I’ve sat through more than a few ropey movies and enjoyed them despite the common consensus being that they’re a bit shite. It takes a lot for me to come away from any film thinking this but every now and then I’ll watch something that reinforces this sentiment. With that in mind here are Ten of the Worst Films Ever Released.
Note, there may well be spoilers within but the most recent films on the list are from 2017. If it stops you having to endure them, then I feel that I have performed a valuable public service.
10. Knowing (2009)
This one is actually quite a functional thriller for the first three-quarters of the film. After a series of disasters take place Nic Cage’s character attempts to decipher a load of numbers written by someone 50 years before that predicted a number of them. Nic is on decent form and pretty restrained by his standard but then in the last quarter of the film aliens rock up and it turns out they’re rescuing children as the world is about to end due to a star flare.
At this point the film degenerates into generic bollocks, it nearly recovers with the actual end of the world but screws it up with a tacked on happy ending of the rescued kids playing on a new planet.
9. Max Payne (2008)
Somehow the only video game adaptation that makes this list, mostly because there’s usually something to enjoy even if it’s just to see how bad it winds up being. Max Payne doesn’t even have that going for it. The game it’s based on is incredibly cinematic so should lend itself pretty well to being converted to a film, however, this is not the case.
The plot mostly follows the game in the sense that Max is attempting to avenge his wife who was murdered in connection with a drugs case. Sadly the people making the film managed to suck all the excitement and intrigue out of it, it’s just boring. It’s a nice looking film but that’s really all I can say for it, Mark Wahlberg is phoning it in. I even had to check the cast on IMDB just to see who else was in it, and it’s got some seriously talented people like Mila Kunis and Donal Logue so it doesn’t bode well for the script that all the other characters are completely forgettable.
8. Batman & Robin (1997)
It’s pretty well known how bad Batman & Robin ended up being at this point, it was an utter shitshow. Not one member of the cast covers themselves in any glory despite most of them being decent actors. As a rule, George Clooney is frequently great but he’s smug as hell in this. Then you’ve got additions like bat-nipples and even a bat credit card, it’s probably even camper than the ’60s series just without any of the charm.
I love Arnie but when the best thing about a film is him chewing scenery and reeling off a shitload of bloody terrible ice puns you know something has gone drastically wrong.
7. The Matrix Reloaded (2003)
How do you follow up one of the most surprisingly fun action films to come, pretty much, out of nowhere? Well, with a film that contains a scene with the biggest load of bullshit exposition ever seen in a film, ever. The scene with the Architect where he’s explaining things to Neo is utter nonsense, it literally makes no sense. Overall the film wasn’t amazing anyway and it just felt like an unnecessary continuation of a film that didn’t really need a sequel. It forced far too much lore and just lost the narrative but I suppose when there’s money to be made a sequel is pretty much guaranteed.
I hated Reloaded so much that I’ve deliberately avoided Revolutions and from what I’ve been told I’m not missing much, which is actually kind of a shame.
6. Transformers: The Last Knight (2017)
I’ve wanted to like the Michael Bay take on Transformers from the very beginning but it’s difficult when the focus is on the humans rather than the bloody massive robots kicking seven shades of shite out of each other. Add into this Bay’s love of quick cuts, gigantic explosions. It was the need to balls up existing fan favourites, like Hot Rod, while adding in shite little robots to presumably sell toys and you can see why I don’t think much of it. This one gets the nod though as it’s a convoluted load of balls – it makes Optimus Prime a bad guy, changes history so that King Arthur had a robot dragon to fight his battles and reveals that Earth is, in fact, Unicron.
Unicron in the animated movie was a planet-eating villain voiced by Orson Welles, so yeah bollocks might actually be a generous commentary.
5. Blue Streak (1999)
I went to see this Martin Lawrence starring “comedy” at the cinema when it was released after allowing a friend to pick the film for that particular trip. This was quickly identified as a huge error in the group’s judgement and he’s never been allowed to pick a film again. The key thing about any comedy film is for it to actually be funny, this fails on that front dramatically. It was the closest I’ve come to walking out of a cinema… it was that bad.
The basic plot is that Lawrence is a criminal who hides his loot, goes to jail and when he gets out a Police Station has been built on the site. He then impersonates a cop in a bid to retrieve the hidden stash. It’s an utterly bollocks plot and in Martin Lawrence it has a star who I think is even less funny than Adam Sandler, which is saying something.
4. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales (2017)
Let’s be clear, I love the first film but the series definitely peaked at that point, it sort of went down the same route of what the Matrix trilogy did. Films two and three of the trilogy aren’t great, four was a bit of an improvement and then this, the fifth, isn’t very good at all. Johnny Depp’s schtick at this point had become a parody of itself and Jack Sparrow is basically a pantomime character. The film somehow goes out of its way to make him a fundamentally unlikeable prick, he’s essentially overstayed his welcome by about four films and it would appear Disney agree as they’re planning a reboot minus the character.
To top it off the story isn’t particularly engaging and it features what I can only assume is a Johnny Depp that has been de-aged with CGI that looks like my mother created on MS Paint.
3. Robocop 3 (1993)
Robocop 1 and 2 were full of satire and ridiculously over the top violence. The obvious way to progress the franchise was to remove both of these things and make Robocop’s shooting accuracy absolute shite. So much so that he’s essentially incompetent, giving him a child sidekick was also a sterling decision by the powers that be as well as having him take on robot ninjas. Given how lacking in basic mobility Robocop is he should get absolutely massacred by them. I’m all for being able to suspend disbelief to an extent but there’s so much bollocks in here which when married up to the atrocious acting it makes it very hard to do.
The special effects are also utterly atrocious, the jetpack sequence is absolutely awful and this was released around the same sort of time as Terminator 2 and Jurassic Park so there’s evidence that this isn’t purely a hindsight thing. Peter Weller had a lucky escape when he had to turn this shitshow down due to scheduling conflicts.
2. A Good Day to Die Hard (2013)
Where to even start with this clusterfuck. Its runtime is nearly half an hour shorter than each of the previous films and yet seems far longer than all of them combined. It casts Jai Courtney, who may actually be one of the most unlikeable actors I’ve ever witnessed in a film, alongside Bruce Willis in full not giving two hoots mode. Which is obviously what you want from your main star.
I think the worst part is that they’ve managed to exhaust the wrong man in the wrong place scenario finally and made an action film that’s boring as watching paint dry. It also takes John McClane, who in previous films is the gruff everyman’s man and turns him into a wisecracking psychopath which feels like a huge departure for the character. Honestly, if you’ve not seen it don’t bother. It’s terrible and an hour and 45 minutes that you’ll never get back.
1. Gods of Egypt (2016)
This film is so awful that I turned it off the first time I watched it. The only reason I’ve now fully watched it is for the purpose of slagging it off in this paragraph, so in a way I hate this whole article now as a result.
Nikolaj Coster-Waldau does his best with the material, Gerard Butler and the other cast members seem to be having an amazing time trying to out-act each other but they can’t stop this being a bloody trainwreck. The special effects are absolutely appalling for a film that apparently cost 140 million dollars and the story is bollocks. It revolves around Set wanting to be immortal by making a suit of armour from bits of other gods, killing his father on his space station and setting a space worm loose on Egypt. Add to this that Coster-Waldau and Butler get to wear metal CGI armour for some of the fight sequences and you’ll see why I think it’s so bad.
That being said it’s that bad that I actually sort of enjoyed it so it might make a list of “so bad they’re good” films, though just know that if you’re intending to watch this it’s utter horseshit.
I’m sure people will point out far worse films, some that I won’t have seen or some that I’ve forgotten about. Maybe my mind has just decided to make me believe that I’ve never seen them so feel free to let me know what your worst films are.