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2007 Calvin Awards: Worst Performance

February 13, 2007

We've seen sexier Bloodrayne costumes at cons.

If you learn nothing else from the discussion below, you will come to realize how much the staff at BOP loathes Bloodrayne. The key is in the voting process. We have virtually no staff discussions prior to the ballot. This ensures that no negotiations, debates or under-the-table deals ensue. Factoring in this knowledge, consider how much vitriol we must have for the production that four (!) out of our ten selections come from this monstrosity. Why, Bloodrayne could double as a syllabus for Bad Acting 101. We should credit the other six other nominees for offering such heinous performances that they prevented Uwe Boll's cast from making a clean sweep of the category. I mean, how did Meatloaf avoid this list?

Stating the obvious, the worst performance of the year has been awarded (?) to one of the cast members of Bloodrayne. What you are now wondering is which one is so far beyond the other heinous performances in this abomination that it stood out as the worst. Did we slag Michelle Rodriguez for showing absolutely no understanding of dialogue delivery? Did we brutalize Sir Ben Kingsley for this shameless attempt at a money grab? Maybe we chose to attack Michael Madsen for sleepwalking through his role as the leader of the Brimstone Society, a league of vampires. Folks, this is a modern day Plan 9 From Outer Space. How do we choose which one stands out over the rest? And again, how did Meatloaf avoid this list?

In the end, Kristanna Loken is the winner. Kingsley, Rodriguez, and Madsen have to settle for fifth, sixth and eighth place respectively. They simply could not match the lackadaisical, bumbling attempt at super-heroism offered by Loken in the title role. She manages to take a sexy videogame heroine and make her look like a frumpy, pregnant barista. Simply look at the image above. She needs a large in those sweats. She can't even button up the stretchy pants. And her fashion statement is what qualifies as a positive about her role. Her attempts at passing herself off as a bloodsucking fiend provoking terror in others work about as well as her pre-production diet. And the heterosexual love scene she attempts to perform in the movie makes those lesbian rumors about as surprising as the news that she's going to be a cable television actress from now on. As for the action sequences she attempts, BOP has seen more believable fighting in I'm Gonna Git Ya Sucka, and that film's fight scene was satire. Then again, maybe Bloodrayne was as well. Is it possible that Boll planned this all along and simply forget to let everyone in on the joke? Is that why Billy Zane's fledgling distribution company took a bath? Bloodrayne offers some of the worst acting in recent cinema history, and Loken's throws under the rest, making her the choice for Worst Performance of the year.

Just missing the top spot is an actor in no way involved with Bloodrayne, Nicolas Cage. What was it about his performance in The Wicker Man that made him serious competition for everyone who received direction from Uwe Boll last year? Check out this YouTube clip and see for yourself. BOP notes that there are spoilers in the attached link, but you are not going to watch the movie for its twists and turns, anyway. It's all about the comedy value afforded when a group of actors create what they think is a drama but that turns out to be up there with anything from the Naked Gun series in terms of belly laughs. One member of our site has not even seen the movie yet he is obsessed with the image of Cage running around in a bear suit. We have it on good authority this is his screensaver. Sadly, it's not even the most embarrassing thing that Cage does in the movie, either. If we take Bloodrayne out of the equation, Cage offers easily the worst performance of the year. And we're proactively saving him a spot on next year's list for Ghost Rider.

The other pair of non-Bloodrayne roles earning a spot in the top six are from X-Men: The Last Stand and The Da Vinci Code. The former film's nominee is Halle Berry, who sleepwalks through a third outing as mutant weather master Storm. An argument could be made that Berry stopped trying in everything the instant she announced she had kicked down doors in Monster's Ball. We introduced this award in 2005 by punishing her performance in Catwoman. Two years later, not much has changed.

Our fourth selection in the category is a bit of a first for us. We are not busting Tom Hanks for his acting in The Da Vinci Code. We are, however, bemused by his hair. That's right. Tom Hanks' hair is our selection for the fourth worst performance of the year. You know what we mean, too. You were there as production stills started popping up on the Internet. We've got one on the main page of the site right now if you have forgotten how ridiculous the hair is. Does Hanks want to look hip here? Is it getting harder and harder to hide the horseshoe formation signifying male pattern baldness and this was the hairdresser's best attempt to draw attention away from it? Is gravity pulling his hair down to his ass? No matter the causality, the hairstyle was so ridiculous that it took attention away from the movie. Sure, that's no great loss but it's inexcusable for a $200 million blockbuster. Shave it all off or get a toupee, Tom. Learn from past mistakes.

The rest of the top ten features an actress we generally like, an actor we always hate, and an actor whose star is dimming. Milla Jovovich is someone we enjoy in the Resident Evil franchise (no, really), but she was woefully miscast in Ultraviolet, a disastrous follow-up outing from Equilibrium director Kurt Wimmer. Jovovich was wooden and utterly unbelievable as a superhuman killing machine, which is strange since that's the same role we have enjoyed from her in Resident Evil. Jamie Foxx is the surprise here. Only two years ago, he finished second in the Best Acting category for Collateral and was also sixth for Ray. We have now turned on him to the point that his ridiculously phoned in performance as manipulative manager Curtis Taylor, Jr. in Dreamgirls has earned our ire. Dreamgirls is a wildly disappointing movie and one of the main reasons why is Foxx's braying, self-absorbed work. And no, we don't give him a pass because that's the character's stated modus operandi. Bad is bad. Finally, the words Paul Walker and Worst Performance go hand in hand, and his effort in Running Scared is no different. We just didn't buy him as an unlawful husband trying to work his way out of a crime ring. Of course, he also got outperformed by a series of dogs this year, so...

Just missing the top ten but still terrible were Bob Balaban in Lady in the Water, Adam Campbell in Date Movie, M. Night Shyamalan in Lady in the Water, Kate Bosworth in Superman Returns, Bruce Willis in 16 Blocks, Fiona Shaw in The Black Dahlia, Uma Thurman in My Super Ex-Girlfriend, Kim Basinger in The Sentinel, Lynn Whitfield in Madea's Family Reunion and Matthew Davis in...wait for it...Bloodrayne.

Shockingly, Meatloaf received no votes.

Top 10
Position Person Film Total Points
1 Kristanna Loken Bloodrayne 49
2 Nicolas Cage The Wicker Man 48
3 Halle Berry X-Men: The Last Stand 44
4 Tom Hanks' hair The Da Vinci Code 38
5 Ben Kingsley Bloodrayne 34
6 Michelle Rodriguez Bloodrayne 32
7(tie) Milla Jovovich Ultraviolet 30
7(tie) Michael Madsen Bloodrayne 30
7(tie) Jamie Foxx Dreamgirls 30
10(tie) Paul Walker Running Scared 28



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