Sunday, March 9, 2008

Random Top 10: The Worst Films of 2007

I try to avoid "bad" movies at all costs. I skip most movies made between January and April and nearly every summer blockbuster in order to do this, but it's inevitable that a few stinkers are going to sneak in. Of the 60 or so films I saw in 2007, here are the worst of the worst.

*Pssst. The 2007 Diva Cup Awards are coming soon. Think of this and an upcoming post highlighting the worst performances of the year as the warm ups.

10. Disturbia (D.J. Caruso)
Critics over the summer wildly overpraised this film, claiming this update of Rear Window for the MySpace generation was worthy of attention. I don't know what film they were watching, because all I saw was a third-rate Hitchcock imitation with one of the most ridiculous plots of the year. And no matter how hard he tries, I still don't see Shia LaBeouf as a badass of any sorts; he's still just the dorky little kid from Even Stevens.

9. Music and Lyrics (Marc Lawrence)
The opening song, "Pop! Goes My Heart," is one of the best songs of the year and the 80's nostalgia is fun, but the film quickly turns to shit afterwards, becoming yet another terribly cliched and overly done rom-com.

8. High School Musical 2 (Kenny Ortega)
From my original post about the wonderful Ashley Tisdale in this film: "The first one was crappy as it is, but had a teensy bit of charm to make up for it. For the second one, it seems no one gave a shit anymore and decided to ride this cash cow for all it was worth. The choreography was stiff, the sound quality of the songs were dreadful (there was no attempt at all to make the voices sound like they weren't done in a studio), most of the songs could have been interchanged with ones from the original (I didn't like "We're All in This Together" the first time, why would I want to hear it reincarnated as "All For One"?) and the story was so contradictory and contrived it's not even funny (Zac Efron's Troy literally says at one point "I don't care about my future, I only care about what my friends think"...what kind of message is this for the tweens watching this?)"

7. Becoming Jane (Julian Jarrold)
It's not a terrible film per se, but there is so little passion behind the directing and the script that it's little more than your average episode of Masterpiece Theater. I love my Anne Hathaway, but she was a terrible bore here and that accent was so pronounced that you could tell it was fake. And if I really wanted a literal repeat of Pride & Prejudice, couldn't I just watch any of the 8 other versions of that story instead of this pile of crap?

6. Hannibal Rising (Peter Webber)
I'm not going to fault Gaspard Ulliel with this monstrous mess of a film because he tries as well as any actor can to fill the shoes of Anthony Hopkins' Hannibal Lecter. No, the fault lies with the writers who, against all odds, humanize Lecter to the point that we feel bad for the guy and, in the most simplistic way possible, make us understand why he became a cannibal. Couldn't we just let him be a bad guy we can root for and leave it at that?

5. Lucky You (Curtis Hanson)
Lucky you if you missed this stinker. Not particularly bad or anything, just incredibly dull and ridiculous. Before any scene starts, you know exactly one of four things are going to happen: Eric Bana will lose at something, Bana will beg for money, his father (Robert Duvall) will get the best of him or Drew Barrymore will be pissed at him.

4. Eagle vs. Shark (Taika Waititi)
Eagle vs. Shark is the perfect example of how one performance can ruin an entire film. Jermaine Clement is such a douche throughout the entire film, whether it's to the sweet and endearing Lily (Loren Horsley) or his entire nice family, that I couldn't stand it. If I hadn't been working for my school's Film Society, I definitely would have walked out of this pile of shit.

3. Shooter (Antoine Fuqua)
Even if they are incredibly stupid, action films are supposed to keep one awake, right? Well, why then did I fall asleep in the middle of the afternoon during this one? It seems that someone wasn't doing their job and keeping the audience entertained. And Mark Wahlberg, fresh off his Oscar-nominated triumph in The Departed, seems to have forgotten his trademark smart-ass edge which is sorely missing here.

2. Reign Over Me (Mike Binder)
No film in 2007 actually pissed me off more than Mike Binder's attempt at a 9/11 drama. Don Cheadle and Jada Pinkett Smith do their damnedest to try and make it work, but Adam Sandler's atrociously goofball performance ruins the whole thing. In the confines of this serious drama, Sandler merely reprises his Waterboy character (excepts makes him more retarded) and expects it to work. The result, needless to say, is a full on disaster.

1. Wild Hogs (Walt Becker)
On the day Wild Hogs was released on DVD, I was at work and during our evening huddle the guy in electronics said the words I never thought I'd hear in my life: "You better get your copy of Wild Hogs now because we're close to selling out." I thought I would pass out on the spot. Now, granted, I had not seen the film at this point, but I figured I would hate it. When I saw it a couple of weeks later, I had just gotten my wisdom teeth pulled out and I was hopped up on Vicodin. Guess what? The film still sucked. Not only was there not a single funny moment in the entire film, but the great William H. Macy is forced to play second fiddle to two former sitcom stars and a hammier-than-ever John Travolta. I think it really says something about our country when a film this shitty does so well at the box office when a film like Zodiac, released at roughly the same time, couldn't catch a break.

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