The year 2016 was not very kind to many, and the film department didn’t help either with many of its products ranging from disappointing to downright terrible, and Coleton, Stephen, and Manuel look at their least favorite of the year.
Stephen Brinkerhoff- “Suicide Squad”
After the conclusion of Christopher Nolan’s “Dark Knight” trilogy, DC Comics has struggled to create a film that even comes close to reaching those heights. While “The Dark Knight Rises” did begin to show an overstayed welcome, both “Man of Steel” and “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” were incoherent and obnoxious experiences to endure. However, things were looking up for “Suicide Squad.” It had an impressive cast of A-List actors, David Ayer is a talented director, and the trailers were all fun and zany. Heck, it probably couldn’t be any worse than the other two.
Right off the bat, the movie feels like it was edited over the course of a week. It’s akin to a college term paper written two hours before class. Dialogue scenes, specifically one towards the beginning with Amanda Waller (Viola Davis), are cut awkwardly, resulting in many long pauses and cut off sentences.
What feels like 50 songs are played within the the first 10 minutes of the movie. Apparently, it’s supposed give the movie angsty personality, but instead it just gives migraines.
Some have argued that the film’s poor quality is due to Warner Bros. chopping up and rearranging the film in the editing room, but the script is embarrassing in itself. Not only is it formulaic as all heck, as a, spoiler alert, blue laser beam shoots up into the sky and the Squad battles a personality-less demon rock monster, but most of the film’s attempts at humor are cringe-inducing, like such classic comedy as a guy (Ike Barinholtz) telling some other guy to delete his browser history.
While Will Smith as Deadshot, Davis, and Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn do try their best, there’s always Jared Leto’s Joker. After all this hullabaloo about Leto harassing his co-stars for the sake of art, one would think that he would do more than just a bad Heath Ledger impression. Between the hunched back and vaguely raspy, but also high pitched voice, he brings about as much to the Joker as the 90% of people that dressed up as him for Halloween in 2008.
Maybe the film was overhyped. Maybe the trailers were too good. Either way, “Suicide Squad,” in all of its loud, arrogant, and factory-made glory, should have signaled the end of superhero movies, if only it didn’t make so much money.
Manuel Fernandez- “Mother’s Day”
It was a real shame when we all heard about director Garry Marshall’s passing this year since he has made quite a number of great films, including “Pretty Woman,” which is often regarded as his best and most iconic piece of work. But what is even more depressing is the fact that his last film he ever made was this year’s “Mother’s Day,” which is one of the most insulting, frustrating, horrific films I have ever seen not just this year, but my entire life as well.
On a technical level, it’s so poorly made to the point where it’s unwatchable. The characters are unlikable, the comedy is flat and unfunny, random racist remarks are present for some odd reason, and it’s so lazy when it comes to its plot.
In the movie, Garry Marshall attempts to interweave multiple different storylines that are occurring at the same time. These storylines include: A mother (Jennifer Aniston) trying to win the hearts of her kids after her ex-husband marries a younger woman, a widowed father (Jason Sudeikis) coping with the loss of his wife (who was a soldier), a strained relationship between a writer (Julia Roberts) and her daughter (Britt Robertson), who she gave up for adoption, and a married woman (Kate Hudson) and her sister (Sarah Chalke) whose parents come for a visit and refuse to accept her marriage to a person of color and her sister’s relationship to another woman.
However, his attempt at a much “bigger” film proves to be a hinderance for the film as it makes the plot thin and generic and cuts back-and-forth between each story. This doesn’t allow for any sort of characterization for any of the characters, making them unrelatable and, as previously stated, unlikable.
But the thing that makes me absolutely hate this film the most is that it depicts women, especially mothers, as these people who all they do is talk about their romantic lives, whine and complain about everything, care only about themselves, and are just flat out dumb and stupid. The film fails to portray the sacrifices mothers make for their families and doesn’t depict them as great, inspiring figures in a family.
This movie is an insult to mothers everywhere as much as it is an insult to filmmaking as a whole.
Coleton Emmel - “Moonlight”
Out of all the films that came out this year, this one was the most shocking. Before seeing it, I was told nothing but praise, being told it’s the best film of the year and so in depth. Unfortunately, I don’t see any of that. In fact, I saw the exact opposite.
Following the life of Chiron, the film takes place during three different parts of his life: childhood, adolescence, and adulthood, “learning” more and more about him as time goes on.
The biggest issue is that it doesn’t go anywhere and dive into its characters enough. For example, Chiron meets a man named Juan (Mahershala Ali) during his childhood and later becomes a father figure to him. As the film goes on, though, he’s never brought up again, making the point of the character feel rather useless.
Chiron interacts with various people like his drug addict mother, Juan’s wife, and bullies from school, but the relationships barely go anywhere. There’s no focus on anything and just consists of Chiron being mistreated by nearly everyone he comes across, making the experience feel very mean spirited and not very rewarding for either the audience or Chiron (except for one scene where he deals with one of his bullies).
All the pieces of being a great movie are here, but nothing is dived in deep enough for anything complex.
The film itself is not exactly terrible, it’s just how universally acclaimed it is and how “masterfully” crafted it is where it becomes bothersome. If the film was being received much less than it is now, then I’d be seeing it in a different way. But knowing this is topping a lot of other people’s charts for best movie over ones like “La La Land,” “Hacksaw Ridge,” and “Manchester by the Sea,” it becomes agitating to see that better films aren’t being as well recognized.
It’s definitely not the worst movie of the year, but it’s the one I hate the most.
Do you agree with our picks? What was your least favorite film of 2016? Leave a comment below and here’s to 2017 for a better year in film.