The Top 10 Movies That Should Have Rocked
So many times a trailer comes out for a new movie and it looks like it’s going to be awesome – and then it sucks big time. All the buzz, all the teasers, all the press counted for squat when you actually sat in the theater for two hours as an overhyped piece of drivel flashed before your eyes. Often these movies are sequels to a really great franchise, but sometimes these losers hang solo. Either way, it sucks getting stuck with a stinker.
By Nathan Bloch
The following article does not represent the opinions of Spike TV or its affiliates.
10. American Gangster
Ridley Scott’s cinematic paen to gangster entrepreneurialism had all the ingredients for a kick-butt movie: Russell Crowe, Denzel Washington, and a whole lotta fools getting dropped. But instead of a bad-ass portrait of thug life '70s style, we get a really characterless Crowe oafing about the screen and Washington basically doing a carbon copy of his character from Training Day. Major letdown.
9. The Alien vs. Predator movies
Leave it to Paul Anderson (no relation to the talented Paul Thomas Anderson) to screw up what easily should have been an awesome sci-fi/horror movie. You have the freakiest alien ever to horrify theatergoers plus the deadliest alien, facing off in a weird pyramid thing in Antarctica, or wherever. This is the recipe for rad.
But Alien vs. Predator was not rad. Alien vs. Predator was the opposite of rad: it was ridiculous. The plot is nonexistent, the actors all seem to have graduated from Bob’s Discount College of Performance, and you even get pretty dang bored of the aliens and predators. Anderson had money, effects, and awesome creatures to make a really great movie. You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him not be a stupid talentless moron.
Alien vs. Predator: Requiem, directed by first timers Colin and Greg Strause, was just a tiny bit better, if only because it upped the ante with a couple of really gross, violent scenes, and it was interesting (sort of) to see an alien/predator baby. But the plot was still extremely stupid, when there was any plot at all, and the C-list actors didn’t help much. Thanks for ruining what should’ve been a really cool franchise, guys.
8. Kingdom of Heaven
Once again Ridley Scott dishes out a deep dish of disappointment. Kingdom of Heaven should’ve been Braveheart meets Gladiator (a Scott movie that was actually very good), but instead we got a snoozefest that proves, for the umpteenth time, that Orlando Bloom doesn’t have the charisma to play a leading man. In fact, he doesn’t really have the charisma to do anything other than shoot elfin arrows or battle ghosts aboard pirate ships. Bloom’s agent should try to limit him to acting in fantasy movies and modeling in Gap ads.
7. X-Men III
Bryan Singer spent all that time and energy building up X-Men’s rep in parts I and II, and then Brett Ratner – the Atilla the Hun of directors – went and demolished it all, laying waste the land for miles around. He kills off two major characters without giving a satisfying reason for either; he gives us incoherent action sequences; and he leaves us hoping no one ever makes another X-Men movie ever, ever again. Now the characters are being picked off piecemeal for their own movies, because no one ever wants to put them together again. Thanks, Brett. Any other franchises you’d like to cannibalize? All you Conan fans out there will be pleased as punch to hear he’s got his mits on the remake.
6. Terminator III
After the first two Terminator movies, everyone was pretty dang pumped about a third. Just one minor problem: James Cameron didn’t direct this one. They put Jonathan Mostow – who’s done nothing of note since, and had done nothing of note previously – in charge, and he did a commendable job of fouling the pristine waters of everything Terminator.
The script was stupid and campy; all the leads, except Schwarzenegger, were horribly miscast (Claire Danes? Come on, people!); and the removal of Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton) from the story was a huge mistake. Sarah Connor is the engine that keeps everyone going. She’s the only reason John Connor didn’t turn out to be a big, whiny p*$sy, and she kept the story believable. But no, they took her out and replaced her with...Claire Danes.
All we can hope now is that Terminator Salvation fixes what Terminator III broke. But if Josh Brolin’s rejection of the project and Christian Bale’s unenthusiastic pronouncements of it are any indication, we shouldn’t hold our breath.