Director:George Lucas Starring:Liam Neeson, Ewan McGregor, Natalie Portman, Jake Lloyd, Ian McDiarmid, Samuel L. Jackson, Frank Oz, Kenny Baker, Anthony Daniels, Ahmed Best
Disappointed Cinema Fans In:1999
Is it possible for anything other than The Phantom Menace to claim the top spot here?
To state the bloody obvious, the original Star Wars trilogy were among the finest motion pictures released during the '70s and '80s. Masterfully crafted, well-plotted, brimming with emotionality and bursting with cutting-edge special effects that hold up to this day, George Lucas' movies were genre miracles. It's a shame, then, that Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace is a mind-numbing, incoherent mess that feels like it was written by an 8-year-old for 8-year-olds. Admittedly, I liked this movie when I was 8, but I grew up and recognised the flaws. Would you like me to list them?
1) Who is the protagonist? Who is the one main character for us to relate to? Who are we supposed to care about? There's absolutely no-one to latch onto. Anakin isn't introduced until about halfway into the film, so it can't be him. Also, characterisations are sorely lacking, and they were a staple of the original trilogy? Every character here is surface-level, boring, and unmemorable.
2) There are inconsistencies, and the script is SO lazy. When George Lucas couldn't be arsed to conceive of a clever a way for the Jedi to escape some droids at the beginning, he gave them the power to run super-fast. Yet, that ability never comes up again. Not even when Obi Wan is trying to save Qui Gon from Darth Maul. Now that's an opportune moment to use your super fast running skills...
3) I could keep going on and on about how fucking horrible the entire narrative structure is, but I'll move on. The dialogue is terrible. It's cringe-worthy. Don't even try to dispute that. It's dumb background noise, and the characters sound extremely dumb as they spout it all.
4) The acting. Every performer is a hollow cipher who never evokes any emotion, and seems as if they're reading off a cue card. Even Samuel L. Jackson is a groaning bore. When Samuel L. Motherfucking Jackson is boring, something is gravely wrong.
5) FOUR FUCKING CONFLICTS INTERCUT TOGETHER DURING THE CLIMAX! What a terrible creative decision. I mean, how are we supposed to care about FOUR conflicts and the different emotions associated with each? In the course of like a minute, we go from emotional to upbeat to downright slapstick. What the fuck?
6) Did I mention this movie fucking sucks?
7) Three words: Jar Jar Binks.
I'd mention the entire prequel trilogy here, but it doesn't seem worth the effort. They all suck. Imagine they're on here.
Disappointment Meter: Fucking HIGH RED!
And now I ask that you watch the following 70-minute video review, because it points out all of the flaws in this film and highlights that it makes no sense.
Director:Joel Schumacher Starring:George Clooney, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Chris O'Donnell, Uma Thurman, Alicia Silverstone, Michael Gough
Disappointed Cinema Fans In:1997
Maybe after the mediocre Batman Returns people did not have high hopes for this movie, but, considering the brilliance of Batman '89 and Batman Returns, I had hoped this movie would save the franchise. But it failed oh-so-miserably. Do I really need to sit here and explain to you why this film sucks? I shouldn't have to.
As you may or may not know, Warner Bros. wanted a Batman movie that opened up tremendous merchandising opportunities. Yeah, Batman & Robin did just that, but what else did it do?
It killed the Batman series and left it dead for 8 years
It gave film-goers a solid example to bring up when discussing the worst comic book movies ever.
It turned George Clooney against a movie he was in. Seriously, he said he'd give people ticket refunds.
It caused physical pain to whoever watched it.
Batman & Robin is hindered by atrocious acting (Arnie even received top billing), cheesy writing and dreadful plotting. The film proceeds with less logic than an essay written by a duck, and it's beset with moments so embarrassing you'll wonder if anyone working on the film had any dignity. Topping this off, it's just badly made.
But it gets worse. There are bat nipples, bat ice-skates, bat crotch-shots, Arnold as Mr. Freeze with ice puns, Alicia Silverstone, and Uma Thurman camping it up. Every scene in this movie is a litany of suck.
When I saw this film as a kid, I almost cried when I saw a dog being frozen. That was all I cared about. A dog. A dog that appeared for less than 5 seconds in total. I didn't care about the characters, the plot, what was at stake... No, I cared about a little dog.
Draw your own conclusions from that.
Disappointment Meter: Definitely high in the red area...
Director:John G. Avildsen Starring:Sylvester Stallone, Talia Shire, Burt Young, Sage Stallone, Burgess Meredith, Tommy Morrison
Disappointed Cinema Fans In:1990
Okay, so I'll admit it: I don't believe anyone thought Rocky V would be a good movie in the first place. But the previous two sequels, while in service of outright formula, were at least fun in an '80s action movie kind of way. One would at least hope for something like that here. Another colourful opponent, another few cheesy '80s songs... Is that too much to ask? Apparently, it is.
Rocky V is not fun. It's not uplifting. It's not inspiring. It utterly fails as a drama, and it fails as a Rocky movie.
Let's break the shit-heap down to a few basic points
- Rocky is never in the ring
- Some new character is in the ring while Rocky COACHES?!
- Rocky loses his insurmountable fortune in a contrived plotline that boils down to Paulie mismanaging their finances. They put PAULIE in charge of their finances? WTF?!
- Unlike all other Rocky movies, #5 is dark and depressing throughout, with absolutely NO redeeming payoff at the end
- Rocky more or less ignores his son throughout the entire movie and makes his whole entire world centred around some stupid punk named Tommy Gunn (WTF?!) and his boxing legacy. Rocky is reduced to a pathetic shell of himself, living vicariously through this new punk boxer while his son - who is hurt and confused - stands by, understandably jealous of them. A Rocky movie should NEVER be this depressing.
- The climax? A contrived street brawl. *yawn*
- The film tried to bring the character full circle and return Rocky to a life of poverty in order to bring the character back to his roots... Which is why it's so wrong. What's the point of the whole series if everything is undone at the end of it? Jesus Christ!
In a 2008, Sylvester Stallone told BBC interviewer Jonathan Ross that if asked to rate Rocky V himself, he would give it a zero. Sounds about right to me.
Thank God Stallone made a sixth movie, and thank God he did it right that time.
Director:Roland Emmerich Starring:Matthew Broderick, Jean Reno, Maria Pitillo, Hank Azaria, Kevin Dunn, Michael Lerner, Harry Shearer
Disappointed Cinema Fans In:1998
The studio began promoting the crap out of Godzilla a year before its release, beginning with a teaser trailer that had people very excited. The studio then hyped the crap out of it with everything from action figures, music videos and publicity all over the fucking place. On top of the promising marketing campaign, the idea of the Independence Day team (the kings of all that was big, dumb, & fun) taking on the classic Japanese character was very promising. How could you miss?
Everyone thought it'd be the biggest hit of the summer and better than Independence Day... instead, this mammothly stupid, unfunny, unremarkable stinker made a lot of great actors (like Matthew Broderick, Jean Reno and Hank Azaria) look foolish. Its special effects have dated badly, and the filmmakers couldn't handle the necessity when it comes to monster movies: likable, compelling protagonists, and suspense. Look at Jaws - shark was fake, but the tension was unbearable, and the characters were thoroughly likable. Why oh why couldn't someone have retooled the script for this one? As it stands, it's just a disappointment.
You couldn't go anywhere in America during the first five months of 1998 and not see the film's logo, poster, or both staring at you from a bus, store window or a TV screen. The relentless hype was so obnoxious, deafening and persistent, it was something of a relief that the film stunk and was out of theaters quickly.
Director:Tim Burton Starring:Johnny Depp, Freddie Highmore, David Kelly, Helena Bonham Carter, Noah Taylor, Missi Pyle
Disappointed Cinema Fans In:2005
I've come to accept the fact that reactions for Charlie and the Chocolate Factory are decidedly mixed, with mainstream critics adoring it and an audience reaction that was rather positive back in '05. Honestly, I thought I was alone when I left the theatre underwhelmed. No-one seemed to agree with me. But here we are many years later, and over the internet people seem to use this film as an example of Tim Burton fucking something up (look at a lot of Alice in Wonderland critiques). Well, what do you know? I saw its flaws back in '05, and over time they've proved to be shared by more than a few. Glad I'm not alone.
First of all, let's lay down why it was meant to be great. For starters, it's TIM BURTON, ladies and gentlemen. It's also another Burton/Depp collaboration. This alone should've guaranteed it success. Shame it didn't.
Where to begin...
- Sorry, but Freddie Highmore was more annoying than endearing. I didn't feel much for the kid...
- Arm-chair psychology? Really? I don't understand why about 20 fucking minutes are dedicated to revealing Wonka's background and childhood, thus sapping the fascinating enigma from his past.
- Pacing problems. After the film left the chocolate factory, it runs out of gas... But, obnoxiously, it keeps going on and on and on. It just becomes a long-in-the-tooth drag.
- They didn't include Charlie having the fizzy drink? In the original film (which, oddly, is inferior) it made Charlie more human. What a terrible idea to exclude this...
All you need to know is: this movie sucks, but the visuals are good and Depp is a good Willy Wonka.
Director:Joe Alves Starring:Dennis Quaid, Bess Armstrong, Simon MacCorkindale, Louis Gossett Jr., John Putch, Lea Thompson
Disappointed Cinema Fans In:1983
1975's Jaws was great, and Steven Spielberg was rightfully catapulted to an incredibly long, rewarding career. The 1978 follow-up Jaws 2 was suspenseful fun, handled by a competent director. However, this time the producers hired a production designer named Joe Alves to direct Jaws 3, and decided to do the movie in 3-D. WTF?!?!
Not many people expected this to be good, sure, but it could have at least been watchable. Instead the shark attacks are laughably phoney, the dialogue is risible, the characters are wooden, and the effects are a constant source of amusement. Plus, the coincidence that the Brody offspring are still terrorised by a huge, monster-sized shark - even after relocating to Florida - is impossible to swallow. Astonishingly, the screenplay was penned by original Jaws scenarist Carl Gottlieb and respected novelist Richard Matheson. It's a shame both were either asleep or drunk while writing the script.
Since Jaws 3, Dennis Quaid has featured in a plethora of bad movies, but even he seems keen to scrub this title from his résumé - when asked about the film many years later, he reportedly replied "I was in Jaws what? Aw, I was drunk".
The special effects are a constant source of amusement, with incredibly fake mechanical sharks and awful computer representations of them. It's baffling, but with each subsequent film, the shark looks faker than ever before. Shouldn't the effects be increasing rather than declining? Shouldn't the always-improving cinematic technology be rendering more believable sharks? The 35-foot Great White in this film never looks real - it looks stiffer than concrete, it's incredibly slow, and appears to have a fucking tongue. In addition, the shark growls at times. Even more hysterical is the shark's amazing ability to swim in reverse or swim on the spot!
At least Roy Scheider had the good sense to call it quits after #2.
Director:Walter Hill Starring:Eddie Murphy, Nick Nolte, Brion James, Kevin Tighe, Ed O'Ross, David Anthony Marshall, Andrew Divoff
Disappointed Cinema Fans In:1990
I adored the original 48 Hrs. It was a solid merger of comedy and action, with the ideal duo of Nick Nolte and Eddie Murphy, who played off one another superbly. Their well-scripted and usually humorous interactions practically made the movie. Thus, when the sequel came down the pipeline, expectations were high. Surely the fact it took them so long to make it, and that they went through so many writers to get the thing right, would have ensured an instant winner.
What an unfortunate, disappointing travesty.
Another 48 Hrs is a comedy-action movie heavy on the action but without the comedy. There are no witty lines, the relationship between Murphy and Nolte is dull, the plot has been reduced to conventional nonsense, and the villains aren't in the least bit memorable. Even the performances were half-hearted, as if everyone involved slept-walk throughout production for the sake of their paycheck. Ughhhh.
Director:Gore Verbinski Starring:Johnny Depp, Geoffrey Rush, Orlando Bloom, Keira Knightley, Jack Davenport, Bill Nighy, Jonathan Pryce
Disappointed Cinema Fans In:2007
At World's End picks up where Dead Man's Chest left off; furthering the pursuit of the East India Trading Company to eradicate all pirates, Will and Elizabeth's communication failure, Jack's death and rebirth, and the return of Barbossa. But that's not enough to justify an almost three-hour runtime! Instead of settling for simplicity with a few neat twists and turns like the first film, this second sequel is a jumbled, incoherent mess of unclear loyalties, cumbersome exposition and bad humour.
As if there wasn't enough going on already in the film, the film introduces even more useless plot threads: romantic entanglements concerning Davy Jones and a voodoo princess Tia Dalma, the madness of Jack Sparrow (resulting in some awful, meandering scenes with multiple Jacks), and Elizabeth's newfound pirate power. If a lot of this was removed, At World's End would've been easier to digest. But spread it out over 170 minutes, and it becomes numbing and infuriating. Perhaps on Jack's next adventure he could sail to the end of the world to locate more judicious screenwriters.
Another unfortunate mistake is the decision to remove the fun element and sail into far darker waters. The first Pirates was a fun, breezy adventure I'd happily watch again. With its massive runtime, this third film feels like a chore rather than a rollicking good time.
The biggest problem with blockbuster filmmakers is that they don't realise that bigger is not always better. At World's End is overblown and overstuffed with special effects, but it's not as exciting or enjoyable as the $30 million Rogue. I'd even sooner watch Ben Affleck's low budget Gone Baby Gone...
Huge disappointment. And it leaves room for more sequels. Great, 170 minutes of meandering around and it's still not over?!
Director:The Wachowski Brothers Starring:Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, Carrie-Anne Moss, Hugo Weaving, Harold Perrineau, Jada Pinkett Smith
Disappointed Cinema Fans In:2003
I would write something more detailed here. But Prelude did a far better job than I'll ever do:
"It seems like the Wachowski brothers, after being pressured to turn the masterpiece 'The Matrix' into a trilogy, got a bunch of stoned dropouts to write up the script ideas for them. Wow, what a let down.
To sum it up, its just some stupid crap about Neo being superman flying around, fighting off a thousand mr. smiths in a pathetic obvious CG-whore-fest, jumping around on bikes and trucks, lots of explosions, some drivel about a 'keymaster', some drivel about the oracle, some drivel about love between neo and trinity, and some fighting in some weird nightclub. that's all i remember. plot? who needs that when making a sequel to a blockbuster film.
The only good thing about this movie is that it isn't Matrix Revolutions."
Director:The Wachowski Brothers Starring:Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, Carrie-Anne Moss, Hugo Weaving, Harold Perrineau, Jada Pinkett Smith
Disappointed Cinema Fans In:2003
2003 was the year for epic trilogies to come to an end. Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King demonstrated the correct way for a trilogy to end. Meanwhile, The Matrix Revolutions showed us how it shouldn't be done.
The problems with the film are easy enough to pinpoint. It's pretentious (we're expected to approach this film with the same solemnity that the directors did). The action is hackneyed (the slo-mo martial arts stuff was neat the first time, but the Wachowskis fail to come up with anything genuinely new or innovative to enhance or improve upon it). The pacing is uneven (the first hour is bogged down with talking and unnecessary exposition). And the payoff is dreadfully weak.
The line between special effects-focused blockbusters and computer games is shrinking, and The Matrix Revolutions further narrows the gap. All that's missing is a joystick on the theatre seat arm rest. The battle for Zion should be tense, but the obviousness of the computer generated animation during these sequences damages the ability to suspend disbelief. It doesn't feel like humanity's last stand, but instead a non-playable demo for a video game. The human element is limited to a few familiar faces rather than legitimate characters we actually care about.
Director:McG Starring:Christian Bale, Sam Worthington, Moon Bloodgood, Helena Bonham Carter, Anton Yelchin, Jadagrace, Bryce Dallas Howard
Disappointed Cinema Fans In:2009
The producer of The OC directed it. It was watered down for a PG-13. Christian Bale is John Connor. The warning signs were all there, yet some of us remained optimistic... Too bad the final result literally laughs in the faces of those expecting it to be good.
Terminator Salvation represents the commercialisation of the franchise - a dumbed-down, illogical action film that might as well have been Transformers 3. The filmmakers neglected to provide a fun, entertaining time. They also forgot about compelling characters and an interesting plot. The dialogue is atrocious as well. The acting is usually reprehensible, with Christian Bale unleashing his "Gotham Growl" in a boring manner. Arnold Schwarzenegger's much-discussed CGI cameo is hardly convincing; he looks like the product of a Pixar movie. Basically, those behind Terminator Salvation forgot everything except the special effects. What they failed to realise was that the charm of the first two Terminator movies lay in the writing and the acting.
The film plays out like a video game tie-in to the original franchise, and even proceeds with video game logic. It's set in 2018 when John Connor hasn't become the leader yet... So why has SkyNet been hunting Connor for years? He doesn't smash their defence grid until 2029, which is when SkyNet decides to send a T-800 back in time to terminate his mother. Moreover, how could SkyNet concoct an elaborate trap using Kyle Reese when it's impossible for the system to have any knowledge that he's Connor's father? And if SkyNet knew Reese was Connor's father, why not just kill him? Eventually Terminator Salvation culminates with an exhaustively moronic climax. To begin with, Connor frees a bunch of prisoners and tells them to run for "the transport ship". He has seemingly forgotten that he came alone on a Motorcyclenator and that there is no transport ship. Oops...
The terminator models are simply a joke in this film - there are Growlenators (seriously, the T-800s were growling), Throwenators (they just throw everything in sight instead of, ya know, killing their targets) and ready-for-humans-to-hijack Motorcyclenators. Adding insult to injury, there are even enormous machines which resemble the Transformers that stomped around in Michael Bay's cinematic abortion of a 2009 summer blockbuster. Couple this nonsense with the fact that one of these Transformer-type machines at one stage manages to silently sneak up on a group of humans...
Fuck you, movie.
Disappointment Meter: Mid-orange... Terminator 3 was pretty bad, and expectations were suitably tempered after McG signing on.
Director:Tony Scott Starring:Eddie Murphy, Judge Reinhold, John Ashton, Jürgen Prochnow, Ronny Cox, Brigitte Nielsen, Allen Garfield
Disappointed Cinema Fans In:1987
Come on, who doesn't love the original Beverly Hills Cop? It's one of those good fun movies you never get tired of, with fun characters, good humour and solid action. Axel Foley was destined to spawn his own series, and Beverly Hills Cop II soon confirmed these suspicions. However, where the original movie was clever and fun, this sequel is just fucking awful.
New director Tony Scott was more comfortable handling the action and less comfortable with dialogue + humour. Hence, Beverly Hills Cop II is a disappointing action puff piece with precious little comedy. Scott places the emphasis on a darker shade of violence too, which is positioned awkwardly with the witty dialogue and localised satire.
Especially with an unnecessarily convoluted and uninvolving plot, it's hard not to be disappointed with Beverly Hills Cop II. Action fans may enjoy it as a mere action film, but fans of the original will yearn for the appeal that made the predecessor so much damn fun.
Disappointment Meter: Mid-red. Beverly Hills Cop deserved a much better sequel than this.
Director:Judd Apatow Starring:Adam Sandler, Seth Rogen, Leslie Mann, Eric Bana, Jonah Hill, Jason Schwartzman, Aubrey Plaza
Disappointed Cinema Fans In:2009
Wow, Adam Sandler and Judd Apatow? One would logically think that a combo like that would guarantee a terrific comedy to rule them all. Shame it sucks.
Clearly, Funny People was an attempt by Apatow to be taken seriously as a filmmaker. He decided to dial down some of the comedy in favour of something deeper... More of a drama. Problem is, his drama sucks. The movie is a drama-comedy that's not touching, amusing or even entertaining. It may be the most accurate representation of stand-up comedians (according to several critics), but that means nothing if the movie is an unsufferable bore.
The main problem is the length and unfocused script. The first half is moderately serviceable. A bit dull, but nonetheless it had potential. Instead of capitalising on this potential, the narrative becomes a conventional tale of a man struggling for the love of his former flame. It's boring and flat.
Judd Apatow's movies (even those he produces) are frequently crippled by their needlessly long runtimes and general self-indulgence. Funny People is no different - it meanders around a number of plotlines before seemingly ending at random; aware it has exhausted its audiences' tolerance for Apatow's trademark excess. Believe it or not, the running time of Funny People exceeds the extended editions of both The 40-Year-Old Virgin and Knocked Up by around 10 minutes, and there's more that could have been added. Some connective tissue appears absent (like the explanation of why Laura, who is irritated and dismissive during earlier conversations with George, agrees to see him upon learning he's dying - and it's a mystery as to how she even finds out about his condition since there's no public announcement). Funny People is a movie in desperate need of discipline.
In the case of Funny People, there's simply too much here for one movie. The plotting is unruly and flabby, as what seems to be a straightforward tale of morality and redemption becomes bogged down by unnecessary characters, formula and outright schmaltz. This isn't an inherently uninteresting or gruelling film (in fact the first hour is great), but the indefensible length turns a bold experiment into something that too often feels like an endurance contest.
Disappointment Meter: Orange somewhere. Though the cast was ideal, I was never foaming at the mouth in anticipation for it.
Director:Joe Johnston Starring:Sam Neil, William H. Macy, Téa Leoni, Alessandro Nivola, Trevor Morgan, Michael Jeter, John Diehl, Bruce A. Young, Laura Dern
Disappointed Cinema Fans In:2001
Steven Spielberg's 1993 blockbuster Jurassic Park was a masterpiece which brought dinosaurs to life on the big screen in a captivating action-adventure. The follow-up, The Lost World: Jurassic Park. was a fun ride, albeit no-where near as great as the original film. Jurassic Park III, however, is a disappointment of truly behemoth proportions.
This third film (for which Spielberg left the director's chair open for Jumanji's Joe Johnston) not only re-hashes the two previous instalments (hapless humans hunted by hungry dinosaurs) but does so with far less style and humanity. There's no build-up to the first appearance of the dinosaurs - they're suddenly there. Character interaction, meanwhile, is worse than perfunctory - it's virtually non-existent. Every action piece is staged in a generic fashion, leaving no room for suspense or tension. And the whole movie is over so fast (only about 80 minutes sans credits) that it hardly seems to have happened.
Worse, the film lacks a legitimate climax - it sort of ends with a big, deus ex machina bang. This is in keeping with the film's overall poor structure. It doesn't have much of a beginning, a middle, or an ending, causing me to wonder whether there was a finished script before filming started (apparently there wasn't).
Jurassic Park III is somewhat fun, but it lacks the excitement factor of the previous movies. This is just a generic action movie.
Disappointment Meter: Orange. Who expected a part 3 to be good, anyway?
Director:David Fincher Starring:Sigourney Weaver, Charles S. Dutton, Charles Dance, Paul McGann, Brian Glover, Ralph Brown, Danny Webb
Disappointed Cinema Fans In:1992
Alien 3 is generally perceived as the film which betrayed the Alien series, and it isn't difficult to understand why. Within minutes of this film, the happy ending of Aliens is ruined. Ripley awakens to discover that Newt - a little girl she risked everything to save in Aliens - is dead, along with the awesome character of Hicks. It's a huge "fuck you" to the fans. And as the film proceeds, it does not get much better.
There are a lot of problems with this film, but the worst is that it's simply dull and dreary; there's a lack of sympathetic characters, and the premise is unpleasant, as Ripley eventually discovers she has a queen alien growing inside of her. Since the supporting characters are cardboard cutouts, they seem like they're simply waiting to be picked off by the alien. The film can have a hundred long, dark hallways and tunnels, but if the audience isn't invested in the characters, there's nothing more to do than wait for the predictable conclusion to the scene.
It's hard to enjoy Alien 3. Whereas Aliens was a fun, action-packed adventure loaded with thrills, this third film is dull, predictable and poorly done.
Disappointment Meter: Red. Aliens was so perfect...
Director:Robert Zemeckis Starring:Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd, Lea Thompson, Thomas F. Wilson, Elisabeth Shue, James Tolkan
Disappointed Cinema Fans In:1989
I know, I know. I'm going to cop a little flack for including this on the list. I look around and everyone seems to like this flick... Except me. So I decided to poke around and grab quotes from a few reviews that summed up my feelings quite nicely.
"Effectively bridging the gap between the infinitely superior Parts I and III, Back To The Future Part II manages to repeat some of the finer moments of the first film (a 21st-century version of the skateboard chase, for example) with ease. However, some appalling make-up effects and a failure to empathise with the crowd-pleasing original make this a movie that's as unsatisfying as it is undeniably smart. [It's] an ambitious film that fails to recreate the warmth or excitment of the first Back To The Future. Fortunately, a rousing final chapter was just around the corner." - Film4
"The energy and heart which Robert Zemeckis and story-writing partner Bob Gale (who takes solo screenplay credit this time) poured into the ingenious story of part one is diverted into narrative mechanics and camera wizardry in Future II." - Variety
"But they have gone for narrative gymnastics rather than anything touching. "Future I," the smash hit of 1985, hit some timeless, almost classical human chords that resonated beyond its snappy plotline: Fox had to return to the past, make his mother fall in love with his nerdy father, and keep her from falling in love with her son-to-be. The suspense turned on character whims, not just whizz-kid storyboarding.
Here, the suspense consists of a cosmic chore." - Washington Post
Director:Susan Stroman Starring:Nathan Lane, Matthew Broderick, Uma Thurman, Will Ferrell, Gary Beach, Roger Bart, Eileen Essell
Disappointed Cinema Fans In:2005
First of all, The Producers was one of my most anticipated movies of 2005. In my opinion, 2005 was a fantastic year for movies. It saw the releases of Sin City, Munich, Serenity, Walk the Line, V For Vendetta, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, King Kong, The Proposition, Capote... If I was to choose my favourite year of the noughties, it would easily be 2005. With the year drawing to a close and all those movies having hit multiplexes, I had high expectations of The Producers. An ideal cast...a funny trailer... To quote a character, you can't miss!
Shame they did.
The Producers is 128 minutes of diluted, mostly-unfunny comedy interrupted by uninspired, unmemorable music. This sort of thing might work in front of a live audience in the form of a Broadway musical, but it falls apart on the big screen.
The film is a total bore. It takes the flaws of the 1968 production and exacerbates them by dragging out a story that already seems too long. And the musical numbers, rather than enhancing things, extend the proceedings without adding any substantial entertainment value.
Susan Stroman, who's highly respected and much lauded for her Broadway and off-Broadway work, made her film debut here, but came to the film with no real experience about what works on the screen, and it shows. Her actors emote like they're trying to reach a live audience. There's absolutely no sense of visual style. It just feels like a filmed version of the Broadway play, minus the charm. The movie sits on the screen and stagnates, and the overacting of Lane, Broderick, Ferrell, Beach, and Thurman is more often irritating than it is effective.
What a bitterly disappointing motion picture.
Disappointment Meter: Red
We all anticipated them... We all thought they'd rock. We figured it would be impossible for the filmmakers to fuck it up, but they did.
Please note that the notes I add may contain extracts from my reviews of these movies. I'm just using the relevant parts of my review to explain why it's so damn disappointing.
There are disappointment at three levels: RED: The highest. It's like getting a winning lottery ticket but finding out it's for $2. ORANGE: Medium. Expectations weren't mega high, but they were still disappointing. YELLOW: Mehhh. Expectations were reasonable, but the film couldn't even meet those.