This year in film has featured many amazing trends and captivating performances. Despite so many great films at the box office, it is the bottom-feeders of cinema that is our focus. We elected not to cop-out and go for the easy choices or “low hanging fruit” such as Tyler Perry or Adam Sandler films. There is also no mention of films that we had low expectations of prior to their release which we didn’t expect to perform and those expectations were met. We also decided against films that had limited interest, as well. The end result are the ten films that drove me crazy, either with boredom or made me consider changing my beloved profession. Without further ado, here are the Worst Films of 2012.
Man on a Ledge
Wrath of the Titans
That’s My Boy
Madea’s Witness Protection
Hit and Run
The Bottom Ten
When a couple decides to leave the hustle and bustle of the big city and find themselves living in at a nudist colony, hilarity should ensue but instead there were tons of unfunny and crass moments in the “comedy,” Wanderlust. Paul Rudd and Jennifer Aniston struggle mightily to revive this one-note story but too many potty and penis jokes made audiences cringe instead of laugh!
9. The Three Stooges
A beloved comedy series from television’s Golden Age is the latest nostalgic favorite that receives the big screen treatment that it neither deserved or necessary. Produced and directed by the Farrelly Brothers, the wholesome quality of the original shorts is substituted for a series of unfunny and crass set pieces that feature nude nuns, plenty of questionable language from the modern-day lunkheads, who deserved better!
8. What to Expect When You’re Expecting
If there was one movie that completely sucked the joy out of parenthood, it was the hideously unfunny comedy, What to Expect When You’re Expecting. This ensemble rom-com starred plenty of pretty people, Brooklyn Decker, Cameron Diaz and Jennifer Lopez, in very unpretty and sometimes disgusting circumstances. Even the male characters are pretty ridiculous in this story that hints that to be happy man, you probably need to be a neutered one!
7. Red Hook Summer
Celebrated writer/director Spike Lee has always been known for his daring storytelling and strong visual point-of-views in his work. His latest film is almost a caricature of his entire canon in the worst film of his career, Red Hook Summer. Lee, who gave actors such as Martin Lawrence, Queen Latifah and Halle Berry their early big-screen launches, picks two of the worst child actors in a year that featured unknown talents such Quvenzhané Wallis and Amandla Stenberg. Despite an awards-worthy performance from Clarke Peters, there is simply not enough there there to save this screenplay that deserved the “hook!”
6. This Means War
Two special agent friends, Chris Pine and Tom Hardy, are intelligence agents but neither are smart enough to know that they are dating the same woman, the disinterested Reese Witherspoon in this unfunny, nonsensical rom-com, This Means War. Every actor in this film is better than this script, which clearly was either a mortgage/vacation check for all involved. That two men would pine for the ordinary Witherspoon, adds to the absurdity of this woeful tale!
5. The Paperboy
Lee Daniels has given his audiences varying levels of perversion in his earlier work but his latest film, The Paperboy, showed that the director was prepared to drag the audiences to the cinematic depths of hell to tell a story. Told from the point of view of subservient but smart maid, Macy Gray, Daniels wastes the talents of an impressive cast, including Matthew McConnaghey, David Oyelewo and Nicole Kidman, in this campy, small-town disaster.
4. Dark Shadows
One would think that after seven previous efforts together, Tim Burton and Johnny Depp could tell the difference between quality and squalor. Despite the talents of both men, the one-note comedy that re-imagines the cult 1960s TV show plays like an extended SNL skit about a 200-year old vampire trying to adjust to life in the 1970s. Depp’s considerable talents couldn’t overcome a threadbare script and the fact that it opened the week after The Avengers clinched the fact that NOBODY would see this tired, lifeless comedy.
3. One for the Money
After a string of forgettable flops, the Stoney Jackson of this generation, Katherine Heigl returned once again bringing her one-dimensional cardboard persona to this lifeless story portraying her as a tough, bailsbondswoman. The tip-off should have been its January release date which has not done the beautiful but vacuous star any favorites (i.e. 27 Dresses).
2. Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance
Tax troubles and entertainment make for some odd choices and this pitiful followup to the underwhelming original film showed that in order to square his account with Uncle Sam that Nic Cage would clearly do anything. This movie was so bad that a viewer reportedly said that the original Ghost Rider, which he didn’t like, was like the Dark Knight compared to this motorcycle cinematic comic disaster!
1. A Thousand Words
Once the funniest man in Hollywood, Eddie Murphy is merely a shadow of his former greatness. The latest example is the year’s worst film, the in despicably awful morality comedy, A Thousand Words. Teamed once again with his directing partner in slime, Brian Robbins, the two deliver another steaming pile of cinematic excrement. Murphy has become the equivalent of cinematic crack for those who hope for a comedic high that appears that will never return.