Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Five worst films of 2015...

Last year I managed to see 34 films on the big screen (it's one of my favourite things to do), and I've already shared my opinion of the five best movies of 2015, so get ready to find out what I thought were the worst, dirty rotten stinkers of the year.

Fantastic 4 movie 2015 billboard
Being a huge Marvel Comics fan I never thought I'd be slating a movie featuring my beloved comic book characters, but then again I'm not a fan of needless remakes either.

Fox Studios reboot of Marvel's 'First Family', the Fantastic 4, was a grim, joyless mess of a movie without much to redeem itself.

Theere was a glimmer of hope at the start when Josh Trank did his best Spielberg-ian flashback to 'Reed Richards' and 'Ben Grimm's' childhood, but the film pretty much got progressively worse from there onwards.
Fantastic 4 Thing billboard
This is supposed to be Marvel's fun band of scientific adventurers, Mark Waid coined the phrase best when he named them 'Imaginauts' when he was writing the series, but there's nothing new or exciting about this version. Bland, predictable and with characters that don't resemble their comic book counterparts.

My least favourite part of the whole ridiculous plot was when they decide to use their inter-dimensional teleported because they were drunk (on one flask of alcohol?) and they left 'Sue Storm' behind (so much for a strong female character). What's inspirational, or heroic about that? It cheapens the whole idea of their scientific curiosity and the spirit of exploration.

As I watched the movie I got angrier and angrier, and I was glad when the whole debacle was over. Sadly not so fantastic and most everybody felt the same way, even the director himself.

Terminator Genisys movie billboard
From a disappointing super-hero movie, to a dull science fiction reboot. Terminator Genisys was another movie that offered nothing new to the film franchise and bizarrely gave the big twist away in the trailers for the movie.

This fifth installment in the Terminator films was just a rehash of previous storylines, action sequences and the same old time-travelling killer cyborg plot. Frankly I was bored.
Terminator Genisys teaser billboard
Not even Game of Thrones Emilia Clarke or the return of Arnold Schwarzenegger could save the day. Let's hope this franchise won't "be back" anytime soon.

Jupiter Ascending movie billboard
One film that I really wanted to like in 2015 was The Wachowskis Jupiter Ascending. At least the creators of The Matrix and Sense 8 were trying to do something different with their attempt at an epic space opera.

I loved Cloud Atlas, but unfortunately you could see why this sci-fi adventure was delayed getting to the box office. The costumes felt like they'd raided 1980's campy Flash Gordon's closet, the plot was as predictable and dull as ditchwater, there was far too much CGI and whoever decided that Channing Tatum looked good blonde and bearded clearly does't understand his sex appeal.  
Jupiter Ascending film billboard
With a new Star Wars movie waiting in the wings, kickstarting a new space-based science fiction franchise was always going to be ambitious, but Jupiter Ascending felt more like the disastrous Star Wars: Episodes I-III than the original trilogy. More like Jupiter crashing and burning I'm afraid.

Giant Jurassic World movie billboard
Another established franchise getting a reboot this Summer was Jurassic World, fourteen years after the third Jurassic Park film.

Audiences seemed to love the dinosaur-filled popcorn movie and it broke loads of box office records, but did it really offer anything new? I felt like I was watching the same dinosaur-on-a-rampage movie that I've seen before.
Jurassic World movie billboard
Not even Chris Pratt's tight trousers, his 'raptor whispering', or Bryce Dallas Howard's skill at running through the jungle in high heels could save this turkey of a film.

You know there's going to be a sequel, or two, so let's hope they can dream up some original and exciting things to so with the dinosaurs and the characters in the future.

Hunger Games Mockingjay Part 2 poster wall
And finally, another film that really left me feeling dissatisfied last year was the conclusion to The Hunger Games movies.

Clearly there wasn't enough material to stretch the final book beyond a trilogy, so curse you greedy studio execs for splitting it in two.

I'd not read any of Suzanne Collins books before seeing the first film and I really enjoyed it (even if it did owe a lot to Lord of the Flies and Battle Royale), but I find that as the production budget has increased with the sequels (along with the quantity of disposable characters), the quality of storytelling has gone out the window.
Hunger Games Mockingjay Part 2 movie billboard
Mockingjay - Part 2 was definitely an improvement on Part 1 (which also made my list last year), but I was more than ready for 'Katniss Everdeen's' story to be over.

Other movies which also disappointed in 2015 (but weren't necessarily abysmal) included Insurgent (I feel The Divergent Series is going the way of The Hunger Games after a great start), The Secret in their Eyes (another unnecessary remake) and even Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation (I loved the addition of Rebecca Ferguson, but the film as a whole felt less original than Ghost Protocol).

Be sure to also check out my five worst films from 2014 and let's hope that 2016 doesn't disappoint when it comes to inventive, compelling film-making and storytelling...

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