I dearly wish I had made it to a screening of “Larry Crowne” so that I could put it on my “worst” list, but I haven’t seen it and spending money to somehow see it is just something I won’t do. But I can tell you I wouldn’t have liked it.
10. “Dolphin Tale”
I still shudder when I think of this movie. I’m putting it at 10, because it’s a movie a lot of people like, and its heart was in the right place. But the cloying cuteness and predictable plot made it difficult for me to watch with my eyes permanently rolled up. If you must see an Ashley Judd movie, rent 1999′s “Eye of the Beholder,” in which Ashley plays a serial killer who wears lots of wigs and whimpers repeatedly, “Merry Christmas, Daddy.” Now THAT is so-bad-it’s-good at its baddest.
9. “Machine Gun Preacher”
The true-life story of a drug dealer who finds God and devotes his life to helping Sudanese children… that sounds inspiring, doesn’t it? Gerard Butler is certainly convincing with firearms, but the more I thought about this movie, the more it disturbed me. Leaving aside the question of whether bringing more vigilante guns into a conflict is a good idea (probably not), all that stuck with me is, “This guy is crazy, and I feel sorry for his family.”
8. “I Don’t Know How She Does It”
I eagerly read this book, mainly to find out how it ends so I could figure out my own life, and I can tell you this: It was dissatisfying. The movie is worse. I just had a hard time identifying with a high-powered, adorable working mom with full-time child care, who had to make a painful choice between Greg Kinnear and Pierce Brosnan.
7. “Transformers: Dark of the Moon”
This is too easy, maybe. But the addition of Rosie Huntington-Whitely as … well, a smart person, was insulting. I’m still impressed with Shia LaBoeuf for being so darn likable amidst all the soulless explosions. Fun French Fact: Shia LaBoeuf translates to “Shia of the Beef.”
6. “Mars Needs Moms”
I’m a rabid fan of author Berke Breathed from his Bloom County days (and I still treasure my stuffed Opus). He wrote the children’s book this is based on, and while it’s not his best work, it’s awfully sweet. The movie, though, animated the story with completely creepy humans (see: the “uncanny valley” theory) and added a whole bunch of chase scenes. Disappointing. You can borrow my book instead.
5. “Jack and Jill”
Uncharacteristically mean Adam Sandler, plus Adam Sandler shrieking shrilly in drag! I totally respect Al Pacino for jumping on board to make fun of himself, and I did laugh quite a bit. But I just can’t encourage this.
4. “Twilight: Breaking Dawn — Part I”
My introduction to the dreamy teenage series was horrifying. It glamorized brooding bad boys, teen marriage, teen pregnancy, and anorexia (arguably). Even the biggest fans in the audience laughed when the wolf pack started talking to each other. And if I wanted to see a graphic birth scene, I’d watch “Window Water Baby Moving.” (Anyone? Stan Brakhage reference? Impressed?)
3. “New Year’s Eve”
I don’t mean to pick on Jon Bon Jovi, but … Jon Bon Jovi? As a rockstar romantic interest? In this century? Garry Marshall kept introducing character after character, each of them cornier than the last. The fact that three Oscar winners were together in one scene (Hilary Swank, Halle Berry, Robert DeNiro) is the kind of thing that makes me want to maim myself. My props to Zac Efron for rising above the dreck.
If you like bad movies, you will fall in love with “Trespass.” Completely contrived, insulting, overwrought, over-cast. Nicole Kidman flew all the way from Australia from this? The only comfort is that, with repeated viewings, Nicolas Cage’s performance might just rival Faye Dunaway’s in “Mommie Dearest.”
1. “One Day”
A gray, morbid movie about an unhealthy relationship. Anne Hathaway’s English accent was supposed to be a mess, although she sounded good to me. It was painful to watch Jim Sturgess’ character abuse Hathaway’s puppy love year after year, and I was in no way prepared for the abrupt ending. A bad movie is a bad movie, but sometimes a movie goes that extra mile and really makes you ANGRY. After the screening for this one, I punched David Plummer in the arm for making me watch it.