Wednesday, 15 February 2017

The 15 Worst Films of 2016

Julien Faddoul

Welcome to the bottom of the barrel of 2015. Of all the films I sat through in this past year, these were the 15 worst. Each placement is accompanied by my original short review (and in some cases, a link to my original full-length review).

Enjoy, but please under no circumstances see these movies if you haven’t already.

15. Jack Reacher: Never Go Back

Jack Reacher returns to the headquarters of his old unit, only to find out he's now accused of a 16-year-old homicide.
Dull, visually flat sequel that feels so inconsequential it just about evaporates before your eyes. It’s star seems even more miscast than before and Zwick seems to have lost all the aptitude he once had.

d – Edward Zwick
w – Richard Wenk, Edward Zwick, Marshall Herskovitz   (Based on the Book by Lee Child)
ph – Oliver Wood
pd – Clay A. Griffith
m – Henry Jackman
ed – Billy Weber
cos – Lisa Lovaas

p – Don Granger, Tom Cruise, Christopher McQuarrie

Cast: Tom Cruise, Cobie Smulders, Aldis Hodge, Danika Yarosh, Patrick Heusinger, Holt McCallany, Austin Hébert

14. Deadpool

A former Special Forces operative turned mercenary is subjected to a rogue experiment that leaves him with accelerated healing powers, adopting the alter ego Deadpool.
A film that is no different or better than the schlock it ridicules, except here the budget is lower, the characters are dumber, the situations are flimsier and the comedy is more impotent. An outstanding example of Hollywood smugness.

d – Tim Miller
w – Rhett Reese, Paul Wernick   (Based on the Character Created by Rob Liefeld, Fabian Nicieza)
ph – Ken Seng
pd – Sean Haworth
m – Junkie XL
ed – Julian Clarke
cos – Angus Strathie

p – Simon Kinberg, Ryan Reynolds, Lauren Shuler Donner

Cast: Ryan Reynolds, Gina Carano, Morena Baccarin, Taylor Hickson, Brianna Hildebrand, T.J. Miller, Ed Skrein, Andre Tricoteux, Jed Rees, Leslie Uggams, Karan Soni, Paul Lazenby, Stan Lee

13. Gods of Egypt

A common thief joins a mythical god on a quest through Egypt.
Absolutely ridiculous and cartoony spiritual epic filled with cheesy special effects. Dopey as all hell.

d – Alex Proyas
w – Matt Sazama, Burk Sharpless
ph – Peter Menzies Jr.
pd – Owen Paterson
m – Marco Beltrami
ed – Richard Learoyd
cos – Liz Keogh

p – Basil Iwanyk, Alex Proyas

Cast: Gerard Butler, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Brenton Thwaites, Geoffrey Rush, Elodie Yung, Courtney Eaton, Chadwick Boseman, Rufus Sewell, Abbey Lee, Bryan Brown, Bruce Spence, Emma Booth, Alexander England

12. Suicide Squad

You can read my full review of this boring piece of garbage here.

wd – David Ayer
ph – Roman Vasyanov
pd – Oliver Scholl
m – Steven Price
ed – John Gilroy
cos – Kate Hawley

p – Charles Roven, Richard Suckle

Cast: Will Smith, Jared Leto, Margot Robbie, Joel Kinnaman, Viola Davis, Jai Courtney, Jay Hernandez, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Ike Barinholtz, Scott Eastwood, Adam Beach

11. The Huntsman: Winter’s War

As two evil sisters prepare to conquer the land, two renegades set out to stop them.
Often risible sequel-cum-prequel to a previously useless film, struggling to balance camp pageantry with the adolescent heroics of the blockbusters of the modern era, borrowing from films that were themselves bad. It also contains some of the worst attempts at Scottish accents in recent memory.

d – Cedric Nicolas-Troyan
w – Evan Spiliotopoulos, Craig Mazin
ph – Phedon Papamichael
pd – Dominic Watkins
m – James Newton Howard
ed – Conrad Buff IV
cos – Colleen Atwood

p – Joe Roth

Cast: Chris Hemsworth, Charlize Theron, Emily Blunt, Jessica Chastain, Nick Frost, Sheridan Smith, Rob Brydon, Alexandra Roach, Sam Claflin, Colin Morgan

10. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

The adventures of a writer in New York's secret community of witches and wizards seventy years before Harry Potter.
Interminable spin-off of Rowling’s Harry Potter series with a great deal of infantile claptrap going on, none of it particularly interesting or “fantastic.” It is a shame that an adolescent entertainment on magicians should be this counterfeit.

d – David Yates
w – JK Rowling
ph – Philippe Rousselot
pd – Stuart Craig, James Hambidge
m – James Newton Howard
ed – Mark Day
cos – Colleen Atwood

p – David Heyman, JK Rowling, Lionel Wigram, Steve Kloves

Cast: Eddie Redmayne, Colin Farrell, Katherine Waterston, Dan Fogler, Alison Sudol, Ezra Miller, Samantha Morton, Carmen Ejogo, Jon Voight, Ron Perlman, Josh Cowdery, Ronan Raftery, Faith Wood-Blagrove, Jenn Murray

9. Passengers

A spacecraft traveling to a distant colony planet and transporting thousands of people has a malfunction in its sleep chambers. As a result, two passengers are awakened 90 years early.
Creepy, fairly regressive sci-fi/romance which inflicts an enormous amount of vitriol upon its two leads; Pratt, in treating him as a rather unlikely psychotic weirdo, and Lawrence for representing the implication that women are naive morons who will excuse any kind of reprehensible behavior from a man as long as he has a cute face.

d – Morten Tyldum
w – Jon Spaihts
ph – Rodrigo Prieto
pd – Guy Hendrix Dyas
m – Thomas Newman
ed – Maryann Brandon
cos – Jany Temime

p – Stephen Hamel, Michael Maher, Ori Marmur, Neal H. Moritz

Cast: Chris Pratt, Jennifer Lawrence, Michael Sheen, Laurence Fishburne, Andy García

8. Genius

A chronicle of Max Perkins's time as the book editor at Scribner, where he oversaw works by Thomas Wolfe, Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald and others.
Inept and extremely dull, falling into every clichéd biopic trap in the book.

d – Michael Grandage
w – John Logan   (Based on the Book by A. Scott Berg)
ph – Ben Davis
pd – Mark Digby
m – Adam Cork
ed – Chris Dickens
cos – Jane Petrie

p – James Bierman, Michael Grandage, John Logan

Cast: Colin Firth, Jude Law, Nicole Kidman, Laura Linney, Guy Pearce, Dominic West, Vanessa Kirby

7. Alice Through the Looking Glass

Alice returns to the whimsical world of Wonderland and travels back in time to save the Mad Hatter.
A piece of work in which the term “a movie” as a description seems deceitful, as it resembles one in no discernible way. Repellent visuals, atrocious acting and a barren sense of tone and tempo all combine to create that would more believably be called “a violation.” Avoid at all costs.

d – James Bobin
w – Linda Woolverton   (Based on the Novel by Lewis Carroll)
ph – Stuart Dryburgh
pd – Dan Hennah
m – Danny Elfman
ed – Andrew Weisblum
cos – Colleen Atwood

p – Tim Burton, Joe Roth, Suzanne Todd, Jennifer Todd

Cast: Johnny Depp, Anne Hathaway, Mia Wasikowska, Rhys Ifans, Helena Bonham Carter, Sacha Baron Cohen, Alan Rickman, Stephen Fry, Michael Sheen, Timothy Spall

6. Now You See Me 2

The Four Horsemen resurface and are forcibly recruited by a tech genius to pull off their most impossible heist yet.
About as dumb as a movie can get, with ugly scenarios, nonsensical developments and a cast who all look embarrassed to be there.

d – John M. Chu
w – Ed Solomon, Pete Chiarelli   (Based on the Characters by Boaz Yakin, Edward Ricourt)
ph – Peter Deming
pd – Sharon seymour
m – Brian Tyler
ed – Stan Salfas
cos – Anna B. Sheppard  

p – Bobby Cohen, Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci

Cast: Mark Ruffalo, Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, Dave Franco, Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine, Lizzy Caplan, Daniel Radcliffe, Jay Chou, Henry Lloyd-Hughes

5. Independence Day: Resurgence

Two decades after the first Independence Day invasion, Earth is faced with a new extra-Solar threat.
As atrocious as a blockbuster can get: A noisy, incoherent mess in which nothing on screen is even remotely believable, either thematically or aesthetically. It attempts to differentiate itself from the original while remaining in every instance completely derivative, with the most cynical of endings.

d – Roland Emmerich
w – Nicolas Wright, James A. Woods, Dean Devlin, Roland Emmerich, James Vanderbilt   (Based on the Characters by Dean Devlin, Roland Emmerich)
ph – Markus Förderer
pd – Barry Chusid
m – Harald Kloser, Thomas Wanker
ed – Adam Wolfe
cos – Lisy Christl

p – Dean Devlin, Roland Emmerich, Harald Kloser

Cast: Liam Hemsworth, Bill Pullman, Jeff Goldblum, Patrick St. Esprit, Joey King, Jessie Usher, Chin Han, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Maika Monroe, William Fichtner, Vivica A. Fox, Sela Ward, Brent Spiner

4. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

You can read my full review of this heinous monstrosity here, though I should add that of all the films on this list, this one has the most ardent fans. That’s not as sad for me as it must be for them.

d – Gareth Edwards
w – Chris Weitz, Tony Gilroy, John Knoll, Gary Whitta   (Based on the Characters Created by George Lucas)
ph – Greig Fraser
pd – Doug Chiang, Neil Lamont
m – Michael Giacchino
ed – John Gilroy, Colin Goudie, Jabez Olssen
cos – David Crossman, Glyn Dillon

p – Simon Emanuel, Kathleen Kennedy, Allison Shearmur

Cast: Felicity Jones, Diego Luna, Ben Mendelsohn, Donnie Yen, Mads Mikkelsen, Alan Tudyk, Riz Ahmed, Jiang Wen, Forest Whitaker

3. London Has Fallen

In London for the Prime Minister's funeral, Mike Banning discovers a plot to assassinate all the attending world leaders.
Awful: Sadistic, racist and generally vile, with an air of outright contempt towards its audience. It’s that rare film that actually feels morally irresponsible.

d – Babak Najafi
w – Creighton Rothenberger, Katrin Benedikt, Christian Gudegast, Chad St. John  (Based on the Characters Created by Creighton Rothenberger, Katrin Benedikt)
ph – Ed Wild
pd – Joel Collins
m – Trevor Morris
ed – Michael J. Duthie, Paul Martin Smith
cos – Stephanie Collie

p – Gerard Butler, Mark Gill, Danny Lerner, Matthew O'Toole, Alan Siegel, Les Weldon

Cast: Gerard Butler, Aaron Eckhart, Morgan Freeman, Angela Bassett, Melissa Leo, Robert Forster, Jackie Earle Haley, Charlotte Riley, Radha Mitchell

2. Mother’s Day

Intersecting stories with different mums collide on Mother's Day.
A colossal piece of garbage, with everyone concerned supplying the least amount of energy possible.

d – Garry Marshall
w – Tom Hines, Lily Hollander, Anya Kochoff, Matthew Walker  
ph – Charles Minsky
pd – Missy Stewart
m – John Debney
ed – Bruce Green, Robert Malina
cos – Marilyn Vance, Beverley Woods

p – Brandt Andersen, Howard Burd, Daniel Diamond, Mark DiSalle, Mark Fasano, Mike Karz, Wayne Allan Rice

Cast: Jennifer Aniston, Julia Roberts, Kate Hudson, Timothy Olyphant, Jason Sudeikis, Sarah Chalke, Margo Martindale, Jon Lovitz, Britt Robertson, Shay Mitchell, Jack Whitehall, Loni Love, Gianna Simone

1. Collateral Beauty

Retreating from life after a tragedy, a man questions the universe by writing to Love, Time and Death. Receiving unexpected answers, he begins to see how these things interlock and how even loss can reveal moments of collateral beauty.
One of the most heinous concoctions for a film ever made, in which characters are rewarded when they should be punished at every juncture. From premise to plot to message to execution, it is self-indulgent rubbish designed for an audience whose lives are so boring that judicious thought no longer assumes any part of their personality. It insults the intelligence of any group imaginable: Men, women, parents, blacks, whites, believers, atheists… It is a crumbling ruin of a movie.

d – David Frankel
w – Allan Loeb
ph – Maryse Alberti
pd – Beth Mickle
m – Theodore Shapiro
ed – Andrew Marcus
cos – Leah Katznelson

p – Anthony Bregman, Brad Dorros, Kevin Scott Frakes, Allan Loeb, Michael Sugar

Cast: Will Smith, Edward Norton, Kate Winslet, Keira Knightley, Helen Mirren, Michael Peña, Naomie Harris, Jacob Latimore

Honourable Mentions

13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi
Assassin's Creed
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice
Dirty Grandpa
The Divergent Series: Allegiant
Eddie the Eagle
The Girl on the Train
Hillsong: Let Hope Rise
The Invitation
I Saw the Light
Keeping Up with the Joneses
The Legend of Tarzan
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies
Sausage Party
The Sea of Trees
Triple 9
War Dogs
X-Men: Apocalypse
Zoolander No. 2

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