Thursday, December 13, 2007


In a way, it's a real pity that I'm only posting the absolutely ten worst films I saw this year when in fact 2007 has had such a bumper crop of bad, inane films. These films have no 'technicalities' attached to them, they're just awful. Other films like 'Premonition' and 'Balls of Fury' just narrowly avoid the list because these ten were even worse but even 'Spiderman 3' deserves a bad rap. The most worrying trend is the fixation directors have when it comes especially to sequels: trying out new character plots that sink the film and make 'wrap up' difficult to achieve. Or, there's the start of a trilogy like 'The Golden Compass' for example that uses its time (and, alas! ours too) toexplain what we already know in a most laborious manner. Then there are films like '300' and 'The Last Legion' that parade as a historical account of something but what they omit is as disastorous as what they put in.
That said, here are the worst films of the year:

1. ‘Hannibal: Rising’: for a film that chronicles the upbringing of a brilliant serial killer this film lacks everything except its unending boredom. Dr. Lecter is stripped of any personality, sexual overtone or any real conviction of his cannibalism. Add an Oriental relative that figures more of an Electra-complex figure and the word ‘twisted’ doesn’t even begin to explain this hash.

2. ‘Wild Hogs’: The generic plot is the main offender here: four friends—a portly Martin Lawrence is thrown in for racial harmony—decide to rediscover their machismo on an outback road trip. What ensues is one cliché-ridden romp to another and a lot of really disappointing slapstick humor.

3. ‘The Number 23’: Jim Carey plays a man obsessed with mathematical equations that all add up to the number 23. If the film actually trued to revert everything from that figure, like, with a plot for example, then maybe the straws it grasps for would’ve allowed it to breathe easier, instead it sucks up the life out of this hollow, absurdity that tries to pass itself off as horror.

4. ‘Vacancy’: As ‘Vacancy’ ascribes to be a type of thriller, what occurs after each scene is supposed to induce paranoia but, even though the motel manager (a creepy bordering on annoying Frank Whaley) is confirmation that the night will be hell to survive, it never successfully manages to unearth much after this set up because it relies too much on the obvious and what not needed to have been hidden. Excruciatingly bad

5. ‘Mr. Brooks’: If the notion of Kevin Costner playing a serial killer disturbs you because you know there’s no way he’s edgy enough to pull it off then skip ‘Mr. Brooks’, a dull film that tries to carp out intricate thrills from performances that are laden with rigor mortis. Not even the presence of the usually wild-ride William Hurt can sustain interest because his imaginary character is held in check. Still, if the plot hadn’t cornered itself so deep in etching mystery then maybe it’d breathe better. Oh, by the way, if the notion of Demi Moore playing a serial cop disturb you…

6. ‘Hostel II’: Roth doesn’t spend too much time with logics in ‘Hostel II’, instead he laboriously shows us the behind the scenes excitement to collecting the human prey. I can’t recall any other horror flick making its aim and outcome so evident and not expecting to suffer for this foresight of our knowledge. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid.

7. ‘Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End’: over long, over wretched with its plot and over the edge tipping towards south in terms of everything else except actually trying to balance its messy equations.

8. ‘Blood and Chocolate’: A film that pretends to chronicle the lives of were-wolves then stops and turns to an impossibly trite love affair with a human involved. ‘Blood and Chocolate’ uses every conceivable cliché and still ends up chewing its leg off.

9. ‘Transformers’: ‘Transformers’ readily embraces the summer’s worst trend of tacking on multiple characters and plots to give the illusion of strength to an already burgeoning script. Here we are kept tediously updated with the happenings of the Defense Secretary (Jon Voight) and soldiers fighting unknown technology near Qatar. In addition, Agent Simmons (John Turturro) of the unclassified Sector Seven and our hero, Sam (Shia LaBeouf, in the reprisal of his ‘Disturbia’ role, but downright uninteresting here) become tied to the plot as well. Four continuous and drab story-lines that not only go nowhere in the end but keep the time of the first attack by a Decepticon to the next way too long to sustain much interest in the ground-breaking CGI technology that we’ve glimpsed in trailers for the film.

10. ‘The Brave One’: While she struggles mentally to decide what to coherently follow, ‘The Brave One’ tethers with a look back to Erica’s (Jodie Foster) past and sees nothing to offer her or us real or imagined. Because the principle of exacting revenge is never fully explored to or by her at any point ‘The Brave One’ ends up toothless despite arming itself for the long haul. Like her other recent films, Foster carries this one viciously overboard by integrating all her previous ebullient roles into this persona and the necrophilia is utterly wooden.