With only ten days left to go of the year, Bloody Disgusting will now begin unrolling our year end pieces starting with Brian Collins’ (BC) Top and Bottom 10 films of 2009, with lists from Tex, David, Ryan and myself coming all this week. Below you’ll find BC’s list of the worst films of the year, with the best following shortly behind. Even with all of the garbage released, I’d say it was a pretty solid year for horror.
David Harley (Best/Worst) | Ryan Daley (Best/Worst)
BC’S BOTTOM 10 OF 2009
We as a people do not ask much from our Anaconda movies. Some folks show up in the jungle, there is some sort of conflict between them, and a snake that could care less eats most of them. But this thing can’t even deliver that much – the snake is largely MIA while the humans fight each other. Bullets kill more people than Anacondas do in this film, and despite their diminished screen presence, they look worse than ever (you’d think that if the CGI guys only had a couple of shots to do, they could make them look good. But no dice.) . Even by Sci-Fi Channel standards, this is one lazy and terrible movie.
Instead of summing up all of its problems, I want to give you a single example of how idiotic this movie is. At one point our revenge-seeking hit and run victim ties our heroine to the front of his car and drives around for a while (no one notices this). He parks in his own garage, and his wife eventually sees the girl and tries to call for help. So what does he do? He kills his wife. Because in this movie, that makes sense. Unfortunately it’s probably the smartest action any of the characters in this thing ever take.
You know why Vacancy worked? They put two A-list actors in the middle of a fairly routine survival horror movie and provided plausible reasons for them to remain in the motel. You know why Vacancy 2 sucks? They put kids we’ve seen in other shitty DTV horror movies in the exact same situation, except they seemingly travel around the entire city while eluding their would-be snuff film directors. They also saddle the heroine with being pregnant, which is shitty horror movie shorthand for “There is no way any harm will ever come to this girl”, rendering the flimsy attempts at suspense moot. The filmmakers also went out of their way to find a motel that looks exactly like the one in the first, except they say it’s not the same, which makes the movie confusing on top of being pointless.
The only good thing I can say about most of the movies on this list is that they were direct to video and thus weren’t asking you to spend 14 bucks to see them. Yet somehow Homecoming managed a limited theatrical release, which paid off with some press – Mischa Barton’s highly publicized meltdown caused her to miss the premiere. It’s still unconfirmed, however, if she realized that being thrown in a psych ward for 24 hrs was better than having to sit through this wholly boring and horror-free movie. It went out unrated, but I assume that’s because the MPAA was going to give it a PG and they were embarrassed. It’s Misery meets Fatal Attraction, minus all of the suspense, good writing, good acting, and any actual horror.
The first Wrong Turn was a 70s throwback, with little humor and an old-school city vs country theme. The 2nd was pure 80s splatter fun. So I guess in some way, Wrong Turn 3 is a success, as it delivers an early 90s style horror movie – bland, cheap-looking, and utterly pointless.
You know why this one was on the shelf for so long? Because it’s a boring, jaw-droppingly stupid pile of shit. Never in my life has my intelligence been insulted so many times in a single film. Although I did learn that there is “an art to a good convoy”, so there’s something. Please, Hollywood – stop paying Jake Wade Wall for his scripts.
This film started off as a remake of Terror Train. Somewhere along the line it became a bald-faced, logic-free ripoff of Hostel and Turistas. If you just need organs from these kids, why not drug them in their sleep? Why chase them around with axes and other giant blunt objects, subjecting them to attacks that could easily kill them? Oh right, because that would be “boring”. Unfortunately, boring is better than stupid.
Halfway through the film, I realized it was supposed to be a comedy. I still never laughed.
This one looked pretty bad from the start, but the trailer promised at least one cool scene – the Stepfather dangling a buzzsaw like a pendulum over a screaming Amber Heard, and then letting it fall. Well, the scene wasn’t in the movie. Neither was anything one could call “good”. In the end, the only purpose this movie serves is to redefine the term “unnecessary remake”, with JS Cardone’s script demonstrating a complete lack of both respect and understanding of the original film (note how he brings back the film’s most famous line – “Who am I here?” – without bringing in the actual context of him already having a new family in place). At least the teens were smart enough to sneak into Paranormal Activity or Zombieland instead.
The film that no one asked for is here! This in-name-only sequel tells the same sort of boring serial killer plot that the first one had, except instead of the amazing visuals, delivers budget CGI that pales in comparison to mid 90s CD-Rom games. I shit you not, at one point, our heroine (????, who makes Jennifer Lopez look like Meryl Streep) is menaced by the “Pipes” screensaver that came with Windows 95. Hands down one of the worst films I’ve ever seen in any year. When Mr. Disgusting gave me a copy to use as a raffle prize for a screening I was hosting, I drop kicked it into the street. Even for free I wouldn’t subject anyone to this fucking thing.
Dishonorable mentions: Blackout, While She Was Out, The Horsemen, Mutant Chronicles, Whiteout