Act of Valor: This movie boasted having active navy seals in the starring roles and while I’m sure these guys are legitimately awesome, they are not actors. It’s really embarrassing watching them in their more dramatic scenes, although even if they had skills that rivaled De Niro and Pacino, there wouldn’t be much they could do with the conventional script and cliched dialogue. It has its moments, but is just a little on the amateurish side.
However, I saw “Battleship” just a week ago and felt the need to edit it in. You got lucky “Act of Valor”. This time…
This is the script I was reading from.
12) Dark Shadows: As expected from Tim Burton, the sets and visuals are very gothic, over-the-top and flashy, which could’ve made this a great campy horror film. Unfortunately, it’s more interested in the halfbaked drama and the juvenile comedy. None of the relationships have any substance, making the interactions rather boring and unless a vampire brushing his fangs makes you laugh, you probably won’t find this to be very funny.
11) Taken 2: Super mediocre! It’s just a rehash of its predecessor, complete with identical verbal and visual allusions, but it doesn’t understand why the first one worked. Everything boosted the awesomeness of Liam Neeson. Here, they split up the action between him and his daughter and it’s just too contrived. Even a little cheesy. And lame.
10) Resident Evil 5: Retribution: All of this films resources, time and energy went into making stylized, slickly edited action sequences. It did that well, but too bad little effort went into the plot, characters, acting or anything else that isn’t spectacle. But what made this less enjoyable than the dumb-but-fun Resident Evil: Afterlife is that unlike that film, this had some interesting ideas. But they totally wasted them. Frustrating.
9) Savages: Savages works best when it’s being a normal action-thriller, boasting some cool shootouts and explosions, a great cast and even some suspense. But when it tries to be more, it’s obnoxious. The finale was nauseating and the dialogue, well, it has what is arguably the worst line of all time. “I have orgasms, he was….Wargasms.”. Pardon me while I go vomit on the cat.
- Now we reach the movies I’d give full blown negative reviews too.
8) Battleship: I didn’t hate this movie as much as everyone else did. In fact, I’d say it would’ve been a decent film if it removed the awkward sense of humor, had a better cast, a different director, writer, the aesthetics looked like it cost the budget, had less characters, had more likable characters and wasn’t based on a plotless board game. Had all of that been changed, this might’ve been good.
7) Paranormal Activity 4: I liked this movie more when it was called Paranormal Activity 3, which I liked more when it was called Paranormal Activity 2, which I liked more when it was just called Paranormal Activity. You can only watch so many rehashes before it starts to get boring, and this one doesn’t even have a lot of jump scares. Instead, it tries to use jump cuts as the jump scares. Yawn.
6) Gone: Imagine the structure of Taken, where its just the protagonist going to one location and beating the shit out of people before moving onto the next location, but replace the action with talking. And it’s supposed to be a mystery that you cannot solve and they spend time offering red herrings we know cannot be true. Aaaand there’s no Liam Neeson. Gone sucks.
5) The Cold Light of Day: I liked this movie when it was called “Abduction”….er, wait, no I didn’t. That movie was laughably awful. The Cold Light of Day is just below average, but at least I can take Henry Cavill more seriously than Taylor Lautner. Despite snagging an A-list cast and crew, the script is a by the numbers thriller that offers no surprises, or any exceptional action sequences. It’s just dull from beginning to end. Even Gone had one striking scene. But not the Cold Light of Day.
4) Underworld 4: Awakening– It doesn’t really feel like anybody really wanted to make this movie, but were either contractually obligated to do so or just really wanted the money. The plot is comprised of many subplots that are unexplored and underused. Humans discovered the vampires and werewolves? Cool, oh wait, the humans sorta drop out of the story around the half way point so we could see more vamp vs lycan stuff. It takes place in the future? Well apparently the future looks a lot like the present. It’s just really uninspired and incredibly unnecessary.
3) Silent Hill 2: Revelation– This is likely the ‘worst’ movie on this list due to ineptness, which is a shame because the director has done some good stuff in the past. The budget is small, so the special effects are often pretty weak. The plot is confusing and I had no idea what was going on, the acting ranges from sleepwalking to not taking it seriously, the dialogue is laughable and the relationships are gag inducing. There is no atmosphere and mood, just lazy writing, an incomprehensible story and bad CGI. It’s just bad.
2) Total Recall– The first 20-30 minutes are pretty good because the film is showing off its high tech world. The problem? It plays all its cards during the opening act, so we don’t get anything new or interesting throughout the rest of the movie. It strips everything that made the original intriguing and just delivers non-stop action scenes. That almost sounds appealing, but I was bored out of my mind during the last hour.
But my least favorite movie of 2012 was….
- Red Tails: Wow, The NAACP Image Awards awarded this most outstanding picture….Guys, just because it has African Americans, that doesn’t automatically make it quality filmmaking. Now every movie from here on out that wins this award will be undermined by the fact that Red Tails proceeded them. This film sucks because the characters aren’t likable, one being a drunk and another an ego-maniac. They are trying to give the characters flaws, but those negative traits ultimately dominate their personalities. Soon, those attributes will be the only thing we see when we look at them/ The acting blows, ranging from amatuerish to slumming it. The more accomplished actors like Cuba Gooding Jr and Terence Howard obviously have no faith in this project. The dialogue tries too hard to be inspirational, but it’s too silly to take seriously and the banter feels phony. The script is cliched- you know who will live or die- the romance is predictably shallow but a lot of time is spent on it. This is the pace killer. There’s no concept of tone, a goofy scene can follow a dramatic one.
The visual effects are so polished that the action seems to resemble the cut scene from a video game instead of a movie. It’s just bad. . It’s not as hateful and pretentious as Spike Lee’s Miracle at St. Anna, which might be one of my most hated movies of all time, but it’s just…bad. It takes the incompetence of Silent Hill 2 and combines it with the blandness of everything else on this list. It’s a marriage I find intolerable.
ALTERNATE VERSION: Red Tails: I’m all for African Americans getting their own war movies, but what is with them portraying their heroes in such a negative light? Our protagonists include a drunk and an ego-maniac, with their negative traits ultimately dominating their personalities. The acting is weak- even Terence Howard appears to be slumming it- although Cuba Gooding Jr does okay. The dialogue is silly. They claim that the conventional script was intentional because it’s being a throwback to 40’s war films, but it just magnifies the films problems. There’s way too much time spent on the shallow love story, which was boring and under-developed.
The visual effects are so polished that the action looks like cut-scenes from a video game. There’s no sense of tone or mood. It’s just a bad movie. It’s not as hateful and pretentious as Spike Lee’s Miracle at St. Anna, which might be one of the worst movies of all time, but it’s just…bad. It takes the incompetence of Silent Hill 2 and combines it with the blandness of everything else on this list. It’s a marriage I find intolerable.