Worst 10 Movies of 2015
Writer: Casey Lee
Did you survive any of these 10 worst movies?
We have recounted the movies that made 2015, but every good must come with the bad, and 2015 had its share of those as well. Even studio execs can make that costly miscalculation that bomb at the box office, or when movies are wrecked by a disastrous production, or some ideas for a shameless money grab is just doomed from the start.
While we have avoided picking the movies with the lowest production values because they can't afford to be any good, so the ones that do make it on this list are here for destroying our expectations, failing to reach its potentials, or just so uncomfortable to sit through that they needed a disclaimer for cringes.
If you haven't had the displeasure of watching any of these movies, consider yourself warned before watching any of these awful movies of 2015.
Ever since his feature debut, director Seth MacFarlane has pretty much lost his thunder. If showing up in person didn't do him any favors in "A Million Ways to Die in the West", we were quite shocked that he could do worse as the stuffed Peter Griffin in "Ted 2". There is something to be said about the leeway we give to cartoons for making sensitive jokes, but it completely loses that immunity when that line of jokes are made by real people on a screen.
From homophobia, racism to making a mockery of the judicial process and the history of civil rights, even the likable cast of Mark Wahlberg, Morgan Freeman and Milas Kunis' replacement Amanda Seyfried, not to mention the whole host of celebrity cameos isn't enough to make up for the amount guilt we feel for the tastelessly thrown jokes (and awkward music video moments) that could only make Donald Trump (and his hairpiece) laugh.
It was almost a dream meant to come true. After pushing out an impressive indie debut, the directors are almost immediately picked up to be at the helm of a major studio blockbuster, and its imminent success would launch these directors to stardom overnight. That turned out well for Colin Trevorrow, who went from Sundance hit "Safety Not Guaranteed" to the biggest opening of 2015 with "Jurassic World" (until "Star Wars: The Force Awakens"), but on the other end of the spectrum we have Josh Trank, who went from small-time budget "Chronicle", to the herald that could bring a new revival to Fox's wandering superhero property "Fantastic Four". With a new set of young actors that have already made a name for themselves, there was little to reason to see how this revival was not going to work, but it didn't. As troubled news of its production that Trank was unable to handle with the pressure that had to be coated by the confidence of its young cast, it could not hide the result of studio tampering and last minute damage control that was done when the picture came out.
Messy, uninspired and sometimes just outright confusing, the franchise is once again another dark spot in the golden age of superhero movies, and another record is added to the case that it's time that Fox return those rights back to Marvel.
While there are franchises that will always have a special place in pop culture, but only so rarely are they able to continue evolving and finding new ways to stay relevant, especially through decades. One such franchise that has failed to do so is the "Terminator" series that has managed to tear itself to shreds since Arnold Schwarzenegger went on to become the Governator. Even with his highly hyped return to the franchise brings some hope of goodwill, the studio still manages to find ways to shoot itself in the foot.
From the spoiler trailer, it was only a matter of confirming our worst fears that "Terminator: Genisys" was as delusional in thinking that literally rebooting the franchise would work, as its spelling. With every last resort spent, it is about time this franchise should say 'Hasta la vista', instead of 'I'll be back'.
Another case of the movie that could, but didn't turn out as well by any stretch of the imagination. Not that it suffered the same production problems like "Fantastic Four", when you have a far competent director in Joe Wright, but there was never a weaved picture from the start to the end of "Pan". The admirable cast (what's not to love from a hammed up Hugh Jackman), recognisable backstory and impressive production values and design never seem to fully come together, instead feeling like it was just another cog in the genre of fairy tale origins that never learned from the failures, and taking inspiration from the (only) success the genre has had so far.
An ambitious undertaking in being unambitious is what "Pan" will be panned for, if not for the additional sin of whitewashing.
Since "Speed Racer", the Wachowskis have been in a love-hate relationship with everyone with each output. "Cloud Atlas" did have its die-hard detractors, and fanatical fans, and "Jupiter Ascending" is set to tear the universe apart again. While we can clearly see how its supporters can sing praises for its space spectacle and grandiose scale, but there are also glaring flaws in its world building and cringing clichés in the dialogue that it fully relies to get to the next set piece.
For as long as they are not losing anyone's money but their own, they are free to continue experimenting and it will be long ways before we will see anything to match "The Matrix".
After a string of Razzie-worthy comedies, "The Cobbler" was to redeem Adam Sandler in a dramatic turn, and if Paul Thomas Anderson could coax one performance out of him, surely there is something in there, right? Unfortunately, the fault here doesn't lie with Sandler, but to its director Tom McCarthy. Best known for his warm stories with deep emotional connections, "The Cobbler" is shoehorned with overwrought sentimentality, and doesn't quite pull off the dash of magical fascination as well as his hard-bitting circumstances (watch out for "Spotlight).
That direction drags the entirety of "The Cobbler" down, even with a cast far capable of dealing out dramatic moments, from Dustin Hoffman to Steve Buscemi, and "The Cobbler" breaks every expectation and hearts we have for Sandler and McCarthy.
Franchise-potential properties are a dime in a dozen in an age where movies are expected to span at least into a trilogy, but that doesn't mean that studios should be picking up rights to properties that doesn't bring anything new to the table. Sure, "Mortdecai" may bank on a new image of Johnny Depp as an aristocratic thief, fitted with a boastful supporting cast that alone will be remembered over several sequels, but it depended too much on us not seeing that it was a Jack Sparrow in a decent suit and a better groomed mustache.
While Depp manages to reach a new performance height of his career this year with "Black Mass", he always manages to reach a new low that should be not be revised by a sequel any time soon.
Monsters: The Dark Continent
Gareth Edwards' "Monsters" does not rely on camera tricks or special effect gimmicks to put a spin on the monster genre; setting it in a background fitted for a war movie, a suspenseful mix of curiousity with glimpses of the actual danger, and a character dynamic to stay engaging. Those were the elements that scored Edward the job for "Godzilla" (another indie to major league success story), and the work for the sequel went to director Tom Green. Clearly what stood out to Green was the easier and harder sell of guns, gritty dangers and simple characterisations, which killed every subtle appeal that outstrips this sequel to its predecessor.
Added on by the weight of a shallow political undertone, and making the real threat humans rather than monsters, and "Dark Continent" should have remained in the sad dark place of being unoriginal, in a landscape that needed originality.
High concept sci-fi premises are hard to do because they usually require a high production budget to bring the imagined future to be, at least, imaginably plausible. Not having the studio pull of Michael Bay (who is almost like the center of gravity for studio and box office dollars), is what makes "Vice" feel less like a clone of "The Island" than a movie machine that realises it is so much less than what it pretends to be. Even with the gratuitous on-screen debauchery, and a sprinkling of big names like Bruce Willis, with a trainwreck performance, "Vice" isn't going to leave an impression on anyone who has seen it, and won't be helping the career of Ambyr Childers, if not already damaging it.
Paul Blart Mall Cop 2
Mall Cop may be just the run-of-the-mill comedy from Kevin James, but it was still entertaining with the introduction of a new character. While James may have staved off the trap of failing in a sequel with a string of other original comedies to follow, the bills must have really caught up with him to go back and put on the security uniform again. "Paul Blart Mall Cop 2" demonstrates well that when you take away a comedic introduction to a fun character from a run-of-the-mill comedy, it just becomes run-of-the-mill. Repeated antics, gags and humour that barely steps on the toes on plus-sized people, is not enough to sustain the laughable proceedings, or deserving a sequel, even if done on a different setting.
Cinema Online, 26 December 2015