Ok, we admit it. The main problem with lists like this is it’ll probably be obsolete by the time it gets published, and it doesn’t help that there are still four months left to the year. In the interest of keeping things fair, we’ll only consider major summer blockbusters that had months of hype behind them, only to ultimately let us down in the end.
On that note, we’ll be avoiding titles like The Emoji Movie and Monster Trucks because, honestly, nobody in their right minds expected those to be any good anyway.
Transformers: The Last Knight
An excruciating mix of unlikeable characters and visual garbage, this convoluted, overstuffed turkey of a sequel is the single most compelling argument for Michael Bay to never, ever, be allowed to make another Transformers movie.
Check out our review here, or watch the film if you hate yourself enough. Just don’t say we didn’t warn ya!
While it may have been the most-watched show on the planet at one point (seriously), Baywatch was never a work of art. But unlike fellow classic-show-turned-action-comedy-reboot 21 Jump Street, Baywatch 2017 fails because it only has three punchlines that are reshuffled ad nauseam: 1.) Citing incidents from the old show as impossibilities 2.) The Rock emasculating Zac Efron, and 3.) So. Many. Unfunny. Dick jokes.
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales (aka Salazar’s Revenge)
A tired plot that essentially remakes the first film, a star mired in controversy (alcoholism, wife-beating, and rampant overspending will do that), and featuring nothing by way of novelty value, this fifth Pirates of the Caribbean film did little to prove it was anything more than a cynical exercise in franchise management. Oh, and Kiera Knightly was in it for all of forty seconds.
Check out our review here.
Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets
Speaking of classic European comics mangled beyond recognition, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets took the space-set adventures of Valerian and Laureline and tried so hard to cram in fan-favorite moments, it forgot to include likable characters, much less a coherent story. Throw in a bizarre fifteen minutes where Rihanna essentially takes over the flick, and you have a sad, sad excuse for the most expensive non-American movie ever made, but the one Luc Besson’s (The Professional, The Fifth Element) been waiting to make since he was in primary school.
All Eyez on Me
Obviously patterned after the success of Straight Outta Compton, All Eyez on Me was supposed to be a hard-hitting drama on the life and times of Tupac Shakur. The trouble is, commits the cardinal biopic sin of playing fast and loose with the facts when most of the featured characters are still alive to call the film out on it. Full of anachronisms and outright inaccuracies, this is one story “based on true events” that everyone involved should have just left leaving alone.
Ghost in the Shell
We could touch on the so-called “whitewashing”, but there’s nothing we could say that hasn’t already been debated to bits since the decidedly not-Japanese Scarlett Johansenn was cast as Motoko Kusanagi. At any rate, the discussion is rendered effectively moot by the fact that, aside from its being a condensed, bastardized version of the original manga and the classic animated film, this was just a really bad movie.
While it’s true enough that Marvel’s track record at crafting a living, breathing universe of interconnected films is indeed impressive, rival studios’ attempts to replicate said success have proven either lackluster (Ghostbusters), painful (The Dark Tower), or just plain embarrassing (Batman V Superman). In this case, the latest entrant is ironically based on some of the oldest source material, as Universal Studios attempted to start a “Dark Universe” based on their lineup of classic movie monsters. After the disaster of 2014’s Dracula Untold, Universal decided to start over via a reboot of The Mummy, with Tom Cruise in the lead.
Misguided, unfocused, and just plain dull, the film failed to resonate with audiences who grew up on the 1999 version starring Brendan Fraser, much less fans of the classic 1932 version. Indeed, between Cruise’s grandstanding and the shoehorning of Henry Jekyll (Russel Crowe, Gladiator) into the proceedings, there was precious little in this film that indicated that there was even a mummy in it.
Five years after the debacle of 2012’s Prometheus, which inexplicably went out of its way to distance itself from the original Alien (despite being marketed as a prequel), Covenant is a fully-avowed prequel that makes no bones about its heritage: from the title to the marketing, to the design of the creature, Scott wasted no time in ramming the connection down our throats like the titular monster’s ovipositor.
Now, we could write any number of articles about how and why Covenant failed, but it basically boils down to the fact that over-explaining aspects of a beloved property that never needed answers (the scariest creature in space is Young Magneto’s biology project) effectively negates the very qualities that made audiences love it in the first place.
Simply put: prequels, as a rule, SUCK. But hey, that Joker origin movie Martin Scorcese is working on is gonna be super awesome, right?
BONUS ENTRY: R-Rated comedies
In the wake of flicks like The Hangover, Bridesmaids, and Neighbors, there’s been no shortage of R-rated comedies in recent years about grown-ups behaving badly. Yet quantity doesn’t always quality, as the rush to churn these flicks out has resulted in a staggering lack of quality entries. The result: anyone expecting Amy Schumer to hit a Trainwreck-like homerun with Snatched was sadly disappointed, and Will Ferrell, usually dependable in films like Old School, Anchorman, and Step Brothers, failed to impress opposite co-star Amy Poehler in The House.
What other movies did you waste your money on? Share them with us below!