After posting my "10 Best" films of 2013, it's only fair that I also post the worst films of the year. Week to week all year, I do my best to steer clear of movies that I know are going to be bad, but even a wannabe pro like me gets suckered and dragged down from time to time. Even movies with great potential on paper and in a trailer end up as disappointments. I break my list of the worst of the year into two categories. The first are the actual 10 worst movies I actually paid to see and reviewed. The second list are the collective worst films of the year that I wouldn't touch with ten-foot pole. They were the ones I avoided at all costs and, apparently, rightfully so. Enjoy the swim through the mud, everyone. Here are the worst films, by my account, from 2013.
In 2012, I wrote one zero-star review, three one-star reviews, and a whopping 13 two-star reviews. That's nearly a quarter of all the movies I saw last year. All of the zero and one-star reviews make the main list, but I had extras at the two-star level. Those are getting listed as "dishonorable" mentions.
THE WORST MOVIES I ACTUALLY PAID MONEY TO SEE IN 2013
10. The World's End-- I know every film lover and their brother loved this movie as much as they loved Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz, the other two busy collaborations from director/writer Edgar Wright and stars Simon Pegg and Nick Frost. I loved the first 40 minutes of this movie and rolled my eyes the other hour and a half. It's just too dumb and too much once the bar crawl between reconnecting good pals turns into an alien invasion flick. (full review)
9. Lovelace-- I'm sure this will probably be one of Mr. Skin's top movies of the year for sex and nudity, but outside of a raw and challenging performance from Amanda Seyfried, there's just not much too like about this Linda Lovelace biography film. It's too dark and too muddled to like and follow. I'm glad I caught it on VOD and not in the theaters. (full review)
8. Broken City-- On paper, I loved the idea of Russell Crowe challenging Mark Wahlberg in a corruption game of hubris. I really enjoyed the movie's really well-made, Kayne-pumped trailer which teased enough to get me curious, but, in the end, it turned into another Mark Wahlberg anti-hero flick that we've seen dozens of times over. Crowe hams and shams more than menaces and dominates. (full review)
7. Man of Tai Chi-- Keanu Reeve's directorial debut isn't going to make him the next Clint Eastwood or even the next Ben Affleck. This martial arts flick is entirely forgettable and offers only a few noteworthy fight sequences framed by an awful underground fight ring story headed up by Reeves himself playing the villain. This one is more yawn than brawn. (full review)
6. The Last Stand-- Both 80's dinosaurs and Expendables staples Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger had terrible years of bad movies. This was the only one I paid to see and I'm a sucker for it. Arnold has lost his touch when he has to drag down Forest Whitaker with him and put up with Johnny Knoxville. This film has a mild nostalgia factor and an appropriate R-rating for some fun, but not nearly enough. (full review)
5. A Good Day to Die Hard-- Speaking of R-ratings, what a colossal waste of time and hype! This is the lowest of my two-star reviews. After the weak PG-13 long-term sequel Live Free or Die Hard in 2006, I was ready for an R-rated return to Bruce Willis's John McClane. Instead, we got a incomprehensibly dumb story of international spy intrigue and tired, bad father-son quips between Bruce Willis and the bland Jai Courtney. This hero belongs stateside. Leave the international stuff for James Bond and Jason Bourne. (full review)
4. The Last Days on Mars-- In a recurring theme, I loved this movie's trailer. In a year that had so many unique and challenging original science fiction offerings like Gravity, Europa Report, Oblivion, Elysium, and more, I liked where this movie was heading. The results was the most impossible zombie movie you could ever dream up for a space setting. This one would reek from the millions of mile from the actual Mars to here on Earth if scents could travel through space. (full review)
3. Delivery Man-- I love that my mocking "Letter to Vince Vaughn" review of Delivery Man was so scathing that I got in a traded e-mail comment war with the film's stunt coordinator and Vince Vaughn's own personal stunt double. It might be this website's highlight of the year. The film was that bad and my review was that strong to call it and its star out for giving us a Sandler-esque pile of force-fed slacker whimsy. The worst mainstream Hollywood flick of the year, hands down. (full review)
2. Only God Forgives-- I was as pumped as the rest of the world at the proposition of Ryan Gosling re-teaming with his Drive director Nichols Winding Refn. Like Broken City, this had a trailer that grabbed me instantly. Once I saw the film, my buzz came to a grinding halt. Avoid this dull and slow movie at all costs. Don't fall for the Gosling glow or the artistic look of the thing. It is meandering and pointless. (full review)
1. Jackass Presents Bad Grandpa-- This shouldn't even be called a "film." This is a long extended YouTube prank with zero laugh-out-loud moments compared to the usual gregariousness of the Jackass universe. Dim-witted and overplayed, Jackass Presents Bad Grandpa is the first film in this website's history to earn zero stars. Even my legendary ripping of The Tree of Life got one star. Ouch. (full review)
THE WORST MOVIES THAT I REFUSED TO PAY MONEY TO SEE IN 2013
This is the list of the biggest bullets that I dodged this year. These are ones you likely couldn't pay me to see. The leader of the pack is the annual crap-fest from Adam Sandler, a man I've long said shouldn't be allowed to make movies anymore. I have zero regrets about this list and wouldn't even throw a Redbox dollar on them if I just won the lottery.
1. Grown Ups 2
2. Battle of the Year
3. Tyler Perry's A Madea Christmas
4. Movie 43
7. After Earth
8. The Lone Ranger
9. (tie) A Haunted House and Scary Movie 5