December 29, 2014

The Worst Movies of 2014

Let's face it, 2014 was a lackluster year for movies. For every good one that we got, there was an equally bad one right behind it, and many of the year's "average" films shamelessly blurred the line between passable and unacceptable. We enjoy ripping apart the shitty movies that we are forced to endure about as much as we like watching them; which is to say not very much, but it's something that we have to do, on both counts.

The following movies are the ones that irked us the most in 2014; some because they underwhelmed, others because they were just unequivocally horrible. No matter the reason, they were painful to endure, and we're here to share that pain with you... hopefully so that you can avoid experiencing it for yourselves. We're humanitarians, you see.

*Be sure to read our reviews of each movie (when available), as they provide more in-depth reasoning as to why these movies were so painful to watch.

"From here on out, people begin to die at the hands of some off-camera monster or something, and by the time the end of the movie rolls around, you realize that the whole thing has been some sort of allegory about being at peace with how shitty of a person you are before you die. Yeah."
Originally scheduled to be released in August of 2012, 7500 was such a mess that it got pushed back to April of 2013... and then to October of 2013... and then it finally saw a VOD release in October of 2014. Now, sometimes good movies get pushed back for various reasons (Trick 'r Treat, Cabin in the Woods), but for the most part when a movie is delayed, it's because it sucks. That is absolutely the case here.

7500 was a cringe-worthy effort, playing like a super serious version Snakes on a Plane, only with off-camera ghosts and an evil Japanese Shinigami Doll providing the menace. Also, no Sam Jackson. 7500 is more amusing than it is scary, as most of the film's creepy/bloody moment happens off screen; they obviously made some heavy cuts to get the movie a more "audience friendly" PG-13 rating, which is VERY obvious to see in the way that the whole thing was edited. Even if they had they left the actual Horror bits in there though, this one still would have sucked. It all just devolved into a cheesy melodrama that made us wonder how it all went so wrong.

The good news is that at least now Ryan Kwanten can claim that he's starred in something that sucked even worse than True Blood, because he's probably at least a little bit proud of True Blood.

Read our review of 7500 HERE.

As creepy as the film version of the Annabelle doll looks, how could an entire movie centered around her (it?) be so lifeless and not scary at all? A sewing machine turns on by itself! Close-up on a doll's face!  Doll staring, menacingly! A crayon rolling into a hallway! Menacing staring intensifies! Loud, jarring noise! Annabelle falling on the floor and peeping under a door! Come on!

This movie is packed to the damned gills with tropey gags that are meant to scare us, and yet very few of them work at all. The problem with most "Haunted House" movies like this is that many of their scary moments seem to exist only for the sake of scaring the audience, and make little sense otherwise: why do scary ghosts always need to walk briskly across a hallway, somewhere in the background? Why do they feel the need to make chairs rock, only to stop when someone comes to investigate? And why exactly would an evil spirit slowly close a door after someone leaves a room? Why would it even waste the energy? Why did we waste the energy watching this movie? 

As violently murderous as the spirit that possessed the Annabelle doll was, it sure seemed interested in little else than doing harmless things just for the sake of scaring people. Sure, it "needed a soul" and everything, but instead of just claiming one and being done with it, it wasted most of its time and energy being scary. Why? Why are evil spirits always so ineffective at doing anything value-added in these movies?

Annabelle was actually a well-crafted movie in general, but as a Horror movie, it was bland, dull, boring (yes, I just basically said the same thing three times, but it's well-warranted), barely scary at all, and at times, even silly. If you're going to make a Haunted House flick, feel free to use all the familiar tropes you want to, just please MAKE IT SCARY.

As much as we enjoyed The Conjuring, this prequel was a huge letdown.

"Since there are basically no hot chicks in The Dead 2, let us instead reflect on the many scenes of speedy driving and escape found throughout this one... Honestly, there were so many scenes of high-speed fleeing in this movie, that we wondered if it was a test reel for Fast & Furious: Indian Drift."

We include The Dead 2 on our list not because it was a "shitty" movie, not completely, but because it was a shitty sequel to what we thought was a really good movie. As great as The Dead (2010) was, this follow-up felt to us like it was nothing more than a less-effective remake of the first movie. We say this because The Dead 2 basically takes the story from the first movie, adds a different setting (and marginally different characters), and executes it in just about the same way. It felt like a lazy, half-assed effort to us. The Dead 2 is definitely more disappointing than it is bad, which makes it bad in its own special way.

In addition to it feeling like a carbon copy of the first one, this tepid sequel's most egregious offense is that it squandered its unique setting. Being set in India, this movie could have been a Zombie Apocalypse epic; the idea of 1 Billion+ zombies running around a country half the size of the U.S. is a terrifying one, and we're sad that we never got to see that concept come to fruition like it could have.

The Dead 2 should have improved upon everything that the first movie so effectively established, but instead it just felt like an exercise in copy-paste, which was really disappointing. This movie's reach far exceeded its grasp.

Read our review of The Dead 2: India HERE.

"The Devil Baby promotion that the filmmakers did for the film was vastly more entertaining than the actual film itself, and we would have much preferred to watch 90-minutes of that hilarious awesomeness."

How many shitty Found Footage movies do we need to have forced on us before we revolt, and force the "filmmakers" who lean on such cheap and easy conceits, to actually put some effort into the stories that they try to sell us?

The more Found Footage flicks that we see, it's getting harder and harder to buy into the conceit that for some reason, the people in these movies are compelled to film everything going on around them, even to their detriment. Directors Radio Silence can say that Devil's Due isn't a Found Footage flick all they want to, but that's really just a cheap way to make a Found Footage flick while not having to adhere to that sub-genre's particular set of rules

Call it Found Footage/First Person/POV or whatever you want, but The Devil's Due is basically a Cinema verite' attempt to tell a modern version of Rosemary's Baby, that gets very little right.

Read our review of The Devil's Due HERE.

"I have to imagine that the only reason this movie exists is that the WWE Studios "brain trust" were sitting around one day, trying to figure out what kind of new, cheesy B-movie they could make a buck with, when somebody said 'Hey, we've got a midget on the payroll, let's remake Leprechaun!' "

The Leprechaun movies have always been B-grade schlock, but at least they were funny in a self-aware kind of way. There's really no way that you can make a serious Horror movie about a Leprechaun, especially when those films have sub-titles like "In Space," "In the Hood," and "Back 2 Tha Hood,"  right? Movies like that are made to be goofy fun, and nothing more. Right.

Well, some clueless asshole thought that making a serious entry into this iconic (and more importantly, comedic) series was a good idea, and The WWE need must have needed something for poor little Hornswoggle to do, and so Leprechaun: Origins was born.

This movie would have at least been somewhat enjoyable had WWE Films decided to let Hornswoggle run around and cut wise while he killed people in all sorts of bloody ways, but no, the Leprechaun we got in this prequel was a rubber-suited monster that looked like an angry raisin, and inspired the fear in us that a 6-month-old baby would.

This is one of the most pointless, pathetic, and poorly executed movies that we've seen in quite some time, and one that handily shits all over Warwick Davis' Leprechaun legacy, if such a thing even exists.

Read our review of Leprechaun: Origins HERE.

"The character's frustrating inability to do anything remotely intelligent to change their situations is one thing, but are you telling me that none of their neighbors can hear screams, yelling, glass breaking, or the fucking loudspeaker that's playing creepy, repetitive messages from outside in the middle of the yard?"

The biggest problem with Mockingbird was that it asked us to accept such incredibly impossible premise and set-up, that it felt like it was fucking with us. I honestly don't know how anyone read this script and didn't say "Listen, this shit just doesn't make any sort of sense. Were you high when you wrote this?"

Mockingbird started off in promising fashion, but as it wore on, it devolved into such an illogical mess that we had to rewind and watch through certain parts again to make sure that we saw things right the first time. Unfortunately, we did.

This is honestly the most frustrating and baffling Horror flick that we experienced in 2014.

Read our review of Mockingbird HERE.

"Hiding from someone in a creepy basement where occult rituals have been performed? Record that too, and mind that you keep the camera light on too, because the person who is potentially going to kill you can't see that light in a pitch black basement, and especially not through the thin sheet of clear plastic that you're hiding behind."

How many of these movies are they going to make? Lionsgate handily drove the Saw franchise into the ground by milking it to death with multiple sub-par sequels, and now Blumhouse is dong the same with the PA series. The joke's over guys, we've heard the punchline, and every time you retell it, it gets less and less funny.

It's hard to blame Blumhouse for continuing to make these movies (The Marked Ones has made nearly $100 million worldwide on a $5 million budget), but at the same time it's hard for us to understand how the PA movies went from being genuinely scary to being almost parodies of themselves.

Are they really so out of ideas for this franchise that someone actual thought that using a Simon game as an Ouija Board was a good idea? Just look at that picture above and try to imagine that it's a serious scene in a supposedly scary movie. Don't laugh, because it is.

Read our review of Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones HERE.

Michael King
"From here on out we get Michael King acting all creepy on camera, arguing with himself in front of cameras, laughing maniacally into cameras, trying to finger his sister on camera, and nearly killing his kid on camera... because Demons really like to film themselves doing Demon things"

We're not really sure what the filmmakers were going for with this movie, but if it was "Let's make a movie about a sassy Demon who possesses a guy, and then films itself doing everything, because Demon life is like one big Selfie!" then they succeeded wildly.

Honestly, most of this movie plays like a one-man stage play, with an increasingly possessed Michael King taking a series of video selfies in which he smirks, smiles, talks to himself, smirks some more, and then sticks a pin in his finger. Maybe he was possessed by a Demon who was once an angsty teenage YouTube star?

This movie could have been a creepy one, but it was just too silly and frustrating to ever allow us to feel afraid.

Read our review of The Possession of Michael King HERE.

As "not good" as Uwe Boll's Seed (2007) was, there are not enough words in any language to properly articulate just how horrible this piece of shit sequel is. Most of the time when people say "That was the worst movie ever!" they're over-exaggerating, and probably have no idea what truly horrible movies are. That being said, allow me to say this:

Seed 2 is one of the worst movies that has been committed to film in the past 10, maybe even 20 years.

The film looks lo-fi and terrible; the editing it horrendous, to the point of confusion; and the "acting" on display in this one is just abysmal. Most of the people in this movie have no business acting, and whoever this Z-grade actress Manoush is, she needs to stop.

IMDB has the budget for this retarded fuck-hole of a movie listed at $1.2 million, which is obviously a mistake. $1200, I could believe, but what in the absolute hell could they have possibly spent $1.2 million on? I could make a movie on my Galaxy Note that looks better than this one, and I have no filmmaking talent whatsoever... nor do I have 1.2 million dollars.

Seed 2 makes Uwe Boll, and his far superior Seed movie, look brilliant by comparison.

As bad as most of the Wrong Turn sequels have been, they've at least always managed to be fun in an exploitative way, by offering up all kinds of gratuitous nudity and plenty of excessively bloody (and even clever) kill scenes. This latest (and hopefully last) sequel in the series though, is absolutely no fun at all. It's full of bad actors delivering horrible lines in boring, tedious scenes, and worst of all, it looks really cheap. I mean, the mongoloid killers (who have been the mainstays in most of the Wrong Turn movies) look like they're wearing cheap rubber masks... shitty, cheap, rubber masks.

I know that most movies with Part 6 in their titles aren't very good, but at least some of them aren't as atrociously bad as Wrong Turn 6 is.

2014 gave us plenty of other bad movies of varying degrees, and here are some of the ones that struck the worst kind of chord with us. Feel free to click through to the reviews if you'd like to know why.

animalcaptivezelldendevil hexistsjoyridelifemay 13bJinnnurseouijaPyramidtormentwer

A few quick notes:
  • As for the movies that we didn't review: The Captive had its good points, but man was it ever a sloppy, silly effort that felt like it was parked squarely up its own ass; Life After Beth wasn't very fun or funny, which sucks for a movie that's supposed to be both; I, Frankenstein felt like a shitty, un-funny version of Van Helsing, and that's saying something; whoever came up with the idea for Jinn should never be allowed to come up with anything else, ever again; and The Pyramid... how did such a generic shit-pile ever get a December theatrical release?
  • We didn't totally hate Ouija or The Devil's Hand like most people seemed to, but they just weren't very good at all. 
  • Conversely, lots of people thought that The Den was great, but it drove us nuts.
  • Maybe we missed the point of Nurse 3-D, but watching Paz de ja Huerta "act" makes us cringe, so we don't care. 
  • And finally, here's to hoping that 2015 will be a better year for movies, Horror or otherwise. 

1 comment :

  1. I feel so blessed to have missed all but two on your list and some of them because of your reviews - Thank You! The rarest thing in the horror genre is intelligent writing. No mater how excellent the acting and directing might be; if the plot makes no sense or the characters are forced to act like idiots then the movie is a failure. The late science-fiction author, James Blish also reviewed books in the genre and he railed against 'Idiot Plots' - those plots kept going only because everyone acts like an idiot. Too many films in the horror genre have that problem.