The Movie Board: Worst movies of 2008
Okely, dokely. Last week I gave you my 5 favorite movies of 2008. Now it’s time to talk about the 5 worst movies I saw last year. If you would like, you can take a look at my five worst movies from 2007 right here.
Looking over the list this year, I noticed that the worst movies, for me, tend to be ones I was super-psyched to go see, but they, for whatever reason, turn out to suck. HARD. Just being bad is one thing, but promising massive coolness and then dumping in my lap nothing but a steaming pile of monkey dung is a major faux pas. I am still one of the few that really wants to see movies on the big screen. Yes, the other people that go to movies are neanderthals. They leave their candy and trash all around their seat because “they have people to pick that up” (how hard is it to carry your cup and popcorn bag to the f’n trash, you are going that way anyway). They answer cell phones in the middle of the movie (Why pay 10 bucks to talk on your cell phone?!). They talk to their friends during the movie, or make fun of the movie while it’s playing. So yes, there are plenty of reasons to avoid the “unwashed masses” and watch all your movies at home. I, however, enjoy the large screen and fantastic sound. I want to see movies like Iron Man, Dark Knight, Hulk, Indiana Jones and others on the big screen. That’s how it’s meant to be done. Now, I’ll usually avoid the evening shows and Steph and I will hit the Saturday matinees where it’s cheaper and less crowded, but we are getting out there. Seeing the movie in the theater. So, naturally, after all this, if a movie is uninteresting or just bad, I’ll be pissed that I wasted my energy.
So, as a public service announcement, here are the five movies I believe to be the five worst movies I saw in 2008. I recommend not watching any one of these stink bombs.
Here they are in no particular order:
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull- That’s right. I’m saying it. This was one of the worst movies of 2008. More to the point, it was one of the most disappointing movies of 2008. It was not remotely the same Indy we saw in The Last Crusade. Despite everyone saying that Ford looked great, he looked older. A lot older. They could cast Indiana Jones in the next Mummy movie. Also, Spielberg seemed to be on cruise control. How flat and uninteresting did this movie look? Too much CGI, not enough practical. And the alien aspect was more X-Files and less Indy. The whole thing felt odd when I saw it. I wanted to watch it again in theaters to give it another chance but couldn’t bring myself to pay to watch it again. Maybe I’ll rent the Blu-Ray and give it one more chance. But I’m sure it won’t be good enough to move off this list. If they make more of these, I’ll see them, but it will be in a robotic, soulless way, not with any enthusiasm or excitement (in much the same way they made this movie).
X-Files: I Want To Believe- This is right up there with Indiana Jones. Actually, I found this more disappointing than Indiana Jones. I wanted to believe (ha! pun) that this movie was gonna rock. I was exactly who this movie was made for. I watched X-Files. I saw the last movie in the theater. My wife and I watched the first season of X-Files on DVD a month or so before the movie came out. I was so pumped. Then, after seeing the movie, I came out of the theater feeling like this movie raped my wife and punched my mother in face. WTF was that?! The nostalgia of seeing Mulder and Scully on the big screen again almost brain washed me into thinking the movie was good. ALMOST. Alas, it was not good. At all. It was like a bad episode of CSI, much less a bad episode of X-Files. WTF happened? It’s like Chris Carter crapped in a bucket and that bucket wrote the script for this movie. I want to cry thinking about it. If you have fond memories of X-Files, do not see this movie. EVER.
Disaster Movie- Why do they keep making these spoof movies? Are they making money at this point? What started out as a very clever idea with Not Another Teen Movie and Scary Movie has devolved into a carousel of comedy abortions. I thought Epic Movie last year would have bottomed out the genre but this movie hits the bottom, gets out an industrial-sized drill, and starts digging. It is AWFUL. This might be the only movie on this list I didn’t have high hopes for and it STILL managed to come in under those expectations. I was actually embarrassed for the actors in the movie. There is a HORRIBLE send-up of a High School Musical song that literally had me cringing and looking for the door. I can’t recommend watching this under any circumstances. Seriously. Even hammered with 12 of your best friends, the movie isn’t funny. You’ve been warned.
Righteous Kill- When you see a movie staring Robert DeNiro and Al Pacino, you have certain expectations. The least of which is that the movie is going to be good. The last two movies these guys were in? Heat and Godfather Part F’N 2!! There’s a history there that gives you the warm and fuzzies that you are about to see two of our finest actors kick some un-holy ass on screen. What you get? Two extremely old dudes in a paint-by-numbers cop movie about corrupt cops. There is an interesting twist in that a cop is killing criminals that are not convicted by the justice system, but this plot device is mis-handled by a poor script and weirdly poor acting. Michael and Vito Corleone look like they are three thousand years old. Did the makeup person quit? I can’t think of anything to like about this movie. Oh wait, Carla Gugino. She is in this, and she is HOT. However, she is banging Robert DeNiro who, again, looks like he could be her grandfather. Or great grandfather. So creepy and weird. So unfortunately disappointing. If you want to see a 2008 movie with one of these guys, see 88 Minutes staring Al Pacino. It’s much better than this, but still only an average film overall. However, again, Al Pacino is banging super hottie Alicia Witt in that movie and he looks like her grandfather. I guess being Pacino and DeNiro does have benefits. But these guys really need to screen their scripts a little more closely. I don’t want them venturing into Sir Ben Kingsley territory.
Mama Mia- I’ve loved ABBA’s music for years and I saw this Broadway play in Ft Worth, TX with my in-laws. The play is very good and makes clever use of many of ABBA’s most popular songs. I really did enjoy…the play. However, the reason this movie is on my list is because of one thing; Pierce Brosnan. Watching Pierce bellow his way through the songs is like watching someone torture animals right in front of me. I get the dry heaves just thinking about it. It was PAINFUL. Painful to listen to, painful to imagine what the filmmakers were thinking. Why did they think this was a good idea? Was it his marquee name? Probably. The main girl does very well and Meryl Streep starts off rough, but finishes the movie admirably. However, the massive train wreck that was Pierce’s musical performance is bad enough to place the entire movie on this list. Odds are, you may like every other part of this movie, I did. But the looming shadow of Pierce’s singing will forever haunt your nightmares.
Okay there’s the top…of the bottom. The worst of the worst this past year. What about Honorable Mentions? Here are two more really bad movies from 2008, but not quite bad enough to be the WORST.
Never Back Down- You’ve probably never heard of this so check it out at IMDB here. Last year, I put a movie called DOA in this section. I said it was bad, but it was supposed to be bad. This is in the same type of situation. It’s basically The Karate Kid 2008. But, instead of Tae Kwon Do, this movie uses mixed martial arts/grappling as it’s fighting style. The script is BAD, dude. The acting isn’t great, either. However it’s badly entertaining throughout most of the movie. The bad guy, Cam Gigandet, plays the bad guy with relish. He is easily as shallow and dislikeable as William Zabka was in the original Karate Kid. And the chick, Amber Heard, is super hot. So as an amped up remake of Karate Kid (which I don’t think it was supposed to be), it works on several levels. It’s something I would see with my friend Dr Mike who can appreciate really bad action movies like this one. Also, much like Karate Kid, this movie uses a very energetic song during the final tournament to pump up the audience. Karate Kid used the song You’re the Best Around by Joe Esposito to accomplish this. This movie, however, uses a song called The Slam by TobyMac. What makes this choice unexpectedly funny, is that The Slam is actually a christian rock song by the founder of DC Talk. Either the filmakers didn’t realize it (which when you hear the lyrics you wonder how they didn’t know) or just didn’t care. All it does is add to the humor surrounding this movie. This movie is bad, but good. FYI…I downloaded The Slam and it is now a part of my workout routine.
Speed Racer- Here’s another one I had low expectations for and it still came in under those low expectations. Most of the movie sucks, but the action scenes are phenomenal. I actually want to see this again on my new Blu-Ray system so I can get a better look at the effects. However, whenever the movie is not currently in the middle of a race sequence, it’s horrible. The dialogue, the acting, the music, the visuals. AWFUL. Whenever the movie is showing a race or action sequence, it’s phenomenal. The effects are out of this world. Seriously. The racing scenes are perfect. If they strung together two hours of nothing but racing I swear this movie would be on the top 5 list for the year. The physics of the race tracks and the cars are gorgeous. All of the cars have these bad ass gadgets, too. I really enjoyed the racing, but you have to sit through the story to get to the racing. It’s a double-edged sword. The movie is like Jeckyll and Hyde. But I guess you don’t really expect a Speed Racer movie to be acted very well, either.
Okay, now that all of that wackiness is done, it’s time to clean the Board and setup for 2009.
It was a fairly good movie year, I think. Surprisingly, I think 2007 was a tad better, but not by much. Hopefully, we will have a good 2009.
What do I have my eye on for 2009? Here’s a quick list of movies I’m looking forward to this year.
- Push (Feb 6) – Chris Evans is a telekenetic on the run from the government who wants to make him a weapon.
- Race to Witch Mountain (Mar 13) – Modern sequel to Escape from Witch Mountain with Duane Johnson (The Rock)
- Fast and Furious (April 3) – Fourth movie in the series. I loved the last two. Cheesy but good.
- X-Men Origins: Wolverine (May 1) – Jackman returns as Wolverine along with Liev Shreiber as Sabertooth and Ryan Reynolds as Deadpool.
- Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Jul 17) – Harry Potter 6 gonna kick some ass.
- Disney’s A Christmas Carol (Nov 6) – Jim Carrey as the voice of Ebenezer Scrooge in a motion capture adaptation of Dickens’ classic.
Tune back here in December to see if any of these made my “best of 2009″ list…or the “worst of 2009″ list.
See you in the theater!