Monday, December 27, 2010


Yeah, it’s a harsh list and there are probably over two dozen other choices I could have placed below – but if you’re gonna spend a lot of money and/or populate your film with big talent then you best deliver the cinematic goods. These did not deliver:

VALENTINE’S DAY (with Ashton Kutcher, Jessica Alba and Jamie Foxx)
This movie will not romance you…instead, it’ll hide in the bushes outside your house, peer through your window, waiting for you to come outside so it can leap out and beat you repeatedly with a club made of clichéd, un-thought-provoking, under-written, episodic-television-like, eager-to-please cheese.

UNSTOPPABLE (with Denzel Washington)
I love action films but the dizzying (read: annoying) camera work, cheesily-plotted script and anticlimactic mayhem delivered nothing more than a who-cares shoulder shrug. The acting is the only thing that keeps this crazy train movie from completely running off the tracks. Unfortunately, UNSTOPPABLE…isn’t.

SEX AND THE CITY 2 (with Sara Jessica Parker)
A bloated and contrived mess that drags, annoys and lingers way too long in its almost 2 ½ hour running time. I enjoyed the first movie but this sequel felt so soulless, forced and limp that it, ironically, needed a dose of cinematic Viagra. Hmmm, but then the movie might have lasted 4-6 hours – and then we’d really be n trouble…

LEAP YEAR (with Amy Adams)
Sometimes the road to love can take you to unexpected places – and sometimes, like with this unfunny and uncreative movie, it can take to you places you feel you’ve been a million times before. Leap, skip, hop, jump – I don’t care how you do it – just get away from this movie.

ROBIN HOOD (with Russell Crowe)
They definitely missed the bull’s eye…but almost missed the entire target in Russell Crowe’s ROBIN HOOD. It essentially boils down to two hours and twenty minutes of ‘wait-and-see-if-it-gets-any-better-seat-fidgeting’ as director Ridley Scott tries to mirror the playbooks of much better movies like GLADIATOR, BRAVEHEART and SAVING PRIVATE RYAN. He loses…and, aside from great acting and beautifully captured scenery, so does the audience as we’re never treated to the adventurous, spirited, merriment of the man with the bow. Say what you will about Kevin Costner’s cheesy and painfully-accented turn as the same character in the early 90’s – but at least his movie tried to have a little fun.

EAT PRAY LOVE (with Julia Roberts)
EAT, PRAY, LOVE...GAG, BARF! As the title clearly states - there’s eating, praying and loving. I guess what the title forgot to mention was that there is also boredom. It’s a chick movie, I know – and I will say that the scenery is lush and exquisite, the food looks delicious. But the only spirituality I experienced was when I prayed for it to end.

HOW DO YOU KNOW (with Reese Witherspoon and Paul Rudd)
Flat, dull and without purpose on almost every level, HOW DO YOU KNOW is perfect for catching a two hour nap.

THE TOOTH FAIRY (with Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson)
Visit your dentist for an unscheduled checkup, chew on tin foil or take out an aching tooth with an ice skate ala Tom Hanks in CASTAWAY. By picking any one of these three you’ll ensure yourself a much more enjoyable time than you would by sitting thru this harmless yet ridiculously useless and not-that-funny waste of cinematic space.

WHEN IN ROME (with Kristen Bell)
It has a few, intended, chuckle-worthy moments and even more moments of unintentional laughing because it’s so bad, so uninvolving, so lazy, so disjointed and such a colossal waste of time – time that might be better spent swallowing a handful of thumb tacks, perhaps. Do what the Romans (and the rest of the world, for that matter) are going to no doubt do and skip this unoriginal, short-sighted romantic-blahmedy.

THE TOURIST (with Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie)
Two huge stars…one boring movie. A movie that never bothers to fully utilize the talents of its talent. It’s a dramatic, romantic, action adventure that needed way more drama, romance, action and adventure to be worth your money. This is one TOURIST you might not want to travel with…

COP OUT (with Bruce Willis and Tracy Morgan)
Director Kevin Smith tries to make this an homage film to some of the great Hollywood, buddy/cop movies but it works so hard to be what it’s trying to be that it misses the mark almost completely. No heart, little soul and a few chuckle-worthy moments (when there should have been more) make sitting thru COP OUT truly feel like you’re serving time.

REPO MEN (with Jude Law)
A pretty cool premise bogged down by hyperactive storytelling, lazy dialogue, a clichéd perception of the future and blood & guts galore. Hey Jude – I heard you can take a sad song and make it better…shame you couldn’t do the same thing with this movie.

TRON LEGACY (with Jeff Bridges)
Decent at stunning the audience visually – this mostly boring, uninvolving and ridiculously scripted movie has created no legacy for itself. It’s fun to look at but there’s no magic, no spark. TRON LEGACY is already in desperate need of a reboot. Ctrl-Alt-Del.

GROWN UPS (with Adam Sandler and Kevin James)
More like ‘GROAN UPS’. Lots of talent, little laughs – you will laugh (at times) but you’ll also wonder why you didn’t wait to catch this poorly directed, predictable, half-hearted, goof-ball buddy-fest on cable in the very near future.

LITTLE FOCKERS (with Ben Stiller and Robert DeNiro)
Like trying to wring water from a dry sponge – this unambitious and unoriginal star-studded paycheck ‘comedy’ offers very little in the way of laughter or entertainment. LITTLE FOCKERS is a focking waste of time.


Layne said...

I can agree with a lot of these movies, but I must have watched a different 'Robin Hood' than you. Russell Crowe and Ridley Scott did a bang-up job with this one.

I-RIGHT-I said...

I liked Robin Hood as well. There's enough silly happy go lucky guys in green tights running around already. Crow's character reminded me of the war the common American man is fighting against the morally bankrupt progressive elites that rule this nation. I'll watch it again.

BRTaibl said...

Thanks for your input, Layne and I-RIGHT! I guess I was just hoping for more (in my eyes) originality...I truly felt bored during the preceedings and also couldn't help but think most of what was onscreen looked better in GLADIATOR, BRAVEHEART and SAVING PRIVATE RYAN. But, it's like I said, I wanted to stand out a bit and not name-check the titles that most critics (most anyone, for that matter) would place on their worst of 2010 list. Thanks much for reading!

philperetti said...

Brian's usually trustworthy opinion is so wrong about "Tron: Legacy". The special effects and action were, as expected, spectacular. But what makes a movie a classic is a great story and actors that create memorable characters we care about. "Tron" delivers. Granted Michael Sheen was miscast as the annoying and unnecessary minion Zuse, but the rest of the cast more that make up for this minor flaw. I give it an 8 out of 10. I went out and bought the sound track that night and can't wait for the DVD.