2011 Calvin Awards: Worst Picture
February 16, 2011
It's difficult to imagine a more worthy crop of films to top our Worst Picture list. Did I say difficult? I meant sanity-challenging, as the pure volume of dreck this year combined with its magnitude made us claw at the restraints keeping us in the screening room at several points. And just think – Uwe Boll didn't even have a theatrical release this year. The truly disturbing thing is that a lot of these films were monstrous hits.
Our most dishonored film this year, Sex and the City 2, is a most-worthy recipient of our disdain. Whatever you might have thought of the franchise before this bloated sequel, it became readily apparent that there was absolutely nothing left to it creatively at this point. Yet there was still money to be made, so – hey send 'em shopping for two and a half hours! That's a movie, right? Thus begins The Adventures of the Most Useless and Shallowest People on Earth.
After discovering that married life isn't all red-carpet premieres and $200 molecular gastronomic meals, and that, OMG, children actually take some time to raise, the four pointless women decide they need time off from their lives and jet off to Abu Dhabi. There, they discover that outside their shell of avarice, there are people who don't look kindly on their lifestyle, and gosh, there are poor people too! Can you imagine? It's at this point that viewers of the film are advised not to have any blunt objects around that they might throw them at the screen. The film reaches a kind of grandness at its conclusion, wherein it's revealed that what really empowers women the world over is designer fashion, and then our heroes scramble to be spared the ignominy of flying coach. It's an ugly, tone-deaf film in all respects and when the aliens come to see how our society crumbled, they can just watch this film, and all will be understood.
I think I know what happened with our second worst movie of the year, Jonah Hex. Judging by what was sent to theaters, I can only surmise that someone accidentally switched the canister containing the film's rough cut and what was actually meant to be the film, and by the time it was discovered, it was too late to fix the mistake. I mean, that's the only logical explanation for why a film this amateurish, this half-baked, this... this barely a movie was released into the wild.
Then again, signs also point to this being a deliberate mess. At 81 minutes in length, it's the shortest possible film that can legally be called a feature (and that's with a longer than usual credits sequence), and includes an animated intro, the same flashback sequence three times and a fantasy climactic fight sequence that runs in parallel with the real one for some unknown reason. And that's without getting into the miserable acting, with Josh Brolin struggling to emote through five pound of makeup, Megan Fox doing her usual Megan Fox thing, and John Malkovich saying “screw it, I'm not doing an accent”. It's such a mess that one longs for the model of professionalism that was Wild Wild West.