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10 worst movies of 2017

He said it, not us!

It's that time of the year again. We're not talking about the holiday season, but rather to reminisce about all the movies that we have seen in 2017 so far.


Like every other year, there are the usual good, bad and just plain terrible movies, so here are the 10 worst movies of 2017 based upon our analytical opinions from critics, fans, and box office results.

10. "The Mummy"

Sofia Boutella plays the female mummy-antagonist in "The Mummy".

Worldwide box-office total: USD409.1 million

Like it or not, shared universe is the current Hollywood trend these days. Thanks to the proven formula seen in the Marvel Cinematic Universe so far, just about every major studio wants to replicate the success with their own franchise. Among them, of course, is Universal Pictures. Here, the studio attempts to kick-start their very own shared universe with the big-budget modern reboot of "The Mummy". Otherwise known as Dark Universe, "The Mummy" is blessed with an all-star cast led by Tom Cruise and Russell Crowe as well as a huge budget at their disposal.

Unfortunately, "The Mummy" was already dead upon arrival with less-than-stellar box-office results and equally lukewarm reception. Not even the star power of Tom Cruise can help salvage the movie, especially given his underwritten lead role. Director Alex Kurtzman did offer a fresh angle by enlisting "Kingsman: The Secret Service" and "Star Trek Beyond" Sofia Boutella as a female mummy instead of the traditionally male monster character, while Tom Cruise's highly-publicised zero-gravity stunt during the plane crash sequence is reasonably exciting. Too bad on the rest of the movie, though. Also, Universal reportedly has cancelled their Dark Universe plans after "The Mummy" mustered a worldwide total of USD409.1 million. Hopefully, the Dark Universe is still a go after some major revamps are done!

9. "Baywatch"

Biceps and eye candies galore in "Baywatch".

Worldwide box-office total: USD177.8 million

After 11 seasons of the "Baywatch" TV series, we finally got ourselves a long-overdue big screen adaptation. Mind you, the TV series back then wasn't 'high art' at all but it sure wore its guilty pleasure well enough like a badge of honour. By comparison, "Baywatch" the movie ditches its campy tone with a "21 Jump Street"-like 18-rated territory, but no amounts of profanities, boobs and wiener jokes can help the movie stay afloat since most of them miss the mark.

As an action comedy, it barely generated any worthwhile excitement and what's with the outrageously bad effects in the fiery yacht scene anyway? Despite being headlined by Dwayne Johnson, Zac Efron and Bollywood queen Priyanka Chopra of TV's "Quantico" fame, "Baywatch" is pretty much a limp effort.

8. "Birth Of The Dragon"

Bruce Lee (Philip Ng) and Wong Jack Man (Xia Yu) engage in the legendary fight in "Birth Of The Dragon".

Worldwide box-office total: USD7.1 million

It's far from a definitive Bruce Lee biopic, but more of a true story about the legendary fight between the pre-fame Bruce Lee and Wong Jack Man which took place in 1964.

While Xia Yu delivers a decent performance as Wong Jack Man, Philip Ng fails to make his Bruce Lee worthwhile. Sure, he may have the physical build and some of the late martial arts legend's cocky charisma but he's mostly depicted as a one-dimensional arrogant character. And for a movie that carries the obvious title of "Birth Of The Dragon", director George Nolfi made an odd decision by putting Billy Magnussen's fictional Steve McKee character front and centre. As for the fight scenes, it was all neatly choreographed but neither of them are particularly worth mentioning here.

7. "Daddy's Home 2"

The more, the merrier in "Daddy's Home 2".

Worldwide box-office total: USD118.7 million (still showing in cinemas to date)

The first "Daddy's Home" in 2015 wasn't particularly a memorable comedy. Still, there was a certain underlying charm and novelty factor within its high-concept "lame stepdad vs. tough biological dad" subgenre, thanks to the decent chemistry between Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg.

Since the first movie did manage to make a lot of money after all, a sequel is inevitable. With an expanded cast that includes screen veterans Mel Gibson and John Lithgow playing as granddads, "Daddy's Home 2" could have been double the fun, instead, returning writer-director Sean Anders undermined their considerable talents by tossing the same old physical gags and flat humour. Anders even attempted to offer his sequel a boost of a feel-good Christmas vibe during the entire third act, but for all the unity theme and sing-a-long moments, this sequel ends up being both cringy and mawkish at the same time.

6. "The Emoji Movie"

That's two poop emojis, alright.

Worldwide box-office total: USD216.8 million

How the heck did Sir Patrick Stewart of all people even agree to voice an emoji character none other than... Poop? But the biggest question of all, who in the right mind figured it was a brilliant idea to come up with an animated movie surrounding emojis?

The star-studded cast ranging from T.J. Miller ("Deadpool") to Patrick Stewart ("X-Men" movies, "Logan") didn't even make a dent, but perhaps the brightly-coloured animation was able to please most undemanding children after all, given its surprisingly healthy USD200 million+ worldwide box-office total over a mid-range USD50 million budget.

5. "Resident Evil: The Final Chapter"

Alice (Milla Jovovich) back in action for one last time in "Resident Evil: The Final Chapter".

Worldwide box-office total: USD312.2 million

Poor Paul W.S. Anderson. He didn't seem to get it right with the "Resident Evil" movies ever since he first directed the franchise back in 2002, but despite a continuous dip of moderate-to-poor quality for each outing, it's a wonder that the "Resident Evil" franchise was still able to make money at the worldwide box-office.

The latest and final instalment of "Resident Evil" is not going to restore your faith of getting a worthy movie that honours the legendary Capcom survival-horror video game. Instead, what we got here is the franchise's all-time low where Anderson and his team botched everything from bad editing to epilepsy-inducing jittery camerawork. Even the action sequences are poorly choreographed while the movie relies heavily on cheap jump scares for the sake to justify its so-called "horror" elements. The only saving grace here is the 41-year-old Milla Jovovich, who still has what it takes to pull off a physically-demanding role as Alice.

4. "The Crucifixion"

One of the demonic possession sequences in "The Crucifixion".

Worldwide box-office total: Info not released.

Ten years ago, French director Xavier Gens made a promising feature-length debut with his gruesomely violent horror-thriller, "Frontier(s)", but his latest horror effort via "The Crucifixion" is a polar opposite altogether.

Despite the involvement of "The Conjuring" screenwriting duo Chad and Carey W. Hayes, this exorcism thriller is shockingly dull in every way. The story itself, which claims to be inspired by actual events, is brimmed with exposition-heavy dialogues and preachy debates about religion and faith. Gens' direction is equally tedious where the pace slogs forever and the scares being close to none. Sophie Cookson, who already made her mark in "Kingsman: The Secret Service" and Netflix's lesbian drama, "Gypsy", is equally wasted in her first leading role as the investigative reporter, Nicole Rawlins. Surprise, surprise... the movie holds a 0% rating on review aggregate site Rotten Tomatoes.

3. "Amityville: The Awakening"

Bella Thorne and McKenna Grace in a scene from "Amityville: The Awakening".

Worldwide box-office total: USD7.6 million

Frankly, the 2005 remake starring Ryan Reynolds and Melissa George was actually decent. By contrast, this latest reboot is a failed attempt to revitalise the never-ending franchise. What's even more surprising is the involvement of Franck Khalfoun, the French director whose previous credits including the underground parking-garage thriller "P2" and the first-person horror remake "Maniac", who suddenly doesn't seem to have a clue about making a decent genre movie.

"Amityville: The Awakening", of course, was famously plagued with a troubled production history. It's so obvious that you can practically see them on display with its abrupt editing, inconsistent pacing and mediocre characters. No doubt this is the kind of movie where Jennifer Jason Leigh doesn't want you to remember.

2. "Fifty Shades Darker"

"Fifty Shades Yawner".

Worldwide box-office total: USD381 million

The only worst movie in the list that failed to make it through Malaysia's censorship board (you know why), "Fifty Shades Darker" continues to demonstrate its cinematic existence for being a "so bad, it's bad" kind of erotic drama. With Sam Taylor-Johnson out of the picture, it looks as if James Foley is a better replacement. Besides, he was a veteran director who made the memorable "Glengarry Glen Ross". But then again, he was also responsible for that Bruce Willis-Halle Berry debacle in "Perfect Stranger".

Still, the sequel is a flaccid affair that no amounts of sex and the often-naked presences of Jamie Dornan and Dakota Johnson can make "Fifty Shades Darker" worth watching for.

1. "Transformers: The Last Knight"

Optimus Prime (voiced by Peter Cullen) in "Transformers: The Last Knight".

Worldwide box-office total: USD605.4 million

The "Transformers" movies are best categorised as guilty-pleasure or "so bad, it's good" kind of entertainment. Even the much-maligned "Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen" and "Transformers: Age Of Extinction" had their respective entertaining moments meant to be experienced on the big screen, but this time, Michael Bay hits an all-time low with "Transformers: The Last Knight".

Armed with a massive USD250+ budget and a golden chance to shoot 98% of the film using IMAX cameras, he could have at least brought some popcorn-worthy excitement like he did before. For some reasons, he has gone lazy by throwing every Bayhem moment he could think of and called it a day. As a result, the effect-laden action sequences are shockingly lame where Bay and cinematographer Jonathan Sela assaulted audiences' eyes with tight close-ups and shaky camerawork. So, you can imagine how it feels when a person watches this in a IMAX 3D cinema.

The long-winded plot is incomprehensible, the all-star cast gives average-to-poor performances and finally, it's a real pity to see the great Anthony Hopkins playing a pretentious role who annoyingly tries to explain every history and connection related to the movie's title.


Cinema Online, 11 December 2017