10 Jan Worst Movies 2017
All in all it’s been a pretty decent year for cinema and I’m very much looking forward to sharing my favourites with you, but first we need to get the chaff out the way. The following are the films I really struggled with. Out of respect, I have not included anything I was unable to finish and please check out the end of this post for a bonus list of those I couldn’t even be bothered to give a chance.
This should probably save you about 25 hours of your life. So you’re welcome.
FANTANA’S WORST FILMS OF 2017
Immediately this year I can see the benefits of simply avoiding the films you just know are going to be tripe. Geostorm doesn’t even fall into the category of ‘shit’ for me. It’s a badly done, underwhelming disaster movie, the biggest disaster of which is Gerard Butler who offers nothing (I don’t know if he’s less convincing as an uber-scientist or an American), but it’s tolerable. Just be prepared to laugh at the sheer absurdity of stadiums being blown up by bolts of lightning and that sort of thing. You know, anti-science fiction! This just shows the time I’ve allowed myself not to waste on the real garbage of the year.
Was Arnie always this bad? Looking back on the classics I really can’t say! I don’t think so, but back then he had ensemble casts, massive muscles and lots of big bangs to hide behind. This now, a supposed return to thespian form, which, given the subject matter, seems like good foil, but in actuality turns out to be about eight steps too far for the big man. He just doesn’t have the chops to support a film of this weight and unfortunately it’s a case of if it was anyone else, no matter how depressing this film is, it would have been better.
8. Bad Kids of Crestview Academy
I’ll be surprised if you ever come across this one, but just in case you do and think you’ve stumbled onto an unearthed gem, please take this warning and just keep walking. Acting is terrible by a bunch of no name faces; the script is forced, uninventive and make shift ; the director’s attempts to save budget by making the gruesome death scenes animated fall flat and subsequently underwhelm beyond belief; the logic, the physics and the believability of it all are just plain testing. The whole thing is just plain crass and well, well beneath you. Yes, even you!
7. The Fate of the Furious
Why oh why are these movies still going?! When it has gotten to the point where the trailer tells you literally everything you need to know about the plot, almost to the beat, you have to question what the point of it all is. Honestly if you haven’t seen the trailer go check it out – I’ve never seen a better example of a movie condensed into 3 minutes than this. It gives the opening job, it gives the seeming betrayal, it gives the heroes’ turmoil in believing their man has gone bad and even needlessly spotlights several characters sub plots… I mean these are just supposed to add texture to the main plot! It shows in the face of its characters the turmoil they are experiencing in betraying old friends, so you already know it’s against their will. It shows a bloody great big submarine crashing through the ice in pursuit of our heroes…. that would be the final set piece! The only thing it doesn’t show is whether the heroes win the day or not, but Christ almighty…. what do YOU think the answer to that one is?! Superfluous from start to finish. Let it end!
Here’s the trailer, so you don’t have to bother with the whole movie:
6. The Bye Bye Man
At the mid-point of the year I thought this donkey was destined for the number one spot. Although that is not the case, there was no way it wasn’t going to feature. Wholly unoriginal and making absolutely zero sense, even in terms of what it is, the real horror isn’t in its jump scares (which are beyond reprieve) but in knowing you just sat through the entire thing! I honestly can’t write anymore words about this failure without feeling like I’ve given it undue credit. The end.
5. Phoenix Forgotten
We all know the found footage horror isn’t just a sinking ship, it’s about three feet off the ocean floor. Still in I went so I only have myself to blame. This is a film that sets itself in the ‘90s yet forgets to remove anything – you know, like watches, cars, stereos – that might not have been around at the time. That’s just lazy, but it doesn’t stop there. Rather than attempt to build upon the ideas that were built by the Blair Witch Project, Phoenix Forgotten opts to ‘borrow’. Honestly when I watch tripe this bad, it makes me want to go outside and make something better… with my phone! A very achievable feat.
Trailer Credit: Movieclips Film Festivals & Indie Films
4. Be Afraid
The title seems incomplete – it should read, ‘Be Afraid of Just How Bad Some of the Tripe Netflix Picks up Really Is’…! It’s crap like this that makes the streaming network so bloody difficult to negotiate sometimes. A script and performances that wouldn’t be seen dead on UK Living or the Hallmark Channel is all it takes to bury this dead rubber before it barely takes a step forward. It’s unfathomable that in 2017 we are still subjected to directorial tactics that should have died out with the introduction of green screens – the knob-heads on the Apprentice make better adverts for crying out loud. I’m mostly angry because in other hands this could have been a good idea. Could’ve, should’ve…. grumble…..
3. The Layover
Technically serviceable and studded with future talent, it’s hard to believe no one involved didn’t take a step back and question what had been written on the toilet paper that passes for a script in this case. Never has an advertisement for how not to treat others – let alone one’s friends! – been so on the nose. Reality, normalcy and common sense all sacrificed for the sake of a dozen crass and unfunny jokes. Everyone involved in this shit-show should hang their heads in shame for a full year and come back when they learn to play better with others. Just offensive.
2. Justice League
So the good news: Justice League is not as bad as BvS. Yay.
The bad news: It still manages to add to the now countless demonstration as to why Warner Bros and the DCEU need to cease and desist IMMEDIATELY! I mean how many turkeys does one have to burn before one realises one cannot cook a Christmas dinner?! The saddest thing is this could all be righted if a few simple steps were taken: 1) stop what you’re doing, 2) appoint one cook (anyone but Zack Snyder will do!), 3) take a year out and plan! 4) build slowly, and 5) Stop, please stop, with the CGI backgrounds – your cartoons look more realistic.
It’s one thing to not want to be seen copying your competitors; it’s another to do the complete opposite of them. The MCU has its critics but you have to hand it to them, they have delivered it patiently and competently. In their continued race to try and capitalise on a superhero-saturated market, DC are crashing all over the place with no thought for the collateral damage at all.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. DC has a very attractive back catalogue of properties under their Vertigo line that requires immediate mining. That is where their hits lie. I believe in 2018 it is Aquaman’s turn…. I’ll see you back here next year for the continuation of this rant….!
1. Jeepers Creepers 3
I’m not mad, I’m just disappointed. After the second film I was upset that one of my favourite horror movies had been tarnished by a sub-par-yet-serviceable sequel, and when I read the original script for the third part it sounded as though it would round out the trilogy nicely. Fast forward 5 years and the threequel delivered is as alien to the original script as the Marvel and DC cinematic universes are to each other. Gone are the cinematic experiences, foreboding atmosphere and the terror of the Creeper that had made this a monster franchise to keep an eye on. In its place came a SyFy Channel wannabe with a bout as much ferocity as comatose pigeon. It‘s utterly embarrassing how cheap this piece of shit looks; 50% of the film shot in daylight because the production couldn’t afford the lighting, cheapening the look of everything; CGI that wouldn’t be out of place in 1990, in fact it might have been better back then… when did Alien3 come out again?; not enough money for a legitimate car crash stunt – instead we get a CG rolling car that makes no impact to the ground and an entire car crash played out while the camera remains on a bystander’s face and reaction. Just effing amateur.
Victor Salva had created the first original monster movie in decades. A creature that wasn’t only in the protagonist’s head but witnessed by all and sundry, unafraid of its own exposure. A creature that new how to hide in plain sight. A creature that new exactly what it wanted and how to get it. A creature that had its own rules and stuck to them. All of that blown away in 80 minutes of badly written, incoherent nonsense I’ll never get back. Someone please take Salva’s toys away from him.
Trailer Credit: moviemaniacsDE
Dishonourable Mentions: the Monster Project, Bokeh, Happy Hunting, Sleepless, the Dinner, XX, Black Butterfly, Aftermath, Leatherface, Death Note, the Boss Baby
Didn’t Finish: Guardian, Rings,
Bonus ‘those-I-couldn’t-even-bring-myself-to-watch’ List: The Emojji Movie, 9/11, Fifty Shades Darker, Flatliners, Transformers: the Last Knight, Unforgettable, the Circle, the Mummy, the Dark Tower, Kidnap