January, or as critics call it, “vacation time,” is certainly not the best month for movies. A lot of distribution companies lack the marketing budget to advertise a tent-pole movie after positioning numerous movies for the awards season so they end up placing their smaller movies (or movies that are just terrible) at the beginning of year, leaving critics like me to hate their profession for a month out of the year. Let’s take a look at those films that made us all question why we were in the theater. As a disclaimer, I may have missed out on a few films this month that would probably be contenders for this list (looking at you Monster Trucks, A Dog’s Purpose, and Resident Evil: The Final Chapter) because let’s face it, even critics need to have standards sometimes. Nevertheless, here’s the worst movies of the month that I dragged myself into the theater to see:
#3: xXx: Return of Xander Cage: Vin Diesel is at it again with a standard action movie that goes hard after the lowest common denominator in every sense. Return of Xander Cage tries so hard to be super duper cool with all its stars that have tattoos, say one-liners, and try to look “dope” whenever possible, except all of those elements are practically insufferable. Every actor, with the exception of Donnie Yen, comes off as just annoying and stupid. The movie also shamelessly sets up for more sequels that, judging by the box office, will most likely not happen. Sorry Vin, but keep your idiotic action movies contained to the Fast and Furious franchise.
Rotten Tomatoes Critics’ Score: 43%
Metacritic Score: 41
MovieBabble Score: D
*To read my review of xXx: Return of Xander Cage, please click here
#2: The Bye Bye Man: I give this movie credit for an interesting premise of a being that takes hold of you the more you say his name or think about him, and that’s about all the credit it deserves. The Bye Bye Man has some of the worst acting ever put in a wide release film, leading to a lot of scenes that are suppose to be scary that end up making you laugh uncontrollably. Filled with horrible pacing problems, The Bye Bye Man is just plain boring for the first half of the movie, setting up for scares that never come. Then, the movie falls into complete lunacy that might be worth your time late at night after many, many adult beverages. I foresee this film having a cult following in a few years, full of people that watch it ironically.
Rotten Tomatoes Critics’ Score: 22%
Metacritic Score: 37
MovieBabble Score: D-
*To read my review of The Bye Bye Man, please click here
#1: Underworld: Blood Wars: Can this franchise just end, please? Underworld: Blood Wars is a tiresome, lousy movie that is neither good enough to enjoy nor cheesy enough to enjoy sarcastically like The Bye Bye Man. The movie is full of scenes of characters talking with zero emotion, putting you to sleep with every passing moment. The one character you may care about, Kate Beckinsale’s Selene, is relegated to doing practically nothing during the film, leading the film to make us try to care about Theo James and other side character’s whose motivations lead to absolutely nothing. You might enjoy this movie a tad if you were a massive fan of the franchise so far, but otherwise Blood Wars is incomprehensible schlock that has zero payoff.
Rotten Tomatoes Critics’ Score: 17%
Metacritic Score: 22
MovieBabble Score: F
*To read my review of Underworld: Blood Wars, please click here
That’s the list! What movies have you seen this month that you hated? Comment at the bottom of the page with your thoughts!
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