Last year, when I asked Vince if I could rank the year’s worst movies, it seemed like a harmless enough idea. Now, though, I realize how terrible it was, because I have to watch these horrible movies. Here’s a fun fact: 2011 HAD SO MANY F*CKING TERRIBLE MOVIES. And now that SOPA is about to kick in and limit my ability to criticize these awful films and the dipsh*ts who make them, lest I end up in military prison for life, I figured that this year’s list needed to be more concise than last year’s effort.
For starters, I added some new superlatives because it’s simply not fair to other terrible movies that Adam Sandler and Happy Madison crapped out 4 movies this year. I have to be impartial when I’m putting together a list of the worst movies and that’s just not possible when Bucky Larson is such a phenomenally awful movie. But I’m getting ahead of myself. Without further ado, I give you the Worst Movies of 2011. Please share this with as many people as possible so we can put an end to the misery.
Just kidding, that won’t happen. After all, Aaron Seltzer and Jason Friedberg will be releasing The Biggest Movie of All-Time 3D next year. We’re doomed.
ADDITIONAL AWARDS PRESENTED AT AN EARLIER CEREMONY
The 2011 Seltzer/Friedberg Lifetime Achievement Award: Jack and Jill/Bucky Larson/Zookeeper/Just Go With It
As I noted last year and in the opening to this Pulitzer Prize nominee piece, it’s unfair to other movies to rank them against turd farmers like Seltzer and Friedberg. Well, this year I am rightfully passing the torch to Happy Madison. I watched Jack and Jill, Bucky Larson, The Zookeeper and Just Go With It while knowing very well that I was in for eye rape. Bucky Larson was clearly one of the worst movies I’ve ever seen – which sucks because I love Nick Swardson – and I’m still pretty sure that The Zookeeper was made on a dare.
Jack and Jill, though, was from another planet. For starters, here’s a fake screen grab from “South Park” that was heating up the Interwebs when J&J first came out:
While AWESOM-O never actually said that, the movie really seemed like it was created from throwing sh*t at a wall. It was painfully unfunny. When Sandler as a guy actually dresses up as his twin sister (like the retarded cousin of Inception) to woo Al Pacino as himself, I was about ready to lock my big toe on the shotgun trigger.
But the real crown jewel was Just Go With It, because it proves my theory that Sandler and his crew spend one minute developing their ideas and then 10 hours picking which hot actresses they want to cast as makeout partners. Brooklyn Decker? F*ck you, Sandler.
Worst Marketed Movie: Bridesmaids
I’ve crapped on Bridesmaids a lot this year, because it deserves to be crapped on. It was a good comedy, but the film’s marketing was a lie. I was led to believe that I was going to see a movie about a bachelorette party in Las Vegas, like The Hangover, but for females and actually funny. Instead, the film was a pity party for Annie Walker, whose life was just complete sh*t, and it was just conveniently surrounded by funny characters like Melissa McCarty’s Megan and Jon Hamm’s Ted. [Vince’s note: I liked the personal stuff better, but I *am* a big ol’ girl.]
Quite frankly, I could have used an actual story about Vegas hijinks – especially more from Rita and Becca – and less of Annie’s sad existence. Now, this isn’t to say that it was a bad movie. It just wasn’t what I expected. This is more disappointment than it is criticism.
Worst Movie That Was Just Too Much Fun: The Three Musketeers
The world needed a new Three Musketeers movie like it needed another hole in the O-zone layer. And while Paul W.S. Anderson’s latest version of the classic tale was as awful as we expected it to be, I sure as hell enjoyed it. I’ll get to this in a few moments, but some terrible movies are actually very enjoyable when you go into them knowing that you’re going to watch a terrible movie. Food for thought.
Worst Kids Movie: The Smurfs
I loved the Smurfs when I was a kid. That was between 15 and 30 years ago. Now, even if I had children – THAT I KNOW OF – I wouldn’t take them to watch Katy Perry and George Lopez voice Skanky and Taco Smurf, respectively.
Worst Idea: Glee 3D
Of all the terrible movies that I watched, this was the only one that made me say, “F*ck this, I’m not watching it anymore.” Some of these films made me want to turn them off but for the sake of my blogger integrity, I kept going. This movie would top the list of worst movies, but I didn’t count it because it’s based on a TV show and it’s a musical. I hate all musicals just for being musicals, so it’s not fair to the movies that genuinely sucked.
The Movie I Wouldn’t Watch: The Undefeated
This isn’t about my political values – I am a humiliated former member of the something something – as much as this is about my hatred of Sarah Palin as a fame whore. I’m not even willing to pirate this film simply for the reason that this woman doesn’t deserve any of my attention. I hope this little paragraph inspires some flamers and trolls to pop in and completely miss my point.
Worst Remake: Arthur
Dudley Moore’s Arthur is one of my favorite comedies ever, and it is a source of inspiration for my desire to be a drunken millionaire playboy (so far I’m 1 of 3). In fairness to the unnecessary remake, I hate Russell Brand and don’t think he’s even remotely funny. So when he shows up to rehash and half ass a classic comedy, I’d be better off sitting on my balls. And trust me, if you haven’t seen Arthur, you’d be better off paying $12 to watch me sit on my balls.
Worst Same Idea: No Strings Attached/Friends With Benefits
To be honest, I really just want to single out Friends With Benefits for a moment as a message to screenwriters from an aspiring screenwriter. ENOUGH ALREADY WITH THE BULLSH*T THEME OF A MAGAZINE EMPLOYEE LIVING THE HIGH LIFE IN NEW YORK CITY. I know 8,000 graphic and web designers and writers who are incredibly talented and they’re all riding the poverty line despite working for major publications. Dylan’s life does not exist. Stop lying to people with your Carrie Bradshaws and your Dylans and your Eat, Pray, Loves. Also, way to cram in the needless Alzheimer’s plot.
Also also, enough with the flash mobs.
This movie really should be in my Top 10.
Worst Documentary: Justin Bieber’s Never Say Never
I didn’t turn this one off, but I definitely left the room and did laundry.
Worst Sequel: Big Mommas: Like Father, Like Son
I spent the entire movie wondering if anything could be worse. Then I thought, “At least Chris Brown and Nick Cannon aren’t in it.” It’s all about the silver lining.
Movie That Most of You Hated But I Absolutely Loved: Cowboys and Aliens
Like I said before, if you go into a movie with an open mind and good idea of what to expect you can enjoy anything. That being said, the name of the movie is Cowboys and Aliens. Aliens in space ships attack an Old West town. Were you expecting Daniel Craig to channel Daniel Day Lewis?
Sure, the acting sucked, but it was a fun story and I like to think Craig is pretty much a badass in anything (he gets a lifetime pass from me because Layer Cake is the absolute bomb). And Olivia Wilde. Good Lord. Were you people really asking for a classic ensemble performance or did you want to see a movie about Injuns and Indiana Jones inexplicably battling aliens with peashooters?
Biggest Disappointment: 30 Minutes or Less
Vince and I agreed that this movie was such a letdown because it featured four people that we love – Danny McBride, Aziz Ansari, Nick Swardson and Jesse Eisenberg – and it just wasn’t good. For me, it didn’t help that the story was ripped from the headlines of a really bad news story and then the director lied about it. They should have just said, “Go watch Law & Order, dicks.” Instead, they came off a little douchey and it hurt the product.
Dream House – I know I just said that Daniel Craig makes anything tolerable but this was easily one of the worst horror movies of the last 20 years. Even he was embarrassed by it.
Larry Crowne – I usually think Tom Hanks is charming as hell, but after discovering Chet Haze and watching this phoned in performance, those days are over.
Something Borrowed – Give it back.
Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Big Happy Family – My first and last Tyler Perry movie. Very unfunny.
Priest – I really wanted to like this movie, but it completely missed.
Mars Needs Moms – And Hollywood needs a throat punch.
Gnomeo and Juliet – What the hell happened to quality kids movies?
Sucker Punch – If you told me that a movie with Vanessa Hudgens in tight leather would be a letdown, I would have slapped you.
The Dilemma – When Channing Tatum is the best part of a comedy, something has gone wrong.
What’s Your Number? – Anna Faris and Chris Evans need better agents.
New Year’s Eve – Luckily for this terrible box office flop, I already had most of my list put together by the time that I watched it this weekend. Otherwise, it would be a serious contender for No. 1.
And now the whole point of this feature!
10) The Son of No One
This film was declared an atomic bomb at Sundance, as dozens of people walked out of the theater. At the time, I thought that was embellished, but I would have been right there with them. The story of Channing Tatum as a New York City cop caught up in a scandal involving a murder from two decades ago seems like it’s going to be a decent enough suspense tale, but it’s just so messy and poorly delivered. I mean, Al Pacino has been mailing it in for years now, but Tatum seems like he’s stuck in a revolving door at the Post Office, which sucks because he’s my boy.
Fingers crossed for Magic Mike.
Alex Pettyfer already has a reputation for being an obnoxious, spoiled brat. If only he could make up for that with better film choices. Fortunately for him, the real burden of Beastly lies with the acting of Mary Kate Olsen and Vanessa Hudgens, as well as a terribly told story.
I can respect the idea that a vain man is punished for his good looks. God knows I should be hit by lightning eventually for being this handsome. Just quit lying to people with the “someone will love you for you” idea. Especially someone who looks like Hudgens. Danny DeVito is with Rhea Perlman for a reason.
The Easter Bunny poops jelly beans, Kaley Cuoco eats the poop. The end.
Ok, that’s not all. Apparently the next Easter Bunny – who is voiced by British cartoon character Russell Brand – wants to be a star instead of fulfilling his destiny of giving children all over the world his jelly bean poop once a year. I spent most of the movie hoping that Jesus would return… this movie to Netflix. Thank you, I’ll be here all week.
This film’s one saving grace? Cuoco. I could watch her watch paint dry. Alas, this isn’t about attractive actresses. Otherwise Sucker Punch would be getting the biggest trophy ever.
7) Green Lantern
As a former huge comic book collector, I’ve never understood the fascination with Green Lantern, so this wasn’t necessarily going to be a film that topped my best of list (The Muppets, woot woot). But I like Ryan Reynolds enough and Blake Lively is fun to look at, and I was riding high on Thor and X-Men: First Class (by the time that I got around to watching Green Lantern, mind you) so I was at least hoping for a quality effort.
What I got was exactly what I should have expected from a movie about a guy with a magical ring. Forget the plot being so scatterbrained and hard to follow, the CGI was so surprisingly bad, especially with the Green Lantern’s costume. He looked like he was late getting home from his gig with Hot Cops. But I also can’t ignore the plot – Hal Jordan must save the Earth from a villain that feeds on our fears. By not being afraid of him. Next time just make it a cool space dragon, please.
6) I Don’t Know How She Does It
More like I DON’T KNOW HOW THIS SH*T GETS MADE! Sorry, I’m trying very hard to not be mean, but it’s so hard when this is what people expect us to watch. Ho hum, life is so tough for the upper crust, how ever will Sarah Jessica Parker cope with her fast-paced life as a financial adviser when it interferes with her ability to be a good mom? Thank goodness she has her hot semi-Asian personal assistant and best friend with a huge rack to help her get by.
If you’ve noticed, the recurring theme to my complaints is the lack of realism in these movies. IDKHSDI is probably the biggest culprit of the year in regard to giving us a big pile of poop and telling us that it’s filet mignon. Even worse, it’s just a mess of clichés and bad jokes, from the out of work husband to the harassing boss to the assistant who is afraid of children. Life isn’t paint-by-numbers so stop giving us stories that pretends that it is.
5) Battle: Los Angeles
Vince thinks that Battle: Los Angeles is the worst movie of the year. I agree that it was awful, but it flirts enough with my aforementioned belief that if you tell yourself you’re seeing a movie about an alien attack on L.A. then you shouldn’t expect Shakespeare. [Vince’s Note: All things considered, I think I enjoyed Super 8 less. At least Battle: LA was kind of funny-bad, whereas Super 8 was just obnoxiously fake-good.]
That said, you also shouldn’t expect the most cliché-laden script in recent history. The era of 80s action films is over. We shouldn’t still be creating cookie cutter characters that say the same damn thing over and over. Do you know what a lot of soldiers would do if aliens suddenly invaded California? Seeing as they’d all likely be reservists, they’d probably sh*t their pants and scream, not yell things like, “We are not going to die here!” and “We gotta hit them with everything we got!” For the love of anything holy, people don’t talk like that.
4) Apollo 18
I really, really liked the idea and premise of this film. I love horror films, and I’m a huge space nerd, so this should have been right up my alley. But it just fell so flat and was so disappointing, especially right from the start when we’re told that all this footage was found and it was like someone was taping the astronauts’ every seconds. I kept waiting for footage of a guy taking a dump and reading a newspaper.
In case you’re still excited to see this film, treat this next bit of information as a spoiler and ignore it. If you’re still with me… moon rock monsters? Are you kidding me? Again, at least give me a giant space dragon. Hell, have the villain be the Russian cosmonauts playing violent pranks on the Americans. Then Lou Gossett, Jr. shows up and teaches them how to work together. Glasnost!
3) Real Steel
What is there really to talk about? It’s like someone watched Over the Top and said, “This needs more robots and no Peter Cetera song.” First of all, every movie needs a Peter Cetera song, so get that through your thick skulls, Hollywood people.
But seriously, this movie was Over the Top, except that Hugh Jackman sold his kid instead of fighting for him. But instead of pointing out how unoriginal this film is, I want to explore some other ideas that Hollywood can use for child custody issues, now that we have arm wrestling and robot fighting covered. How about a dad raises his dog to win the Westminster Dog Show in order to get his kids back from his in-laws, who are actually space aliens? He can yell things like, “We are not going to poop here!” and “We gotta sniff their asses with everything we got!”
I think we’ve got a winner.
I’ve pointed out a few times that the “Not if I find you first” line in the Abduction trailer makes me howl with laughter every time I hear it. Well, it’s just as hilarious in the movie, which is about a kid who is suddenly being chased by the world’s greatest assassins, and of course he escapes them and fights back because CHECK OUT THESE ABS, BRO!
Earlier this year, there was a story about how foreign actors were stealing all of the superhero roles because there weren’t any quality young American actors aside from
Ryan Reynolds and Chris Evans. And that’s basically true when you see Alex Pettyfer, Channing Tatum, Kellen Lutz and now Taylor Lautner headlining everything. I’m not trying to imply that these guys can’t eventually become great actors, because even Tom Hanks was a sh*tty actor once in his career.
But we really need to stop force-feeding guys like Lautner on moviegoers, because he’s just not a good actor. He’s certainly not an action star yet. It all goes back to that line – “Not if I find you first!” It’s far and away the worst line delivered in a motion picture this year. If you haven’t seen it, pull up the trailer and give it a whirl. If you don’t laugh your ass off, then you may not have a pulse.
1) Tower Heist
This was a tough one, because all of these movies deserved the title of Worst Movie of the Year in their own ways. What it came down to was which film had a promising plot, a great ensemble cast, more marketing than the Catholic church, and a budget that rivaled the GDP of most countries, and just completely sucked. And by those standards, my worst movie of 2011 is Tower Heist.
Starring Ben Stiller, Eddie Murphy, Casey Affleck, Gabourey Sidibe, Matthew Broderick and Alan Alda, Tower Heist was made for $75 million, of which I assume the bulk was for Gold Bond crotch powder for Brett Ratner. The finished product was supposed to be a comedic take on the topical struggle between the working class and the 1%, but what it actually became was a preposterous dollar store version of Ocean’s Eleven, except without the charm and clever plot. I guess that’ll happen when “rehearsal is for fags.”
Most of all, the biggest flaw of Tower Heist was that it wanted to be a feel-good story, but it broke from the formula. I know, I cry and cry that nothing is original anymore and here I am criticizing a film for not being predictable. But if you’re going to make a carbon copy movie like this, and you want people to leave the theater smiling and saying, “Ha, that Alan Alda got what he deserved!” then why the hell are you still sending Ben Stiller to jail for two years? Shouldn’t he walk free with the rest of the crew and bask in the glory of chopping up a solid gold car and repaying everyone? It just leaves us empty.
I’d apologize for not giving you a spoiler alert there, but this movie was spoiled from day one.