Matt’s Worst Movies of 2013

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#1: The Smurfs 2

This year’s cinematic equivalent to the movie “Ass” predicted by Idiocracy, “Smurfs 2” stands apart in a category of rancid trash masquerading as entertainment. What was this movie about? I can’t tell you. The Smurfs go to Paris to stop Gargamel, or something, and in the meantime make a series of pop-culture references that are supposed to equal comedy and intersperse them with a generous helping of fart noises and product placement.

Once again, the worst movie of the year is a movie targeted towards children. Hollywood continues to churn out this $#!+ year after year, giving little thought to things like plot and character development. Comparing this with 2013’s kid movies that were actually good, like “Monsters University” and “Turbo,” it’s a bit unbelievable to me that people continue supporting this dreck when there is better product out there. You and your kids deserve better; vote with your wallet and avoid this trash.

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#2: Ass Backwards

The movie opens with two thirtysomething women peeing on concrete. And, like the urine flow in the opening shot, the movie goes downhill from there. Two horribly unfunny, unappealing, and unpleasant women trek across the U.S. to compete in a beauty pageant, meeting a series of uninteresting characters in situations that squander their comedic potential. While I don’t have the numbers to back it up, I would say from personal observation that this movie may have earned the dubious distinction of having the most walk-outs of any film playing at Sundance 2013.

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#3: Movie 43

The filmmakers responsible for “Movie 43” pulled off a truly impressive accomplishment: through tenacity and ingenuity, they managed to lure a series of A-list actors to appear in this movie, which (like the infinitely better movies “The Kentucky Fried Movie” and “Amazon Women on the Moon”) uses a wrap-around story as a vehicle for a series of sketches that are supposed to serve as “comedy.” Don’t be fooled by the credits and waste your time or money renting this crap. It’s not funny or fun; it’s just incredibly stupid. The still of Richard Gere from the movie sums it up. I imagine this is exactly how he would have felt had he watched it.
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#4: A Haunted House / Scary Movie 5

I’m really not trying to be cute by putting them in the same slot on this list. Honestly, they both run together in my mind. Each was a supposed spoof of recent horror movies wrapped around a plot loosely based on the “Paranormal Activity” franchise. In each movie, a number of other horror films was referenced – badly. Yeah, I saw the “Paranormal” movies. I get your references to “Insidious” and “Saw.” They were equally stupid and bad.

Producers of all supposed “spoof” movies, take note: REFERENCES TO POP CULTURE EVENTS AND OTHER MOVIES DO NOT EQUAL COMEDY. I am just waiting with bated breath for the next horrible “reference” movie doing a bit featuring Miley Cyrus twerking. Look, it’s Miley Cyrus! She’s twerking! I remember how she did that that one time. HA HA THAT IS HILARIOUS. To the producers of the next “reference” movie, I’ll give you that one free of charge. You’re welcome.

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#5: Getaway

Ethan Hawke has the dubious distinction of starring in a movie on my best list and on my worst list. This film can be boiled down as follows: a stupid plot in a world populated by dumb characters behaving ridiculously through an unrealistic series of circumstances, filled with nonsensical car chases and random explosions. I love a well-choreographed car chase, but although this movie had a ton of chases, not a single one of them was any good (for examples of good car chases, see “Death Proof” or “Fast Five”). And don’t get me started on Selena Gomez, who plays a rich computer hacker that knows a lot about cars… WTH? Other than to try to appeal to younger viewers, WHY was she in this movie? Horrible miscasting.

Except for one good 45-second sequence, this movie was horrible. Don’t waste your time, and don’t be fooled into thinking that this movie deserves to be considered alongside any of the films in the “Fast and Furious” franchise.

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#6: Red 2

Do me a favor: go back and re-read my review of “All Is Lost,” number 6 on my list of the best movies of 2013. This movie is the exact opposite. You know how I said that I don’t like to be treated like an idiot? “Red 2” does exactly that. It’s the epitome of playing to the lowest common denominator. You want your pointless ‘splosions? We got ‘em! You want your respected actors phoning in their performances for a contractually-obligated payday? We gotcha covered there, too! Do you like fast-cutting action sequences that mask the director’s incompetence and an (over)use of super slo-mo to punctuate the ‘splosions? Look no further! Please let this franchise die. Please.

P.S. Congratulations to Bruce Willis, who managed to appear in 3 of the worst movies of 2013.

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#7: Salinger

Did you ever wonder what happened to J.D. Salinger? (Spoiler alert) After publishing his last short story in 1965, he became a recluse, stumbling his way through a series of failed marriages and remaining emotionally unavailable to his children. He continued writing but did not release any of his works, which will be published over time following his death in 2010.

Okay, so how long did it take you to read those words? Twenty seconds? The makers of “Salinger” managed to take that same story and make a documentary of it that stretches out over two hours. Don’t be fooled by the preview; this movie isn’t intriguing, and the resolution of the “mystery” of Mr. Salinger is unsatisfying, particularly given the amount of time you have to invest as a viewer. Also, don’t be fooled by the trailer: Phillip Seymour Hoffman and Ed Norton are on screen less than 5 minutes total. If you’re interested in Mr. Salinger, do yourself a favor and read the Wikipedia entry instead; it’s much better.

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#8: A Good Day to Die Hard

“Die Hard,” which is almost 25 years old, is one of the greatest action movies ever made. It inspired a series of imitators, which can each be described as “Die Hard on a . . .”, which continue to be successful even today (see: “Olympus Has Fallen”). For some reason (truckloads of money, perhaps?), Bruce Willis and the people who own the rights to the “Die Hard” franchise are unwilling to leave this legacy unblemished, and instead are dead-set on squeezing every penny they can from John McClane and his family members. Standing alone, it’s just another (really really) stupid action movie with a nonsensical plot; the fact that this movie is identified as a “Die Hard” sequel makes it somehow worse for those of us who are old and nostalgic enough to remember the first one and what it meant for action movies in general.

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#9: R.I.P.D.

This movie, a rip-off of those “Men In Black” movies, somehow managed to equal or exceed the stupidity displayed in that franchise. Stupid alien creatures rendered with horrible CGI being shot and captured by dumb “futuristic” weapons. Fortunately (and unlike the “MIB” franchise), the moviegoing public ignored this one, virtually assuring us of no stupid sequels. Not even Ryan Reynolds and Jeff Bridges (both actors I really like and generally enjoy) could save this lazy, hackneyed effort from the cinematic trash heap.

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“G.I. Joe: Retaliation”

#10: G.I. Joe: Retaliation

Not even the usually enjoyable Dwayne Johnson or Channing Tatum (who is only on screen for about 8 minutes) could make this turd of a movie tolerable. Quick cuts make it impossible to actually follow the alleged “action” sequences, apparently masking the incompetence of the director and/or actors in pulling off the stunts. Then, there was the so-called plot: some maniacal bad guy wants to take over the world, and in the meantime he ends up destroying a major city… blah, blah, blah. “G.I. Joe: Retaliation” is yet another example of Hollywood turning out mindless crap because the producers have absolutely no respect for us, the moviegoing public. Of course, time and again the moviegoing public confirms this lack of respect by supporting the movie… it did great at the box office. We all deserve better, people.


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