As the saying goes, sometimes in order to get to Heaven you gotta go through Hell. And while 2019 was a great year for films, it also had some stinkers, snoozes and sloppy messes. While sitting through bad films can be a chore, talking about them is often amusing. So let’s talk about the worst of the worst from this past year.
(For a less depressing list, here are my Top 10 best films from 2019)
Dishonorable Mention: The Lion King
Soulless and at times nonsensical (they sing “Can You Feel the Love Tonight” in broad daylight), this is by-far the biggest disappointment of 2019. The live-action Disney remakes (even though this is technically still animated) have never been great, but this set a new low for cash grabs.
10. Godzilla: King of the Monsters
How is a movie about monsters fighting each other so boring? And ugly? And long? And self-serious?
Not as campy or as fun as I wanted it to be, or as it thinks it is. But god bless Octavia Spencer, who at least gets to be the lead in a film for once instead of doing (very good) supporting work.
8. 6 Underground
The most Michael Bay thing to have ever Michael Bay’d, this film is practically incoherent. It starts with an 18 minute long car chase that is so nonsensical that it numbs the senses, and things barely get better from there. I’m convinced Michael Bay is trolling us, seeing just how random and faux-artsy he can get before we storm the Bastille. If this wasn’t a Netflix movie I’m convinced it would set the record for theater walk-outs.
7. Men in Black: International
What a colossal waste of two of Hollywood’s most charming actors. Ugly special effects, a basic, nonsensical plot and just a pure lack of energy make this one of the most bland blockbusters in recent memory.
We have to go all the way back to the start of the year for this one, and upon getting there we find one of the biggest WTF films of 2019. At times unintentionally amusing but more often just forgettable, this film was so bad the studio slashed the promotion budget and cancelled all press junkets for the cast the week of its release.
We don’t need to go back too far for this one. “Cats” defies definition, it doesn’t fit into a single box. Part fever dream, part sheer miscalculation in every front, this film has some laugh-out-moments and a whole lot of “what the actual hell is happening?” By the time one cat said to another “what’s the matter, cat got your tongue” I knew God had abandoned the human race.
“Unbreakable” is great. “Split” is pretty good. “Glass” is just boring, and spits on the memory of both those films.
I doubt you even know what this film is, much less saw it; count your lucky stars. Barely containing a plot and ending with a sheer nonsense, this is one of the most boring films I’ve seen in quite some time.
2. Cold Pursuit
What could’ve been “Taken” with a snowplow turned into some sort of wannabe dark comedy, and I checked my watch relentlessly. Truly one of the most nothing films I’ve ever seen. None of it worked outside Liam Neeson growling, and in a year where she will likely sweep her way to an Oscar for “Marriage Story” not even Laura Dern could save her scenes.
But the film that was hands-down the worst of 2019 was…
1. Pet Semetary
In a bad year for Stephen King adaptations (“It Chapter 2” is also quite bad and “Doctor Sleep” bombed at the box office), this took the cake. It’s pointlessly slow, purely meaningless and worst of all, not scary. The direction is so lazy that they will hold the camera on parts of the frame and foreshadow jump scares (of which this film has an overt amount) and none of the kills are creative. In an era where we have seen a resurgence of the horror genre with “Get Out” and “A Quiet Place” there is no excuse to be making scary movies as ugly, dumb and lazy as this. I hated this movie. Truly.
And that’s it. We made it. Try your best to avoid these dumpster fires, and have a great start to your 2020!