Continuing our way down the list of this year’s summer movies:
15. The Queen of Versailles – If you can stomach 100 minutes of the Siegels, a wealthy Orlando family living waaaay beyond their means, you’ll discover a prudent and timely cautionary tales pertaining to our current economic collapse
16. Battleship – Maybe not quite as bad as you’ve heard; this is still a contrived FX spectacle best consumed with zero expectations. Speaking of spectacle, there’s enough CG eye candy here to arouse even the most jaded moviegoer.
17. The Bourne Legacy – Tony Gilroy writes himself into circles trying to connect this new story to the Bourne universe. There’s enough fresh material here to warrant a totally original, standalone film. Jeremy Renner delivers as the new protagonist, and there’s enough old-school tension and classic suspense to make you wish they had just started with an original idea. The biggest letdown is the action climax, which favors shaky-cam chaos and rapid-fire editing over clear geography and coherence.
18. Snow White and the Huntsman – Exceptionally dull, despite the lavish and stylized visuals.
19. Total Recall – Lots of noise and chaos, padding out a two-hour story we’ve already seen before. Way to go, Sony!
20. The Amazing Spider-Man – I’ll tell you exactly when I gave up on this movie. It was the scene where Uncle Ben is killed, because Peter Parker let a criminal get away. I’m sorry, but I thought I already saw this EXACT same moment ten years ago. If the future of cinema is going to be an endless parade of big-budget supero movies, is it too much to ask for an original character and story once in a while?
21. The Watch – Ever seen one of those comedies where the writers seemingly forgot to type in actual jokes? Here’s a movie that almost makes you feel sorry for three highly overpaid comedy superstars. Better luck next time, I guess.
22. The Expendables 2 – This should’ve been a no-brainer, an energetic summer romp. Instead, we get a stone-faced revenge tale with a lumbering plot performed by a cast of beefy non-actors. Has Hollywood forgotten what ‘dumb fun’ is supposed to look like?
23. That’s My Boy – If you thought the Sandman couldn’t sink any lower than last year’s Jack and Jill, think again my friend. This is what the bottom of the barrel looks like.
24. Seeking a Friend for the End of the World – Yikes. This ‘dramedy’ squanders an intriguing setup by failing to find the proper tonal balance between dark comedy and bittersweet yearning. In the end, it settles for mopey sentiment.
25. Men in Black 3 – The crucial mistake here is that agents Jay and Kay are more alluring and mysterious the less we know about them. Now we have a sequel that attempts to fill in all the backstory we never wanted to know. So why does this movie even exist? Foreign markets.