Monday, April 24, 2017

The 20 Worst Movies of 2015


Earlier this week, I finally got around to handing out the 2015 Dellies. If you saw them, you know there was no Best Picture category. I've reserved that for my "Best Movies" list. However, if you know how things work around here then you know I've got some things to get off my chest first. That's right, I'm talking about...


The 20 Worst Movies of 2015

Stuff I'm told is bad, but I decided to skip (so far): The Cobbler, The Green Inferno, Hitman: Agent 47, Hot Pursuit, The Human Centipede III (Final Sequence), Jem and the Holograms, The Lazarus Effect, Mortdecai, Rock the Kasbah, Unfinished Business, Victor Frankenstein.


20. Trainwreck
The message becomes the same as the one people have been raging against for a really long time: it is okay to compromise your beliefs if it will help you get that “special” guy. Forgive me if I’m not feeling the girl-power, nor the movie. (Full review)


19. Point Break
There’s no fun to be found anywhere, in fact. This movie takes itself so SERIOUSLY it’s like a doctor coming to let you know you’re in the final stages of cancer, and so is your dog, while holding a stack of business cards from local funeral homes. (Full review/comparison with original)


18. The Wedding Ringer
It follows bromance protocol as if it's gospel. Whatever is coming is painfully obvious. Every emotional moment is telegraphed well in advance. Every twist of the plot is really just a lazy turn we've already braced ourselves for. (Full review)


17. Ted 2
This time around the various moving parts fail to work in unison. We’re left with a movie that’s all over the place tonally with jarring shifts in style. (Quick & Dirty Review)


16. Sisters
Tina Fey and Amy Poehler try to avoid stereotyping themselves by each playing the role the other should have played. Switching may have helped. As it stands, joke after joke falls stunningly flat and renders the whole thing a bore.


15. Pan
A very pretty, overly complicated disaster of a film. It never gels, or even comes close to doing so, Someone should have been made to walk the plank for this one. (Quick & Dirty review)


14. The Divergent Series: Insurgent
Nah, this doesn't sound familiar at all. Sigh. Another pointless entry in The Hunger Games Lite Divergent franchise. The whole thing engenders a "been there, done that" feeling that's nigh impossible to shake. (Quick & Dirty review)


13. Taken 3
Strangely, no one gets taken this time around. Instead, our hero finds himself accused of the murder of his ex-wife and goes on the run while trying to clear his name. He does, no surprise so no spoiler alert, in a movie that makes Taken 2 look like the original Taken, if that makes sense.


12. Terminator Genisys
The first half of Genisys works extremely hard to undo everything in the franchise’s original film. The second half of Genisys blindfolds you, spins you around three times while repeatedly whacking you in the head with a mallet, then turns you loose in a dark room you’ve never been in before with no light switch. (Quick & Dirty review)


11. Jupiter Ascending
Something about a lowly Earth girl named Jupiter (Mila Kunis) who is really an alien queen, unbeknownst to everyone including herself. Throw in some stuff about other aliens coming to kill her and Channing Tatum swooping in like a 21st century Kyle Reese to protect her. Sounds fun, but it's goofy in all the wrong ways.


10. The Gallows
It never rises above, nor sinks below the trappings of its genre. Everything is done by the numbers. In lieu of creating a real sense of dread, it gives us one of boring inevitability. (Full review)


9. Fifty Shades of Grey
When we get to the contrived cliff-hanger ending we first laugh at the stupidity of it all, then cringe at the threat of a sequel being unleashed on humanity. (Full review)


8. Hot Tub Time Machine 2
This is a hit and mostly miss endeavor. There are a few hilarious moments mixed into long stretches of flat jokes and plot holes. John Cusack, who was roped into the first one, decided to skip this one. If you do the same, you won't be missing anything. (Quick & Dirty review)


7. The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water
I was looking forward to this since I love SpongeBob Squarepants, the TV show. I also really liked the first movie. This one is just a complete misfire right from the start. When it transports our hero into the "real" world, it gets even worse.


6. Unfriended
Click…read…type…click…read…type…click…read…type…click…AAAAARRRYYYAAAAARRRRGGGGHHHH!!! WTF!!!...click…read…type… (Full review)


5. War Room
Heavy-handed Christian drama that takes itself extremely serious while doing things like inadvertently likening prayer to voodoo. It offers overly simple solutions to the problems of the people on the screen and is wholly predictable.


4. Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2
This one transports the action to Vegas and loses whatever charm the original had amongst the neon lights. Kevin James tries hard to give it some life, but he's only Kevin James. That just means he doubles up on the pratfalls. Since they weren't really that funny the first time around, do we really need more of them?


3. Whitney
This was such a one-sided look at things I felt bad for Whitney Houston. Any story of her life with any semblance of truth is not going to be a pretty one, but it should be fair. This is not. (Quick & Dirty review)


2. Fantastic Four
As the credits roll, we're left in an odd place. The film we just saw is short, barely an hour and a half, but feels much longer since so little works or even happens, at all. Still, we know that it should be longer. It feels like huge chunks of it are missing. It's well over an hour of set up for something that amounts to nothing. (Full review)


1. Black or White
It is offensive, no matter how well-meaning anyone claims it to be. Truthfully, it’s the type of film that I’d expect to be shot down before getting to the filming stage because it’s so badly dated and insensitive. Evidently, it’s not. (Full review)


By the way, you may have been looking for one of these movies, but they're pretty great at being pretty horrible:


Check out The 2015 Dellies to find out which movie came out victorious in the battle between these titans.

Click Below for The Worst Movies of...

29 comments:

  1. I teach a class in communications. The quarter-long project involves students selecting a movie and then using scenes from that selected movie to highlight and explain various aspects of communication and communication theory. So, students could conceivably pick a particular scene to look at aspects of nonverbal communication, for instance. Aside from them needing to pick a movie with multiple characters (so things like Cast Away are out) and not picking silents, I don't restrict their choices in many ways.

    I've had at least two movies on your list selected by students who chose them knowing that the would have to watch that movie multiple times over the course of the quarter. I won't tell you what's been picked, but I will say that the two I remember are both in your top (bottom?) 5.

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    1. That sounds like a fun project. I personally wouldn't saddle myself with one of these, but to each his own, I guess.

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  2. I've only seen five of these in their entirety. I will respectfully disagree with you on Ted 2 though it's not as good as the first. The other 4 are shit. I've seen bits of Trainwreck, Point Break, Sisters, and Jupiter Ascending as I was just like... eh.... not really worth watching as a whole.

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    1. Ted 2 is one of those movies some people really like and others really dislike. I'm in the latter camp. I love the first one. This one never came together for me.

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  3. First off, who said The Green Inferno was bad? I liked that a lot. It's far form perfect but it's a nice gory watch.

    Of the ones I've seen here, I definitely agree they're awful. I mostly liked Trainwreck when I saw it in theaters, but then when I watched it again on DVD I wasn't feeling it at all.

    I still can't believe the Fantastic Four reboot failed. How hard is it to be better than the first one? It's so frustrating.

    Some of these I forgot existed. lol

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    1. Lots of people. On Rotten Tomatoes it's sitting at 33% with critics and 30% with audiences.

      I "think" Marvel themselves is going to take a crack at it. Fingers crossed they'll at least make it watchable.

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  4. Of those, I've watched two. Fifty Shades of Grey was watchable, but ruined by bland acting by the male lead. Trainwreck I kinda liked, lots of jokes, which helps lift an average story into something with entertainment value. Typically raunchy, which Apatow movies tends to be, but not excessively so. I didn't look too deeply into its message though, was just a comedy for me.

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    1. Dornan was dreadful. Not much else worked, either. As for Trainwreck, I couldn't help but think of the message. Everything I heard about it was telling me how this film was so empowering for women. Aside from that, I found the humor on the so so side. And I tend to like Apatow films, too.

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  5. I had forgotten a lot of these existed! According to my movie diary I watched The Wedding Ringer, but my mind is drawing an absolute blank as to what actually happened - so I guess it can't have been good!
    I'm sad Sisters is here, but only because it should have been amazing with those 2 ladies at the helm.

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    1. One part of The Wedding Ringer I can't forget is the dog fellating a dude. Ewwww. Sisters should have been great, I agree, but alas it's not.

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  6. I can't argue that Mordecai isn't a bad movie, but I liked it anyway. It's like some of those later Bob Hope or Jerry Lewis movies that are not good at all (such as Boy, Did I Get a Wrong Number or Which Way to the Front?), but I'm fascinated and entertained, but not for any of the reasons I'm supposed to be fascinated and entertained.

    The idea that what you're seeing on the screen is supposed to be funny is much funnier than anything that you're supposed to be laughing at.

    My favorite movie of this type is That Touch of Mink. I've seen it a few times and I yell at the screen at how stupid it is. But I love it! The cast is great and at times almost convinces you that it's not that bad. Doris Day, Cary Grant, Gig Young, John Astin, Audrey Meadows, John Fiedler. Also Yogi Berra, Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris!

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    1. For me, I call those movies so bad they're awesome. They're filled with unintentional humor and all sorts of ridiculousness. I hadn't heard of That Touch of Mink before now, but you just told me Yogi Berra, Mickey Mantle, and Roger Maris are in it. As a lifelong Yankees fan I feel like I'm obligated to see it.

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  7. The remake of Point Break made me reach my breaking point (chuckles to my self) with hollywood remakes that I point blank (haha) refused to see it.

    Most of these films on here are pretty bad. Though I have to defend Unfriended, I liked it. Thought it was quite effective.

    Hot Tub Time Machine and Paul Blart I didn't even want to finish and I didn't even start Fifty Shades of Gray

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    1. Nicely done play on words. Unfriended bored the hell outta me. Nice premise on paper. As executed it's little more than watching kids using the internet. It would've helped if the story grabbed me, but it didn't.

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  8. Well, I've only seen #20, and I didn't even make it halfway through that movie before deciding it was fundamentally unwatchable. So it seems I dodged a hail of bullets that year.

    My son used to work in a movie theater, and I remember him talking about the release of War Room. Church groups came in by the busload to see that movie. They mingled, around the box office, with the usual weekend stoners, and my son said the stoners behaved much better.

    It's a shame there aren't more good films about the role of faith in people's lives. I am not religious, myself, and I decided a long time ago that organized religion and I just don't click. But I admire genuine spirituality, and I wish it were being explored, in film, in a respectful and nuanced way.

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    1. Yes, you dodged lots of bullets.

      I can believe that about the church groups.

      Totally agree with your last paragraph. Most of the "Christian" films are all propaganda lacking all nuance. Rather than honestly exploring the role of faith in the lives of their characters, they position religion as a magical elixir that instantly solves all problems.

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    2. One of the problems with faith-based films in the modern world is that they don't have to be good. Let me 'splain, since that sounds harsh coming from a fairly militant atheist.

      While there are plenty of people who have a deep faith or a spirituality that guides them who find such movies to be oversimplified trash, there are a lot of people who are happy with them the way they are. I can't tell you how many well-meaning believers, hoping to save my pitiful excuse for an apostate's soul, have recommended in all seriousness that I watch and truly consider the lessons of a film like God's Not Dead. In fact, I think War Room has been brought up to me.

      Need evidence? War Room has a 33% from critics on Rotten Tomatoes, and an 87% from audiences. (God's Not Dead, by the way, is 15% and 76%, respectively).

      If these ham-fisted, kindergarten-level theology films are good enough for more than 3/4s of their intended audience, why spend the time to make them better?

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    3. I was going to say pretty much the same thing. The only thing I would add is that it's not just that their target audience likes these films the way they are, it's that they come out in droves to support them. Consider this: war Room raked in $73 mil against a $3 mil budget, God's Not Dead costs only $2 mil to make and brought in $62 mil, Heaven is For Real had a budget of $12 mil and a box office haul of over $100 mil. Add in almost all of Tyler Perry's extremely profitable filmography (even Boo! A Madea Halloween made almost $75 mil on a $20 mil budget) and you can see why there's little to no incentive to actually improve the product.

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  9. When I clicked on this post, I had a feeling I was going to go something like 18 out of 20, but perhaps shockingly, I only hit for a total of six. Still above the Mendoza line, sure, but being that dogshit films are essentially my wheelhouse, I can't help but be a little disappointed. And worse? After reading your words underneath...I'm not rushing out to see any of these (no 'so bad they're good' stuff here).

    As for the six I saw (Ted 2, Sisters, 'Terminator', Jupiter, 50 Shades and Unfriended), I can safely say that I somewhat enjoyed all of them, even in a perverse way. And maybe I was drunk on popcorn butter, but I actually liked Unfriended straight up. Real-time shit fascinates me, as the logistics are insane. And if I recall...the opening scene was bananas.

    GREAT POST!

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    1. No surprise. These aren't the type of "dogshit films" people like ourselves love to watch. These are bad of the painful variety. The good bad stuff is at the bottom of the post (Most So Bad It's Awesome).

      Unfriended has a great premise, I just thought it was executed in as boring a way as possible. The opening scene was great. After that, it was a serious struggle to keep my eyeballs open.

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  10. I will see Pan, eventually. For reasons. But holy hell is Trainwreck an abomination, as is Schumer. It shows how amazing Hader is that he actually managed to be good and likable in this trash

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    1. Oh, I know you'll see Pan. If it helps, Jackman is the best part of this movie, though that's not saying much.

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  11. I didn't mind Trainwreck, but can't disagree with anything else on the list. Some were so bad even I didn't see them!

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    1. Lots of people liked Trainwreck. It made a ton of money. Good job on not seeing some of these. And I'm serious.

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  12. Yippee! I missed almost all of them:) I did see Taken 3 and they should have just stopped with the first one which I like. I wish the books (books!!!) and movies would implode and disappear on 50 shades of blechhh. I did not read it nor watch it but I know what dreck is when I see it. I love Ted but I won`t see Ted 2 because it looked bad. Actually all you mentioned sounded so bad I didn`t want to even rent them. Yes, Jurassic World was horrible and I wanted the kids to get eaten

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    1. Nice job not getting caught in this shit storm, other than Taken 3, of course. I also wanted the kids in JWorld to get eaten, but that's part of the reason I loved it.

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  13. Of the ones I've seen, I totally agree with them being here. I did appreciate Unfriended for what it was though. Point Break... still can't bring myself to do it. I love the original so much, the new one just looks like shit run over twice.

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    1. The new Point Break, yeah, that's what it was.

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