2016 Movies: Worst of the Year List

The movies to which I gave 1.5/5 stars or less. There are twenty-nine of them (Addendum: as I’ve revised and added to my list there are now 33 movies i’ve rated at 1.5/5 stars or less). So this is going to take a while. I’ll start with the movies I awarded a half star.

The following are the movies I gave a half-star rating. Some got a half-star because there is no way to give them a zero-star rating. Most I watched all the way through and some are so bad I couldn’t finish them.

A movie that didn’t need to be made and has no reason to exist except to meet a quota of Avengers based movies that need to be released for that year. And I guess to introduce the new Spiderman, Black Panther, and Ant Man. All who would be getting their own movies soon. No stakes. No real tension. The plot is that world governments want to ban or control superheroes because they are too powerful and too dangerous. So the Avengers take “sides.” Those who favor submitting to world rule, and those who don’t. So they argue. Some are banished. Then there is a fight between the opposing factions of Avengers. Most of whom can’t be killed and none who will be killed. Also, Thor and Hulk aren’t there. Thor because he is off doing Thor stuff and Hulk because he’s been banished from Earth by Natasha because he’s too unpredictable. So yeah, the two most powerful Avengers aren’t conveniently there because if they were they would win the fight. This is also the movie where worrying about collateral damage became a thing due to the Hulk destroying an African city in the opening fight scene.
Just awful with an awful performance by Amy Adams. As great as she is in ‘Arrival” she’s equally bad in Nocturnal Animals. Filmed by Tom Ford who shoots it like he is shooting a photo spread for a fashion magazine. The opening art show scene is intentionally repulsive and the inciting event that sets off the main conflict is so contrived it’s impossible to believe real people would act that way. I mean, a grown man with his family in the car decides to play chicken with maniacs on a deserted highway? I have to admit that the end scene got me. Or end shot. Adams made me feel what she was feeling. Still a terrible movie.
Another movie with no reason to exist except to cash in on an existing franchise. Poor Harry Potter and JK Rowling. They both deserved better than the final five Potter movies and starting this new series was not the way to make up for it. Boring actors, boring characters, boring dialogue, boring beasts, boring action. Eddie Redmayne acts like he’s in a contest to burn the most calories while portraying a role. Johnny Depp’s cameo at the end is the least of this movie’s issues by a mile.
X-Men Apocalypse features a bad guy who can turn people into sand and explode their heads with his thoughts but never tries this trick against the X-Men who try to stop him. What I most remember is how Olivia Munn turned down the wife role in Deadpool to take the role of Psylocke. She passed on the wife role because playing the wife of the main character was just a supporting role and she wanted to play a “bad-ass ass kicking” character. Deadpool received great reviews and made tons of money. X-Men Apocalypse got terrible reviews and made no money. And Munn’s ‘bad-ass’ character was in the movie for about ten minutes and had one scene where she swung her sword once.
This is the first movie on the list that I didn’t finish. I got about twenty minutes in then shut it off. Just too something. I don’t really like Coen brother’s movies nor George Clooney and the future Han Solo did nothing for me.
This movie is one of those movies where I wonder how they could spend so much money to make such a bad movie. Skarsgard can be interesting in certain roles, like playing an abusive asshole on ‘Big Little Lies’ for instance, but is kinda dullish as Lord Greystone and Tarzan. Built like hell though. Margot Robbie said she wanted to portray Jane not as a victim but as an empowered strong independent woman. So she follows Lord Greystone from Africa to England, marries him, works as a governess or tutor, follows him back to Africa, gets captured and needs saving, and plays no role in the defeat of the antagonist, played by Christoph Waltz. She’s spends much of the movie tied up on a boat. But there is a scene where she mouths off to her captors so…empowerment I guess. The movie’s main problem is that they take a generally dull character and try to make him interesting by having him swing through trees and run on his knuckles like he’s an animal or something. The special effects are bad but not as bad as the physics. Not people nor ,monkeys can swing through trees quickly and growing up outdoors does not make one a superman. The abilities Tarzan possesses would take generations to develop.
I was reluctant to see the first Jack Reacher movie due to my dislike of Tom Cruise even though it was filmed in my hometown. I ended up liking it alot and was looking forward to the sequel. Well, the sequel is just bad. Really really bad.
I can’t understand Kate Beckinsale’s obsession with making terrible movies with her husband. The first Underworld was decent vampires vs werewolves action even with it violating it’s own logic (Victor has been living for hundreds of years kicking werewolf ass but suddenly has trouble with a new born hybrid?) I think the Underworld movies were Len Wiseman’s way off putting his wife in skin tight latex and showing her off. Like a fetish of objectifying her. All subsequent movies have been terrible (the third installment, ‘Underworld: Rise of the Lycans is bad as well although that one stars Rhona Mitra in the Beckinsale role) and this latest one, ‘Underworld: Blood Wars’ is abysmal. It’s vampires vs lycans again only now, Selene, the death dealer played by Beckinsale, can now exist in the sun, and there’s a super race of ice vampires who get destroyed when the lycans show up and open the curtains to expose them to sunlight. How can a movie about vampires have the vampires lose all of their battles?
Not just bad but offensively bad. ‘Criminal’ stars Ryan Reynolds as a CIA operative and Kevin Costner as a mass murderer. At the beginning of the movie the Reynolds character has been captured and is now being tortured for what he knows. He doesn’t give it up and is killed. But not killed all the way as he still has some brain function left when the cavalry comes. The CIA needs the info in Reynolds’ brain so they do a brain transplant type operation where the memories or consciousness of Reynolds is implanted into the Costner character, who has been scheduled for execution so is expendable. The operation is a success but the problem comes when Costner, now both himself and the other guy, realizes that the CIA is going to kill him after the mission. He escapes by murdering CIA agents (regardless of how you feel about the CIA this is still murder) then goes to his alter ego’s home because why…I don’t know. He ends up making contact with the wife of the guy who’s living in his brain, and even though he looks and acts like Kevin Costner, manages to convince the wife, played by Gal Gadot, that he is in fact her husband. The final shot of the movie shows Gadot, who has accepted that her husband is living in an old man’s body now, and Costner, who is still the criminal who committed all the previous crimes for which eh was imprisoned, and has over the course of the movie committed many m ore murders. I was just mad that I was supposed to come to like a character who is bad?
I saw the movie version of Grease in the theaters during its original run I’d say…twenty or thirty times??? Nobody living and working today should have ever tried to reimagine, redo, or reboot Grease, especially the people who did this live version. I didn’t watch the whole thing. Once I saw that the actor playing Danny was demonstrably shorter than the actor playing Kenickie I said no. Danny and Kenickie are ostensibly equals in The T-Birds so no way Danny should be looking up at Kenickie. I may have listened to one song number. I can’t remember. This just looked so bad.
Suicide Squad is a movie so bad it made me like Joel Kinnaman as an actor. I couldn’t stand his character on The Killing which caused me to dislike him. But Suicide Squad is so bad with so much bad acting that I liked Kinnaman’s character the best. I’ve actually come to like Kinnaman and have enjoyed him in ‘Run All Night’ and ‘The Informer,’ and look forward to him doing more action movies. Margot Robbie got all the acclaim for her portrayal of Harley Quinn which is too bad because other than wearing a skimpy outfit she didn’t really do much with the character and popular opinion stated that she deserved her own Harley Quinn movie, which she didn’t.
Zack Synder must really like making bad movies that cost a lot to make and lose money because he sure does make lots of them. I know there is a comic book that this is based on but really, Batman is a human with toys and Superman is a god-like being from outer space. Batman never wins this fight. Never. So why have them fight then only have the fight last a few minutes in one scene? A gunman is holding Lois with a gun to her head and Superman is able, from a flatfooted position, fly and grab the guy and take him away so quickly he can’t fire the gun and we’re supposed to believe a guy that has to do chin-ups to get strong will beat him? Also, Batman and Superman are the two most popular comic book characters. Neither of them will die in a movie ever. Killing either one of them would be like McDonald’s shutting down. The fight against the monster was cool and Wonder Woman had a dynamic entry. That’s about all I liked about this movie.
Manchester by the Sea. Casey Affleck mumbles his way through this very uneven movie about sadness and loss. I was expecting this to be serious and sadder than it is. Way too many jokes and all that Boston-accented ‘Fuck you’ stuff i don’t really find to be funny most of the time. Particularly in a movie about two kids and a man who die and the people who are left behind to cope. Affleck won best actor for this, which upset many people who thought the award should have gone to Denzel Washington. Neither of them deserved it and this movie about one man’s sadness didn’t do it for me. The famous scene pictured above, during which Michelle Williams does a phenomenal job doesn’t save this turkey.
Chris Pratt is a terrible actor and probably really likable in real life but the way he comes off on screen does not make him likable. If he was his bad acting could be overlooked. But man is he bad. It’s like right before he films a scene an acting teaching says ‘Now Chris, this is how to pretend to be confused. And this is how you pretend to walk down a hallway.” The scene right after he wakes up and is looking around for other people going ‘Hello, hello’ is unintentionally funny it’s so bad. Jennifer Lawrence does better after he character wakes up but she, Pratt, and the movie are undermined by the dumb plot. Pratt is lonely so he wakes up, and by doing so murdering, Lawrence’s character.
Snowden is a straight up traitor and a Russian agent and does not deserve to be immortalized and defended on film.
A really unfunny movie. Someone should have told The Rock and Kevin Hart that comedy doesn’t work if both leads are comic relief.
I liked the premise of the movie: A cat is kidnapped by drug dealers and its owners hatch a plan to rescue it. I expected more humor from the acclaimed creators of Key and Peele, a show I never watched but had read good thigs about. This movie seemed like it should have been funnier but it wasn’t funny at all.
A cash grab if there ever was one (well The Hunger Games: Mockingjay parts one and two were also blatant cash grabs.) Allegiant is such a bad movie that the planned fourth and final film in the Divergent series never got made. At the end of Insurgent the evil controllers were defeated and the gates were opened to the outside world. The final shot is literally a mass of people making their way to beyond the wall. Yet Allegiant begins with citizens still banned from going outside the wall. Poorly done action scenes and Jeff Daniels doing his ‘father knows best bit’ don’t help.
Not really a bad movie but so overly jingoistic it’s more like a parody of movies like ‘Blackhawk Down.’ The American “heroes” spend the movie talking and behaving like assholes, and someone needs to point out to Jim from The Office that growing a beard and lifting weights does not make one manly. The worst part of this movie is it tries to convince viewers that John Krasinksi can be an action star.
A Snow White movie without Snow White. Sadly Kristen Stewart, who was the highlight of the bad Snow White and the Huntsman, is not here outside of a brief cameo that was played by CGI I think. I never would have thought a movie with Jessica Chastain, Charlize Theron, Chris Hemsworth, and Emily Blunt suffers without Kristen Stewart but The Huntsman: Winter’s War does.
Alot of famous factors in a movie I couldn’t last ten minutes watching.
Hamm and Gadot aren’t as likable as some people think and Galifinakis isn’t likable at all.
So dull. Too much atmosphere not enough story.
Argo light.
Ethan Hawke is not interesting enough to carry a movie. Why does he get starring roles?
Tried to recreate the lightning in a bottle that was Ride Along and fails. Makes the sequel mistake of taking what made the original good and overdoing those same things.
Spectral. A very low budget action movie. Emily Mortimer leads a group of American GIs hunting aliens. So poorly made I couldn’t keep watching.
Bryan Cranston feels like his family no longer needs him. His solution is to hide in the garage attic and spy on them. Why not try being at home more and engaging with them? Cops respond to a missing persons report and don’t bother searching the garage. Another movie i didn’t watch until the end.
Naomi Watts plays an agoraphobic writer who is haunted or stalked by someone of something in 1977 NYC (The Summer of Sam summer). Didn’t stick around to find out what did the haunting or how or why.

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