This was supposed to be the year we made contact. It was supposed to be all about the Balabans and Scheiders, not the Benjamins as horrible product after horrible product attacked us not from space but from the multiplexes dangerously close to our homes.

It wasn’t a great year for good films but it was a very robust one for bad ones.

Films I did not see and why:

  • Leap Year, because I want to wait at least four years before I watch another dogshit romantic comedy.
  • The Spy Next Door, because I couldn’t be any more tired of Jackie Chan than I am.
  • Extraordinary Measures, because until he tries a new hairstyle I’m done with Brendan Fraser.
  • Tooth Fairy, because I learned all I need to about Francis Dolarhyde in Red Dragon.
  • When in Rome, kick a Catholic.
  • Valentine’s Day, a massacre.
  • Remember Me, the film whose twist involves 9/11 and that’s the second worst thing about it.
  • Date Night, because good folks are in it but it reeked of being not what anyone needs.
  • The Back-up Plan, Alex O’Loughlin is the male lead. AND HE’S THE SELLING POINT TO ME. God help us all.
  • Furry Vengeance, Fraser’s hair. CGI animals. My discontent.
  • Sex and the City 2, because the first film is apparently better and it was my worst of 2008.
  • Any Tyler Perry Anything, if hating this man makes me a racist then please send me my Klan membership card.
  • Prince of Persia, since my jaw is covered with moss because it hits the floor every time I realize this happened for real.
  • Get Him to the Greek, I hate Russell Brand more than a Promise Keeper hates a bumpy sidewalk.
  • Killers, because there is no worse pairing of nightmares imaginable.
  • The Karate Kid, because while people say it’s good I don’t care if it blows me. I have no interest.
  • Grown-Ups, because I was never in a fraternity.
  • The Twilight Saga: Eclipse, because my dick was sore from all that face fucking.
  • The Last Song, because I knew it wasn’t about the untimely explosion death of the entire Cyrus family.
  • Lottery Ticket, because I don’t like racial profiling.
  • Takers, because of Hayden Christensen’s hat.
  • Saw 3-D, because it violates my “I like the concept of Tobin Bell” rhetoric if I see it.
  • Skyline, because I literally didn’t have time. This film was gone from screens quicker than Balfour trims his goat.
  • Burlesque, because as of the typing of this article I still possess a nice, shapely penis.
  • The Warrior’s Way, because no trailer pissed me off more than this one. I wish kung-fu was canceled.
  • The Tourist, did you see the trailer? Did you see the confused look on Johnny Depp’s face?
  • Gulliver’s Travels, because classics be damned, I even hated this when Harryhausen was doing the effects.
  • My Soul to Keep, because I cannot stand Wes Craven.
  • Little Fokkers, if you have to ask…


There are always people who complain in the talkbacks that I didn’t see enough movies to warrant a list, but most if not all of the films above I had enough intelligence and foresight to know to avoid and luckily didn’t have to see them for work. I have worked hard over the years to learn how to not put myself in a position where I’m intentionally setting myself up for hardship. That said, if enough people steer me towards a surprisingly good flick I normally would have avoided (for example: Easy A) I’ll give it a chance, so it’s not like this is an exact science. But, though I have safeguarded myself from a lot of dogshit I still enjoy putting punctuation on the year with a little hate. Some of these films I should have known better about seeing. Some had too much talent not to completely write off.

All are movies I do not need in my life ever again and ones whose posters I tried to use Photoshop’s limited witchcraft skills to lessen the power of.

Here are some previous hateballs, mylast two WORST OF articles: 2009. 2008.

10. Survival of the Dead (my DVD review)

AKA: Survival of the Shittest. World War ZZZZZZZZZZZZ.

Latin: Romero est preteritus suus prime

Guilty Parties:

Sadly, the amazing filmmaker and wonderful man George A. Romero. I love the man with all my heart but I fear there’s no gas in the tank any more. It seems like he’s willing to just proceed with underdeveloped ideas to keep the machine going. There’s none of the soul of his first few films in this or Diary of the Dead. Also, Kenneth Welsh. He delivers a performance with the subtlety of nine planets colliding. There’s a difference between the intentional ham Joe Pilato brought to Day of the Dead and Welsh’s tiresome and one-dimensional hardship.

What It Could/Should Have Been:

It’s unfair to expect Romero to really go full-on with a zombie film that connects on all cylinders. I really like Land of the Dead but even there opportunities were lost whether by imagination or budget limitations. It probably shouldn’t have been at all, but could one at least hope for something sober and intelligent and with some delightful gore?

What Kind of Bad Is It?:

Uninspired and bland bad. One of the worst kinds.

Someone Who Disagrees’ Lame Defense This Film:

“George Romero is holding a mirror to society here with an acute look about territory and how we bring a lot of grief upon ourselves. You know he based the struggle of the families on the Hatfield/McCoy feud, that means this is deep and literary.”

My Rebuttal:

“I don’t care. It’s dogshit. I’m holding a mirror up to the movie and I see a zombie riding a horse. Go wipe your chin.”

If CHUD had a blurb on the box it’d be: “You will believe a zombie broad can hop on a horse and ride it around town and if that works for you please die in a sad and ironic way so that you can be a lesson to others. Your own Survival of the Dead, if you will.”



9. Splice.

AKA: DILF. The Drenfeeling Limited.

Latin: mutant floorhump interruptus

Guilty Parties:



David Cronenberg, for doing this stuff so well in the 70’s and 80’s and creating an unfair look at how this is supposed to be done.



What It Could/Should Have Been:



Honestly, it could have been The Fly for the early 2000’s. It had cachet (look who produced it), an interesting filmmaker (Cube is still fun), and it had resources and a good cast. It doesn’t nail the tone, push itself far enough, and showcase enough fresh ideas to be disturbing, cool, scary, or memorable enough. Too bad, really.



What Kind of Bad Is It?:



Almost really good, which is the problem. With the folks involved this had the chance to be special. And there are good moments. And there are really good ideas at play. There are just a few decisions along the way that make it a real disappointment, and it hurts to call this film bad and have it make this list. But I did and here it is.



Someone Who Disagrees’ Lame Defense This Film:



“This film is great. I want to fuck my creator.”



My Rebuttal:



“Shut up, Dren.”

If CHUD had a blurb on the box it’d be: “If your two fetishes are Persis Khambatta and Joseph Merrick, do I have the movie for you…”



8. Legion (My review)

AKA: Angels with Dogshit Faces. Wim Wenders’ “The Wim Chronicles”.

Latin: iustus dico mihi angelus of oriens

Guilty Parties:



Scott Stewart, for not learning from his years in special effects that they are not what makes movies great. Tyrese Gibson for reading the script and asking that he be a little less of a caricature. Paul Bettany, who was in Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World and now films like this and Priest.



What It Could/Should Have Been:



If it was as good as The Prophecy I’d have been happy. It’s not even as good as Prophecy, the mutant bear movie.



What Kind of Bad Is It?:



Generic bad. With the ripe material that is the war between angels and all the possibilities from this kind of Biblical hootenany, it’s a sad time. And frankly, giving automatic weapons to creatures and characters of lore is the quickest and dumb way to try and capitalize on a genre.


Someone Who Disagrees’ Lame Defense This Film:



“But did you see when the Ice Cream Man’s jaw extended and when the old lady walked around hissing on the ceiling?”



My Rebuttal:



“Yep, in the trailer. Which is why I implore everyone to just watch that instead.”

If CHUD had a blurb on the box it’d be: “Looks like Jennifer Connolly ain’t the only one Paul Bettany’s fucking.”



7. The Last Airbender (CHUD review)

AKA: Bend it Like Boring. Earth, Wind, and Fire: Live at Red Rocks.

Latin: feces adveho ex quattuor procuratio

Guilty Parties:



M. Night Shyamalan. Planet Earth. Binary Code. Fossil Fuels. Aspartame. Fuzzy Logic. Chastity. Dan Haggerty.



What It Could/Should Have Been:



A stillborn adaptation of a kid’s product that most of us wouldn’t even have superficially noticed because it wasn’t being directed by a filmmaker capable of kicking tsunamis into our face every year. But it was, and worse yet it was billed as some sort of “M. Night Shayamalan graces the mainstream with his presence” event. He didn’t grace shit with shit.



What Kind of Bad Is It?:



Imagine tone deaf screenwriting and the same faults which have marred the director’s recent works only surrounded by tons and tons of special effects. Yay!



Someone Who Disagrees’ Lame Defense This Film:



“You don’t understand the genius of M. Night Shyamalan and are a blind hater of his work.”




My Rebuttal:



“I don’t understand child cancer and blindly hate it as well.”

If CHUD had a blurb on the box it’d be: “The best airbending since the campfire in Blazing Saddles.”



6. Cop Out (CHUD review)

AKA: Fuck Off. Clerks III.

Latin: species askew

Guilty Parties:



Kevin Smith. Tracy Morgan. Bruce Willis. Everyone else involved in Cop Out.



What It Could/Should Have Been:



I don’t know, really. There’s no way this script was ever good. What it could and should have been was a failure on every level but not the film that created this weird new version of Kevin Smith. The one who was either acting like the film wasn’t his and making too much a point of how he was just the director and then railing on and on against critics who hated the movie. It was an ugly thing no matter how you slice it. It should have just been a dud. But instead it’s this weird little historical footnote. It’s a car crash between the fandom, the movies, and the leading filmmaker nerd. Typically with a car crash you can’t look away but drive slowly on by. This one was Cronenbergian and everyone was fucking the leg wound.



What Kind of Bad Is It?:



Well, I can’t stand even looking at Tracy Morgan anymore. That’s pretty bad.



Someone Who Disagrees’ Lame Defense This Film:



“You’re just hating Kevin Smith because you’re an online movie person and he’s got your number.”



My Rebuttal:



“My number’s in the book, so everyone can have it. I don’t hate Kevin Smith, which is part of why I hate seeing him show his ass onscreen and online.”

If CHUD had a blurb on the box it’d be: “You will find yourself famished for the likes of The Hard Way and Number One With a Bullet.”



5. Devil (Tag Team review)

AKA: M. Night Shyamalan’s M. Night Shyamalanamlanamalan. Devil Night Shyamalan.

Latin: vetus era est diabolus

Guilty Parties:



John Erick Dowdle. M. Night Shyamalan. Matt Craven’s agent.



What It Could/Should Have Been:



A scary movie.



What Kind of Bad Is It?:



It’s the first film in “The Night Chronicles”, a series of bad movies M. Night Shyamalan can’t make because he can only make so many bad movies a year and it’s unfair for him to leave it at that. Plus, it has such a loaded title that your mind tells you it’s powerful and deep and there are thematic issues that will dig to the core of your beliefs and rattle them. Then you spend a little under and hour and half watching some assholes in an elevator. It could have been called Danny. It could have been called Dudes in a Rectangle. But no, M. Night had to take Devil away from us too, adding it to his collection that includes our innocence, dreams, and the truth about Joaquin’s lip.



Someone Who Disagrees’ Lame Defense This Film:



“I shit my pants!”




My Rebuttal:



“Because you are clinically retarded.”

If CHUD had a blurb on the box it’d be: Devil does for elevators what The Accused did for Pinball Machines.”



4. The Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole

AKA: Owl Movement. Featherface: The Treehouse Beaksaw Massacre.

Latin: illa pennipotenti mos crap in vestri car

Guilty Parties:



Zack Snyder. Kathryn Lasky, a woman who decided regurgitating the Hero’s Journey with owls was a good idea. The people who paid millions of dollars to see photorealistic owls kick each other’s ass instead of countless other possible animal on animal violence scenarios.



What It Could/Should Have Been:



Hoot. I’m kidding. I’m kidding, please help me solve all this AIDS.



What Kind of Bad Is It?:



It’s beautiful to look at. And it is the blandest thing in town since Barry Bland moved from East Bland to Blandington Boulevard. Listening to this mythology dumped on us from frame one about these amazing owls and their kickass ways is dreadful if you’ve seen any three fantasy films in your life, but when you ultimately watch the movie and realize that you really are paying to watch owls claw and bite each other and little else it puts a kink in the bill of goods that’s been sold. They are owls and there is a finite amount of interesting shit you can mine from these head-twirling hooters. That limit is reached ten minutes into the film and then it’s on the shoulders of the cool characters to keep us invested. OOPS. Also, you’d think Snyder could have not done the speed ramping effect with this, but alas…



Someone Who Disagrees’ Lame Defense This Film:



“The owls are an allegory for oppression and the individual’s need to rise up and defend themselves.”



My Rebuttal:



“The owls are hobbits or elves or titans or jedi or whatever other worn-out fantasy stereotype surrogate we’ve seen countless times, except none of those other heroes I mentioned are just as happy shitting on a statue or mouseproofing a barn.”

If CHUD had a blurb on the box it’d be: “Fuck an owl. Right in its neckruffle.”



3. Alice in Wonderland (CHUD review)

AKA: The Curious Case of Tim Pushing the Same Button. Rabbit Hole.

Latin: idem eadem idem damno res super quod ob

Guilty Parties:



Tim Burton. Tim Burton. Tim Burton. Tim Burton. Tim Burton. Tim Burton. Tim Burton. Tim Burton. Tim Burton. Tim Burton. Tim Burton. Tim Burton. Tim Burton. Tim Burton. Tim Burton. Johnny Depp, for letting Tim Burton. Johnny Depp, for bad acting.



What It Could/Should Have Been:



Left alone.



What Kind of Bad Is It?:



It’s not that it’s ALL bad. There are some really cool effects and nice visual moments and little character things that have value but really… do we need to see the Tim Burton approach done to this? Do we need his trademark mope to permeate this already ripe world? No. It’s the kind of bad that is seriously endemic with creators like Burton: Overindulgent.



Someone Who Disagrees’ Lame Defense This Film:



“It was transportive senses-overloadingly good candy that tickled my cortex and fondled my vortex”.




My Rebuttal:



“I think you are confusing Alice in Wonderland with your last visit to Stanley Tucci’s underground sensation station.”

If CHUD had a blurb on the box it’d be: “It appears Tim Burton’s own politics contrast with Spider-Man’s on the important issues of Power and Responsibility.”



2. A Nightmare on Elm St. (Blu-ray review)

AKA: Operation:Sweatercryme. Craven’s Last Hunt.

Latin: exuro ultra agnitio quod exosus is

Guilty Parties:



Samuel Bayer. Michael Bay. Brad Form. Andrew Fuller. Wes Craven. Fire. Steel. Goodwill. Nostalgia.



What It Could/Should Have Been:



It’s pretty hard to fuck up the first Freddy Krueger film. Especially with Jackie Earle Haley. But they did! Incredibly so, missing opportunities in every direction. It should have been a very tight remake that didn’t muck with anything. I’m not a fan of this series much at all and the sequels have rendered the original to nothing in my book. I don’t even subscribe to the New Nightmare love. And still I could see what a gigantic shunting this was.



What Kind of Bad Is It?:



The kind of bad that improperly touches your kids before being killed and then returning to properly touch them. WITH CLAWS!



Someone Who Disagrees’ Lame Defense This Film:



“This is a postmodern retelling of a timeless tale of horror.”



My Rebuttal:



“I hope an empty airplane crashes onto you.”

If CHUD had a blurb on the box it’d be: “The bastard son of a hundred bad ideas.”



1. Robin Hood (CHUD review)

AKA: Sherwood Homes. Ridley: Believe it or Not.

Latin: is mos incendia telum in vestri bones

Guilty Parties:



Ridley Scott. Russell Crowe. Mother England.



What It Could/Should Have Been:



A movie about anything in history or fiction BUT Robin Hood.



What Kind of Bad Is It?:



It’s unnecessary. It’s pointless. It’s a placebo of a movie, as if Ridley and Russell HAD to make some sort of battlefield epic or lose their love of one another and grabbed whatever was lying around. There is nothing new here and in fact a lot of old. It’s a creative step back but worse yet the world was deprived of a new Ridley Scott/Russell Crowe classic. It’s not a very good movie in its theatrical version, something which is fine for Kingdom of Heaven but a sin that should never be repeated. Dreary. Boring. And a waste.


Someone Who Disagrees’ Lame Defense This Film:



“I learned things about Robin Hood that I never knew!”




My Rebuttal:



“Robin Hood is dumb.”

If CHUD had a blurb on the box it’d be: Robin Hood steals your time, dangles it front of the rich and then maniacally burns it while the poor look on in horror.”


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