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Worst Films of 2006

Published December 30, 2006 in Movie News
By Fred Topel | Image from Universal.
Miami Vice on DVD Miami Vice wins the title
Worst of the year lists are always harder for me because there's so much crap from January to April. Then you still want to include the ones that weasel their way into the good months. I could have a list of 20-30 but that just becomes redundant. At least half the movies made have to be mediocre or worse, so I whittled it down. I do want to mention that Madea's Family Reunion barely eeked off the list because I decided the scenes of Tyler Perry in drag weren't as awful as the dramatic scenes, and Crossover was just a bad stab at the urban market. Since they didn't fall for it, it's not worth including.

Worst of the Year List

10. Larry the Cable Guy: Health Inspector – I can't put this lower because I didn't watch the whole thing. For all I know, it got really good about halfway through. But the beginning was just so repulsive and unwatchable. I like Larry the Cable Guy but this wasn't about his humor. It was about his ass.

9. You, Me and Dupree - Painfully unfunny. Just painfully. Owen Wilson's whiny guy schtick just wasn't cute. I felt sorry for Matt Dillon who can be really great in comedy. But stop letting Owen improv.

8. American Dreamz - How could a movie with Hugh Grant as an unscrupulous A-hole be so unfunny? A satire with no perspective or bite, this movie can't make reality TV or George W. Bush amusing.

7. A Scanner Darkly - All due respect to the technical process, but what the hell was going on in this movie? If someone can explain the story to me, maybe I'll take it off this list. Something about being undercover with druggies and creating an alternate personality. Maybe it's really cool but I'll never know.

6. Dirty and Shadowboxer - Cuba Gooding Jr. has become the kiss of death for movies. If he's in it, just stay away. Dirty has the white collar Hollywood actor pretend to be a foul mouthed tough guy. Shadowboxer has him play a conflicted hitman who walks through the front door and screws his older mentor thinking it makes him deep. It doesn't. It's just boring and worthless filmmaking.

5. Freedomland - Here's a boring drama with no real conflict. When they finally riot, we don't even get to see it. All we see are actors talking about what they're talking about, in case we're not sophisticated enough to understand it.

4. Annapolis - I really didn't think I'd see any worse movies than Annapolis this year. It does every cliché but badly. There's a reason formula works. They just couldn't figure it out. The fact that it doesn't even remotely resemble Annapolis is the least of the film's problems.

3. Everyone's Hero - If this really was Christopher Reeve's vision, he should know better. Just because you're disabled doesn't mean you can pander to kids with outdated references and unsophisticated messages. Most likely, this was the fault of the animators who picked up after Reeve's death. It was a bad year for animation in general, but this was just unwatchable, boring and offensively stupid.

2. Step Up - It may seem harmless enough to have a silly formula dance movie for kids, but this was terrible. The "street" kids are so not street, the dancing doesn't even look real and those message moments are insulting. It seems to have been made by people who don't know how to dance, or tell a story.

1. Miami Vice - I know there are die hard Michael Mann supporters out there, but this may have been worse than Manhunter. How do you do a generic undercover cop story and treat all the clichés like they're so important. How do you do an action movie with so little action? How do you do Miami Vice with no attitude? They just sleepwalk through their important meditations on life. Guys, I know Tubbs and Crocket. You, sirs, are no Tubbs and Crocket. But even as a standalone it sucked.

Stay tuned for the top 10 of 2006.

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Fred Topel
Sources: Image from Universal.

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