We’re going to look at all kinds of lousy acting, from unintentionally funny to legendarily bad because, why not?
Marlon Brando and Musicals Don’t Mix.
When "Guys and Dolls" came out in 1955, Frank Sinatra was at his peak while Marlon Brando was a younger actor on the rise. While shooting the Broadway musical remake, Sinatra complained bitterly about Brando’s acting, and Brando was intentionally overacting in rehearsals to get under his skin.
Sinatra knew he could beat Brando with his vocal talent, and he did. His harmonious voice performance soared in stark contrast to Brando’s clumsy baritone. And Brando admits it. Talking about Guys and Dolls, he said once, “I couldn’t hit a note with a baseball bat. Some notes I missed by extraordinary margins.”
Colin Farrell’s "Alexander" is Not-So-Great
Before his father, King Phillip, is assassinated in the pivotal scene, Colin delivers this line with no emotion, not even trying to get the inflection right. Val Kilmer, as the king, pats him on the cheek as if not knowing what else to do with that line.
Oliver Stone’s historical epic had the potential to be great. If only Colin Farrell had stepped up his game. Even Farrell didn’t much like his performance. He said it was his worst role and that he brought too much of himself into it. He even revealed he wishes he could give it another shot.
Eddie Murphy Makes Fun of Himself for "The Adventures of Pluto Nash"
“'Pluto Nash,' that breaks me down, that breaks me down all the way.” When Eddie Murphy thinks of "The Adventures of Pluto Nash," it makes him break down and cry. This is what the comic genius says of his mortifying misstep on the silver screen.
It tanked painfully. Out of the ten biggest money losers of all time, Eddie Murphy’s movie is placed third. See " Trading Places," "48 Hrs." or maybe "Beverly Hills Cop." Or, better yet, listen to his iconic 1983 stand-up recording before picking out the pathetic "Pluto Nash ."
Kristen Stewart’s "Twilight" Performances
If you talk to Kristen Stewart, she will tell you in minute detail the great efforts her method requires. She’ll pontificate upon what she goes through as an actor to be in the moment with a character employing cryptic metaphorical depictions that seem to ebb and flow with the ease of her delivery.
She was the highest-paid actress from 2010 to 2012, generating $34.5 million in one year speaks for itself. But the role that she’s most famous for, Bella Swan in the "Twilight" franchise, misses. Some of her performances can seem tried and overacted. It’s as if she’s bored with the gig. And in all honesty, we grew bored of her.
Hayden Christensen Repelled Star Wars Fanatics in "Episode II: Attack of the Clones"
And he didn’t make them any happier in the second " Star Wars prequel, Episode III: Revenge of the Sith ." He earned a Razzie for Worst Supporting Actor in both films, and the aspiring up and coming actor packed it up and moved to the country.
He took a 5-year hiatus due to the media scorn but returned and proved himself in at least a couple of films, like " Shattered Glass." Taking on the role of Anakin Skywalker at 19 was a big bite considering the legacy of the Star Wars franchise and the rapidity of its fan base.
George Clooney Ruins Batman in "Batman & Robin"
There’s no need to convince anyone that George Clooney failed miserably as the comic book character favorite; he said it himself. He apologized to Comicon fans; he apologized to regular fans; he even apologized to the original T.V. Batman, Adam West.
He wasn’t a good Batman, and he admitted it. “I was playing Batman, and I wasn’t good at it; it wasn’t a good film. But what I learned from that failure was that I had to relearn how I was working.” He learned that taking that role was not just any role, “I was being held responsible for the film itself.”
John Travolta Bungles "Battlefield Earth"
Even though John Travolta’s sci-fi adventure " Battlefield Earth" was a year in the making passion project adapted from the 1982 novel of his guru and Scientology founder, L. Ron Hubbard, he butchered it with flair. Travolta produced and acted in " Battlefield Earth," depicting a giant evil alien.
It seems he was unable to so deftly deliver his signature attitude of cool to sci-fi, failing with dumb jokes, which might have been ironic and funny in " Pulp Fiction," but not in this one. It won every Razzie nomination it received, including a well-deserved Worst Actor for John Travolta.
Kathy Bates in "The Day the Earth Stood Still"
Oscar-winning actress and director Kathy Bates plays Secretary of State Regina Jackson in the 2008 reboot of the 1951 classic alien invasion movie. Starring Keanu Reeves and featuring as many explosive action shots as can be crammed into an almost two-hour sci-fi movie, it drove in the crowds.
But even though the film didn’t flop, it missed badly. While Kathy Bates’ role was relatively small and not as bad as Keanu Reeves, the performance was lackluster. She based her character on Hillary Clinton’s Secretary of State position, and it distracted from the alien attacks.
Russell Crowe Makes the "Les Misérables" Experience Miserable
Call it a miscasting blunder, but the fact remains, Russell Crowe has done irreparable harm to Tom Hooper’s nearly 10-year-old film version of "Les Misérables." This production is a musical, and, as such, people who possess vocal talent should be cast.
The fact of the matter is, Crowe can’t sing. He’s a great actor, and he portrayed Javert stupendously, as long as he wasn’t singing. We watch musicals for music. Crowe’s Javert is a gruff interruption.
At the Peak of Her Career Gwyneth Paltrow Stars in "View from the Top"
Among Gwyneth Paltrow’s many accolades, including an Academy Award for " Shakespeare in Love" and starring in " Seven," " Emma," and " The Royal Tenenbaums," you will not see mention of " View from the Top" (2003). It’s a rom-com story about a beautiful teenage girl achieving the dream of becoming an airline stewardess. She wasn't the only big name in the film, either...
It’s hard to say why Mike Myers, Rob Lowe, Christina Applegate, and Mark Ruffalo were all on board. She later said that she took the film for its large payout. " View from the Top" wasn’t a passion project like so much of her work, and it shows.
Mike Myers is "The Love Guru"
It’s impossible to match the pop culture phenomenon of something like "Austin Powers," and "The Love Guru" proves it. Mike Myers’ Love Guru is embarrassing.
The film flopped at theaters when it was released in June 2008. With a budget of $62 million, this movie was a massive loss for Paramount. And a waste of talent. Jessica Alba, Justin Timberlake, Ben Kingsley, and John Oliver were on board for this train wreck. Myers co-wrote "The Love Guru," and Marco Schnabel directed, so it wasn’t wholly Myers’ fault. For starters, his jokes are in bad taste, worse than usual.
Shaquille O’Neal is the Biggest Little Genie You’ve Ever Seen in "Kazaam"
"Kazaam" is a kid’s flick. Point taken. What should we expect? Good acting? It’s a movie for our youngest audiences, so that is what you get—poor acting, unlikeable characters, and an overall lousy film.
If you don't believe us, take it from the children’s movie review site commonsensemedia.org: “This is a comedy that isn’t funny, an action movie with terrible set pieces, and a fantasy movie with plot holes you could ride a magic carpet through.” So, what did it have? A-list-grade name appeal!
Johnny Depp Slips on a Risk in "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory"
Anticipation was palpable when word got out that Johnny Depp would play Willy Wonka in the classic Roald Dahl tale. Coming out of Edward Scissorhands and other dark and whimsical endeavors with Tim Burton, "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" seemed like the perfect pitch.
While Wilder brought a gravitas to the character, Johnny Depp in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory was anything but. His character was supposed to be “quirky,” but all we saw was “cringy.” Let Hollywood take this as a huge lesson: never remake a Wilder classic.
Few Bat-fans Cared When Katie Holmes Left the Trilogy After "Batman Begins"
Katie Holmes played Rachel Dawes in Christopher Nolan’s "Batman Begins" but left like a bat out of you-know-where after the first installment of the trilogy. Call it creative differences or say she was offered a better role, the point is, it didn’t work out. Actress Maggie Gyllenhaal stepped in to take over, and many fans wish she would’ve been the only Rachel Dawes in Gotham while others thought Holmes played her well.
Here's the thing, the lack of chemistry between her and Christian Bale was palpable on-screen. Nolan has been criticized relentlessly for miscasting Holmes as Batman’s love interest because literally, no one wants a strained superhero love story.
Rihanna’s Acting Debut in "Battleship"
"Battleship" is a rollicking ride, lock, stock, and barreled with whimsical humor while blowing stuff up, bringing to life the Hasbro board game that it is named after.
Rihanna, gracing the silver screen for the first time, is a dedicated weapons specialist with careful aim. She plays the tomboy character in her own Bronx-y accent. With her lines a few and far apart, Battleship headlined her star power, promoting the movie with her name and fame while keeping her acting skills under wraps.
Dick Van Dyke’s Legendary Cockney in "Mary Poppins"
Dick Van Dyke’s accent in the 1964 Disney classic children’s film "Mary Poppins" is notorious. When people think of a bad Cockney, they think of that lovable chimney sweep singing a cheerful duet with Julie Andrews.
The accent, which derives from the working class of East London, is a common choice for British casting. He was so bad he apologized for it. Finally, at 91 years of age, Van Dyke apologized for his notorious Cockney while accepting a BAFTA. “I appreciate this opportunity to apologize to the members of BAFTA for inflicting on them the most atrocious Cockney accent in the history of cinema.”
Not Even Kevin Costner Could Save "Robin Hood Prince of Thieves"
"Robin Hood Prince of Thieves" was a $50 million flop, and Kevin Costner was at the helm. Naturally, he was blamed for the underappreciated film, but there was bad writing, bad casting, and lousy storytelling too.
Those hoping the Oscar-winning actor could carry the massive project were disappointed. For starters, he couldn’t even be bothered to polish up his British accent, and his delivery was stiff and unpracticed. Making matters worse, it’s a very dark version of the classic fairytale land. So, the failures of this film weren’t all his fault.
Nicolas Cage Dresses Up Like a Bear in "The Wicker Man"
So, was it underrated or just unwatchable? Nicolas Cage says that dressing up as a bear and going around killing people in "The Wicker Man" was comic genius overlooked. "The New York Times," said, “The Wicker Man is comically inept as a horror movie, unable even to manage an effective false scare, or sustain suspense for more than a beat or two.”
That scene is great, but our favorite worst scene is him pointing his gun at people, stealing a bike, screaming at people, kicking in doors, and punching people. Not just one person, not two, but three women – one of which he hits while in a bear costume.
Tom Hanks Goes Dark in "The Ladykillers"
"The Ladykillers" is not the Coen brothers’ Fargo, but it’s dark and funny anyway. Tom Hanks stars as the lead crook who is also a professor of Greek and Latin in this crime-adventure comedy. He’s willing to plot a murder to cash in on his caper.
It’s not the Tom Hanks we’re used to endearing as either the voice of Woody or Forest Gump or so many more. In "The Ladykillers," he’s demented and sinister, making viewers feel an unfamiliar discomfort. But kudos to Hank for stepping outside of his comfort zone to do a different kind of comedy.
Keanu Reeves in "Bram Stoker’s Dracula," Why? Just Why?
I think we can all agree Keanu Reeves is limited in his ability to act. Starring Jonathan Harker in "Bram Stoker’s Dracula" (1992), Reeves was never a good fit. Critics called him boring and dull, an unfortunate choice for the story’s hero.
Bram Stoker’s story of the timeless monster tale so often brought to film is set within the gothic sensibilities of 1798, and it is just not Keanu’s forte. One questions why Francis Ford Coppola chose this actor. The only answer is that he wanted to make the cryptic Victorian setting more palatable to pop culture audiences.
Mariah Carey Makes Her Film Debut in "Glitter"
Like Rihanna, Mariah Carey took her superstardom to the silver screen only to stay kind of quiet unless she was belting out a song. In between acts, her script was limited to clichéd responses, just enough to get the dialogue back to the professional actors. Her D.J. boyfriend, played by Max Beesley, could easily make our Top 50 worst actor list.
Thank goodness for the music. Because without it, "Glitter" is an hour and forty-four minutes, you will never get back.
Tobey Maguire’s Peter Parker Hit a Rough Spot with "Spider-Man 3"
"Spider-Man 3" did so poorly; film execs dumped Tobey Maguire and director Sam Raimi. Some fans found it a harsh blow after revolutionizing the Spidey character with a lovable side. To be fair, Raimi was getting tired of working with Sony, and Maguire was trying to arrange a stuntman after injuring his back by doing his own stunts in "Spider-Man 3."
Mutual or not, fans and critics were displeased with the third Spider-Man. Storylines were needlessly complicated and Maguire’s dark side persona Venom, Spidey dressed in black, was merely cringe-worthy. It drew unintentional laughter with its almost campy, creepy cringe.
Sylvester Stallone Is Particularly Adept With Bad Acting in "Backtrace"
Sylvester Stallone has won more Worst Actor Razzies than anyone. Five in total, and we’re not talking about nominations; he has 14 nominations; he won it five times. To top it off, he won the Golden Raspberry Award for the Decade's Worst Actor for the ‘90s.
In "Backtrace," Stallone is a police detective. When a bank heist goes south, the overused plot turns passably interesting with a storyline about salvaging an amnesiac bank robber’s memory with injections into his spinal cord. As for Stallone, his delivery is painful to watch. He runs his words together as if he is reading lines from a teleprompter and is in a hurry. The 2018 action crime flick flopped. Hardly making a dent in ticket sales, "Backtrace" went to video almost immediately.
Leonardo DiCaprio in "The Beach"
Based on the novel by Alex Garland, the Beach was Leonardo DiCaprio’s first post-"Titanic" film undertaking, and it fell flat. The adventure-romance movie in the tropical islands of Thailand was an obvious letdown after the success of "Titanic."
By now, cinephiles are diving into nostalgia, taking a second look at the 2000 film, and seeing it as a lost classic. But nothing will make that Razzie nom for DiCaprio in "The Beach" go away.
Tommy Wiseau and His Creation "The Room"
The last thing a filmmaker or an actor wants to hear regarding their production is “unintentionally funny.” Yet "The Room" is all about that. Tommy Wiseau wrote, produced, directed, and starred in the 2003 movie, and he has heard the smear a lot. “Worst film ever” is another way critics depict it.
But it’s become a cult favorite at midnight showings because of that. For almost two decades now, fans show up to these showings with audience participation antics that rival the "Rocky Horror Picture Show" phenomenon, complete with throwing props at the screen and LARPing along.
Quentin Tarantino’s Cameo was Explosive in "Django Unchained"
Quentin Tarantino’s cameo in his 2012 foray into cinema with "Django Unchained" was highly anticipated. Getting a peek at the genius behind the lens is thrilling for his many fans. Of course, he didn’t disappoint as his character is not only shot to death but exploded to smithereens, caught holding his ammunition, ironically, an armful of dynamite.
As thrilling as it was, some people were happiest just to see his character’s demise. His accent was annoying to many. In this movie about American-style slavery, he was supposed to have a rural Australian-hick accent - the Aussie version of cowboy drawl, but, frankly, who knows what Australian cowboy slang sounds like?
Halle Berry as "Catwoman"
The 2004 "Catwoman" film is considered one of the worst comic superhero movies ever. The script, the story, and its vague resemblance to the original "Catwoman" comic book story are not Halle Berry's fault.
She said, getting into it, “The story didn’t feel quite right.” She started asking herself, “Why can’t Catwoman save the world as Batman and Superman do? Why is she just saving women for a face cream that cracks their face-off?” She followed directions, did her job, and it failed miserably.
Lo’s ‘Gigli’ Disaster
"Gigli "swept the 2004 Razzies winning Worst Movie, Worst Director, Worst Actor, Worst Actress, and Worst Screen Couple. Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck headlined the 2003 rom-com with the high expectations two A-listers bring. Even so, the Martin Brest film flopped fantastically.
The comedy was laughable. The chemistry, unappealing, even with J. Lo and Ben falling in love backstage during the shoot. The script was lame. James Christopher of the "Times U.K." sums it up, “Mere words fail to express the awfulness of Martin Brest’s "Gigli.'”
Mickey Rooney Lived to Regret "Breakfast at Tiffany’s"
It’s one thing to blow it in a major motion picture flop that will forever dwell deep in the vault of obscurity, but to crash and burn in a timeless film that will never die, like "Breakfast at Tiffany’s," it is a whole different disaster.
Mickey Rooney played Mr. I.Y. Yunioshi in what we now call yellowface. He did the stereotypical caricature with that grotesque accent and even taped his eyes shut, and he did it for laughs. For years, Rooney wouldn’t talk badly about his performance. But, finally, 40 years after the film, when asked if he would play I.Y. Yunioshi again, he said in an interview, “I wouldn’t have done it.”
Jake Gyllenhaal Bulks Up for "Southpaw"
Jake Gyllenhaal is a critically acclaimed and cult-favorite actor, which makes him a rare breed. Proving his chops in " Brokeback Mountain" and standing out in " Donnie Darko," Gyllenhaal’s next movie is always anticipated.
As the scrappy boxer in " Southpaw," he disappoints. The role is cliché, and so is the writing and his performance in director Antoine Fuqua’s 2015 sports drama.
Britney Spears Stars in "Crossroads"
A year after Mariah Carey’s "Glitter," we have Britney Spears’ "Crossroads." You do the math. Tamra Davis’ 2002 MTV production "Crossroads" was this diva’s first-ever movie, but at least the rock and roll road trip adventure-comedy possessed an energy that the other lacked.
In the end, the energy it brings doesn’t translate to sound cinema, and "Crossroads" is only good because it’s terrible in just the right ways. That, and because the rare footage of the pop superstar in her youth is so irresistible!
Meryl Streep in "She-Devil"
Some actors ought not to try comedy, and Meryl Streep is one of them. She’s an unrivaled film legend with a roomful of Oscars. Yet, next to the comic genius of Rosanne Barr, she’s just not that funny.
Roseanne Barr co-stars as the She-Devil, the very one, and she is a beast. To put in perspective just how much of a blunder it was deciding to star in "She-Devil," Meryl Streep has not taken any interviews or spoken about this role even once since the film was released never. It makes one think she would just like to forget it ever happened.
Michael Shannon Delivers a Stylized Villain in "The Shape of Water"
Michael Shannon plays Cold War security expert Richard Strickland in Guillermo del Toro’s Academy-favorite " The Shape of Water" (2017). The notable stage actor is known for bringing a solid acting performance to the screen. In " The Shape of Water," Shannon misses.
His "Pearl Harbor" performance shows him at his best in a military role, but not this time. According to "Vulture," “Shannon invests the disgusting Strickland with every drop of dignity he can muster, almost making this deluded zealot a tragic figure.
Arnold Schwarzenegger Ruined "Batman & Robin" Too
Now, there is plenty of room to spread the blame in " Batman & Robin ." It almost won a Razzie for the worst film. Arnold Schwarzenegger played his part—the evil villain Mr. Freeze—who was responsible for so many bad puns and corny cracks you almost forgot about the egregious missteps of Clooney’s Batman.
Of course, we don’t think of Schwarzenegger as a stellar actor and expect no less than corny jokes, but the point is, he was so bad he was nominated for a Razzie as Mr. Freeze. Laugh all you want; the Terminator walked away with a $25 million contract.
Colin Farrell Also Stumbled in "Daredevil"
A year before "Alexander," Colin Farrell floundered in "Daredevil." Perhaps it was a bad time for him. Maybe it was that absurd nameplate symbol scarred into his forehead. Either way, the movie was too wacky to be dark, or else it was too dark to be wacky. As a Marvel universe creation, it starts exciting, but then fizzles and flops.
Even though he was allowed to keep his Irish accent as the fanatical assassin Bullseye, he still managed to mangle it. The only saving grace is Farrell played the evil villain instead of starring as the justice warrior, Daredevil. That superhero role was brought to the screen by Ben Affleck.
"Gangs of New York" Was Not Cameron Diaz’s Best
Leonardo DiCaprio shined in "Gangs of New York," but Cameron Diaz faded, according to many critics. With her A-list name headlining a Martin Scorsese film, anticipation for something great lingered in the air unfulfilled.
Hardcore Cameron Diaz fans who dote over the gorgeous and entertaining star felt her performance was underrated, but she did not like it herself. Which part would she want to change? She said she would like to “change all of it – that’s the problem with making movies” as opposed, presumably, to stage or a running character in a series. “I’d love to have the opportunity to do a movie and three years later do it again.”
No Slam Dunk for Michael Jordan in "Space Jam"
Michael Jordan trained five hours a day while filming the blockbuster kid movie "Space Jam." Even if he had time to practice his lines, it wouldn’t have helped. In general, prominent burly athletes cannot act.
With a roster of NBA greats and comic legends, this movie soared at the box office in 1996. Charles Barkley and Larry Bird join Danny DeVito and Bill Murray in a Looney Tunes cartoon starring sports legend Michael Jordan. It was too much fun for the audiences to care if athletes can or can’t act.
Elizabeth Berkley’s Campy Adventure in "Showgirls" Flopped Her Career
The ‘90s cult movie "Showgirls" was a disaster. Elizabeth Berkley as Nomi Malone, a young dancer trying to make it as a showgirl, was a far stretch from the character that made her a star.
Her scenes were painfully overacted with an over-the-top campiness that was widely criticized at the time yet, make it the cult film it is today. Her career tanked for years following the performance. As it turned out, it wasn’t her fault. Director Verhoeven said that her over-the-top acting was his fault. “Most of that comes from me. I pushed it in that direction.”
Critics Hated Sofia Coppola in "Godfather III"
She ruined the film, according to a chorus of film reviews. At the end of the day, it was an accident that Sofia Coppola landed the role of Michael Corleone’s daughter, Mary. Production was waiting on Winona Ryder to play the godfather’s daughter, but an illness derailed those plans. At the last minute, with no time to rehearse, Francis Ford Coppola stuck his daughter in the role.
Afterward, he’s known to have said, “She is not an experienced actress; that is not her career goal.” At the 1990 Razzies, she won Worst Supporting Actress and Worst New Star. The experience may have short-changed her acting career, but it was the impetus of her filmmaking success.
Natalie Portman Incurs Backlash After Starring in "Star Wars"
There was no way Natalie Portman, as Luke and Leia Skywalker’s mom and Queen of Naboo, Padmé Amidala, was going to pass muster in the prequel. She is also a co-conspirator in the Rebel Alliance and a Galactic senator. This is a very significant role, and the force was not with her.
She spoke about how difficult it was to disappoint people so much, saying that she was naïve getting into the role. “It was hard,” she said. “Also, to be at an age that I didn’t really understand that’s kind of the nature of the beast,” was frustrating for her.
Renée Zellweger in "Cold Mountain"
We know what you’re going to say: ‘Renée Zellweger won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress in "Cold Mountain." How can she be on the worst performance list?’ True enough, but sometimes the Academy goes astray.
In playing the spunky Ruby Thewes, Zellweger animates a lovable and unpredictable character who is as entertaining as all get up in this southern Civil War-era drama. “Let’s put him in a pot,” Ruby says after snapping the head of an allegedly demonic rooster right off its neck. But as heartwarming as she is, she rubbed some critics the wrong way.
Jim Carrey in "The Number 23"
Jim Carrey proved his astounding range in " The Truman Show" and " Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind ." There was no need for the "Dumb and Dumber" actor to dive into a psychological conundrum like Joel Schumacher’s " The Number 23" (2007), but he did.
He plays a dog catcher who becomes obsessed with a book about the cryptic number. Taking chances is an admirable quality in an actor, and we’re glad he did; it’s just that things didn’t pan out in this movie.
Jared Leto in "Suicide Squad"
Jared Leto gave it his all as Joker in "Suicide Squad" (2016). The quirky A-lister was in full-blown method-mode the entire shoot, not once breaking character to chat with cast members. His performance was so unwatchable; the studio cut nearly all of his scenes.
His antics were tried, he overacted, he disappointed. Instead of being the most chilling Joker we’ve ever seen, he took the character to an irredeemably dark and creepy place. "Cinema Blend" had this to say, “Leto’s performance was the worst live-action Joker we’ve seen.”
It’s Not Jeremy Irons’ Fault "Dungeons & Dragons" Was Bad
"Dungeons & Dragons" was one of the most abysmal films of 2000. The flop was acutely painful to D & D fans who had waited years on end for a movie about their favorite pastime. Jeremy Irons is wrapped up in a mess as the villain, Profion, who plots to take the throne and rule as an evil despot.
The Tomatometer over at Rotten Tomatoes registers 10%. If it was so bad, it was funny; there would be at least one redeeming quality to the 107 minutes of awful cinema and awkward special effects. Instead, it’s just bad, unwatchably bad.
Julia Roberts is Out of Her Realm as the Evil Queen in "Mirror Mirror"
It can’t be. How can we leave behind " Pretty Woman" for this comic evil queen? Tarsem Singh’s 2011 " Mirror Mirror" is a cartoonish version of the Snow White fairytale, so whimsical it can’t be taken seriously.
She delivers a few funny lines. But where’s the malevolence? Roberts’ evil queen is evil like Doctor Evil; every act of perfidy is a joke. Yet, with "Snow White and the Huntsman" released the same week, we suppose it was best that this one took the parody route.
Mark Wahlberg Admits He Tanked in "The Happening"
"The Guardian" called " The Happening" “a disaster on so many levels,” and at the box office, the M. Night Shyamalan film was a smoldering wreck. Mark Wahlberg earned an Oscar nomination in " The Departed," so his performance in this film was anticipated. Instead, " The Atlantic," says, “he is not merely unpersuasive, but dim, whiny, indecisive, and self-pitying.”
Even Wahlberg thought it was terrible because he hated playing a teacher. In between expletives about " The Happening," he said, “You can’t blame me for not wanting to try to play a science teacher. At least I wasn’t playing a cop or a crook.”
Faye Dunaway in "Mommie Dearest"
"Mommie Dearest" is Faye Dunaway’s last big film, and she wishes she wouldn’t have done it. She thought that her career turned in a direction where people had the wrong impression of her and that it was tough for her to overcome that.
It made an impression, that is for sure. Her explosive drama is something you can’t forget.
Michael Caine Animates "The Hand"
"The Hand" (1981) is one of Oliver Stone’s first films, and it is a horror flick with an unlikely slasher angle. The killer in "The Hand" is the disembodied hand of a cartoonist who lost his tragic accident. The hand goes around killing people he is angry at. It gets edgy when he’s in a fight with his wife.
It's a challenging role to act with the believability index so low, and it turns out Caine did it for the money. He took the job to pay for a home improvement construction project.
Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson in "Get Rich or Die Tryin’"
In 2003 rapper Curtis Jackson, more commonly known as 50 Cent, released the smash album “Get Rich or Die Tryin’.” Two years later, in 2005, a biopic of the same name hit theaters. The movie follows the life of Marcus (50 Cent), closely depicting that of a rapper turned actor. Although the film tells the story of Jackson’s real-life experiences, it easily falls into the trite storyline we’ve seen before.
This rags to riches plot should have been easy for the rapper, seeing as he would be portraying himself. However, the disjointed film was brought even lower by Jackson’s forced acting. We recommend returning to the album and jamming out to “In Da’ Club” in all its early 2000s realness.
Dev Patel in "The Last Airbender"
In 2010, well-known horror/thriller director M. Night Shyamalan strayed from his usual style to write and direct a remake of the popular anime series “The Last Airbender.” Still riding the wave of his "Slumdog Millionaire" success (highly recommended for those that haven’t seen it), British/Indian actor Dev Patel was cast as Prince Zuko, the fire bender.
The movie was much anticipated but fell flat at the box office. Patel’s performance was over-acted (maybe a directorial miss-step) and wasn’t helped by the poor CGI effects. It’s possible that if the film hadn’t taken itself so seriously, some of its arguably horrible performances could have been salvaged.
David Bowie Not So Prestigious
David Bowie. Absolute legend and rock giant. He brought us some of our favorite rock anthems, such as "Space Odyssey" and "Changes" (to name a very, very few). But an actor? "The Prestige," starring beloved Hugh Jackman and Christian Bale, was relatively well-received by audiences. That being said, the late David Bowie didn’t quite cut it as well-known, real-life inventor Nikola Tesla.
Bowie was chosen by director Christopher Nolan because of his immense amount of charisma. The performance was, all-in-all, not so terrible but, in the end, supremely undermined by Bowie’s inability to correctly speak with the famous Serbian’s accent, which left the audience distracted in every one of his scenes.
Adam Sandler in "Jack and Jill"
Just from the sheer volume of the movie, Adam Sandler has produced as a comedic actor; there are bound to be a few dud performances in the bunch. “Jack and Jill” centers around twins (both of whom are played by Sandler). The film has a bizarrely A-List cast, with Katie Holmes and Al Pacino in supporting roles. Sandler really tried his hand with a concept already overdone by the beloved Eddie Murphy.
Still, its one-note jokes are a bit hard to swallow, and Sandler remains from beginning to end fairly unpalatable. We can certainly get down with Sandler’s silly style, i.e., "Billy Madison" and "Happy Gilmore," but this time the contrived performance was less than desirable.
Nicole Kidman in "The Invasion"
Let’s begin with the premise. With the world trying to deal with an alien pandemic, a psychiatrist (Kidman), based in Washington D.C., finds the plague's origin and subsequently discovers her son may be the world’s only hope. As you may have guessed based on the plotline, the film is fairly inconsistent, especially in the second half, where following the storyline becomes difficult, to say the least.
We all know and love Kidman in some of her well-known roles, such as Celine in "Moulin Rouge" (classic). But her performance in “The Invasion” doesn’t seem to delve deep enough into her character, making her fairly shallow, unrelatable, and ultimately, just a pretty face.
Christopher Walken in "The Country Bears"
Beloved Christopher Walken is right up there with our very favorite A-list actors that have been in the game for quite a several years. But fame and acclaim don’t mean that there isn’t a misstep or blunder every once in a while. This came for Walken in the children’s movie “The Country Bears.” Walken plays evil banker Reed Thimple, the ‘baddie’ in the film.
Although Walken will always have quite a screen presence and a certain level of charm (not to mention his iconic voice), with a script, plot, and borderline creepy CGI bears that give no support whatsoever, Walken’s performance just falls flat.
Brad Pitt Couldn't Get a Trojan Horse to Save Him in "Troy"
“Troy.” Enormous Hollywood blockbuster came out in 2004 starring a young, outrageously handsome, and half-dressed Brad Pitt as the hero Achilles. That’s about the only real positive thing we can say about the actors in this movie (though a bare-chested Brad Pitt is no trivial matter). Pitt’s performance was extremely stiff and lacked any smidgen of depth.
Much of his scenes were almost solely comprised of him glistening in the sun and squinting off into the distance with his smoldering stare. That being said, the movie grossed a total of $497,409,852 and is still regarded as one to watch over and over. Hmmm, we wonder why?
Zac Efron in "High School Musical"
An idea that blossomed into three trendy films and subsequently an ongoing series on the Disney Channel and a very popular stage musical, we can all agree the franchise is very successful. Efron plays high school basketball star Troy Bolton who becomes conflicted when he discovers his love of singing and must hide his passion.
We all expect overdone performances, but Efron’s acting throughout the film is somewhat reminiscent of an actual high school musical. On top of that, Efron doesn’t even do his own singing in the first “High School Musical” film. That being said, the tunes are definitely catchy, so maybe we would recommend the soundtrack instead.
Cate Blanchett in "Indiana Jones the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull"
The latest installment in the Indiana Jones series, “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull,” was chock full of both good and bad things, in the end not quite living up to its predecessors. One notable performance (and not in a good way) was Cate Blanchett as the villain Irina Spalko.
The character was from the former soviet union, and it was glaringly obvious that Australian-born Blanchett struggled with the accent. On top of that, the communist-style wig was laughably bad. Blanchett is one of Hollywood’s most regarded actresses; however, this role wasn’t ideal for her.
Tommy Lee Jones in "Batman Forever"
After two very successful Batman films directed by the quirky Tim Burton, “Batman Forever” supremely fails to live up to its predecessors. Our villain in this version is Harvey Dent, otherwise known as Two-Face, played by Tommy Lee Jones. Although the movies are based on the comics, leaving quite a bit of room for exaggerated acting, Jones’ Two-Face borderlines overly comical.
That coupled with Jim Carey’s over the top portrayal of the Riddler makes for a movie that’s overacted and overly kitsch. We respect all of these actors and the work they do. However, we recommend you appreciate their talent in other films. Maybe a "Men in Black" movie night is just the right dose of Tommy Lee Jones.
Dennis Hopper in "Super Mario Bros."
One of the earlier video game to movie adaptations, Super Mario Bros., didn’t receive good reviews in 1993 when it came out, and the special effects certainly do not stand the tests of time. The movie follows the bumbling plumbers through their totally wild adventure with aliens, lost princesses, and a bizarrely cast yet still charming John Leguizamo as Luigi.
We are bombarded with a large number of villains, but the standout is Dennis Hopper, who generally a great actor is made up in an extremely wacky costume and proceeds to deliver a large number of cheesy one-liners. The movie managed to gross about half of its budget after release.
Robert DeNiro in "Rocky and Bullwinkle"
Robert DeNiro starred in such classics as “Taxi Driver,” “A Bronx Tale,” “Goodfellas,” “Raging Bull,” the list goes on. We can even delight in some of his comedic acting in “Meet The Parents.” His performance, however, in the 2000 kids movie “The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle,” left the audience with a bit to be desired.
DeNiro’s performance was over the top, even for a children’s movie, and was brought down even more by a poor script. That being said, the children liked it, and isn’t that all that really matters? DeNiro, incidentally, also produced the film.
Tom Green in "Freddy Got Fingered"
In 2001, Tom Green was at the height of his somewhat short-lived career. “Freddy Got Fingered” was created in the same vein as other silly teen movies (also featuring Tom Green), such as the ever-popular “Road Trip” and “Stealing Harvard” with Jason Lee. “Freddy got Fingered” features Green as the leading role, a failing cartoonist who, after moving back in with his parents, begins to spread rumors so as not to be thrown out of the house.
We think we can all agree this is a fairly grotesque plotline, and especially that of something that’s supposed to be a quirky, light-hearted comedy. Green’s performance is no less uncomfortable than the plot implies, almost exclusively relying on the shock factor to produce laughs. If this is your type of humor, then, by all means, watch away. However, you’ve been warned.
Sandra Bullock Should Have Known Nothing About Steve
Sandra Bullock has taken us on quite a rollercoaster throughout her career. We have high highs like "The Blind Side" (which won her an Academy Award for Best Actress), "Infamous," and "Crash." We also have low lows such as "Premonition," "In Love and War," and "Forces of Nature" (though this one has some solid moments if you’re willing to wade through the shmaltz).
The performance that takes the cake, though, is in the movie "All About Steve," earning a whopping 6% on Rotten Tomatoes. The movie supremely missed the mark with their attempt to make Bullock’s character quirky and endearing, leaving audience members more than slightly creeped out and borderline rooting against the couple’s success.
Emilia Clarke in "Me Before You"
As a whole, “Me Before you” is actually a relatively palatable rom-com, with the handsome Sam Claflin and the undeniably adorable Emilia Clarke. Clarke is best known for her role as the dragon queen Khaleesi from “Game of Thrones.” The movie centers around the relationship between small-town England girl Alicia (Clarke) and the stubborn, recently paralyzed Will (Claflin), who she is assigned to care for.
The acting comes with Clarke’s inability to perform without the distractingly exaggerated usage of her eyebrows. If you don’t notice it, the film is pretty enjoyable. If you notice it, it can’t be unseen, and it may ruin the film for you. Watch at your own discretion.
Kevin Costner in "Waterworld"
“Waterworld,” released in 1995, is widely regarded as a notorious sci-fi flop. The film takes place in a future where the world is almost entirely covered in water due to the melting of the polar ice-caps and stars a young Kevin Costner. Costner plays Mariner, the surly hero who is fated to help a young woman and even younger girl find dry land.
The character of Mariner is purposefully fairly unlikeable and prickly. However, Costner’s performance made him dull and ultimately completely unrelatable for the audience. I think we can agree poor scriptwriting had a heavy hand in the humorless nature of the character; however, in the end, we fail to find any salvageable pieces to relate to.
Lindsay Lohan in "I Know Who Killed Me"
It’s true, once Linsday Lohan was quite the buzz in Hollywood, having had huge success playing the twins in “The Parent Trap” and even more success in the wildly popular “Mean Girls.” In 2007, Lohan tried her hand once again in playing dual characters in “I Know Who Killed Me,” this time to no avail. The movie centers around Lohan, a young woman who reappears after missing but claims she’s someone else.
It seems the movie served as Lohan’s attempt to transition from Disney sweetheart to dramatic actress; however, this performance would not be the one to get her an Oscar nomination. The entire film toes the line of being so awkward it’s either hard to watch or can be received as purposefully camp. Either way, it received an undesirable 9% on Rotten Tomatoes.
Ben Affleck in "Batman vs. Superman Dawn of Justice"
Sigh. Okay, we’ve seen quite a long list of actors play Batman throughout the franchise. Some were standout, i.e., Michael Keaton and Christian Bale. And some were standout poor performances. As a whole, “Batman vs. Superman Dawn of Justice” is visually impressive, but the plot never really finds its footing leaving the actors with little to nothing to work with.
Affleck's Bruce Wayne aims for the general dark nature of the character but winds up with a superhero who remains fairly flat and, dare we say, almost pitiful. There are so many great Batman movies out there to choose from, so maybe this one doesn’t need to be at the top of the list.
Nicholas Cage in "Ghost Rider"
I think we can all agree Nicholas Cage has a particular acting style. When it works, it truly works, for example, in “National Treasure,” “Raising Arizona,” or even “Con Air” (an undeniably enjoyable movie). That being said, when it doesn’t work, it really doesn’t work. “Ghost Rider” came out in 2007. The plot is such: the man loves riding a motorcycle and becomes the Devil's personal bounty hunter when he sells his soul to save his father’s life.
Thus "Ghost Rider" was created. The dialogue is overdone, and the performance is equally hammy. Unfortunately, the creators weren’t dissuaded by the poor reviews because, in 2011, a sequel was released, also starring Cage.
Tom Cruise in "The Mummy"
As campy as it may be, we can all agree that Brendan Fraser brings charm and lightheartedness to the entire mummy franchise. This fact is exactly why “The Mummy” remake that came out in 2017 was an entirely unnecessary addition to the series. Tom Cruise plays Nick Morton, who’s supposed to be the hero, Brendan Fraser type but ultimately misses the mark.
The character simply doesn’t manage to excite the audience, leaving us lost in a fantasy world that takes itself entirely too seriously. In the end, however, the film ended up grossing triple its budget, so we’re sure the producers were pleased.
Victoria Beckham in "Spice World"
The plot of “Spice World” is relatively non-existent; however, if you’re a fan of the British girl group, there’s surely something to be enjoyed. That being said, asking whose performance is worse is like asking someone to pick their poison. For the article's sake, we decided to focus on Victoria Beckham, otherwise known as Posh Spice.
Posh, go for the girly, pouty vibe throughout the film but seems to have forgotten that even pouty singers have personalities. Her performance is ultimately so flat that you might not even notice her in the scene if she’s not talking. None of the girls could be deemed top-notch actresses, but the least captivating award surely goes to Posh.
Jessica Alba Was Not So Fantastic
All in all, there were a few salvageable moments in "Fantastic Four," but that’s about the best we can say about it. Jessica Alba played “Fantastic Four” member Sue Storm and was about as exciting in that role as a piece of white bread. No flavor. However, she did look stunning in her outfits, of course.
The film got a little bit lucky with the casting of Chris Evans as Johnny Storm and Julian McMahon as the villain Victor Von Doom. These two were able somewhat to salvage the film with their slightly better acting chops. Alba doesn’t seem like the ultimate choice for the role but in the end, who are we to judge?
Ashton Kutcher in "Valentine's Day"
Made up of a series of trite romantic storylines,” Valentine’s Day” fails in its attempt to be “Love Actually.” Ashton Kutcher plays Reed Bennett, who proposes to girlfriend Morley Clarkson (Jessica Alba).
Except for a few laughs here and there from the goofy Kutcher, his performance as a whole is supremely cliche, as if we could predict every line before he speaks them. The biggest redeeming factor in the film is the large number of familiar faces, but in the end, it’s not enough support for the whole movie to rely on.
Paris Hilton Is a Hottie, But Her Performance Was a Nottie
None of this review should come as a surprise based on the film's title and the leading actress. “The Hottie and the Nottie” is about “the hottie” Cristabel Abbott (Hilton), who will only agree to go on a date with the handsome boy who asks her out if he can find a date for her ugly friend. Yes, you read that right. That’s the plot of the film.
Paris Hilton, who only had experience playing herself in the popular reality show “The Simple Life,” is appallingly incapable of playing the romantic lead in the film. She acts with little to no effect, and it’s fairly uncomfortable to watch. If you have a strong desire to watch a silly teen film, there are plenty out there with significantly more value than this one.
Dan Marino in "Ace Ventura: Pet Detective"
“Ace Ventura Pet Detective” is an absolute classic. We’ve all been quoting Jim Carey’s quirky character since 1994, and it never seems to get old. Because the movie centers around the kidnapping of the Miami Dolphins Mascot, it only makes sense that there would be a popular NFL player in the film. Dan Marino, and at the time very well known NFL player for The Dolphins, does his absolute best to bring some acting chops to the screen.
We, as the audience, can really see the effort he’s putting in. However, it just doesn’t cut it. It’s stiff and extremely forced. We can’t really blame him though, he seems like he tried his hardest, and there are props to be given for that.
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson in "The Tooth Fairy"
We’d like to preface this by saying, if there was a role of “America’s Sweetheart” for men, The Rock would certainly win. Though he’s been in quite a several Hollywood blockbusters since leaving his wrestling career behind, he really won us over with his humor and versatility as an actor in the Jumanji reboot series. That being said, Johnson’s performance as the titular role in "The Tooth Fairy" is a bit of a swing and a miss.
Johnson plays a hockey player who enjoys knocking out his opponents’ teeth and stealing money from children. He learns his lesson when he is forced to do the work of the tooth fairy. Let’s be real, is anyone surprised playing a character with this plot didn’t earn him an Oscar nomination?
Justin Timberlake in "In Time"
Let’s begin with the good things. Justin Timberlake on screen. Good. Amanda Seyfried on screen, also good. A storyline set in a future where people stop aging at 25, if only! A plot that tries too hard to be forward-thinking and provocative but ends up just being confusing? Not good.
The intricate twists and turns in the plot leaves Timberlake in a constant state of panic, which in turn leaves us slightly anxious just to get to the end. The title is quite apropos because the movie ended just “in time.” After that performance, we’re left wanting to watch maybe something that doesn’t make us scratch our head and ask ourselves, “am I stupid? Or is this just supremely disjointed?”.
Freddie Prinze Jr in "Down To You"
Oh, where to begin with this movie and this performance. We know him now as a family man, still holding strong with a long time wife, Sarah Michelle Geller. However, Freddie Prinze Jr. was once the most popular teen movie heartthrob in Hollywood. His most memorable role was probably in "She’s All That" (which raises its own issues, but we won’t get into that). “Down To You” focuses on Prinze Jr. as he tries to navigate life post-breakup with his first serious love.
Not an original premise but the extreme measures he takes didn’t spark emotion but rather were quite disturbing and poorly acted. The one that sticks out most to us is the scene where he drinks her shampoo to try and immunize himself to her. It’s a hard no for us.
Jessica Simpson Gave a Hazardous Performance
It should not come as a shock to any of you that a relatively successful singer, Jessica Simpson, doesn’t make it onto the list of well-revered actors. “The Dukes of Hazzard” is a movie remake of a popular sitcom that aired on CBS from 1979-1985. The remake consists of primarily long car chases with a few scenes thrown in between for exposition.
There's no doubt Simpson’s primary initiative in the film is to rock the character’s namesake shorts, Daisy Duke (which she accomplishes for sure). Outside of the tiny shorts and crop tops, though, the character never really takes off, and the stilted acting lends very little to a plot that’s already quite absurd.
Vanilla Ice Was Not Cool as Ice
“Cool as Ice” came out in 1991 when rapper Vanilla Ice was quite popular. The movie has Ice playing a rapper (no surprise there) who ends up falling for a girl who’s in witness protection with her family. It almost feels as if the rapper knew his acting chops wouldn’t cut it, so they threw in many very 90s rap/dance sequences.
It was the early 90s, so awareness wasn’t what it is today, but the cultural appropriation of this film is very tacky, to say the least. The movie received 6% on Rotten Tomatoes, and much of this can be largely attributed to the inability of Ice to carry the film on his shoulders as the leading man.