Yes that’s right folks, it’s that time of year again. Time for the best and worst of the year, and since there are still some films I’m hoping to see that might make it onto my Best of the Year list (excuse me, I have to check to see if The Revenant is paying near me for the 3rd time today) I figured it would be better to announce the Worst List first.
But, you might notice something different about this year. You see, I usually only announce a Worst 5, with the official explanation being that the makers of those movies didn’t try as hard, so why should I (but the actual explanation being that I pay for these movies, and my time is limited, so I only see so many bad movies in a year). But this year, this awful, awful year, I actually have enough terrible movies to make up a full Worst 10. So, let’s get started.
Despite it barely scraping the bottom of this list, I don’t really dislike Jupiter Ascending. Oh it’s a bad movie, badly written, completely nonsensical, with hard to follow action and characters that are completely flat. But it’s such a fascinating failure, that I almost want to give it a pass (except then this spot would be CHAPPiE, which is in the same boat). And I do maintain that the Watchowski’s previous movie, Cloud Atlas, was the best movie of 2012, and well worth seeing. This one…not so much.
I haven’t bothered to see Tomorrowland since it hit DVD, but I can’t imagine it would improve on multiple viewings. And the reason I haven’t bothered to investigate further, is because watching the movie is so incredibly boring. Why would I bother with a movie where everything interesting or cool about it has already happened and is merely talked about by the characters in the past tense? Tomorrowland makes it on this list for wasting what could have been a potentially cool premise.
Every year I hope that the deluge of terrible remakes and sequels will end, and every year I am disappointed. This year was especially bad, as you’ll see further down the list (although one sequel DID manage to make it on my Best list…no prizes for guess which one) but this one is barely worth being angry about. It’s just there. Not scary, not tense, not engaging, not even interestingly bad. It just sort of sits there, trying and failing to evoke some kind of emotion from you. And if it can’t even make me mad, why am I still bothering to think about it?
Oh Shyamalan. What are we going to do with you? Seriously, what are we going to do with you? We’ve kept you around despite legions of terrible flop movies that would end almost anyone else’ career, just because you did a couple of pretty good movies once upon a time. But when you’re making garbage this boring and irritating, I have to wonder, why are we doing that? It’s not the worst Shymalan film, but it’s probably the least interesting.
The young adult wave has crested and is pretty clearly rolling back. That doesn’t make me happy or sad, it’s just a fact. The big one, Hunger Games, has wrapped and the remainders are slowly finishing off their franchise’s as studios try to figure out what the next big thing is gonna be. And the Divergent series may not be the YA wave at its worst, but it’s definitely the YA wave at its most lifeless. I’m pretty sure there’s a Microsoft Word prompt that’ll write the treatment for this series for you.
I do actually want Marvel’s competitors in the superhero realm to do well, because reigning unchallenged breeds complacency, and that’s what led to Batman and Robin. But you gotta meet me halfway on this one, and between WB’s complete inability to make DC movies worth a damn, and this boring, half finished garbage from Fox, it’s not looking good. Oh well. Maybe Deadpool will be good?
When I first saw this movie, I was painfully aware of its litany of flaws, but I was trying really hard to like it. But as I tweeted about repeatedly, it stuck in my brain, and I could not stop thinking about it, and it kept getting worse in my brain. So once it hit DVD, I took it upon myself to watch it again. And every second was repulsive to me. There is not a single moment of this film that I could even remotely stand. I’m honestly still tempted to put it higher on the list. It’s not incompetently executed enough to be my worst movie of the year, but I hate it like it was.
Terminator Genisys is a movie that asks a lot of hard questions: How long can the first two movies in the franchise sustain Terminator‘s goodwill? How many awful sequels before the first two are tainted by association? Why do people want Arnold to return to acting? Did Emilia Clarke use up all of her acting ability in Game of Thrones? HOW does Jai Courtney keep getting work? Has Hollywood forgotten how to make a time travel narrative that makes sense? Why and how did this movie get made? These are all important questions, and I think we as a country need to sit down and discuss them. While watching almost anything else than this movie.
#2: Little Boy
I didn’t review this, partially because I saw it on DVD, and paritally because I’m still not 100 percent positive I didn’t take something weird and hallucinate it. I occasionally make jokes that a bad movie is so bizarre, so awful, so wrong-headed and weird, that it must be seen to be believed, but in this case, I need other people to see it to make sure I didn’t imagine it. Someone help me out here, I have to make sure I’m not crazy.
I’m not going to review Adam Sandler movies anymore. I mean it this time. For the last couple weeks, The Ridiculous Six has been sitting on Netflix, taunting me. “Come on,” it seems to say. “It’s Christmas, you’re stressed. An angry review will relax you.” But I resisted. Because there’s nothing left to say at this point, and it’s just going to bother me. And now that he officially can’t make acceptable movies even with competent directors, like Jason Reitman, or Thomas McCarthy (who will probably be on the Best list this year, so we know he’s good) his career has bottomed out. So I’m done. There’s three ways movies can go, and good, bad or mediocre, if Adam Sandler is the star, I’m not going to review them. Goodbye Adam.