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The Worst Movies of 2011

2011 was kind of a mediocre year for movies in general, but there were a number of pretty great movies released this year regardless. There were also a number of terrible films released as well… here are the five worst movies I saw in 2011.

Cowboys & Aliens
This movie never felt right. I dig westerns, sci-fi, and Harrison Ford, but the three simply didn’t mesh. Cowboys & Aliens didn’t feel like it was ever going anywhere, the action was no better than mediocre, and you could tell pretty much everybody in the cast was simply in it for the cheque.

People seem to love this movie, which is totally perplexing to me. I often love movies with long, drawn out builds to nothing (I’m looking at you, Malick), but this movie drove me crazy for two hours. It’s admirable that Lars Von Trier is able to put his struggles with depression out there like this, but that alone cannot make Melancholia a good movie. In fact, it’s awful. By the one hour mark of the movie, I was rooting for Kiefer Sutherland to go Jack Bauer and kill everybody like they were Ukrainian terrorists, but instead the movie remained insufferable. And thematically Melancholia was extremely similar to Take Shelter… the biggest difference being that Take Shelter didn’t suck.

In Time
This is the worst kind of movie – a terrible movie with a good idea. Andrew Niccol has made great science fiction before (see: Gattaca), but this movie was a dud. Justin Timberlake was entirely out of place, and the concept of using time as currency was completely wasted. Even the god of modern cinematography, Roger Deakins, couldn’t make this thing worth watching. Every time I think about how good this movie should have been, I get profoundly upset.

Warrior had the same formula as pretty much every other post-Rocky sports movie, but it was all too lazy to care about anything. There were awful montages, Joel Edgerton’s character was entirely uninteresting, and the whole thing felt like little more than an attempt to capitalize on MMA’s popularity. Nick Nolte was good, but he’s been acting circles around people in terrible movies for years, so I’m starting to think he might just be good in awful movies. Ugh… I still can’t believe people in my theatre applauded this thing.

Conan O’Brien Can’t Stop
The drama between O’Brien and NBC was fascinating, but this documentary about the Legally Prohibited from being Funny on Television tour was not. If “White People Problems” has become a full-on meme, soon to be in Webster’s along with Tebowing and the word jiggy, then Conan O’Brien Can’t Stop should be listed in the definition, as it is the epitome of the white person problem. It was self-absorbed, completely unnecessary, and kind of made me hate Conan. Please stop.

Alex Stephenson

Alex is an avid film fan, with an appreciation for both low and high culture. He loves Steven Seagal movies, but he can break down all those womb metaphors in The Graduate, too.