The 10 Worst Films of 2006
So many bad films, so little space. Would that I could extoll the non-virtues of Doogal, Material Girls, Just My Luck, RV and Man of the Year. If only I had room to discuss Steve Martin’s systematic destruction of The Pink Panther franchise. Just a word or two about the endless, pointless horror film remakes (The Hills Have Eyes, The Omen, When a Stranger Calls, The Wicker Man, Black Christmas) ... But no. This is the worst of the worst, and we’ve gotta muck our way right to the bottom.
Ask the Dust
This tone-deaf romantic melodrama about Depression-era Hollywood is ample proof that a legendary filmmaker (Chinatown writer Robert Towne) and a literary pedigree (John Fante’s cult novel) do not a credible art film make. If Colin Farrell and Salma Hayek are naked in your movie and it’s still boring, you’ve got trouble, brother!
Basic Instinct 2
How bad? So bad I didn’t even watch it ... and it’s still on my list.
Not only was this ludicrous videogame-turned-vampire-flick continuing proof of director Uwe Boll’s singular lack of talent, it also provided two rather hilarious footnotes. The film was slated to open on 2,500 screens, but first-time distributor Romar didn’t bother to tell theaters, so more than 1,500 prints ended up sitting around gathering dust. Later in the year, angry over the bad reviews, Boll challenged any and all movie critics to a boxing match.
Borat: Cultural Learnings of America For Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan
After sitting through a laughless preview screening punctuated by frequent walkouts, I was sure this would be one of the biggest bombs of the year. I have no problem with the people who do find it funny; humor is a matter of personal taste, after all. But I’m flabbergasted by critics who fell all over themselves to praise this crude, mean-spirited bastard child of Yakov Smirnoff and Allen Funt as “brilliant,” “Strangelovean” and “the most thoughtful comedy released so far this century.”
Which formerly-edgy-comedian-turned-lame-Hollywood-dad am I most disappointed in: Robin Williams, Steve Martin or Adam Sandler? Honestly, I never found Sandler’s angry man-boy act very funny, so seeing him reduced to croaking this stupid-enough-to-be-a-beer-commercial film’s painfully obvious moral “family ... matters ... most” seems like fitting punishment.
Failure to Launch
This is certainly the lamest romcom Hollywood has pinched off in years. Sarah Jessica Parker plays a freelance relationship interventionist for hire. Matthew McConaughey gets bitten by a bunch of animals. Zooey Deschanel spends the entire movie trying to kill a bird. What the hell?
Garfield: A Tale of Two Kitties
I don’t think I have to go into much more detail, do I?
Lady in the Water
My dislike for this film is diamond-like in its perfection--not simply because it is awful, but because writer/director M. Night Shyamalan had the self-deluded audacity to cast himself as the greatest writer in the history of the world. Based solely on the nonsensical plot of this go-nowhere vanity project, Shyamalan is anything but. Narf!
Larry the Cable Guy: Health Inspector
If the title can’t even decide if the main character is a cable guy or a health inspector, what hope is there for the film itself?
You’d think the Wayans brothers couldn’t sink any lower than White Chicks. But they did with this unpleasant, crotch-obsessed comedy, which steals its entire plot from a Bugs Bunny cartoon.