Bottom 25 of 2013

It's that time again. The time when I must publish my lists of the best and the worst film experiences of the past year.

Any list, but these in particular, represent a frozen moment in time, so don't hold me accountable to the exact order. I may feel differently about it already, but such is the nature of the beast.

The focus of these lists is the experience of watching the films. Expectations play into it, and intent is also taken into account, which is why Pacific Rim makes the list, and not Atlantic Rim, the no-budget knock-off.

Oh well, enough excuses, here we go, the worst films of 2013 were....


25. Room 237

Sometimes violence IS the solution, and a good ass-kicking is what the participants in this project need, and a lot less than they deserve.

(Read the full review here)

24. Kapringen

Deadly dull hijacking move, where nothing happens for 2 hours, while the characters constantly assure us that nothing will happen. Par for the course for Danish films, sure, but I had expected more.

23. Spring Breakers

Gorgeous bikini clad girls, drugs and drinking, vibrant colors, and party till dawn, what else could you ask for in a movie...?! Oh yeah, A FREAKIN* STORY. Director Harmony Korine's pervy, 90-minute, rambling non-movie looks like the work of a sexual predator, who got his hands on every video shot during spring break and cut it together in his basement using just one hand.

22. Pacific Rim

Like a wet dog Del Toro vigorously shakes off his geek cred, with this unimaginative cartoon about giant robots fighting giant monsters. The hilariously incompetent human race on display here deserves to be stomped on by giant monsters - or at the very least the screenwriters should suffer that fate. This film encapsulates everything that's wrong with Hollywood. A $200 million piece of garbage.

21. The Master

Stop it Paul Thomas Anderson! Just fucking stop it! You're not fooling anybody. Douchebag!

20. The Possession

Perhaps one day scientists will figure out why a reputable, director such as Ole Bornedal, decided to jump aboard this script, which everybody else must have turned down. If it was out of sheer desperation to get a US job, it seems counterproductive that he would make such an inferior product. If it was out of boredom, why did he make such a dull, unimaginative stinker? After the double jackpot of Vikaren and Kærlighed på film in 2007 the poor guy seems to have lost all his artistic integrity.

19. Frankenstein's Army

Badly made found-footage film with no story, just a handful of cool creature designs. This is what happens when the barrier to entry is lowered and anybody can suddenly make a movie.

18. Viceværten

This is a Danish movie about a janitor in an apartment complex, who finds a semi-nude girl in an empty apartment. He rapes her repeatedly, then falls in love with her, and discovers that she has healing powers. There's no point to the story, except that sex with a young randy girl is really cool. An unexpected lesson from a movie directed by a woman.

17. About Cherry

Hey guys, not to put too fine a point on it, but next time you tell a story about a young girl joining the sex industry as a porn actress, you might consider a version that doesn't seem to support the idea wholeheartedly, ignore every single emotional pitfall, and barely stopping short of providing contact information for the nearest porn agency at the end. Just a thought. Also, you really believe porn movies are made that way? Or is it just because you can't show the real thing?

16. Now You See Me

While it's not the worst film of the year, it's gotta be the most unintelligent. A 12-year-old wrote the story after watching his first magic show, and it went downhill from there. The filmmakers' intent and the actual end-result are so out of sync that this almost qualifies as one big continuity error. It's the Prometheus of the year! Need I say more?

15. RIPD

Nope.com! Yes, I'm bringing back a 5-year-old joke and yet I'm still not as uncool as the filmmakers behind RIPD, who bring us a remake of Men in Black, without realizing that's what they're doing. Although Ryan Reynolds tries desperately to add some honesty to the proceedings, he's fighting a losing battle against the script, the often terrible CGI effects, and Jeff Bridges, who appears to have lost the ability to speak, possible following a debilitating stroke, which also knocked out the script-picking center of his brain.

14. The To Do List

The movie has a few genuinely funny and sincere moments, unfortunately they're buried in an antiquated script, which has little to offer beyond tame vulgar moments, which all feel recycled. The young heroine's journey rings false, as does Aubrey Plaza's forced performance, while she struggles to portray an utterly unrealistic, inconsistent, and unbelievable character. Watch Easy A instead.

13. Olympus Has Fallen

This is an incompetent remake ripoff of Die Hard. It's that simple. Parts of the story, action sequences, characters, lines, sometimes whole scenes have been lifted directly from that classic action movie. The CGI effects are laughable, Gerard Butler utterly ineffective, and here's the kicker: Olympus Has Fallen is so bad it made two films fail.

12. Silent Hill: Revelation

Contender for the worst drop in quality from original movie to its sequel. Well, Superman IV (1987) probably still wins, but it's a tight race.

(Read the full review here)

11. This is the End

Piss-poor, self-indulgent and staggeringly unfunny meta-film about stupid, unlikeable Hollywood stars who try to survive the apocalypse. I wanted them all to die horrible, gruesome deaths every step of the way, especially Danny McBride. Unbearable to watch.

10. A Good Day to Die Hard

What the fuck happened?! Seriously, WHAT HAPPENED?! Look, Die Hard 1 and 2: Best movies like ever, right? Right! Die Hard 3: Surprisingly good, even with the change of setting. Die Hard 4: Good action movie, not really a Die Hard film, though. Die Hard 5? Not even an action movie! Barely a movie!

Dull direction, a script full of holes and gaps in logic, no sign of John McClane - Bruce Willis just plays some sort of perverted, joke version of the character now - and worst of all: No NEED for John McClane! You could cut him out of the story and it wouldn't make any difference! What are you DOING, people!?

9. The Man with the Iron Fists

For a few minutes during the opening credits this film will almost have you fooled, but then it begins for real. Musician RZA wrote and directed, and plays the titular character (which, hilariously, appears in its true form 15 minutes before the end of the film). The only problem with this triple-threat? He can't write, direct or act. No actually that's not the only problem... that's just the beginning of a multitude of problems that plague this amateur production. Stick to the drums or whatever the hell you play, Razzy.

8. Oz the Great and Powerful

As bad and as ugly as Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland. Says it all, doesn't it?

7. Jack the Giant Slayer

It's worse than The Phantom Menace. The CGI effects are ugly, the designs are ugly, and who the hell asked for a retelling of that story anyway?! Bryan Singer is on a fast track to becoming a joke. The bad kind you get in those crackers. You know, the ones where you say "Wait, IS this a joke? oh yeah, I guess it is. Not funny, though."

6. Paranoia

Why would you buy the rights to a perfectly fine pulp novel, and then change the whole thing, so that it makes NO sense?! Did the screenwriters read the novel?! Seriously. Have they ever heard of corporate espionage before? Have they ever been in a company meeting, or even seen one on TV? Have they met a real person and had a conversation in real life? This is almost science fiction, it's that far removed from reality and simple logic. Half-finished scenes and references to things we haven't seen also points to an attempt to save this in the editing. It was unsuccessful.

5. Alex Cross

Laughable attempt to turn the second most feminine guy in the world (No. 1 being Prince, former known as a musician) into an action star. Rob Cohen apparently can't direct any more, the script is less coherent that the crime stories I wrote in 5th grade, and the whole thing looks cheaper than cheap. It pains me so much to see the stunning Rachel Nichols in trash like this. She deserves better. Damn you all to hell Perry. Get back in the dress, big guy. We know you want to.

4. Cloud Atlas

This rambling science fiction epic is brought to us by the Wachowski sisters, whose primary agenda seems to be to show that it's okay to dress up as the opposite sex. Hey, go with whatever makes you happy, I say, but did you really have to force a 3-hour craptastic mess like this down our throats to get the point across? Why don't you just write a blog about it?

(Read the full review here)

3. After Earth

Shamalama Ding-dong follows up The Happening (worst film of 2008) and The Last Airbender (appearing in the 2010 worst of list as well) with this misguided case of nepotism, come religious barf bag/science-fiction bore. Which must count as the worst family decision of the year. Charisma vortex Jaden Smith adds acting to the list of things he can't do, but more surprisingly even Will Smith comes across as a dick. Do I need to point out the awful CGI as well? Almost a rule when it comes to most Hollywood blockbusters these days.

2. The Canyons

So bland, so flat, and so dull you won't believe it. On paper, it could work: A porn star making a mainstream appearance. An actress fallen from grace, who gets a second chance. A jaded director struggling to get his films financed. And an artistically ailing cult writer. Mix it all together in a low budget film full of sex and betrayal. Sounds good, right? Well, it isn't. This looks like an amateur film. Like everyone in front of and behind the camera is a complete novice. As for Lohan, she looks like a 50-year-old coke addict. This is a career-ending train-wreck.

1. Les Misérables

Les Misérables is pure, concentrated evil. A diabolical monstrosity capable of laying waste to entire planets. Director Tom Hooper's visually impaired style leads a frontal assault on the eyes, while the incompetent songs gleefully rape our ears from the flank. 157 minutes later it's all over, but you'll have ended it much sooner, perhaps choosing the method of tone-deaf Russell Crowe, hurling yourself off the nearest bridge just to make it stop.


And there you have it. Luckily 2013 also brought many, many good film-experiences. Stay tuned for those.


  1. I am so on board with your mini-reviews (except for The Master, which I think you may return to one day and realize you might have got it wrong first time... ), but alas I draw the line at this comment: 'the Wachowski sisters, whose primary agenda seems to be to show that it's okay to dress up as the opposite sex.' Well, now. Lana Wachowski doesn't 'dress up as the opposite sex'. She is transgender, and the transition she has made was a gruelling, challenging, and difficult journey to make, requiring greater courage than I suspect either you or I would be capable of. Nor does she have a 'primary agenda', socio-political or otherwise. So your comment, with its implied snigger, feels ugly and - given the sharpness of your insightful reviews - unworthy of you.

    1. Thanks!

      Come now, I didn't refer to her (Lana) as the one dressing up as the opposite sex, but the actors (male and female) in the movie. I'm not sniggering, I'm a bit annoyed, because I think it feels forced. Especially Hugo Weaving as the nurse! He can dress up with the best of them (just watch The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert), but here it just looked silly, and like I said forced. Same with much of the rest of the cast. Whatever point there was in the film, about how we're all connected, it got lost in a mess of silly makeup and cross-dressing.

      As for my read on their agenda that comes from listening to interviews with the Wachowskis about the film. You could barely get them to say two words about anything prior to this, and now Lana won't shut up about this wonderful, beautiful, multi-colored world we live in, while Andy just seems to nod. I was actually considering writing something about this, but I wanted to see their new film first. I guess I have to wait until February now.