Have you ever felt mugged by a bad movie? Ever wanted to stamp DOA on a Netflix package?
I’m here to help. As a public service, here is my list of the 10 worst movies of 2010. Since I was told in fifth grade that constructive criticism is the best kind, I’m including a sweet-smelling alternative to each stinker.
“The Tourist”: Johnny Depp gives his first dull performance and Angelina Jolie is as emotive as a mannequin in this Venice-based thriller. It’s hard to believe this was directed by Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck, who gave us the transcendent “The Lives of Others.”
See instead: Alfred Hitchcock’s “To Catch a Thief” (1955), featuring Cary Grant, Grace Kelly and the French Riviera or Stanley Donen’s “Charade” (1963) with Grant and Audrey Hepburn -- two of the best star vehicles ever made.
“Burlesque”: Makes “Showgirls” look classy. Starring Christina Aguilera and Cher, who at this point should stick to infomercials.
See instead: “Showgirls” (1995).
“Date Night”: Steve Carell and Tina Fey are painfully unfunny in this comedy about innocent suburbanites caught up in crime. Their TV work has consistently been funnier and edgier than their film work. Isn’t it supposed to be the other way around?
“The Tempest”: Julie Taymor’s gender-bending travesty of Shakespeare’s final play even makes Helen Mirren look awful. When she intones “Our revels now are ended,” it wasn’t a moment too soon for me.
See instead: “Forbidden Planet” (1956), a sci-fi “Tempest” with Robby the Robot standing in quite nicely for Caliban.
“Sex and the City 2”: Gives camp a bad name. Other things it gives a bad name to: women, Abu Dhabi, Prada, karaoke bars and expense accounts.
See instead: “Crimes of the Heart” (1986), a brilliant chick flick based on the Beth Henley play. Sissy Spacek, Jessica Lange and Diane Keaton are at their best.
“The Nutcracker in 3D”: Andrei Konchalovsky’s dystopian take on the beloved ballet features precious little Tchaikovsky and no ballet. Instead we get steel-helmeted Nazi rats, bonfires of burned children’s toys, electrocuted sharks and John Turturro, looking a lot like a fright-wigged Phil Spector.
See instead: “The Nutcracker, The Motion Picture” (1986), with sets by Maurice Sendak.
See instead: “Dumb and Dumber” (1994), the thinking-man’s moronic movie.
“Morning Glory”: Paddy Chayefsky would be mad as hell if he were alive to see this celebration of TV news mindlessness starring scowly Harrison Ford and Rachel McAdams, with her industrial-strength twinkle.
See instead: “Network” (1976).
“Hemingway’s Garden of Eden”: In the long history of lousy Hemingway-derived movies, this adaptation of his posthumous novel gets the booby prize. It also gets the prize for Dullest Depiction of a Menage a Trois.
See instead: “The Macomber Affair” (1947), with Gregory Peck looking surprisingly at home in a safari suit. Along with “The Killers” (1946), it’s the best of the Hemingway movies.
“Gulliver’s Travels”: Jack Black’s rampaging talent gets shrunk down to Lilliputian size in this dismal 3D comedy. It should have been shot in Zero-D.
See instead: Anything.
Peter Rainer is a critic for Muse, the arts and leisure section of Bloomberg News. Opinions expressed are his own).
To contact the writer responsible for this story: Peter Rainer at Fi1L2E@aol.com.
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Manuela Hoelterhoff in New York at email@example.com.