Category Archives: Crap

Downers of 2014

On the rare occasions my childhood friends and I get to celebrate New Year’s Eve with each other, we have a tradition. Before midnight we each do a shot of an alcohol mixed with cranberry juice. After midnight, we do another with some kind of alcohol paired with apple juice. As we do it, we say: “Bitter cranberry for the past and sweet apple for the future.” It sounds a lot more poignant than it actually is. The tradition started when my friend, who was royally pissed at the time, ran out of Malibu and coke and had to improvise.

At the end of 2013, I did a ‘year in review’ post where I listed my favourite and most hated movies released that year. I have decided to do the same this year but have approached the post differently. This year, I wanted to take inspiration from our tradition by doing two separate posts: one chronicling the bitter cranberry movies and another celebrating the sweet apples.

As a general rule, 2014 was quite a strong year for movies. Then again, there were some absolute shockers in the bunch. Some films, such as Transformers: Age of Extinction and A Million Ways to Die in the West, don’t make the list. That’s not because I liked them. It’s because I didn’t see them. Quite frankly, I don’t hate myself enough to watch these films. If I had seen these movies then they may have been included. The best I can do is include the shit films I have watched. Rest assured though, I did see quite a few. Without further ado, here are my picks for worst films of the year.

Maleficent

Maleficent_poster

What is it about?

It’s a reinterpretation of Sleeping Beauty, only this time through the eyes of the villain who, apparently, is not a villain at all…she’s just a messed up woman who was physically abused and possibly date raped.

Why is it one of the worst films of the year?

Because it’s totally unnecessary! I must admit, I am a bit of a traditionalist when it comes to these sorts of things. I’m happy to label the villain as a villain and leave it at that without further question. Not everybody needs a back story, especially if it’s one that’s so saccharine and ham-fisted. The reason Maleficent was such a good villain in the original version was because she was a total drag-queen bitch. She didn’t need a reason to be evil. With cheekbones like hers, she doesn’t need a reason to do or be anything. In my eyes, this was just a waste of money and some of the CGI was pretty monstrous.

Worst thing about it?

Despite the attempts to give them more depth, the characters are really bland and uninspiring.

Grace of Monaco

Grace_of_Monaco_Poster

What is it about?

Grace Kelly’s marriage to Prince Rainier and their efforts to keep Monaco a tax haven for corrupt officials and millionaires.

Why is it one of the worst films of the year?

Because everything about this steaming pile of crap was mistake. It’s hard for me to point out anything positive. If you were to put a gun to my head and make me say something nice it would probably be that the costume department did a good job. Everything else was a total misstep. The acting is hammy at best and none of the characters are sympathetic. Olivier Dahan, the director of the film, was the man behind La Vie en Rose, which is widely considered to be a great French movie. As such, it’s a little confusing to be presented with this abomination, which essentially functions as a two-hour Chanel commercial.

Worst thing about it?

It feels like a wildly inappropriate film to make. At a time when people are tightening their belts and trying to get by on what little money they are given, it seems tacky to make a film about how a screen goddess helped hide their wealth from the government. On top of that, the film ends with a message that it’s OK to be rich and superficial so long as you help the poor on one day of the year….by throwing a lavish ball.

Mood Indigo

Mood_Indigo_poster

What is it about?

It’s about weird French people living in a fantastical Paris and one gets sick when a lily starts growing in her lung.

Why is it one of the worst films of the year?

Because it is simply too weird. Don’t get me wrong, I love serious film’s that add a touch of the strange and fantastic. This film gets it all wrong, however, by having the weirdness eclipse the human drama to a point where nothing really makes sense. It feels like you’re watching street performers and mime-artists who managed to scrape together enough money to make a film with various political messages.

Worst thing about it?

I was so bored throughout this movie. Nothing really happens in it and the cutesy touches just become nauseating after a while.

Sin City: A Dame to Kill For

Sin-City-A-Dame-to-Kill-For-teaser-poster

What is it about?

Life in a fictional city where crime lords and corrupt politicians run the show.

Why is it one of the worst films of the year?

Because it was mistimed. This film should have been released years ago, closer to when the first Sin City came out. Now that it’s 2014, the momentum of the first film has been lost and the film feels kind of irrelevant. On top of that, the quality of the individual stories in this film vary from dull to pointless. On a positive note, I will say that Eve Green’s boobs look magnificent in this film but I wish Joseph Gordon Levitt got his arse out.

Worst thing about it?

Replacing Devon Aoki and the scene in which Miho kills a bunch of guys….it just looked so sloppy.

Divergent

Divergent

What is it about?

It’s about a really dull teenager who inadvertently sparks a revolution in a dystopian society simply because she a “balanced” personality.

Why is it one of the worst films of the year?

Because it’s angsty teenage trash with a crappy protagonist who likes to do the things all moronic teenage girls like to do, namely looking at herself in mirrors and fussing about boys. This film is essentially a boring version of The Hunger Games and the lead actress, Shailene Woodley, is fucking annoying. I don’t know what it is but something about her gets on my tits…maybe it’s the fact that she’s younger than me and more successful or maybe it’s that she eats clay. That’s something people in special-ed classes do. Maybe it’s to do with the fact she starred in a film this year in which two kids make out in Anne Frank’s house in Amsterdam. Who does that!? That place is a house of sombre remembrance and they decide to get busy there!!??

Worst thing about it?

The film lost me when the protagonist explains that society is split up into certain groups that match an individual’s personality type. At a certain age, kids get to choose where they want to be. As she’s explaining it all, she mentions there is a group called ‘Amity’ and that everyone there is happy. Why, then, does she decide to join the kids who all act as though they have ADHD!? Just pick the group where everyone is happy! Seems like an obvious choice.

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Black Christmas (2006)

Black_christmas_ver3

Genre: Horror

Cast: Michelle Trachtenberg, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Lacey Chabert

Synopsis: A bunch of spoilt sorority bitches get axed one by one by a Christmas maniac

Merry Christmas ya filthy animals! I must admit, Christmas is not my favourite holiday to celebrate. I am more of a Halloween kind of guy. However, thanks to the ‘Holiday Horror’ sub-genre, I can indulge my Halloween spirit whenever a holiday rolls around. This year, my brother suggested that I watch the remake of the 1970s festive slasher classic Black Christmas.

Despite taking place over the holiday season, Black Christmas is unlikely to get you in the Christmas spirit. It is not because the film features a lot of death: Die Hard has tons of people dying but that never fails to put me in a Christmassy mood. No, the real reason is because all the Christmas decorations in this movie are tacky as shit. Personally, I prefer Christmas to be a tasteful and subdued affair. Think along the lines of a roaring fire and minimal usage of tinsel on a real tree rather than a house that looks as if a red-neck Santa Clause threw up on it.

Christmas HouseIT BURNS MY EYES!!!

On top of the distasteful use of Christmas bric-a-brac, the film employs a rather disgusting neon colour scheme. After about 30 minutes of watching this movie you will begin to feel a little nauseous. I suppose the sickening use of colour is meant to heighten a viewer’s sense of unease and discomfort with what is happening in the film. I understand the need to make cannibalism and holiday incest as unpleasant as possible, but doing so with the film’s colour scheme was a rather unfortunate choice.

If you manage to stomach the colour scheme and continue watching the movie, the first thing you will notice is that Black Christmas is chock-full of actresses you will sort-of remember from other things. I found myself asking things like: “Isn’t that Buffy’s sister?” and ‘Isn’t that the girl who did the voice of Eliza in The Wild Thornberrys?” It’s kind of fun at first but when they all get killed off in gruesome ways it’s kind of like watching your childhood get murdered. Then again, the amount of character development that goes on in the film is minimal so it’s not going to be too traumatic to see a character get an ice-skating boot upside the head. In fact, the person in this film who gets the most development is the villain but not in the good way: spoiler alert but it turns out the guys is a festive Joseph Fritzl.

In truth, I wish I hadn’t listened to my brother’s suggestion to watch the remake. I understand that the original has a campy appeal and it’s available on Netflix so I feel as though I missed a golden opportunity. Plus, it has Margot Kidder in it before she went manic. If you’re really up for a holiday slasher, then don’t waste your time with the Black Christmas remake. Keep it old school and watch the 1974 original…or watch Silent Night, Deadly Night Part 2.

High-lights:

  • The hilarity that ensues when one woman shows up and all you can think about is how much plastic surgery she’s had.
  • All your favourite actresses from childhood.

Downers:

  • Too much neon!
  • Unnecessarily gruesome maiming and murder.
  • No character development.
  • All your favourite actresses from childhood getting killed.

Summary:

Why spoil your Christmas season with this crap? Do yourself a favour and watch Die Hard instead. Hell, even Die Hard 2 is better.

2/10

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Wishmaster (1997)

Wishmaster

Genre: Horror

Cast: Robert Englund and a shitload of actors I have never seen or heard of

Summary: A powerful and evil entity known as a djinn is released from his prison inside a jewel and seeks to claim the soul of the woman who discovered him.

Wes Craven certainly has put his name on a lot of shit. No doubt, he is one of the greatest horror directors and writers still alive today and I’m not saying his reputation as a “master of horror” is undeserved. But for every Scream and A Nightmare on Elm Street that he makes you also get things like My Soul to Take and Dracula 2000. By all accounts, his filmography and projects is mixed, which is why I approached Wishmaster with some trepidation…especially when I found out the movie is about an evil genie.

GenieOne not quite as gay as Jafar

I’ll start things off by saying that genies are seriously underrepresented in movies, even in the horror genre. While I appreciate that an effort was made to make a film about an evil genie for diversity purposes, the end product was so campy that Wishmaster stopped functioning as a horror movie a good 15 minutes into the movie. Rather than going for “jump out your seat” moments, Wishmaster largely relies on its story to provide its scares. Unfortunately there’s nothing all that scary about a monster granting people’s wishes in a fucked up way. Similarly, there’s nothing all that terrifying about gore and when the wishes backfire in gruesome ways you just find yourself wishing that the main character would just figure out a way to stop it all so you can watch something else.

One thing I always appreciate in horror movie is the appearance of Robert Englund. That man must have made so much money from cameo appearances in horror movies. Then again, he’s not very good at telling the difference between a good and a bad horror film either. I saw him quite recently in the crappy version of The Phantom of the Opera. God that was terrible. It had an 80s Molly Shannon in it. Still, Englund put in more effort in that film than he did Wishmaster but I worry that he’ll never come upon a role as unique and terrifying as Freddy Krueger. Or one that inspires terrible 80s rap…

I wish I could give you more details about this movie but, to be honest, I was pretty bored with this one. It just didn’t grab me or thrill me in the way I was hoping it too. On top of that, the special effects in this film are terrible. Nothing ruins a horror movie quite like poor special effects because it removes you from the tense atmosphere. It’s a shame that the Baked Movie Review Halloween Roundup has to end in such a disappointing way but there’s always next year to plan ahead for

High-lights:

  • It’s rare to see a movie about a genie. Finger snaps for diversity.
  • Robert Englund.

Downers:

  • Surprisingly boring and virtually no reasons to develop an interest in any of the characters.
  • Poor special effects.

Summary:

I would recommend avoiding this one, largely because it is boring. If you’re desperate to watch a Wes Craven film this Halloween then make it a good one. There are lots of great ones to choose from. There are also a lot of disappointing ones to choose from so make sure you do your research first.

3/10

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Red Riding Hood (2011)

red riding hood

Genre: Romance, Thriller

Cast: Amanda Seyfried, Gary Oldman, Julie Christie

Synopsis: It’s basically a retarded but sexed-up version of the fairy tale we all know and love.

Little girl in a red cape goes into the forest to visit her grandmother. She gets to the house and finds that her grandmother has been eaten by a wolf. Wold gets killed. The end. It’s a story that we’ve all grown up with and one that we all know off by heart. It’s a simple story, for sure, and that’s probably why there have not been many attempts to adapt the story for cinema. I mean, how can you stretch the story of Red Riding Hood into 90 minutes? Catherine Hardwicke certainly had an idea…one that maybe wasn’t entirely obvious. Her plan was basically to turn little red riding hood into a ho.

red riding hood“Grandma! What a big erection you have!”

Let’s examine this idea for the moment. In my honest opinion, it’s not THAT bad. As I mentioned in my review for Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters, a lot of fun could be had with adapting traditional fairy tales for modern audiences. They would have to be dark though. That’s where Hansel and Gretel failed. Red Riding Hood is an improvement as it deals with the theme of female sexuality; something that works well with the original tale. Where the film fails, however, is with the execution.

I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised. After all, Hardwicke did direct Twilight and this film has a similar feel. It’s too teen friendly with its hunks and budding ingénue. A proper adaptation would be about prostitution with a serial killer thrown into the mix. Instead we get a film about a werewolf and a girl being torn between two guys who performs a pseudo-lesbian dance to seduce one of them. Seriously girls, that’s the oldest trick in the book and doing it in medieval dress is in no way sexy. You need to watch Showgirls and take some lessons from Nomi Malone.

nomi1

What is surprising is that this film has a very good cast. It’s got Julie Christie in it who, may I remind you, has an Oscar. Gary Oldman is also a brilliant actor. I even think Amanda Seyfried is a good actress. I’ve seen Lovelace and I was impressed with her performance in that. I think the problem with her is that she picks terrible roles and this film’s central character (who is horribly named Valerie) is another role that is beneath her talent.

All in all, I found this film to be wholly underwhelming. It’s like watching a mediocre slutty Sleepy Hollow. It has some great performers, a fresh theme, and even some good style but it lacks the bite and the shock-value that it sorely needs. This film doesn’t really have much to keep your attention if you’re over the age of 15.

High-lights:

  • Max Irons is adorable and he is well buff in The Riot Club.
  • Some beautiful scenery.
  • Good theme.
  • Red Riding Hood’s mum is hysterical. The film is supposed to be set in the middle ages but with all that makeup it looks like the mother just came from the club.

Downers:

  • Poor execution.
  • Inappropriate use of the pseudo-lesbian dance.
  • Creepy incest moment.
  • Boring characters.

Summary:

I’m still waiting on someone to come along and bowl me over with a fresh and exciting fairy tale adaptation. I hear that they’re making a sequel to Hansel and Gretel so it looks like we won’t be getting one for quite some time. Shit.

3.5/10

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Valentine (2001)

Valentine

Genre: Horror

Cast: Denise Richards, David Boreanaz, Marley Shelton

Synopsis: In the run-up to Valentine’s Day, a masked man goes around offing the hot chicks that rejected him in junior high

Ooooohh gurl! We are really scraping the bottom of the holiday-slasher barrel with this turd. This film isn’t bad. It’s diabolical. The plot is clichéd, none of the characters are likeable, and the acting is as wooden as Paul McCartney’s ex’s leg. But you know what I’m going to say next, right? It’s this stuff that makes the film enjoyable! Yes, that’s right, we’ve come across another “shit but good” movie for me to take the piss out of.

Can I start by saying that these women are total bitches? Seriously, why are these women friends with each other? One is dating an alcoholic and her friends are doing virtually nothing to help. They’re all so wrapped up in their crappy little dramas like how one of them used to be fat and can’t get any dick and how one of them is dating a famous artist who wants a three-way. Who needs friends like that? One of them does help eventually by taking the miserable cow speed-dating but then cock-blocks her by flirting with the one attractive guy in the room. Who the fuck does that!? I’ll tell you who: Dr Christmas Jones!

Christmas JonesPictured: renowned nuclear physicist Dr. Christmas Jones

The lack of likeable characters does, oddly enough, help the film because you end up rooting for the killer. If you can’t root for the heroes then you might as well root for the villain. This is apparent in the opening scene with Katherine Heigl. As far as celebrities go, she is one of the most shankable. Her character is equally annoying…and kind of dumpy. She is the sort of girl who practices autopsies in a scary looking building by herself with the lights off. In other words, she’s asking to be killed. I almost let out a sigh of relief or a victory cheer when it happened.

Now, some of you may get annoyed by the predictability of this film. Not me. I like it when horror movies follow the traditional formula. It’s fun to shout at the stupid white girl running up the stairs instead of out the door. It’s also fun to scream obscenities at the chick who’s going into the basement to use the hot tub by herself despite knowing that two of her friends have been horribly butchered and that her friends have been receiving death threats. Pointing out the flaws of idiots is one of life’s greatest treasures.

If I wanted a smart and unique horror film, I’d watch something like Rosemary’s Baby. I wouldn’t watch an early noughties slasher with Buffy’s boyfriend in it. Having said that, stupid horror films have their own charm and part of the fun can is figuring out what all the characters are doing wrong. For some horror movies, it’s a laugh to ask yourself: “what would I do differently?” The answer for this movie? Every fucking thing because the characters in Valentine are the worst characters to ever appear in a horror movie.

Gingerbread manOK, maybe not THE worst

High-lights:

  • If you’re a fan of BoJack Horseman you can make a lot of David Boreanaz jokes.
  • The neighbour who breaks into the main character’s apartment to try on her panties. Hysterical.
  • Katherine Heigl popping her clogs early on.
  • “BITCH! DON’T GO IN THERE!”

Downers:

  • Objectively speaking, this is a terrible movie.

Summary:

There are two types of people out there who would like this film. The first is a person who has little or no taste. The second is a person who has taste but enjoys taking the piss out of bad movies or watches them ironically. I am a film snob and a douchebag, so I fall into the latter category. If you’re the sort of person who can only watch good movies then stay away from this holiday-slasher turkey. If, on the other hand, you can laugh at other people’s failings then by all means proceed! A lot of fun can be had by pointing and laughing at stupid characters

Objective score: 3/10

Stoner score: 7/10

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Stay Alive (2006)

stay alive

Genre: Horror

Cast: Jon Foster, Samaire Armstrong, Frankie Muniz

Synopsis: A group of hot, young adults all play a video game. Unfortunately, the game is haunted and the game’s central villain begins picking them off one by one.

There have been many attempts over the years to turn video games into movies: Resident Evil, Silent Hill, Mortal Kombat etc. For the most part, these adaptations have been unsuccessful. Stay Alive is a little different in that it’s not an adaptation, but a film that centres on the characters playing a haunted video game. It’s like an updated Ringu. Whoever made the film, however, has clearly never played a video game. In fact, whoever made this film has obviously never opened a history book or developed any idea of how decent people act in real life situations.

So what is this video game about? It’s about a serial killer. A fictitious one? No. A real life serial killer….wow. That has got to be one of the most inappropriate things to ever happen. Can you imagine someone making a video game about Jeffrey Dahmer or Fred and Rose West? It’s just something you should never do! OK, the serial killer in the game is a historical one but that hardly makes it better. The killer’s victims were still real people and I don’t think they would appreciate their killer being celebrated in a video game…if they know what that is. So, who is the serial killer in this film?

Elizabeth_Bathory_PortraitDis bitch

Elizabeth Báthory, a 16th century noblewoman who supposedly slaughtered dozens of young and fertile wenches and then bathed in their blood to keep her youthful looks. Fucked up, right? Yes, she was an awful human being but the makers of this film didn’t even do that good a job of researching her life. In fact, the characters just spread lies about her and put her in New Orleans, which, may I remind you, did not fucking exist in the 16th century! Aaaaah, historical accuracy rage. Hollywood writers, I implore you, research your characters thoroughly.

Hocus Pocus

So what else is wrong with this film? The characters! All of them are terrible but special mention goes out to the one played by Anna from The OC aka Penny from the Hanson song, ‘Penny and Me Tonight.’ I refuse to call her by her actual name. She’s the sort of person who takes photographs at a funeral. Who does that!? No-one because it’s fucking rude, and borderline psychotic. Frankie Muniz is in the film too and it’s funny yet rather depressing to see how his cuteness as a kid in Malcom in the Middle did not continue into adulthood. Milo Ventimiglia is the only actor to come out relatively unscathed and that’s because he’s killed off before he has a chance to get annoying.

High-lights:

  • A lot of the annoying characters get killed off.

Downers:

  • How are all the characters playing the video game on one screen if it’s first person?
  • Seriously!? A video game about a serial killer?
  • Stop taking photos! You’re at a fucking funeral! Show some god damn respect.
  • The historical inaccuracy makes my blood boil.

Summary:

I can’t believe I wasted 90 minutes of my life on this steaming turd. If you want a scary video game experience then do yourself a favour and play Resident Evil or Silent Hill because this movie should be avoided at all costs.

1.5/10

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Pathology (2008)

Pathology

Genre: Thriller

Cast: Milo Ventimiglia, Alyssa Milano

Synopsis: A bunch of psycho doctors smoke crack and kill people for sport and then try to guess how the murder was done.

We have a doctor in our family. My twin brother, who has gotten many shout-outs on this blog, is that doctor. He currently works in a hospital outside of London and, although I don’t see him as much as I would like to, we talk regularly. As such, I like to think I have a pretty good insight into what the life of a doctor is like. It is hard work, long hours, crazy stress, and even crazier patients. It is not a crack orgy in the morgue. If you don’t know any doctors and watch this movie, you may be fooled into thinking that’s what a career in medicine is like. Unfortunately, that is not the case. That’s what a career in law is like.

RBGYou don’t even want to know the shit RBG gets up to on the weekend

This movie gets so many things wrong. I will start with the writing because clearly the writers have never met another human being in their lifetime. Why would a doctor decide to start killing people for fun just because a bunch of “popular” kids do it? THIS ISN’T FUCKING HIGH SCHOOL! If someone came up to me and said: “Hey do you want to join our secret society but first you have to kill someone and smoke crack”, I would agree to it, wait until they left the room, and then call the cops. It wouldn’t make for a very exciting movie but I feel as though people would have more respect for me that way.

Also, what kind of person would get turned on and want to fuck another person while surrounded by dead people? The answer? No-one. No-one would get turned on. Yet this is what happens in this movie when Milo Venti-whoosit joins the team of pathologists. All of a sudden he sees some crazy red head playfully stroke a dead body and suddenly he wants to get all up inside that crazy. Seriously, a dog with two dicks would have shown more restraint.

That’s part of the reason why this film is fucking terrible: it tries to inject eroticism into a situation that is in no way sexy. Autopsies and sex do not go well together. Ever. Getting aroused while watching this film is like trying to watch someone shove a roast ham into an electrical socket. It’s an exercise in futility. That shit just won’t go. What’s worse, there’s this huge sex scene after this girl kills her abusive stepdad who she says raped her as a child. Why on earth would a guy have sex with someone who’s: 1) just killed someone; and 2) just revealed seconds before that she is the victim of sexual abuse? Does crack make you do that? If so then I’m sticking to weed. The stuff I smoked on Friday gave me couchlock so fierce I doubt I could have fucked anyone even if I wanted to.

flat-girl-above-the-influence-elite-dailyI need to get me some of the stuff this girl was smoking

This film gives me a headache and I think I can feel my blood pressure rising. I could go on and on about all the things that it did wrong but, for the good of my health, I think I had better stop. Just know that this film is the reason why I have no faith in mankind.

High-lights:

  • Milo Venti-something or other has a cute ass.

Downers:

  • Why is everything on screen happening? Why is no-one acting like a normal person? Why is that Asian woman getting off with the redhead woman while those guys are cutting some dead person open!?
  • Alyssa Milano was rude about that girl’s dress. I mean, she said she liked it and all but you can tell she was lying. The dress was fucking ugly but you don’t need to draw attention to it. Just don’t say anything. Rude.
  • Aaaahhhh, nipple piercing! AAAAAAAAAAHHHH NEEDLE IN THE EAR!!!
  • “You never forget your first fuck.” Perhaps the worst thing that could ever be said about child abuse.

Summary:

This movie is like when you show up for a Grindr/Tinder date and the other person shows up and looks very little like the photo they sent you. That sweeping sense of mortification is present in this film also. Proceed with caution.

1.5/10

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