This worst-of list will not be as long as my other Top 10 lists due to the fact that some films that were downright unwatchable weren’t even watched all the way through. I decided not to subject myself to them, so some of these selections will probably just get “honorable worst-of” mentions instead, or a combination thereof. The films that I did watch in their entirety and hated are listed below. There are several big flicks on this list, with massive budgets, but most should not have even gotten made. Some had great marketing, some looked great in the trailers, but they fizzled out at the end. With that being said, sit back, relax, and enjoy my WORST films of 2012 list.
The following films are listed in no particular order. The only commonalities they share is that they all sucked.
The Devil Inside – The trailers for The Devil Inside looked great and actually made my skin crawl, had minimal viral marketing, and was made for 1 million dollars and raked in 101 million dollars worldwide. I give much props to the writer/director and producers. The fact of the matter is that the ending of this film pretty much kills the momentum it had built upon previously. Literally, the film ends in a section of the film that felt like it was the middle. You’d think that there would be more, but when even the usher cleaning up the movie theater tells you it’s time to go, then you know that’s a wrap.
Contraband – I like Mark Wahlberg films just like the next guy. This time out it’s Mark Wahlberg and Kate Beckinsale tearing the screen (it’s been a less than remarkable year in film for Kate as she is on this list several times) up in a dull film about smugglers gone legit before they’re pulled back in to the business to make the wrong things right again. Mark Wahlberg, Kate Beckinsale, Diego Luna, Giovanni Ribisi< Ben Foster, Lukas Hass, and J.K Simmons round out the stellar ensemble cast. Too bad the film is wrought with cliche after cliche that by the time I got halfway in, I wanted to be all the way gone. Contraband did nothing for me.
Underworld: Awakening – I’m a fan of the first three films of the franchise and thought this one looked cool. Boy, was I ever wrong. Len Wiseman (director of the first two) decided to take a pass at directing the film and assigned it to Swedish directors Måns Magnus Mårlind and Björn Stein. I’m a big fan of the directing duo’s previous horror film, Shelter, starring Julianne Moore and Jonathan Rhys-Meyers. I thought that they would bring a nice aesthetic touch to Awakening, but 5 minutes into the film, I knew it would be a hack job of epic proportions. They were clearly hired guns and probably had zero say in how to move the Underworld world forward. The film is a loud mess. I could care less that Beckinsale is in tight leather. I can easily go ahead and watch the previous three films and get more out of those than this piece of crap entry. I was heated when I left the theater.
Battleship – Taylor Kitsch had the trifecta of the year with John Carter, Savages, and Battleship. I actually enjoyed John Carter and Savages but HATED Battleship. It’s a horribly loud and horribly acted film about aliens who have come to Earth (or have they already been here?) to take over the planet for the natural resources. Kitsch is the misfit who everyone agrees has the potential to be more than what he already is by joining the Navy. Once in the Navy he climbs rank almost overnight and has control of a battleship destroyer. Literally, overnight. Hijinks promptly ensue as the aliens destroy various cities around the world in spectacular fashion. Too bad the film is corny as all hell and not funny when it wants to be. It’s a giant turd of epic proportions. I was stunned that director Peter Berg tried to go all Michael Bay on Battleship. Berg is way better than that.
The Bourne Legacy – The Bourne films are a great franchise, so when Matt Damon decided to not come back for a fourth entry, Jeremy Renner was drafted to carry that “legacy” onward. Did he succeed? I don’t think so. I’m a fan of Renner, but The Bourne Legacy is such a dull and overly long film. *SPOILERS*The ending is also a major buzzkill in that it literally looks like it was filmed in two parts, with the second part of the film (and actual ending) culminating in the next installment.*SPOILERS* The problem is that there isn’t one and it was not shot in two parts. The action that we’ve grown accustomed too is absent and when it is present, is few and far between. I was severely disappointed by The Bourne Legacy.
Totall Recall – Colin Farrell has been in some damn good film as of late. Sure, they’ve been of the independent variety, but some have also been critically acclaimed. As is customary, you gotta star in the obvious “paycheck” film every once in a while in order to continue doing the better films that don’t necessarily pay all that much by actor standards. Throw in a ridiculously good looking pair of women into the mix (Kate Beckinsale and Jessica Biel) and have Len Wiseman (Live Free or Die Hard, Underworld 1 & 2) and you should have a recipe for success, right? WRONG! ABSOLUTELY WRONG! This completely useless remake of the Schwarzenegger classic craps on the original in a vapid, humorless way. Not even the very pretty three breasted woman could save this tripe. Farrell literally looks like he is sleepwalking in the film. The effects are great, but that still cannot conceal the many faults this remake has. I’m actually getting angry thinking about all the other problems this film has, so I’ll stop right there. Grrrrrrrrr!
Dishonorable Mentions: Fortunately for me, I stopped watching each of these films at about the 30-minute mark. It wouldn’t be fair to put them on my actual list, which is why they’re getting their own little sidebar down here.
Dark Shadows – Dark Shadows, suffered, from what I gathered, an identity crisis. The film started out strong as a full blown violent horror film before it turned into a slapstick mess of a comedy film. I love Tim Burton films as they’re ALWAYS style over substance, but not even the great style this remake has, could save it from me not being able to watch it all the way through. Granted, I’ve never watched any of the television show, but I do know that that show was never played for laughs like this adaptation was. I was done after half an hour.
Snow White and the Huntsman – The trailer for this version looked decent enough as it was played on a more serious note than Mirror, Mirror was, but who would have thought that that version of Snow White would have been much more fun and superior than this bloated mess? This one, unlike Dark Shadows, I made through about an hour. Then I checked my watch and saw that the film was over two hours. I stopped it right there. I don’t think I even got to see the dwarfs in action. I thought the production design and special effects were great, Charlize Theron was hot as usual playing the evil Queen, Thor was cool, and Kristen Stewart still had the same expression on her face that she always has in those Twilight movies. Yeah, not even Theron and Thor could save this one.
That does it for this year’s worst-of 2012. If for some strange reason you are compelled to buy any of these films on Blu-ray then all you have to do is click on any of the thumbnails above and you will be taken directly to Amazon to place your order.