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!