Sure there are many worthwhile movies releasing in 2013, a lot of great horror movies too, but not all of them are winners. Aside from a money making rationale, is there any reasonable explanation as to why terrible films have to be made? Do studios not realize this when they are writing the checks? From unwarranted sequels to long since expired action heroes, after the break, take a look at some of the movies you should avoid this year.
Jurassic Park, Top Gun, The Little Mermaid, Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones, and Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith will attempt to draw you in with nostalgia, but don’t be fooled, these 3D re-releases are only interested in one thing, your wallet. 3D re-releases are worthless; the production of these films never accounted for the third dimension and seeing them in this format is a waste of time. Monsters, Inc. is a great film, but was never meant to be seen in 3D and it brought no further enjoyment.
Movies on the fence: Parker, Jack the Giant Slayer, Admission, Olympus Has Fallen, Fast and Furious 6, White House Down, Red 2, and Riddick
And let us begin:
A Haunted House / Scary Movie 5 – Spoofs can be great (Scary Movie; Airplane; Not Another Teen Movie; The Naked Gun; Spaceballs) but after the onslaught between 2005 – 2010 (Vampires Suck; Dance Flick; Disaster Movie; Superhero Movie; Meet the Spartans; Epic Movie; Scary Movie 4; Date Movie) they have considerably worn out their welcome. A Haunted House and Scary Movie 5 not only look terrible, but they are practically the same movie. They do not look like they’ll bring anything new or push the genre further.
Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters – Unfortunately H&G was already shot before the horrendous garbage that is Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter could show studios that this type of mashup is a complete waste of effort and time. Now I’m not sure how well Pride and Prejudice and Zombies will fare, but we could assume the same fate. Taking classic tales and flipping them into a fantasy, sci-fi or action movie doesn’t seem to work out well – look at how bad Three Muskateers turned out recently ($20 million domestic box office ticket sales).
The Croods / Escape from Planet Earth – I never use to champion animated films, but I have learned to appreciate them wholeheartedly. The medium isn’t just for kids – any Pixar movie can attest to that – but there are times when certain animated features do not look like they’ll work for anyone. The Croods looks crude; between the animation and Nicolas Cage voice acting a caveman, I cannot take this film seriously – it doesn’t seem like it would appeal to kids either. Escape from the Planet Earth appears too childish; some kids may get a laugh out of it, but I feel like it is banking on cheap gags.
The Last Stand / Bullet to the Head / The Tomb – The Expendables does a great job bringing together our favorite vintage action stars in a way that can be seen as mindless entertainment. These three movies just don’t have the same appeal when they are separated. I’ll admit, The Last Stand was enjoyable, but it was really dumb. Bullet to the Head comes across empty with too much forced comedy. The Tomb brings together both actors, Stallone and Schwarzenegger, but how much longer can these two go on with these unintelligible action flicks?
Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters / Beautiful Creatures / The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones / The Host – Now that The Twilight Saga has exited stage left, a new fantasy teen romance franchise must fill the void for tweens everywhere. The first Percy Jackson was pretty much forgettable and boring, while the rest of these new adaptations are almost carbon copies of each other – single, white teenage girl that is not quite human drawn to a male lead. It’s OK if these properties exist, but give them depth, something everyone can gain from watching them, not just some romantic fantasy dribble.
Safe Haven – Nicholas Sparks is to romance films as M. Night Shyamalan is to thrillers. Once we see their names we know what we’re getting ourselves into. Sparks cranks out these stories like clockwork and they are piling up on top of each other, one after another. They’re so formulaic with extreme circumstances of falling in love that it is impossible to find any value or realism in any of it.
The Big Wedding – Katherine Heigl. She needs to find more challenging work to help her expand her filmography. And I’m sick of De Niro subjecting himself to these lowbrow romantic comedies; if only he could get more work like Silver Linings Playbook.
Grown Ups 2 – It’s practically laughable that Adam Sandler has done nothing of value since Click – I liked Funny People, but many are not in my camp. Grown Ups 2 is mostly a reason to find work for the actors involved. Even Taylor Lautner landed a role as “Frat Boy Andy” – his career has really taken off since Twilight. The first film was one eye rolling joke after another – “chocolate wasted” was the only entertaining moment. Everyone is returning for this sequel and the question remains, “did we ever want them back in the first place?”
Planes / The Smurfs 2 – Two animated sequels that scream cash grab, which is funny because I never would have thought The Smurfs earned that much, but surprisingly our little blue friends are very popular overseas ($421 million worldwide). Planes, which is a spin-off of Pixar’s Cars, was originally slated for a straight to DVD release, but the powers that be determined it should get a wide release in theaters. I’m not too sure how popular the plane characters were in Cars, but is there really that big of a fanbase to give them their own movie?
One Direction Concert Movie 3D – One Direction has such a limited audience that it doesn’t make sense to generate a 3D concert movie. Aside from Bieber and Michael Jackson who each made about $73 million domestically, Katy Perry, Glee, The JoBros, and U2 all failed to obtain half of that, even with the 3D ticket sales. What will make One Direction any different? Sure there are many tweens on Twitter raving about 1D, but it’s such a limited demographic.
Last Vegas – Robert De Niro, Morgan Freeman, Michael Douglas, and Kevin Kline come together in a Las Vegas bachelor party movie with retired folk. Why? All we’re going to see is The Hangover with a bunch of geriatric actors; and who wants that? Why not just grab all of the final girls from the 70-80s slasher movies and throw them into a modern horror and see how well that does? It’s just a waste of talents.
Any Tyler Perry movie. Period.