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Suckfest! The Worst Movies of 2016 -- So Far

Ok, let's be honest -- the calendar year for 2016 has been kinda shit, hasn't it? Sequels to cult hits that gave us secondary slop....superhero movies that failed to deliver on the super....studios still trying to cram the awfulness of Kevin Hart down our throats....and this season's offering of summer popcorn flicks did nothing to buck the trend. Does it get better as we turn to fall and the Awards race? Maybe, but for now, here's my compiled list of the worst this calendar year had to offer us thus far.

London Has Fallen - Baltimore movie critic Max Weiss warned me about this abhorrent, xenophobic, racist and profoundly idiotic picture and gave it one star in her review. I felt that was waaaaaaay too kind after sitting through one of the worst action films I've seen in the last 15 years. Gerard Butler is doing his second rate John McClain thing, Aaron Eckhart is still the President with a target on his back, and fine performers like Angela Basset, Melissa Leo and Morgan Freeman are doing next to nothing in this sequel that the whole of London should be demanding an apology for by the filmmakers.

Zoolander 2 - Once Will Ferrell's Mugatu appears on screen, it seems that this sequel to the 2001 surprise cult hit would begin to find its stride and save this laugh-free debacle. Unfortunately Ferrell's not in this movie for long, and the jokes leave with him once he does. Ben Stiller (who also co-wrote and directed), back as the super male model without a brain, along with Owen Wilson as his equally clueless BFF Hansel, give it their all, but the gags feel forced and the satirical element about fashion world and celebrity culture is tired and worn out, particularly when you get every movie star, pop star and fashion icon crammed in, and not particularly funny, either. With the first Zoolander, the titular character was a dim-wit getting caught up into a world of of fashion espionage and sabotage was funny because how in over is head he was and, despite his dumbness, there was a earnesty about his lack of intelligence. That quality is nowhere to be found in this terrible sequel.

Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie - Much like Zoolander 2, the best quality of the dynamic between Edina (Jennifer Saunders) and Patsy (Joanna Lumley) during their misadventures in trying to recapture their glory days as trendsetters on TV was that there was an earnestness to the proceedings; the fear of getting older and facing one's mortality is something most people can relate to. And like with the former, said quality is absent in this film adaptation of the British comedy series. Eddy and Patsy are on the lam after accidentally knocking and potentially killing Kate Moss over the Thames River; the former's granddaughter in tow, along with her wealthy inheritance, to the French Rivera to live their lives as fabulous as possible. No, that's the plot - you know, the same plot we've seen in better, funnier episodes when the show aired.

Suicide Squad - Whereas Batman v Superman succeeded in launching the answer to Marvel Studios' interconnected film universe despite its shortcomings, writer/director David Ayer's introduction the villains of the DC Extended Universe failed because of its numerous shortcomings - sloppy editing, poor writing and acting, and the obvious studio interference during post-production. I'd love to see Margot Robbie's Harley Quinn and Jared Leto's Joker cause chaos in future movies, and I thought Viola Davis was wonderful as Amanda Waller, a tougher, darker version of Samuel L. Jackson's Nick Fury.  However, Will Smith was miscast as Deadshot; Joel Kinnaman comes off as one note as Rick Flag; and other actors like Jai Courtney, Jay Hernandez and Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje as El Diablo, Captain Boomerang and Killer Croc, respectively, aren't given much to work with and fail to make much of an impression. At the end, Bruce Wayne/Batman (Ben Affeck in a cameo role) tells Waller to cease and desist with any and all activities regarding Task Force X. Perhaps Warner Bros and DC should take his advice.

The Divergent Series: Allegiant - When your teen dystopian sci-fi flick has to borrow elements from Kurt Wimmer's Equilibrium and Ultraviolet, you know your movie sucks. You should also spot red flags when your director, Robert Schwentke, and four of your screenwriters can't keep basic continuity with Shaileen Woodley's hairstyle from the last movie, which was short, to the latest movie, where it mysteriously grows longer again. Speaking of: if your lead actress and your supporting players like Miles Teller, Naomi Watts, Octavia Spencer and Jeff Daniels simply look like they'd rather be doing anything else but fulfill their obligation to this uninspired piece of young-adult junk, it's time to do the audience, the actors, and the studio a favor and just pull the plug on the series. A prime example of everyone on 'just don't give a fuck!' mode if I've ever saw one.

Independence Day: Resurgence - Of all the movies to have come out in 2016, this just might be the worst I'll see all year. It's everything I hate in cinema - a storyline that makes little sense and makes even less sense as it goes on; characters so wooden and so devoid of charisma, energy or anything remotely interesting that calling them both one note and dimensional would be generous at best; nonexistent performances by everyone involved; and the adherence to the Michael Bay playbook that audiences only care about effects that look cool and loud, ongoing explosions rather than telling a decent story with interesting characters. The original knew what it was, it didn't take itself too seriously, and you had two charisma-fueled performances by Will Smith and Jeff Goldblum, as well as eye-popping effects and a memorable, thrilling sequence of the aliens blowing up the major cites. This is Roalnd Emmerch trying to re-capture what he did in 1996 and failing miserably to do so in 2016, and an insult to the paying audience who forked over money to watch this bullshit.


  1. Of these films, maybe only suicide squad might at least be watchable in the future. The others are dead on arrival.


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