2011 Summer Movie Wrap-Up Part 2: The Negative
A lot of people, myself included, would argue that 2011 was definitely one of the better summers for movies in recent memory. However, that does not mean that there weren’t a fair share of stinkers. Hollywood still likes to bank on talking animals or generic plots for kids to be successful at the box office. The same goes with sequels that fail to expand on the original and are only made for the money. As I previously stated in Part 1 of this feature I don’t have the money to see every movie out there. When I do go, I try to see things I believe will be good based on the trailer and buzz surrounding the movie. After seeing over ten movies this summer I must say I enjoyed most of what I saw, however, I saw enough terribleness to feel capable of doing this feature. I must note some of the movies I missed that didn’t benefit from good reviews: Priest, Hangover 2, Mr. Popper’s Penguins, Cars 2, Larry Crowne, Zookeeper, Cowboys and Aliens, The Smurfs, The Change-Up, Conan the Barbarian, Spy Kids 4, or Colombiana. Alright now down to the worst of the worst from summer 2011
Worst Hero: We had some craptastic heroes this summer that took to the screen. The biggest disappointment was probably Ryan Reynolds as the Green Lantern. Reynolds seemed fit for the role but the script didn’t demand much of him unfortunately. However this category goes to a hero we were already used to rooting for that pulled a lot of unheroic moves by the movies end.
Winner: Optimus Prime from Transformers: Dark of the Moon. When you think about it, how much of Optimus Prime, the franchise’s main hero, have we seen over the course of three films? In the original he doesn’t land on Earth until the midpoint. In the sequel he dies halfway through and is brought back just to wrap up the final fight in a matter of two minutes. In this one he pulls a fast one on us. The Autobots are forced to leave Earth but instead Optimus stays to protect the humans. But get this, first he lets the Decepticons destroy most of Chicago to prove a point to the humans. That doesn’t seem very heroic to me.
Worst Villain: A hero is just as important as his villain and if one fails it certainly hinders the other. Had Loki been a more interesting villain, Thor might be more memorable. Ian McShane’s Blackbeard was nothing compared to Barbossa or even Davy Jones from the previous Pirates movies. But the worst kind of villain is one that we unintentionally laugh at.
Winner: Hector Hammond from Green Lantern. I haven’t laughed this hard at something that was supposed to be serious since Mr. Freeze kept dishing out ice puns in Batman and Robin. Come on his head kept getting outrageously big and all of his crazy world domination lines. It was so cheesy and silly! It didn’t help that Peter Sarsgaard took his role way too seriously.
Worst Comedic Performance: Here is an interesting category because bad performances in comedies are usually justified if they can make you laugh. For instance Jason Bateman was dull in Horrible Bosses but he had some decent moments playing off his co-stars that made up for it. I find to have a truly bad comedic performance the character needs to be continuously annoying.
Winner: Jesse Eisenberg in 30 Minutes or Less. Coming off of an Oscar nomination, Eisenberg gave the worst performance of his career in this terrible film. He was always overacting and never funny, it became annoying after less than ten minutes. He was a major reason for the movie’s failure.
Worst Special Effects: This is 2011 folks, we are living in a post-Avatar world. So why do we continue to see movie with terrible special effects? Budget would be the reason. Not every movie gets the funding that James Cameron does. However most of the special effects this summer were pretty great. One movie I saw really stands out though.
Winner: Fright Night. While the 3D was great, the CGI was awful. All the vampire effect and make-up looked very cheaply done. Luckily we got two charming performances from Colin Farrell and Anton Yelchin that saved the rest of the movie from being awful.
Most Unintentionally Funny Moment: Sometimes a serious movie can make you laugh for the wrong reasons. I almost named Voldemort hugging Draco in Harry Potter as this categories winner but there is too much of an argument that we are supposed to laugh there so I didn’t put it. I also loved watching Ken Jeong die in Transformers 3. But no, the movie I chose had so many moments I found myself laughing at supposedly serious action.
Winner: Green Lantern vs. Hector Hammond in Green Lantern. The fight starts with Green Lantern showing up without any way of knowing what was going on at Hector’s laboratory. Then they both ended up on the ground. The noises Sarsgaard kept making combined with his giant head made for some hysterical stuff. Sarsgaard should never play a villain again because his maniacal laugh is TERRIBLE.
Worst Moment Overall: Most bad movies have a moment where they simply jump the shark (or is it nuke the fridge now?). Most of the moments involving Patrick Dempsey in Transformers 3 were pretty ridiculous but he ended up being a surprisingly effective villain for Shia Labeouf to fight. What about the continuous awfulness that is 30 Minutes or Less? Well that movie started out terrible and had nothing interesting happen all the way through, thereby, remaining terrible. So that means it just a matter of where Green Lantern had no chance of redeeming itself.
Winner: Hotwheels saves the party in Green Lantern. So Green Lantern’s ring can conjure up anything that Hal Jordan thinks of. So when a helicopter starts malfunctioning at a party and begins to crash, Hal stops it with a giant green Hot Wheels track that loops all around the party carrying the helicopter away from the guests. Really Green Lantern? You’re a superhero not a ten year old! Just watch the tie in commercial for Hot Wheels and for those who didn’t see it…yes, that was actually in the movie.
Worst Movie: Let’s cut to the chase. There are no two movies I hates this summer, maybe even year, more than Green Lantern and 30 Minutes or Less. So which is it?
Winner: 30 Minutes or Less. It’s really hard to sit for an hour and a half in a movie when the movie just isn’t doing anything you like. I never laughed once during the whole movie. The jokes were so cliched and overdone that I couldn’t handle it. Few movies are this terrible with this good of a cast. Clearly everyone who had a hand in creating it didn’t believe in it. This movie is just a mess, no better way to put it.
Did you agree with my pick for the worst of the worst of summer 2011? Any movies that I didn’t see that you would place as a winner (or loser depending how you look at it) in any of the categories I listed here? Luckily there were enough great movies this summer to help us forget these atrocities and have us confident in Hollywood again.
photo credit: http://www.bestgeekblogever.com/?p=1198