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Monday, November 24, 2014         

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Worst films

Hollywood dumped some reel duds on eternally hopeful cinema lovers

By Barry Koltnow

Orange County Register

POSTED:



There are no apologies in Hollywood.

There are no excuses in Hollywood.

And there certainly are no refunds in Hollywood.

They charge you the same ticket price for a bad movie as they do for a good movie.

If the movie is a real stinker, there are no apologies from the filmmakers, and there are no offers of refunds or discounts from the studios. And the theater owners are their partners in crime. That overpriced tub of popcorn and that giant box of Goobers will cost you the same, whether it’s an Oscar winner or a studio dump job in late August.

Yes, life is not fair, but Hollywood takes the concept to another level.

There is little we can do, except release our annual list of the worst movies of the year.

And when I say “worst,” I understand that this is a judgment call. I may hate something that you love, and vice versa.

Perhaps “worst” is the wrong word. Maybe the word should be “disappointing.”

I don’t know about you, but I hope that every movie I am going to see will be “The Godfather.” I don’t mean that literally, but at least aspire to the quality of “The Godfather.” Of course, if it’s a comedy, I hope it’s nothing like “The Godfather.”

But there are very few “Godfathers” being put out by Hollywood these days, and most films are not only a waste of our money, but a waste of our precious time. For stealing two hours of our lives, certain movies deserve to be on this list.

What recourse do we have but to publicly mock these people?

So, it is with a small measure of pleasure and disdain that I pre­sent the 10 most disappointing movies of 2013:

1. “Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues”: Frankly, I don’t care how much money this sequel makes. I don’t care if some critics actually like it. I have always admired Will Ferrell and his writing partner Adam McKay, but there apparently was a very good reason why they didn’t come up with a sequel for 10 years. There obviously was no reason for making a sequel, except money. However, we would like to salute the best movie marketing campaign in history. No one can accuse Paramount and Ron Burgundy (Will’s alter ego) of failing to promote this film. And that was part of the problem. Will’s appearances as Burgundy were hysterical, and when the movie’s promotion is better than the movie, you’ve got a problem. It’s like when the trailer is better than the movie. Stay classy, Ron.

2. “Grown Ups 2”: No one steals your money like Adam Sandler.

3. “R.I.P.D.”: What were they thinking? This idea should have been sent to the Rest In Peace Department before it was made into a movie.

4. “The Internship”: Everybody loved “Wedding Crashers,” and some clever studio executives assumed that all you had to do was put Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn together in a movie again, and the money would flow. Well, the money didn’t flow. Apparently, you need a good script, too.

5. “The Lone Ranger”: There is a thrilling moment near the end of the movie when the “William Tell Overture” kicks the movie into another gear. Getting there was agonizing.

6. “The Hangover Part III”: Hey, we got drunk in Vegas. Then we got drunk in Bangkok. Since we’re only doing this one for the money, let’s just go get drunk. The only good news is that this ends the franchise.

7. “Identity Thief”: I occasionally enjoy it when actors or actresses leave their comfort zone to try to play a character that is unlike anything they’ve ever played. Melissa McCarthy is hot right now, due to her CBS show “Mike & Molly” and to her scene-stealing performance in “Bridesmaids.” Her character in this alleged comedy was so despicable and unlikable that by the time of her redemption (second-rate movies always include a redemption scene for an annoying character), it was too late. The cause was lost.

8. “After Earth”: You’ve heard of “Bring your child to work” day? Well, Will Smith interpreted that as “Bring your son to star in a $130 million movie” day. By the way, how long has it been since we liked an M. Night Shya­ma­lan movie?

9. “We’re the Millers”: Some people thought that watching Jennifer Aniston play a stripper was worth every penny of the ticket price. Those people need more friends. We were hoping for some better writing, and perhaps a lead character (played by Jason Sudeikis) who might be easier to root for than a small-time drug dealer who aspires to be a big-time drug smuggler.

10. “August: Osage County”: We get it; Meryl Streep’s character is not very nice. Director John Wells likes endings so much that he included five in this overly long film.






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