10 Worst Movies of 2009

Thursday, December 31, 2009 at 4:10 pm
By Shane Rivers

This is my list of the 10 worst movies of 2009. Sure, I know most people are doing top 10 lists dedicated to quality films, but I wanted to veer away from the pack a bit. Don’t worry, though, as we’ll still be posting a few such lists in the coming days.

In the meantime, take a look at this selection of films deemed the worst of the year. Maybe the acting resembled a high school talent show, or maybe the script had less direction than a broken compass. Whatever the reason, only a masochist could view these pictures and come away as anything other than nauseous.

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Proceed with caution. Here there be stinkers…

The Pink Panther 2 – I like Steve Martin, I really do. For years, he entertained audiences with bizarre comedic gems such as The Jerk and The Man with Two Brains. Then he started to grow as an actor, and that gave us Planes, Trains & Automobiles and Parenthood. Then, somewhere in 2005, Martin must’ve received a sharp blow to the head. That’s around the time that filming started on Pink Panther, the remake of the Peter Sellers comedy classic. Despite awful reviews and the suicide of numerous film critics, the film managed to make money and spawn a sequel, just as Satan will spawn the Antichrist. With an outrageously silly accent designed to make 5-year-olds laugh and Frenchmen red-faced with anger, Martin throws comedic subtlety to the wind and creates a film that’ll stink for centuries. Sadly, actors such as Jeremy Irons, Jean Reno and Alfred Molina also get sucked down into the muck. Pink Panther 2 grossed just over $82 million, and a third film is being planned. Now where did I put that noose?

Madea Goes to Jail – Words can’t even begin to describe the horror of watching writer/director/star Tyler Perry dressed in a fat suit and wig, delivering such sassy lines as “Hell to the yeah,” and “I’m Madea! Ma to the damn D-E-A!” Sure, there’s a whole other plot about a prostitute turning her life around and other such soap opera fodder, but Madea’s raw sass overshadows the rest of the proceedings. Whether she’s dishing out blunt homespun wisdom to fellow inmates or butting heads with Dr. Phil and Judge Mathis, Madea is about as obnoxious a movie character as you’ll ever find. Based on the play of the same name, which just proves that Hell has a burgeoning theater district, Madea Goes to Jail managed a gross revenue of over $109 million.

Miss March – Trevor Moore and Zach Cregger, two of the comics behind television’s The Whitest Kids U’ Know, try their hand at the movies. Don’t quit your day job, guys. Miss March is a listless comedy about a guy who wakes from a four year coma to find his girlfriend is now a Playboy Playmate. He and his best bud hit the road on the way to the Playboy mansion, getting into a predictable series of misadventures along the way. While Miss March is more irritating than funny, Hugh Hefner also puts in a cameo and gives the film a sudden, unintentional creep factor. Looking like a corpse jacked up on Viagra, Hef has long since lost the ability to project cool, and there’s something inherently eerie about a man in his eighties banging 20-year-olds. For once, the American moviegoing public got it right, as the film had a gross revenue of just over $4 million.

The Informers – Featuring a killer soundtrack from ‘80s legends like Simple Minds and Wang Chung, The Informers also stars such notable performers as Billy Bob Thornton, Kim Basinger, Mickey Rourke, Winona Ryder and Brad Renfro (in his final performance). None of that matters, as the film is lacking any semblance of emotion or depth. Worth of all, it’s just plain boring. As the self-absorbed characters go about their business in 1980’s Los Angeles, there’s absolutely no reason to care if they live, die or suddenly grow wings and ascend into the heavens. If you want a quality Bret Easton Ellis film adaptation, try Less Than Zero or American Psycho; The Informers is not what you’re looking for. Quickly disappearing after a limited release, it grossed a pitiful $300,000 at theaters.

Terminator Salvation – The special effects look great, but that’s about the only positive thing I can say about this so-called “summer blockbuster.” Despite all his hype, Aussie actor Sam Worthington couldn’t save this film from being anything more than a B-grade sci-fi dud with a bloated $200 million budget. Christian Bale spends most of his time growling lines in a Batman voice, and Anton Yelchin plays young Kyle Reece with about as much masculine bravado as the average RuPaul performance. Oh, and don’t forget Reece’s traveling companion, a mute kid with wacky hair and the irritating ability to produce helpful gadgets like, well, Batman. The plot makes no sense, the action is less-than-groundbreaking, and director McG may have managed to finally kill off the franchise. It’s pretty sad when a movie makes you long for the acting prowess of Arnold Schwarzenegger. The film grossed $372 million, but keep that $200 budget in mind (as well as the undoubtedly outrageous advertising expenses).

The Girlfriend Experience – Porn star Sasha Grey takes a break from the adult film industry and tries her hand at real acting in director Steven Soderbergh’s experimental film about a high-class prostitute. As someone who routinely gets slapped in the face with real-life penises, you’d think Grey would be more convincing. She’s not, however, and the entire production collapses under her drab performance and the lack of a compelling storyline. Looks like it’s time for Soderbergh to direct Ocean’s Fifteen. Shot on a budget of $1.3 million, it went on to gross only $677,439, but at least it gave Grey a chance to rest her vaginal muscles.

Imagine That – Eddie Murphy, the former comedy genius now on total cruise control, stars in this fantasy film about a workaholic dad, his adorable daughter, and a magic blanket named “Goo-Gaa.” Yawn. Audiences felt the same way, as the $55 million movie grossed just over $16 million. Still, expect another one of these paint-by-number family films from Murphy in the near future. God, Beverly Hills Cop seems like a hundred years ago.

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen – The original was bad enough, but director Michael Bay really outdid himself with the sequel. Paper-thin characters fight alongside boring robots, and the camera shakes so much that you’ll have trouble telling one from the other. Megan Fox gives a boner-inducing performance, but most the audience reaction will be saved up for cheap laughs like a small dog humping a larger one or a middle-aged woman getting stoned on marijuana-laced brownies. Guaranteed to kill off brains cells at an alarming rate, it went on to gross over $834 million. After reading that last part, I think I just threw up in my mouth.

Halloween II – No list of the 10 worst movies of 2009 would be complete without watching Rob Zombie dig up John Carpenter’s Halloween franchise and anally rape it on the screen. Dr. Loomis is reduced to a sleazy attention whore, Laurie Strode has become a cutter, and Michael Myers has been backpacking across America for the past year. And let’s not even get into the whole thing with the white horse, basically just an excuse for Zombie to get his hot-yet-untalented wife into the film. Poor Brad Dourif. The film grossed just over $37 million on a budget of $15, and a sequel has already been announced.

I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell – You just know a film’s going to be bad when people are picketing theaters and accusing it of promoting rape culture. And if you think sleeping with drunk chicks constitutes rape, Tucker Max must hold the title of King of the Rapists. When he’s not acting like a complete asshole…wait…he acts like an asshole throughout the entire film. I’m betting most of us know jerks like Tucker Max in real life (by the way, Tucker Max is a real guy), so why would you pay to see it? While the book this film was based on was a best-seller, the movie didn’t fare nearly as well. On a budget of $7 million, it grossed just under $1.5 million. I’m sure women everywhere will be going out and getting drunk in celebration…and then getting banged by Tucker Max.

Those are my picks for the 10 worst movies of 2009. There were plenty of worthy contenders, but I felt these dreadful flicks really stood out. Wanna argue about it? Be sure to post your thoughts in our comments section.