Four days more, it will be the end of 2011. Before we usher for 2012 with more new movies ahead, here's my (rotten) pick for "Top 10 Worst Movies of 2011!".
After a very disappointing trilogy-finale in 2007's PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: AT WORLD'S END, I'm expecting the filmmakers can at least make a worthy comeback in this fourth installment, PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: ON STRANGERS TIDE. Unfortunately that is hardly the case. Instead it's a bloated, uninspired and soulless piece of entertainment that not even Johnny Depp, who reprised his iconic Jack Sparrow role, can save this waterlogged sequel. And despite the risky but inspiring choice of choosing director Rob Marshall (CHICAGO, NINE) to helm this latest series, he fails to bring anything new to the well-worn pirate genre. Yup, this PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: ON STRANGERS TIDE is simply creatively bankrupt.
9. SUCKER PUNCH
This is Zack Snyder's highly-anticipated action fantasy, which marks his first visionary picture created from scratch. (Translation: a creation that is not adapted from comic book or graphic novel of any kind). That is got to be something, right? Well, I almost think so. All the promotional trailer certainly looks cool and promising, but it's all smokes-and-mirrors. SUCKER PUNCH is a bloated mess of genre mash-up that is nothing more than a hollow and empty-headed cinematic experience. Characters are strictly caricatures, while the story is so poor it's tough to sit through most of the time. All the eye-popping visuals aside, this sucker is a yawner.
From the surface, INSIDIOUS looks promising enough as a good old-fashioned haunted house spookfest. After all, with SAW series co-creators James Wan and Leigh Whannell alongside PARANORMAL ACTIVITY creator Oren Peli joint venture, this is certainly sounds like a dream team. Too bad INSIDIOUS is a flash-in-the-pan effort. The first half is admittedly a fairly jolting experience but what follows next is a series of terribly incoherent and silly second half that is so broad it makes little sense. From here, loads of heavy-handed expositions and sudden plot points jump out of nowhere -- all for the sake to fill in whatever necessary gap as complex as possible.
Everything about the highly overrated KUNG FU PANDA 2 suffers most of the charms and wits previously found in the first movie. Oh yeah, this sequel is basically more of the same. Top-notch animation and fluid action sequences aside, this lazy sequel is more of a cash cow instead of a creative input.
Taylor Lautner may be an overnight sensation, thanks to his appearance playing Jacob Black in the first four TWILIGHT SAGA, but his first main vehicle in ABDUCTION is a total cop-out. This teenage version of THE BOURNE IDENTITY is supposed to cement his superstar reputation as a new breed of action star to look for (after all, Lautner is a martial art champion in real-life) but that's hardly the case at all. ABDUCTION is a hopelessly bland action thriller suffered from poor screenplay, badly-edited action sequences and terribly pedestrian direction by once-acclaimed director John Singleton (BOYZ N THE HOOD).
With a combined budget of production and marketing cost as high as $300 million, you would expect GREEN LANTERN to be a visually spectacular comic-book movie extravaganza, right? Well, Warner Bros. has certainly take a huge gamble and fails miserably. CASINO ROYALE director Martin Campbell is clearly out of his element here -- the special effects are cheap-looking, the pace is draggy, the story is poorly constructed and all the acting performances are as flimsy as they get. Plus, Ryan Reynolds spends most of his time looking goofy the whole time who is quite difficult to take him seriously as the main superhero.
From the look of the trailer, IMMORTALS looks as promising as Zack Snyder's 300. Well, look can be deceiving most of the time and this movie is no difference. For all the visual flair director Tarsem Singh manages to cook up here and there, IMMORTALS is a disappointingly gloomy picture that is too heavy-handed and awfully slow-moving. And the story... all I can say it's a torturous experience to sit through.
The previous two TWILIGHT SAGA movies (NEW MOON and ECLIPSE, except the first TWILIGHT) are shockingly dull motion picture. This one is no difference either. Despite being helmed by Bill Condon who is responsible for two Oscar-winning movies, GODS AND MONSTERS (1998) and DREAMGIRLS (2008), his directing effort here is surprisingly flat, Melissa Rosenberg's adapted screenplay is so heavy on verbal exposition it's a yawner. Everything here is simply long-winded that frankly, only the climactic finale involving Bella's struggling childbirth worth to watch.
2. DREAM HOUSE
This "suburban house-in-peril" thriller subgenre is supposed to be a promising effort. It has two-time Oscar nominated director Jim Sheridan (MY LEFT FOOT, IN THE NAME OF THE FATHER) and an irresistibly dream cast to boot: Daniel Craig, Rachel Weisz and Naomi Watts. So what's not to like? Too bad everything about DREAM HOUSE is a train wreck of a movie. The movie is suffered miserably from David Loucka's terribly bloated screenplay and Jim Sheridan's inconsistent direction -- what's with that unnecessary shaky-cam and some irrelevant close-ups? This one is simply a terrible and frustrating mess.
Yeah, I know. It's hard to believe. While I can safely say that HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS: PART 2 is universally praised around the world, I beg to differ. Make no mistake, the previous few HARRY POTTER installments are certainly praiseworthy, but this supposedly concluding chapter is shockingly dull. Instead of a spectacular cinematic experience I would have expect for this so-called "epic conclusion", this final chapter of HARRY POTTER series suffers miserably from erratic pacing, draggy storyline, awkward comic reliefs, some questionable acting performances (e.g. Daniel Radcliffe) and director David Yates doesn't seems to have a clue how to sustain epic battle scenes which feels more like a series of afterthoughts instead. Yeah, this one is a terribly overrated blockbuster.