10 January 2017

Maynard's TOP 25 WORST MOVIES of 2016

25 (actually 27) movies, all bad. I pretty much hated all of them.
Here's what I have to vent... um, say about them ;)



25.
Paul Greengrass'
JASON BOURNE (USA, 2016)

It's not as bad as "The Bourne Legacy", but it comes pretty close. I have nothing against shaky cam, but this crap takes the fucking cake. Half of the time I had no idea what was going on. It was filmed in an incredibly annoying and uber-shitty way, edited in an annoyingly super-choppy way, and Matt Damon's performance felt more like he just sleepwalked through this turd.


24.
William Brent Bell's
THE BOY (USA / Canada, 2016)

One of the dumbest doll-themed horror movies I've ever seen (even dumber than "Dolly Dearest"), packed to the brim with cliché characters, repetitive scenes and images, pretty weak acting and one of the downright stupidest plot twists in history, not just stolen from other better movies ("The Pact", "Housebound", "Bad Ronald"), but also executed in a terrible what-the-fuck?-way.


23.
Paul Verhoeven's
ELLE (France / Germany / Belgium, 2016)

A-fucking-nnoying is the best way to describe this insanely overrated piece of trash. As much as I adore Isabelle Huppert, but her performance feels recycled from at least 10 other characters she played over the last 20 years. It's also full of the most horribly unlikable and/or implausible characters, full with oh-so-shocking facepalm-twists, and... damn, this is the very first Verhoeven movie that bored, frustrated and annoyed me from start to finish. Dreck.

22.
Will Canon's
DEMONIC (USA, 2015)

I have no idea why James Wan chose to produce this lamefest which is so dull and uninspired and unoriginal, it's almost shocking... almost, because there's actually nothing about it that will touch or move or shock you. It's just loud noises and cheap-looking effects and predictable twists, including (of course...) a horridly daft end twist. Wait a sec... there IS one shocking thing about it: Frank Grillo's performance which is shockingly awful.


21.
Adam Wingard's
BLAIR WITCH (USA, 2016)

It doesn't matter if it would have been called "The Woods" or "Blair Witch 3" or simply "Idiot kids vs. Old Hag"... this is just a shitty and completely superfluous quasi-remake of the overrated-but-decent 90s classic. Half of the movie is boring, unnerving and predictable as hell, the other half is just loud, wild, and uber-agressive drivel. What the fuck happened to the Adam Wingard who made awesome stuff like "The Guest" or "A Horrible Way To Die"? This is just horseshit.

20.
James Wan's
THE CONJURING 2 (Canada / USA, 2016)

Although it's a well-filmed, good-looking movie with a pretty nice cast, I hated it, and still hate this absolutely unnecessary sequel with a passion that shocked even me. Part 1 is a darn masterpiece. Part 2 is an overblown, over-pompous, completely over-the-top piece of shit, so packed with shitty CGI, dumb dialogue, oh-so-emotional oh-fuck-me!-scenes and the most predictable, most boring and unscariest supposed-to-be-scary scenes I have ever seen in a movie of that caliber. It would have sucked even if it would have been only taken place in (yawn) Amityville. Oh Wan, how the mighty have fallen.

19.
Mike Flanagan's
BEFORE I WAKE (USA, 2016)
& HUSH (USA, 2016)
& OUIJA: ORIGIN OF EVIL (USA, 2016)


Mike Flanagan is very successful in fooling the modest, unambitious mainstream horror 'fan' with his glossy oh-so-gorgeous-looking trash... but he doesn't manage to fool me. This guy just takes worn-out concepts, adds a few layers that are supposed to make it look fresh, and then shoots them in glossy and oh-so-stylish ways that makes it look oh-so-cool, obviously to distract from the fact how dumb and inane these movies really are. I've seen his three latest movies and they're all basically the same garbage: white women getting scared by horrid CGI effects or super-dumb douche-villains. I'm sick of it. Flanagan is dead to me.

18.
João Pedro Rodrigues' 
THE ORNITHOLOGIST (Portugal / France / Brazil, 2016)

The kind of movie that is totally, totally artsy fartsy, and obviously not in a good way. The director tries to hide that fact that he has nothing to say, has nothing no tell, and has absolutely no clue what he wants this movie to be, by hiding it behind raunchy sex scenes, extremely weird characters and stylish images. Guess what? Right, it's dull as hell, annoying as shit on your shoe, and as oh-so-provocative as a bikini. Artcrap.


17.
Zack Ward's
RESTORATION (USA, 2016)

Zack Ward is an okay actor, nothing outstanding, just okay. Unfortunately, as a director, he's absolutely awful. He has no idea how to direct actors, how to create any kind of tension, how to tell the already lame storyline (which is more or less a ripoff of "The Skeleton Key") in an at least mildly interesting way. The fact that his acting is pretty much the only good thing about it... well, let's just call it cynical.


16.
Francesco Picone's
ANGER OF THE DEAD (Canada / Italy, 2015)

The 2013 short film this was based on was downright awesome. However the full-length version (which by the way was co-produced by Schlockmaster Uwe Boll himself) is so weak and so poorly made, even the worst Italian oldschool zombie movies, like, let's say, "Killing Birds" or "After Death", are masterpieces compared to this no-suspense-wooden-acting-missing-character-development dreck. Even worse: it actually looks a lot like the super-crappy zombie flicks by Luca Boni and Marco Ristori... which by the way were also co-produced by Uwe Boll! Coincidence?

15.
Masayuki Ochiai's
JU-ON: THE FINAL CURSE (Japan, 2015)

I have seen all entries in the almost-20-year-old franchise. This is not the worst one (see #7 on this list) but it comes close. After 7 Japanese JU-ON movies and 3 American GRUDGE movies, Kayako and Toshio just can't scare me anymore. Actually this time, it was just stupid and annoying to see their empty white faces and hear their I've-got-something-stuck-in-my-throat!-noises over and over again, and the fact that Ochiai is an untalented hack (he made that super-super-shitty "Shutter" remake...) obviously doesn't help.

14.
John Fallon's
THE SHELTER (USA / Canada, 2015)

John Fallon is the mastermind behind the glorious Canadian horror website "Arrow in the Head". He now directed his very first movie. Bad idea. Just another atttempt of over-using stylish images and trippy images to hide the fact that there's no story, no concept, no nothing. I almost fell asleep two times because it's so slow and so fucking boring. Even Michael Paré, usually a neat actor, delivers a clunky and indescribably uninteresting performance. Yawn.

13.
Robert Schwentke's
ALLEGIANT (USA, 2016)

I love "Divergent". I very much enjoyed "Insurgent". I downright hated "Allegiant". It sucks. It bored the shit out of me. Countless lame characters talking endlessly, saying absolutely nothing. Countless actors looking bored or apathetic. Countless plot points and not-really-twists that are as predictable as the sunrise. Thrills? Chills? Action? No chance. This is a movie no one wanted to make, no one wanted to star in, but someone financed it, so it got made. End of story. Ugh.

12.
Lou Simon's
ALL GIRLS WEEKEND (USA, 2016)

This movie sucks so fucking hard, I have no idea how Simon could have ever been able to make a movie as terrific as her ace "HazMat". Aside from a few gorgeously filmed scenes in the beginning, everything else in this movie is so terrible, it's bizarre. The characters are all annoying and unlikable, most of the acting is bafflingly bad, the editing is incredibly lousy, the overall direction is just shoddy, and the fact that half of the movie feels like a lowest-budget version of "The Descent"... yup, uber-fail.
Ah, one more thing: one of the main characters has the posters of Lou Simon's first three movies hanging in her apartment, and you get to see these posters so fucking often... Simon, say, how laughably pretentious can one person be?

11.
Nick Basile's
DARK (USA, 2015)

The second-worst movie of 2016 that starts with the letters D, A and R.
The nothingness of this movie is inscrutable. It's not that long ago since I saw this movie, a couple of months, and yet, I can't remember jackshit about it. Well... that's not entirely true. I remember how dull and trite and super-slow it is, how it tries to be oh-so-super-artsy just to hide the fact that there's no story, no script, no nothing, there's just a bad director who has seen Polanski's "Repulsion" a tad too often, a bad director who somehow tricked the rapper Redman into appearing in it for whatever reason. Terrible movie.

10.
Fede Alvarez'
DON'T BREATHE (USA, 2016)

Three teenagers whose behavior and statements are questionable and unlikable from the very first minute, a blind villain that somehow has superpowers and is even more unlikable than the teens, a house that seems to be three times bigger inside than on the outside, "It's not rape!"-rape and accidental sperm-eating as the laziest, stupidest and most pointless plot device I've seen in a very long time... and you "Don't Breathe" fans really expect me to love this movie? Fuck that shit.

9.
Jon M. Chu's
NOW YOU SEE ME 2 (USA / China, 2016)

The first one was a prime example of a mindless popcorn flick that just want to entertain you. The sequel... well, it showed us that Chu is a fucking hack director (thanks movie, I already know that since "G.I. Joe"...), that Ed Solomon can't write good stuff anymore (thanks movie, I already know that since "Charlie's Angels"...), that Daniel Radcliffe looks retarded when he's grinning (thanks movie, I already know that since "Harry Potter"...), that Lizzy Caplan is a shitty actress (I had no idea! Um, thanks movie...). Bottom line: it's a piece of shit sequel, made by people who have never heard the line "Less is More" before. Nuff said.

8.
Nicolette Krebitz'
WILD (Germany, 2016)

An oh-so-feminist artsy-fartsy bullshit statement about Germany's most unsympathetic girl who breaks out of her oh-so-depressing middle-class world by taking an actual wolf (dafuq?) into her apartment, trying to make friends with him (dafuq??) and even trying to play sex games with him (dafuq???), or something like that. She's also doing some masturbation by sliding down a banister, shitting on her boss's table after he fucked her and creamed on her, etc etc. What a load of crock! Would have been so much better as an Sexploitation flick by Troma... or at least Joe D'Amato.

7.
Kôji Shiraishi's
SADAKO VS. KAYAKO (Japan, 2016)

I have seen all entries in the almost-20-year-old JU-ON/GRUDGE franchise. This is the worst one.
I have also seen all entries in the almost-20-year-old RINGU/RING franchise. This is not the worst one (that's definitely the horrid "Sadako 3D") but it comes pretty close.
"Sadako vs Kayako" is not a movie made for fans of this franchise, or for horror buffs who expect this to be some wacky Japanese "Freddy vs Jason" variation. This is for people who STILL (yawn) get frightened by girls with long black hair, who STILL (ugh) get scared by loud noises and age-old jump scares, who think that even bad CGI is good CGI... this is a movie for people who don't care. A movie made solely for dumb idiotic kids who think "Ouija" and "The Gallows" are good scary movies.

6.
Rob Zombie's
31 (USA / UK, 2016)

I forgave Rob Zombie his disappointing "Halloween" remake, his quite disastrous follow-up "Halloween II", and his utterly unfunny "The Haunted World of Superbeasto", and I even forgave him his super-weak "Hellbilly Deluxe 2" album. But this time... no, not this time. "31" is a terrible film, lousily made, shoddily filmed, awfully edited. Aside from the terrific soundtrack, I hated everything about it, every single character, doesn't matter if good or villain, every single line of "fuck this, fuck that, cocksucker etc." dialogue, all the cheap-looking settings, everything. Total shit movie. Fuck you, RZ.

5.
Mickey Keating's
DARLING (USA, 2015)

The worst movie of 2016 that starts with the letters
D, A and R.
The nothingness of this movie is inscrutable. It's not that long ago since I saw this movie, a couple of months, and yet, I can't remember jackshit about it. Well... that's not entirely true. I remember how dull and trite and super-slow it is, how it tries to be oh-so-super-artsy just to hide the fact that there's no story, no script, no nothing, there's just a bad director who has seen Polanski's "Repulsion" way too often, a bad director who somehow tricked the actress Sean Young into appearing in it for whatever reason. Terrible movie.

4.
Axelle Robert's
THE APPLE OF MY EYE (France, 2016)

Imagine the worst rom-com you've ever seen... got it? Good. Now imagine a movie that is 10 times, no, 100 times worse... that's "The Apple of my Eye", one of the unfunniest, most irritating and absolute worst comedies I have ever seen in my entire life. An armada of insanely unlikable idiots walking around, talking unfunny, unromantic shit all the fucking time. But... well, what do you expect from a movie where some douche tries to get into the pants of a blind girl by constantly mocking her and trying to make her believe that he himself also suddenly became blind? Aaargh, horrible!

3.
Ben Wheatley's
HIGH-RISE (UK / Belgium, 2015)

I've never been a fan of Ben Wheatley and aside from "Sightseers", I find all of his movies mediocre... but omg, they're actually all pieces of art compared to this tower of poop. Two hours of primitive people giving way to their basest instincts, drinking, eating, fucking, killing it each other, wallowing in filth and dirt and garbage. That's it. Imagine watching low-class TV shows like "Honey Boo Boo" Clockwork-Orange-style... that's "High-Rise", one of the most pretentious, most imbecile British mid-budget films I have ever seen. Just because it's stylishly filmed doesn't make it an arthouse piece, Mr. Wheatley, you bloody wanker.

2.
Travis Zariwny a.k.a Travis Z's
CABIN FEVER (USA, 2016)

Not just the most pointless remake anyone has ever made (goddammit, the original "Cabin Fever" came out in 2002 and needed no fixing!!), but also probably the worst horror remake of all time. Yes, even worse than the remakes of "The Fog", "Psycho" and "The Wicker Man". Travis Zariwny (or "Travis Z" as he like to be called) has absolutely no talent... has absolutely no sense for direction... has nothing to say... thinks he's a director because he directed a movie... has no fucking idea why the original is a great movie, and why his movie stinks like cow shit. And who produced this pile of shit? My favorite Enemy, Eli Roth, the director of the original! How money-grubbing can one man be? How blind can one man be, not seeing that everything about the idea of remaking a 14-year-old cult classic is WRONG, WRONG, FUCKING WRONG??? People who still tell me that "Cabin Fever 2" sucks... fuck you, you haven't seen this piece of dick.

1.
Roland Emmerich's
INDEPENDENCE DAY: RESURGENCE (USA, 2016)

This was the movie that broke me this year. I mean, like really broke. Well, maybe not broke... it actually changed me... well, not me, but my going-to-the-movies behavior. Earlier this year, I already began to unlike, un-enjoy in-cinema-experiences, went to the movies less and less because of too many rude idiot people who can't behave during a movie, who talk nonstop or who constantly play with their goddamn phone.
But Emmerich's unnecessary garbage sequel of ID 4 taught me a few other things, which made me decide to go to the movies only if I really, really, REALLY wanna see the movie, and not just because it could be good maybe.

1. Don't trust Nostalgia. If it was good in the 90s, it doesn't mean that it's still good, or still works in the twenty-tens, at least not when you remake, sequelize, prequelize etc. it.
2. If a once successful director after a string of box office bombs suddenly decides to make a sequel to his most successful movie... be suspsicious. Be VERY suspicious
3. Hell, just don't trust Roland Emmerich anymore. Since 1998 pretty much all of his movies sucked. No need to get excited for any of his new projects.
4. If Will Smith doesn't want to be in a, erm, potential hit sequel... trust him! He's doing the right thing.
5. Get excited for a sequel only when Denis Villeneuve is attached to the project.

I love the original "Indepence Day" and thought the sequel could be fun. Well, in the end, I hated "Independence Day: Resurgence" so fucking much, I left the movie theater after 70-80 minutes because I couldn't stand it anymore.
I just couldn't. This movie is as fun as a deadly disease, as fun as rape, as fun as Donald Trump. A big bucket of vomit, that's what this crap is.

---

I hope you had fun reading my poetic outbursts ;)))
See you soon!



06 January 2017

Maynard's TOP 25 BEST MOVIES OF 2016

Hey and Happy New Year!

Here are my Top 25 favorite movies I've seen in 2016. For the very first time in Diary-history, I had to combine Horror and Non-Horror because... well, this was such an awful year for Horror, I wasn't even able to compile a Top 10 Best-of-Horror list.

Oh, one more thing: if you think 2016 was bad, beware, 2017 sure will be even worse. Just sayin'...

25.
James DeMonaco's
THE PURGE: ELECTION YEAR
USA, 2016

Not as great as its predecessor "Anarchy", but still a cool and highly entertaining new entry in the "Purge" franchise. Can't wait for the planned 4th part + TV series!





24.

Stephan Rick's
DIE DUNKLE SEITE DES MONDES (a.k.a "The Dark Side of the Moon")
Germany / Luxembourg (2015)

Cool adaptation of the novel of the same name by Swiss bestseller author Martin Suter. If you haven't read the book beforehand, you might not dig it that much though.




23.
Florian Gallenberger's
COLONIA DIGNIDAD (a.k.a "Colonia")
Germany / Luxembourg / France 2015

Superb thriller about the infamous violent torture colony of the same name in Chile. Although largely a German production, it actually (and surprisingly) feels more like an American production.





22.
David Hartman's
PHANTASM: RAVAGER
USA, 2016

Although us Phans had to wait almost 20(!) years phor a new Phantasm Philm (we almost gave up waiting), and despite the phact that Don Coscarelli didn't direct this time, "Ravager" ended up as a very satisphying and heart-warming new (and phinal?) phanchise entry, and phor whatever reason, I liked it even more than I expected.


21.
Arnaud des Pallières'
ORPHELINE (a.k.a "Orphan")
France, 2016

Dark, heavy and very emotional portrait of a young woman over a period of more than two decades. Next to the 4(!) different actresses who geniusly portray the woman, we also get a wonderful Gemma Arterton who delivers a performance that reminded me a lot of Isabelle Huppert.



20.
Jeremy Saulnier's
GREEN ROOM
USA, 2015

Almost as great as Saulnier's previous movie "Blue Ruin", a brutal and stunningly thrilling shocker. Very authentic when it comes to depict modern punk rock bands and neo-nazis, and holy shit, Patrick Stewart as neo-nazi leader is just wow!




19.
Terrence Malick's
KNIGHT OF CUPS
USA, 2015

2016 was my Malick year. For the first time in my life, I watched 5 of his movies. I liked 4 of them, including this one. Yes, it's weird, yes, it makes not much sense, but somehow Malick managed to mesmerize me with thousands of insanely awesome images and an armada of stellar actors.



18.
Park Chan-wook's
AH-GA-SSI (a.k.a "The Handmaiden")
South Korea, 2016

It's as gorgeous and pretty as all of Chan-wook's movie, but it's also incredibly funny, unbelievably sexy, at times super-tense, at times super-emotional, and it delivers one of the most shocking plot twists in history, not kidding!




17.
James Vanderbilt's
TRUTH
Australia / USA, 2015

I had no expectations going into this and basically watched it only because of Cate Blanchett a.k.a the most beautiful woman in the world. In the end, the movie was brilliant and told me some super-interesting stuff about a real-life scandal I haven't heard anything about!



16.
David F. Sandberg's
LIGHTS OUT
USA, 2016

So simple, so unoriginal, and yet, so unbelievably powerful and effective. Far better than the short film it's based on, and also so much better than anything James Wan has produced over the last few years. Bonus point for the super-short tuntime!




15.
Antonin Svoboda's
DREI EIER IM GLAS (=Three Eggs in a Glass)
Austria, 2015

9 years after "Immer nie am Meer", IMO one of the greatest Austrian comedies of all time, the second collaboration between director Svoboda and Austrian/German comedians Stermann, Grissemann and Strunk - and, yes, it made me laugh... a lot! Weird story, strange characters, but it's all so absolutely hilarious!


14.
Thomas Vinterberg's
KOLLEKTIVET (a.k.a "The Commune")
Denmark / Sweden / Netherlands, 2016

Since "Jagten", Danish director Vinterberg is on a real roll, shooting one great movie after the other. This is no exception. Compelling and at times quite depressing drama with many great actors, splendid dialogue and at least one scene that made me cry hard.



13.
Sean Baker's
TANGERINE
USA, 2015

In terms of the extremely kick-ass soundtrack, this is pretty much the "The Guest" of 2016. A surpisingly amusing and also quite riveting tour-de-force that feels a bit like a Larry Clark movie... if Larry Clark had a heart and at least 2-3 emotions. 




12.
Yorgos Lanthimos'
THE LOBSTER
Greece / Ireland / Netherlands / UK / France, 2015

Greece's weirdest director at the moment delivers one of the weirdest movies of the year. The first half is ridiculously weird and imaginative. The second half isn't that imaginative, but far, far weirder. And the ending is a real shocker, damn!



11.
Henry Joost & Ariel Schuman's
NERVE
USA, 2016

Considering my mega-low expectations, this freaking little flick rocked my world so fucking hard, I'm still gobsmacked. Simple story, simple concept, but executed in such a thrilling, stylish and really powerful way. More of that!




10.
Guillaume Nicloux'
THE END
France, 2016

The first of two Nicloux movies on this list. Depardieu, alone and lost in the forests. Very artsy and mystical, definitely not for everyone (my friend Christian hated the fuck out of it), but I completely fell in love with it. Enigmatic and eerie from start to finish. Yay!



9.
Edward Zwick's
PAWN SACRIFICE
USA / Canada, 2016

The severly underrated (and underused) Tobey Maguire as the greatest chess player of all time, Bobby Fischer, during that 70s phase where he almost lost his marbles. Strong performances, tight direction, and yes, Chess CAN be thrilling as hell.




8.
Marcus Dunstan's
THE NEIGHBOR
USA, 2016

Never mind the horrible "The Collection", here's the Marcus Dunstan I fell in love with it back in 2009 when he unleashed his insane "The Collector". His new film might be pretty unoriginal, but it's so incredibly well-directed and so unbelievably suspenseful and frightening, I'm at a loss for words.



7.
Stephen Frears'
FLORENCE FOSTER JENKINS
UK, 2016

No other movie this year has made me laugh AND cry so fucking hard like this absolutely wonderful gem of a movie. Entertaining, hilarious, touching and sad at the very same time. And holy fuck, Hugh Grant delivers an unexpectedly amazing performance that is totally Oscar-worthy.



6.
Guillaume Nicloux'
VALLEY OF LOVE
France / Belgium, 2015

The second Nicloux movie on this list. Two of the greatest French actors of all time united in a strangely spiritual and slightly spooky two-men show, at times funny, at times very sad, but most of the time just captivating, mesmerising and deeply fascinating.



5.
Tom McCarthy's
SPOTLIGHT
USA / Canada, 2015

A remarkable movie about journalism, pedophilia, the power of the media and the even bigger power of the church. Excellent cast, excellently written and directed, excellently paced and executed. "Spotlight" totally deserves the two Oscars, though, if you ask me, it should have gotten a couple more.



4.
Dan Trachtenberg's
10 CLOVERFIELD LANE
USA, 2016

It came out of nowhere and completely flabbergasted us all: a new Cloverfield movie (well, kinda), not just far better than the 2008 movie, but also one of the best, most intense, most suspenseful one-location movies in a very long time, including a fantastic powerhouse performance by John Goodman who manages to be even scarier than in "Barton Fink".


3.
Jan P. Matuszynski's
OSTATNIA RODZINA (a.k.a "The Last Family")
Poland, 2016

I know and like the works of  Zdzisław Beksiński, but I had no idea about his life and family... until now. And omg, I daresay: what a life! This is the greatest family portrait I have ever seen in my life including one of the most realistic plane crash scenes I have ever seen, one of the most bizarre failed-suicide scenes I have ever seen and one of the most gruesome end scenes I have ever seen. Masterpiece.

2.
Maren Ade's
TONI ERDMANN
Germany / Austria / Romania, 2016

Believe the hype: this movie really is as awesome as everyone says. A 160-minute long monster of a movie about a lonely retiree who tries to bring joy into the life of his lonely, hard-working daughter. At no time boring or lame, always compelling and fascinating, most of the time very, very funny, at times depressing and sad, weird and inexplicable. There are at least two scenes that will make you cry, and there are also at least two absolutely incredibly never-seen-anything-like-it scenes that will make you laugh so frigging hard, you will never ever think again that Germans and Austrians are unfunny bastards. Masterpiece.

1.
Denis Villeneuve's
ARRIVAL
USA, 2016

Denis Villeneuve's previous four movies "Incendies", "Prisoners", "Enemy" and "Sicario" were all absolutely incredible - however, this one is even more incredible. Next to "Under the Skin", the greatest science fiction movie of the last twenty years. Packed to the brim with the most beautiful images I've ever seen, delivering the most intelligent, most intellectual sci-fi dialogue since the golden 70s era. Top-notch acting, fully satisfying special effects, an eargasmic musical score, breathtaking cinematography and... damn, at no time I was able to predict how this movie would end. Goddamit, I'm so pumped for "Blade Runner 2049". Masterpiece.



Next Week:
Top 25 Worst Movies of 2016

Thanks for reading! :)





Total Pageviews

:-)

:-)