Friday I listed what I thought were the best movies of 2013. Now it’s time to talk about the worst. I normally don’t like piling on movies that miss their mark. But call this a Public Service Announcement. It’s a warning of sorts that points out what I felt were the real stinkers of 2013. Of course this is based on the movies I’ve seen. There’s plenty of garbage that I was lucky enough to avoid. Still, these five dandies are certainly worth missing.
#5 – “The Lone Ranger”
Unlike many, I felt “The Lone Ranger” had tons of potential. Sure it was based on an old television western that may not connect with younger audiences, but it was still a good concept with plenty of star power behind it. I certainly wasn’t expecting the overly long and bloated mess that we got. The film runs at a gasping 150 minutes and suffers from huge shifts in tone and almost no energy whatsoever. And Armie Hammer is as stiff and unsure as anyone else I saw last year. I don’t agree with some of the gripes thrown its way (racism, revisionist history, etc) but there are still plenty of other problems to point to. What a missed opportunity.
#4 – “Now You See Me”
Speaking of missed opportunities, “Now You See Me” was a film built around a pretty cool concept. It’s too bad the script was so darned ridiculous. Four street magicians are hired by a wealthy financier to perform elaborate bank robberies. All of that sounds good. But the story becomes unhinged once it starts to twist and turn. Some of the reveals are downright silly and then there is the whole weird secret society thing called “The Eye”. I really like Ruffalo, Caine, Harrelson, Eisenberg, and especially the wonderful French actress Laurent. But they can’t make up for the goofy and scatterbrained script. This should have better.
#3 – “After Earth”
This should hardly be a surprise to anyone. The universally panned “After Earth” was a film well deserving of the thrashing it took from critics. At a cost of nearly $250 million (including marketing), “After Earth” should have never been as bad as it was. But with the fading M. Night Shyamalan at the helm and two truly horrendous performances from Will and Jaden Smith, the movie never had a chance. The story fumbles along never providing an ounce of energy or excitement. It’s boring and sometimes laughably bad. I can’t see this movie helping the careers of any of the three people I cited. As a matter of fact, I can see this as a career killer.
#2 – “White House Down”
Roland Emmerich has become a master of the obnoxious, silly, overstuffed action picture. “White House Down” may be his crowning achievement in the area of stupidity. This movie screws up everything. The story is unoriginal. The characters are boring and cliche. The action is dull and repetitive. The acting is absolutely terrible. The CGI is poorly done. It’s waaay too long and sitting through 130 minutes of it is mind-numbing. I could go one and on. Emmerich’s politically correct action thriller has no exciting action and it isn’t the least bit thrilling. Even its attempts at humor fall flat as a pancake. Watching this was a chore.
#1 – “Grown Ups 2”
It’s hard imagining a movie being worse than the first “Grown Ups” film. Well this sequel is worse in almost every way. The same idiotic juvenile humor is apparently all that Adam Sandler knows and it has never been more on display than in this film. Cheap and unfunny toilet humor along with moronic slapstick never drew a laugh out of me. I sat stone-faced through this poor excuse for a comedy constantly wondering how this thing attracted the audience it did. It’s relentlessly stupid and the jokes feel as though they were written by some hack looking for a payday. And there is practically no plot whatsoever. This was clearly a cash-in movie for Sandler and his pals and sadly they laughed all the way to the bank. At least someone was laughing. I sure wasn’t.
So there they are. Do you agree or disagree with any of my choices? I would love to hear your least favorite movie of the year. Please drop a comment in the section below.