This is the time of year where we celebrate the best films and best performances from the year that was. This post is not that. Instead today I’m taking time to give 2019’s biggest stinkers their moment to…..shine. While it ended up being a good year for movies it wasn’t without its blemishes. Here are the five worst films *I SAW* in 2018.
#5 – “Isn’t it Romantic”
Tell me if you’ve heard this before: a character bumps their noggin, wakes up to some wacky side effects, has a life-changing epiphany, and then all is right in the world. Well, “Isn’t it Romantic” is another one of those. It’s main comedy conceit is that Rebel Wilson is caught in a romcom. But in the process of satirizing the genre, it becomes the very thing it’s spoofing (and not a very good one).
#4 – “The Fanatic”
To say it has been a rocky time for John Travolta’s career may be the understatement of the century. This 2019 disaster is an uncomfortably ugly and seemingly pointless look at celebrity obsession. Along the way the film dabbles in some toothless black humor (I think), fails to generate an ounce of tension, and features a cringe-worthy portrayal of autism/mental health. Not sure how this movie got off the ground but it sure landed with a thud.
#3 – “Booksmart”
After hearing so much buzz I went into this film with high hopes. I left feeling I had sat through yet another galling, unoriginal raunchy teen comedy dependent on the same tired cliches and full of recycled stock characters, many of them dialed up to 10. There are a couple of emotionally strong moments, but they’re lost within a mire of teen movie tropes, rehashed raunch, and boring caricatures. I know, I know, “Booksmart” is loved by many. I saw it as a sloppy Superbad 2.0 wannabe, and a poor one at that.
#2 – “Polar”
This movie had all the pieces in place to be something really, really cool (no pun intended). But as its presence on this list indicates, “Polar” wasn’t cool. It wasn’t fun. In fact it was barely watchable. How can you get the terrific Mads Mikkelsen onboard playing a patch-wearing ex-assassin yet still botch this movie so badly. Far too much time was wasted on mindless, gratuitous, and trashy nonsense and in the end no amount of stylized action or slick camera work could make up for it.
#1 – “The Haunting of Sharon Tate”
Nothing sounded right about this movie from the very start. Taking the horrific real-life murder of Sharon Tate and four others by the Manson family and infusing it with fictional nonsense about premonitions and supernatural mumbo-jumbo seemed to be in bad taste. It turned out to be even worse – exploitative, soulless, and without an ounce a shame. And even if you could look past its offense, the shoddy performances, vapid dialogue, and complete lack of tension would be enough to earn it a spot on this list.
Those do sound pretty bad.
Stinkers man! But I guess every year has them, right? 😂
Well I think the Razzies will be dominated by Charlie’s Angels
Oh yes! See, that’s another one I missed. One of the perks of not being paid to do this! LOL
The only one I’ve seen is Booksmart, which I liked, but it definitely ripped off Superbad far more than I thought it would.
I think I might wait to see Cats before posting my worst list…you know, for research purposes and an excuse to get drunk and laugh at something.
HAHA!!! I swear to you, three different times I planned on seeing Cats at the theater but slapped myself back to reality. I’ll check it out for one dollar on Redbox, but I just couldn’t bring myself to watch it in the theater.
Maybe I should call this the Cats Memorial List. 🤣
I feel Booksmart it a little overrated. I enjoyed it but like you said, it felt like Superbad 2.0. The Fanatic was… interesting. At first I thought it was good but then after thinking about it some more afterwards it became less good to me. I didn’t see the others but that’s probably a good thing. 😉
A VERY good thing. LOL. I know a lot of people who like Booksmart and I certainly respect their take. But I was so ready for that movie to be over. I spent more time rolling my eyes than laughing.
i pin all the praise booksmart received on it having a check list of talking points that hollywood and mainstream media are concerned with. “okay, we name checked obama while high fiving. what’s next?” bleh.
It did feel like it was checking a lot of boxes. I legitimately don’t get the praises of originality it has received. 🤷🏻♂️
I applaud your ability to get through Booksmart . It was a tired piece of raunch which I do not find funny nor amusing. I shut it off less than 20 mins in. Polar was deeply disappointing. Its was really trash and one felt like they needed a shower after watching it. The Sharon Tate movie was in such bad taste . I hate it when a movie about a real life tragedy and horrific crimes master minded by a truly evil man is allowed to be filmed . I couldn’t even get through it . Never bothered with the other 2 . Travolta just doesn’t do anything for me , and the other one was so derivative of other movies.
Booksmart was such a letdown from all I had heard about it. Polar was indeed scuzzy and trashy. And the Sharon Tate was appalling bad. I have no idea how that movie was green lit.
Thankfully I’ve not seen any of them, and none sound up my street anyway even if thye were good 🙂
BTW 1/2 way through Irishman- so far, so good.
You aren’t missing a thing by skipping them! As for The Irishman, great to hear you’re enjoying it. It’s so good. My wife is want to see by we haven’t made the time. We may have to break it up like a miniseries! 😂
That’s what we’re doing,😊
I feel the same about Booksmart. I had heard such great things about it, but I definitely was not a fan.
It feels great not to be alone on that movie. So many love it but I just can’t see it.
Yeah, I didn’t get it. Lol. About half-way through I made a reach for the bookshelf and just kept it running in the backgorund.
Ha! I stuck with it but I don’t know why. I guess I kept waiting for it to redeem itself. 🤷🏻♂️
-POLAR – 3/10
-BOOKSMART; ISN’T IT ROMANTIC – 6/10
THE HAUNTING OF SHARON TATE still doesn’t have a theatrical distribution here. Neither does THE FANATIC, which is weird. You see, it was screened at the Rome Film Festival, which stopped giving out awards many years ago (except for one that’s voted by audiences, not a jury). The people who work there liked John’s performance so much that they created an acting award specifically for him. And there were no runner-ups. I attended it, but I can’t tell you whether he deserves it or not. When they gave him the award, they showed a clip in which Devon Sawa takes a marker and writes on John’s forehead. It was too short for me to judge his performance. Maybe it’s the case of a good performance buried under an overall bad movie and nobody bothers to make the distinction when talking about it(?) Anyway, I’d figure that all of this would somehow guarantee at least a limited theatrical run.
One thing I will say for Travolta is that he does give it his all. He just isn’t that convincing and the material is really awful in spots.
I haven’t seen any of those films. The Fanatic is the one film I hope to never see. Mainly because it’s helmed by that no-talent Fred Durst. I did hear that there’s that scene of Devon Sawa trying to get his kid to get into that song Durst’s old band were famous for. “Dookie”
I did it all for the dookie! Come on! So you can take ookie!
And stick it up your ass! So I can eat that dookie
20 years later after that awful song, he can barely fill a club while Trent Reznor is scoring a Pixar film with Atticus Ross and getting ready to make a new NIN album and do a possible tour (which I hope to attend again) as they still sell out venues. We NIN fans don’t forgive and forget very easily.
There is an egregious sequence where he is trying to celebrate his own “music”. It’s pretty pathetic and shameful if you ask me. And he definitely needs some work as a screenwriter.
So, what you think of my “improved” lyrics for that awful song?
Cats is also one of the worst movies of 2019
That’s what I’ve heard. I’ve managed to avoid it so far.
Good on ya Keith 👍🏻
I don’t think Booksmart belongs in this list but I also haven’t seen most of these so.. mine looks very different though, and I wouldn’t even put Isn’t it Romantic in here as it’s one of the stronger Netflix romcoms from last year. They did much much worse with some of the others. 😀
I know many really really loved Booksmart. I thoroughly disliked it and left with a pretty bad taste in my mouth. I didn’t realize Isn’t it Romantic was a Netflix film. Aren’t you in England? I’m wondering if it was one of those strange deals where Netflix did the international distribution? Pretty sure it was wide release here in the States.
The only one of these I have seen is “Isn’t it Romantic?” and it was pretty rubbish.
You show great wisdom and discernment! LOL
They don’t sound all that good (although the presence of Mads Mikkelsen in Polar almost interests me – ALMOST)
They’re terrible. As for Polar, Mads can’t save it. I love him but that movie is soooo bad. Such a disappointment.
Pity. (I was watching him in Doctor Strange just the other day.)
He’s such a great actor. He did give one of my favorite leading performances this year in Arctic. Just not Polar. 😂
The best performance of his I’ve seen so far is in Casino Royale. Top notch.
Oh he’s really good in that! He’s also phenomenal in one of my favorite WW2 movies, an underseen Danish picture called Flame and Citron. If you get a chance, check it out.
I’ve only seen one of these, Booksmart, and have to agree that it was disappointing! I think there was so much hype around it that I went in expecting a lot more than it was ever intending to be – once I accepted it as a kind of goofy, silly teen comedy I found it more bearable!
There was a ton of hype which may have effected my reaction as well. That said, I did find it unoriginal, annoying and derivative. It is good to hear from someone else who wasn’t head-over-heels for it. It certainly has a following.
I can’t help but think the following is based more on what they think the film represents than a genuine love of the movie. Or maybe a love of the actors in it, who are for the most part lovely people with good taste in projects?
I think that’s spot-on.