kind of publicity. First, Disney made headlines by re-imagining the main character Ariel along racial lines for no reason other than what is now referred to as ‘race swapping.’ The movie has underperformed at the box office domestically and even more so overseas. And now Amazon has put its thumb on the scale for the film. Amazon, owns the most trafficked movie related website on the web, the ‘Internet Movie Database’ or as its more commonly known IMDb. Disney’s aquatic love story was not being well reviewed on the site with a majority of users scoring the movie a three or lower out of a possible ten. 40% of users gave it the lowest possible score of one out of ten. Yet if you go to the film’s page you will see a very nice rating of 7.2 out of ten. What has happened is IMDb has moved the score to what they call an “alternate weighting calculation” and thus boosted the flailing film. The company said they did this because the system “detected unusual voting activity” and in an effort to save the reputation of the scoring, they’ve artificially enhanced it.
Amazon and IMDb say they have a formula for weighing ratings but they refuse to give any details about how it works. All they will say is their “mechanism remains effective” and offer no further information on what that mechanism is. When looking at the Mermaid ratings it shows this film has been extra weighted. The film’s mean score without weighting would be about 4.6 out of ten but when weighted it rises to 7.2 of ten. Now, compare this to the recent blockbuster from last year “Top Gun: Maverick” which has an unweighted mean of 8.5 of ten but when weighted drops down to 8.3 of ten. Left wing conspiracy theories are plenty for this film, some accuse “review bombing” which would be a coordinated online movement to damage a film’s reputation.
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