2008 Calvin Awards: Worst Performance

February 20, 2008

I won! I won! Wait, what did I win?

In addition to the worst films of the year, we at BOP also like to call out those particular performers who proved ill-cast, ill-suited, or just plain had no business holding down a paycheck for roles on the silver screen. These actors are owed refunds by their acting coaches.

Come back, ass-talking Jim Carrey! All is forgiven! The Number 23 makes a clean sweep of the Worst categories with this "award". In 23, Carrey plays a mild-mannered man who goes insane after reading a book. The surprising thing is that it was not The Da Vinci Code, but no matter. Carrey, who one would think would take to psychosis like Kevin Federline to a thong-wearing contest, ended up more in the "deadbeat jazz musician" category. Apparently you can't be crazy and play crazy.

Nicolas Cage nearly made it two-for-two in Worst Performance, narrowly missing out after his triumph in the field of over-emoting for The Wicker Man last year. Instead, he has to settle for a close second for portraying daredevil (oh, I get it now, ha ha h... ahem) Johnny Blaze in Ghost Rider. Really, what kept him out of top spot here was that it was his standard bad Elvis impersonation that he's been using for his "cool" roles for the past 25 years, and he didn't really bring all that much new to the world of awful acting. But hey, we don't want to discourage you entirely, Nic, and there's always next year.

Third place went to another repeat offender, Jessica Alba of Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer. Alba never met a scene she couldn't underplay to the point of appearing comatose in it, and this film was no different. In the immortal words of Homer Simpson, "She card read good."


Comic book heroines fared poorly this year – Kirsten Dunst finished fourth for her portrayal of Mary Jane Watson in Spider-Man 3. The first of four (!) cast members to place in the top ten, she was singled out for her incessant pouting and the sudden disappearance of all romantic chemistry between her character and Peter Parker. Honestly, it just feels like she got bored.

Picking on Lindsay Lohan these days has a certain fish/barrel quality to it, but then she's still asking us to take her seriously as an actress. In I Know Who Killed Me, she played a young woman tortured by a serial killer, afterwards claiming she's not that woman but actually a stripper. Or is she? Leaving the obvious skank jokes behind, Lohan really bit off more than she could chew with this role as trying out one personality would have been advisable before jumping all the way to two at a time.

Sixth and seventh went to two of Dunst's cast members, Thomas Haden Church and James Franco. Haden Church does have an Oscar nomination to his name, but seemed to be picked for the role only because he promised to fill out the shirt. He, like Franco, was really let down by the script, which called for them to be all-brood, all-the-time, and few actors can survive that when given almost nothing light and humorous to play off of.

Nic Cage makes it a double-shot with an eighth place finish fro National Treasure: Book of Secrets. You could say we're picking on him, but we did gave him a Best Actor award a few years ago for Adaptation... by the way, can we have that back now?

Ninth spot goes to Frank Whaley's sadistic motel owner in Vacancy, a role that had the meek-looking Guy from Swimming With Sharks play a backwoods-Southern killer. I mean, he was only trying to kill Luke Wilson, so I guess that's sort of plausible, but there's only so much we can take.

Finally, tenth spot went to Tobey Maguire for Spider-Man 3. Personally, I feel he got off a little easy with this spot, as his Emo Spider-Man pretty much single handedly sunk the film, but perhaps he's just another victim of Raimi's secret hatred of the franchise that made him so rich these past years. (Reagen Sulewski/BOP)

Best Actor
Best Actress
Best Album
Breakthrough Performance
Best Cast
Best Director
Best DVD
Best Overlooked Film
Best Picture
Best Scene
Best Screenplay
Best Supporting Actor
Best Supporting Actress
Best TV Show
Best Use of Music
Best Video Game
Worst Performance
Worst Picture
Top 10
Position Person Film Total Points
1 Jim Carrey The Number 23 45
2 Nic Cage Ghost Rider 42
3 Jessica Alba Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer 34
4 Kirsten Dunst Spider-Man 3 30
5(tie) Linday Lohan I Know Who Killed Me 19
5(tie) Thomas Haden Church Spider-Man 3 19
7 James Franco Spider-Man 3 17
8 Nic Cage National Treasure: Book of Secrets 16
9 Frank Whaley Vacancy 14
10 Tobey Maguire Spider-Man 3 13



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