My Best from 2006
My Worst from 2006
My Worst from 2005
My Best from 2005

The films that almost made this list: Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer. Rush Hour 3. The Golden Compass. Shoot ‘Em Up. Hostel, Part Two.

Films that would have if I was dumb enough to see them: Code
Name: The Cleaner, Delta Farce, The Seeker: The Dark is Rising,
Pathfinder, Daddy Day Camp, The Comebacks. Catch and Release. Hot Rod.
Vacancy. Reno 911!: Miami. The Hills Have Eyes 2. The Last Mimzy. Mr.
Magorium’s Wonder Emporium. Mr. Woodcock. Balls fo Fury. Good Luck
Chuck. The Number 23.Epic Movie. This Christmas. Are We Done Yet?.
Premonition. Saw IV. Tyler Perry’s Why Did I Get Married? Fred Claus.
The Game Plan. Norbit. Evan Almighty. Hairspray. Bee Movie. Wild Hogs.
Shrek the Third

The films that I really don’t like that I was supposed to: Grindhouse. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. Hitman.

But that’s enough of that. I present to you for varying reasons, my biggest dogshits of 2007:

10. I Am Legend (Buy the superior book)

Why it’s here: Because
this story is so ripe for the screen yet hasn’t been done just right in
two previous incarnations and that Francis Lawrence and Will Smith are
a very nice one-two punch of talent to make it happen, FINALLY .

See this Film Instead: I Am Legged: The Heather Mills Story

How to Make it Work: Convincing
CGI. Villains that don’t suck an ass. A coda that isn’t dumber than a
plumber. A second half to match the glorious first one.

Comments: The first half of this film makes me think it was on a path towards being one of my top ten movies of the year.
Then it got really bad really fast. Whomever’s idea it was to make the
villains bizarre and noncommunicative and really poorly designed and
executed really made tender love to the proverbial canine on that call.
Also, the conceit of this guy who happens to be the man charged in
saving the world happening to have a fully fortified Manhattan
apartment complete with a secret fortified laboratory in the basement
and happening to be the only survivor is a lot to swallow. As things
unfold so many great opportunities are scuttled that I just gave up.
It’s not a horrible film but it’s a lost opportunity to be sure and
that’s worse than just being a bad movie.

9. Hannibal Rising (Buy the DVD if you’re dumb)

Why it’s here: Because the other films are good, even Red Dragon… and this is supposed to be a finer cut of horror movie than the other stuff out there.

See this Film Instead: Hannibal Appraising: The Banker Years

How to Make it Work: Have
Hannibal’s real curse be that he came out of the womb a paunchy but
malicious Anthony Hopkins. Either that or have the film be one 2 hour
zoom into a vagina.

Comments: Gaspard
Ulliel sounds some something the Gorf machine would say if you left it
alone long enough, and that would be the best thing about him judging
from his work as Tiny Lecter. A horrible idea of a movie from start to
finish, one where every decision is wrong and dumb. Making him some
sort of tragic character whose hand was forced by Nazi tuff stuff and
peer pressure is bogus and shreds all of the mystique of the character
and good work done by the previous films. Imagine if George Lucas got
stupid and turned the force into some microscopic particles that can be
born into someone and you’ll get my idea.

8. Lucky You (Why would you buy the DVD?)

Why it’s here: Curtis
Hanson. Eric Bana. Robert Duvall. High stakes poker. Should be yummy
like a gummy bear filled with coconut rum. But it isn’t yummy, is it?
It’s WAR.

See this Film Instead: Unlucky Yul: A Tale of Cancer

How to Make it Work: First,
the Predator arrives and claims Drew Barrymore’s impressive skull and
jawbone. Then he leaves. Then Eric Bana and Robert Duvall act in an
engaging card playing film under the assured hand of the reliable
Curtis Hanson. I keep watching the movie to see if they corrected the
credit to Curtis Armstrong but they never do.

Comments: This
film had no right being bland. It should have been hand. A Royal Flush.
Guess what? The audience got dealt a three of clubs and assorted cards
from Rook, Uno, and The Official Dan Rather Collectible Card Game.

7. Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End (Buy the DVD again.)

Why it’s here: The first one was genius. The second one was penius. But still, there was incredible hope for this one…

See this Film Instead: The Teacup Ride: The Darjeeling Limited Returns

How to Make it Work: Instead
of the large, focus on the small. No one asked Gore Verbinski and his
cronies to try and outdo everything they overoutdid in the last one.
There is no need to outoverdo in a world filled with undid outdones.
Lay off the Wachowski sauce and just keep the adventuring spirit at the
fore. As a result, Jack Sparrow is boring. Thanks guys!

Comments: My head and prick hurt
when I left the theater after seeing this and at least one of those
injuries was in direct relation to this overblown atrocity. The most
important trait a filmmaker needs to have on projects like these is
grace. Grace got gang raped by Explosion Jones, Set Piece Danny, and
their cousin The Great One-Upper.

6. Elizabeth: The Golden Age (Pre-Order the DVD)

Why it’s here: The
first was lust. The cast and crew on this thing were better than a
hoagie from the Stage Deli. Yet it sucked a burning baby’s sizzledick.

See this Film Instead: Elizabeth Banks: The Slither Years

How to Make it Work: Have the big twist be that this is all transpiring at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade.

Comments: There’s
no reason this film couldn’t have started with Elizabeth walking out
from behind a curtain in slow motion bearing two large assault rifles
and cutting apart the citizenry with heated bumps of superheated
metallurgy. In fact, it’d be the decision to propel the film directly
into the Golden Age. Instead, Shekhar Kapur [pronounced violently and
with spittle aplenty] has gone so overboard with the production I
expected to see a jovial Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn amongst the
Queen’s subjects. The film is lush and gorgeous and loaded with
excellent actors. It’s also the sequel/follow-up to an amazing film.
This one’s just hollow. If only she had hollow point rounds and some
kickin’ hand cannons, this film would be on the other list for 2007
instead of this one.

5. AVP-R (Buy the lame soundtrack)

Why it’s here: Because
even though these franchises have eroded from lofty places to severely
low levels, somehow this movie still managed to drive hot wedges of
sharpened beef bone into my most gentle areas.

See this Film Instead: xXx-R.

How to Make it Work: Go
for the B-Movie audience and treat this like Godzilla vs. Gamera or
don’t bother making a movie unless it’s something that people are going
to remember for the right reasons. People don’t care about humans. They
want a cool showcase for these amazing creatures. Something visceral.
The only thing keeping these guys off the direct-to-video circuit is
their still worthy names and reputations. It certainly ain’t the past
three films. Raw. Cool. And not about people. That’s the meat of this.
You can’t do what Ridley Scott or james Cameron did. You just can’t.
Instead, find something interesting and new to do.

Comments: I cannot believe how much I do not like this product. I’ll peek at Alien: Resurrection from time to time and find stuff to enjoy about the first AvP
film, huge missed opportunity that it was. I will never watch this
again. It was a dirty bomb of dumb aimed at the center of my psyche and
I shant allow it to detonate on my crisp drawers again.

4. Lions for Lambs (Buy the soundtrack immediately)

Why it’s here: Because I was given a less heavy-handed lesson about politics and intrigue from Cloak & Dagger.

See this Film Instead: The Contender 2: Hypercube.

How to Make it Work: Have
Cruise, Streep, and Redford take to the Middle East with jetpacks and
rocket launchers, fucking shit up and showing them mouthbreathers who’s

Comments: Apparently,
hypocrisy happens in the world of government and decisions are made on
a daily basis that cost lives and create rifts between people. Also,
differing religions have strong oppositional viewpoints which sometimes
causes them to injure each other even though they share the same amount
of eyes, ears, and limbs unless a suicide bomber fucked them up with
the ol’ shrapnel enema. Also, it’s bad to put war into a guy. Lions for Lambs is to politics and war as Higher Learning is to social commentary.

3. 30 Days of Night (Buy the poster. It’s not sucky like the rest.)

Why it’s here: Because
Sam Raimi and a good director and a decent cast should supercede the
horrible graphic novel and ride a great concept into horror movie

See this Film Instead: 20 Minutes of Andy

How to Make it Work: Seriously,
how do you fuck up this concept as a film with the skill of David Slade
and the producerial weight of Sam Raimi? To make this work you stray
from the source material, which was a good concept with unique art but
dealt a leaden and clunky narrative. The meat and bones has so much
potential, yet aside from plentiful gore there was little to offer here.

Comments: If
only slack-jawed disproportionately skinny vampires and odd howls to
the night sky were enough. If only bloodstained chins were enough. If
only massive leaps in logic were enough. This film wouldn’t be such a
pile of shit if it wasn’t such a pile of shit.

2. Live Free or Die Hard (Buy the DVD that hates you.)

Why it’s here: You may have heard that Die Hard is pretty neat.

See this Film Instead: I Pledge Allegiance to the Die Hard

How to Make it Work: Honestly, the only way to make this work is to not make it at all.

Comments: It’s
amazing what fans will accept from a franchise before it finally rams
their colon so hard that it quivers in the darkness long after the
party’s over. The first two Die Hard
movies are excellent. The third one is decent but not tragic enough to
warrant any kind of a hateful diatribe. The first is obviously a
cornerstone in the genre, nearly impeccable. The third one is dumb.
Bruce Willis’ John McClane is a superhuman action hero now, jumping on
planes and timing car crashes like some kind of vehicular Chinese
puzzle, going from everyman action here to a character who seems to
have ingested the invincibility potion hidden in the unreachable part
of the level. Seriously, if he was glowing as if he’d found some
power-up I’d have bought Live Free or Die Hard, possibly the worst title for an action sequel since The Bourne Again Christianatum. This is not a Die Hard movie. It’s a dumb riff on a Die Hard movie from people who simply don’t get it.

1. Halloween (Buy the loaded abortion of a DVD)

Why it’s here: Because love hurts.

See this Film Instead: Secretary’s Day (Rob Zombie revamp)

How to Make it Work: The only way to remake Halloween,
a film that a remake of is redundant, is to strip away the veneer and
make it wholly your own. I’d have embraced a lot of things both because
of goodwill invested in Rob Zombie and because I don’t find the
franchise to be one of much honor. Any series that has gone on this
long with as many bad sequels as it’s had has lost merit but somehow
this one seemed to be different.

Comments: I’m
all for using a remake to go in a new direction. Something that allows
the original to exist on its own and not be sullied or just rehashed by
the newer version. I’m all for exploration. That said, this film
doesn’t feel like that but rather idol worship married with a ‘throw
shit at a wall and see what sticks’ mentality. It all sticks, because
the wall is gone. There’s no wall. All there is… is the shit sticking
to it. I want to love Rob Zombie as a filmmaker. If this is his
"vision" of Halloween, I certainly don’t want to see what he does with something that doesn’t have the built-in value this had. I really think
The Devil’s Rejects was an isolated incident, because this, House of 1,000 Corpses, and the worst trailer in Grindhouse don’t do a lot for me.

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