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As well as the celebrating the best movies of 2014 we at Entertainment Fuse Movies share what we believe to be the worst movies experience of the year. We have seen a lot of movies between us, though there is movies that have the dubious honor of being on more than one of our lists.
While I was able to find something redeeming; something I could appreciate about each of these films, I also felt let down in some ways. If I were to single any film out though, I would definitely hands down put Transformers: Age of Extinction at the bottom of the list of films I have seen this year. The technical prowess, thrilling action sequences, and expert cinematography aside, this film felt like nothing more than an extended and exhausting theme park ride. You may have read/heard something similar from me when talking about this movie, but I stand firmly behind those comments. There is absolutely no story worth caring about, nothing that makes all the action matter, which I was disappointed with. The Amazing Spider-Man 2 was also a disappointment in some ways, though it was an improvement on its predecessor. Again, while there were many things that were worthy of any fan’s appreciation, such as Andrew Garfield’s performance as both Peter Parker and Spider-Man, Emma Stone as Gwen Stacy and some solid action set pieces, it had elements that felt rushed and undercooked. The entire Green Goblin situation for instance is a good example. For such an important character in the Spider-Man mythos, he deserves more time to be developed and if that cannot happen then he should be excluded. Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 3 made a similar mistake with Venom and that film’s version of Gwen Stacy. Marc Webb’s second Spidey offering also tried to squeeze in too much of the mythos in order to lay the groundwork for future movies, which took away from the film a bit. Don’t get me wrong, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is a strong Spider-Man movie. However, it makes my list because I was letdown by it too.
Now, to honor the bad end of the spectrum for the year. Each of these movies is guilty of taking studio movie budget and miscalculating everything big time. My time and patience was severely tested with each of these movies. No movie was the worst offender than my pick for worst of the year, Transformers: Age of Extinction. Once upon a time, the original movie was released and was a surprisingly entertaining affair, with a winning performance from Shia LeBouf. Now, we have the fourth installment of a series that just wants to pummel our senses into submission. The movie is also tied for worst of the franchise (difficult to say which is worse, this or the awful Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen). The movie clocked in close to THREE HOURS! No movie about clashing robots should be so long! Michael Bay keeps making these movies as an assembly line, with little thought to wit, character development, and a decent plot. All he does here is makes things explode….and explode….and explode some more! I was worn out after watching this movie and not in a good way. That is why Michael Bay’s epic in stupidity gets my honor of worst movie of 2014.
My “worst” movies of the year are, most likely, atop everyone’s list. I try not to be a contrarian, and therefore, any film that gave an honest effort (I’m looking at you Men Women and Children) will be given a pass. My top five worst are as follows: Horns, Let’s Be Cops, Exodus, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Growing up, I was a huge fan of both the cartoon and live-action Turtles. Speaking to my early 90’s persona of a “bad dude with rad-itude” (I had the sweetest TMNT fanny pack in the whole 2nd grade class), the Turtles packed a hell of a lot of nostalgia. Unlike the fantastic LEGO Movie, TMNT was geared towards a new audience of Transformer-loving (movies, not the equally-rad cartoon from the 80’s/90’s) who clamber for jumpy editing, explosions, and a barren plot. Certainly the worst $13 I spent all year.
First of all, I’m considering this more of a “Disappointed” list rather than out-and-out “I hate them.” I actually don’t hate them all. Only one. And that one is Maleficent. A movie about a powerful, strong, independent female bad-ass whose entire central backstory focuses on a guy pissing her off. It’s indecipherably identical to bland “fantasy” duds like Snow White and the Huntsman and Alice in Wonderland and its lone clever conceit – what if a Disney villain were the hero? – is marred by the fact that once the bad guy is made good, they’re no longer scary. One of the most hypocritically dull movies I’ve ever seen, the entire thing – full of scenes that teleport characters randomly wherever the script demands, have them doing stuff that’s never justified or explained, all featuring constant old-crone fairy-tale voice overs summing up entire stretches of character backstory and world building in mere syllables – feels like a prologue to something better coming along. And then it ends.
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 is perhaps my biggest disappointment this year. An icky money-grabbing Hollywood propaganda machine that’s not nearly as meta-clever as its propaganda-focused plot is trying to be. It’s a movie whose entire purpose is to set up a better movie coming out in a year, and everything from its cat-focused sub-plots and tediously protracted “action scenes” feel like the cinematic equivalent of expanding the margins and using size twenty font in a college research paper. You think your professor won’t notice, but they will, and you’ll fail spectacularly. Following Mockingjay, everything else is just kind of… bland. Let’s Be Cops is a movie filled with funny people being uncomfortably unfunny. The Interview is most fresh in my mind, and a movie I do technically enjoy. But its media hype and international scrutiny ultimately resulted in a film that’s disappointingly puerile and safe, and not exactly worth all of the hubbub. Interstellar is another movie I actually quite enjoy. It’s got big, bold universe-shattering ideas and tackles them head-on. But it kind of loses its way in the third act and starts making a whole lot of no sense at all when thought about too long, so it’s ultimately a cosmic letdown compared to Nolan’s other mind-benders like Inception and Memento. Both movies that make a sort of logical, migraine-inducing sense that don’t make you mentally stuck in the mud over simple questions like “Why is Jessica Chastain still so mad?”
Many Worst Movie Lists for this year have included the likes of The Amazing Spider-man 2, Transformers: Age of Extinction and Transcendence, leading me to ask have some critics only seen the bigger movies of the year. The movies that have the dishonor on the bottom of movies I have seen list this year are little different. January is infamous for being the movie dumping ground the 3D Greek mythology movie The Legend of Hercules is an example of this, a dull, generic, poorly acted fantasy movie that was deservedly a box-office bomb and made the remake of Clash of the Titans preferable viewing. Paul W. S. Anderson’s romantic disaster Pompeii is the other classical set movie to make this year, a Gladiator-knock-off that has cheap set-design but at least has the virtue of Kiefer Sutherland’s hilariously campy performance. Inkeeping with the historical theme the Russian war film Stalingrad is my second worst movie of the year, an insult to anyone with a love of history and seems like the result of a number of patriotic Russians wanting to make their own version of 300 (which is awesome)and Pearl Harbor, showing it is not just Hollywood that butchers history. Cameron Diaz had a terrible year with The Other Woman and Sex Tape being added to her filmography, with The Other Woman being the worst of the two: I will put it this way, it has two jokes involving defecation. The biggest movie on this list is Maleficent, Disney’s live action adaptation of Sleeping Beauty, twisting the story to follow the villain: but ended up being a generic, forgettable fantasy movie that was made because the accountants demanded it more then there being any artistic need.