2016: Watchlist/So Bad it’s Good

Hey, this list was a long time coming!

I won’t divulge too much into an apologetic diatribe as to why my 2016 list has only started when we’re a month into 2017. Moving my old blog posts onto WP took longer than I thought. Now with that out of the way:

Rereading my older lists made me realise I ramble on too long when introducing these. So I’ll keep it short; here is a list of every movie I saw that was released in 2016 in Ireland (as in legally viewable-includes TV, DVD/Blu Ray, streaming platforms like Netflix, etc.):

1. 88
2. The Danish Girl
3. Joy
4. The Hateful Eight
5. The Revenant
6. Creed
7. The 5th Wave
8. The Big Short
9. Dirty Grandpa
10. 13 Hours: The Story of Benghazi
11. Spotlight
12. Trumbo
13. Dads Army
14. Goosebumps
15. Deadpool
16. Jem and the Holograms
17. A War
18. Concussion
19. Point Break
20. Frankenstein
21. Zoolander 2
22. The Assassin
23. How to be Single
24. The Finest Hours
25. Triple 9
26. Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon: The Sword of Destiny
27. Secret in their Eyes
28. The Other Side of the Door
29. Taj Mahal
30. Two Friends
31. The Forest
32. Kung Fu Panda 3
33. Grimsby
34. A Bigger Splash
35. Hail, Caesar!
36. Sing Street
37. Freeheld
38. Rams
39. Zootropolis
40. The Boy
41. Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice
42. 10 Cloverfield Lane
43. Risen
44. Gods of Egypt
45. Anomalisa
46. Chigasaki Story
47. Miss Hokusai
48. High-Rise
49. Three Stories of Love
50. Eddie the Eagle
51. Midnight Special
52. Hardcore Henry
53. Criminal
54. The Huntsman: Winter’s War
55. Time out of Mind
56. Mammal
57. The Jungle Book
58. Eye in the Sky
59. Jane Got a Gun
60. Nasty Baby
61. Bastille Day
62. Louder Than Bombs
63. Captain America: Civil War
64. Miles Ahead
65. The Brand New Testament
66. Friend Request
67. Hush
68. Demolition
69. The Violators
70. I’m All Yours
71. Embers
72. Exotica, Erotica, Etc.
73. Janis: Little Girl Blue
74. Life Partner
75. No Home Movie
76. I Saw the Light
77. Florence Foster Jenkins
78. Our Kind of Traitor
79. The Darkness
80. The Green Room
81. Everybody Wants Some!!
82. Son of Saul
83. X-Men: Apocalypse
84. Money Monster
85. Mustang
86. A Hologram for the King
87. Warcraft
88. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows
89. The Nice Guys
90. The Boss
91. Me Before You
92. Love and Friendship
93. Tale of Tales
94. Mon Roi
95. Independence Day: Resurgence
96. Elvis & Nixon
97. The Secret Life of Pets
98. The Daughter
99. Central Intelligence
100. The Meddler
101. The Bang Gang (A Modern Love Story)
102. Fire at Sea
103. The Angry Birds Movie
104. The Legend of Tarzan
105. Now You See Me 2
106. Maggie’s Plan
107. Ghostbusters
108. Embrace of the Serpent
109. Mom and Me
110. The Girl King
111. Batman: The Killing Joke
112. Star Trek Beyond
113. Finding Dory
114. The Neon Demon
115. Born to be Blue
116. Suicide Squad
117. Bobby Sands: 66 Days
118. Adult Life Skills
119. Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates
120. Notes on Blindness
121. The Shallows
122. Nerve
123. Summertime
124. Cosmos
125. Special Corespondents
126. David Brent: Life on the Road
127. Bad Moms
128. Viva
129. War Dogs
130. The Commune
131. Almost Holy
132. Julieta
133. Sausage Party
134. Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping
135. Pete’s Dragon
136. Lights Out
137. Childhood of a Leader
138. Equity
139. Kubo and the Two Strings
140. Don’t Breathe
141. Morgan
142. Anthropoid
143. The Uncountable Laughter of the Sea
144. The Beatles: Eight Days a Week-The Touring Years
145. The Infiltrator
146. Nine Lives
147. Captain Fantastic
148. A Date for Mad Mary
149. Things to Come
150. Hell or High Water
151. Hunt for the Wilderpeople
152. Cafe Society
153. Deepwater Horizon
154. Little Men
155. Shoebox Memories
156. Tanna
157. The Host
158. Strange Heaven
159. Beyond the Woods
160. Richard Linklater: Dream is Destiny
161. Storage
162. Twice Shy
163. Mattress Men
164. Lift
165. South
166. Faith & Fidelity
167. Whatever Happened to Gelitin?
168. While We Live
169. Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders
170. Oasis: Supersonic
171. Keeping up with the Jonses
172. War on Everyone
173. Baden Baden
174. The Flag
175. Doctor Strange
176. From a House on Willow Street
177. Don’t You Recognise Me?
178. Raw
179. Lake Bodom
180. The Chamber
181. The Autopsy of Jane Doe
182. Don’t Kill It
183. Demon Hunter
184. Egomaniac
185. 31
186. Ouija: Origins of Evil
187. Nocturnal Animals
188. Apparition Hill
189. I, Daniel Blake
190. The Accountant
191. Under the Shadow
192. American Honey
193. Dancer
194. The Love Witch
195. 24 Weeks
196. Chasing Asylum
197. Slash
198. The Miracle of Tekir
199. Out of Innocence
200. The Apology
201. 2 Nights til Morning
202. Porto
203. The Lovers and the Despot
204. Armorican Suite
205. Most of the Souls that Live Here
206. Eldorado
207. Suntan
208. Chi-raq
209. Fear Itself
210. Fragility
211. The Birth of a Nation
212. Creepy
213. Rock Dog
214. The Eagle Huntress
215. The Seasons in Quincy: Four Portraits of John Berger
216. Women Who Kill
217. The Handmaiden
218. Cardboard Gangsters
219. A United Kingdom
220. The Light Between Oceans
221. Arrival
222. Your Name
223. A Streetcat Named Bob
224. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
225. The Edge of Seventeen
226. The Purge: Election Year
227. Bleed for This
228. Dark Night
229. Crash and Burn
230. I, Olga Hepnarova
231. Dog Eat Dog
232. Moana
233. Atlantic
234. The United States of Love
235. Paterson
236. I am Not a Serial Killer
237. Snowden
238. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
239. Sully
240. Into the Forest
241. 13TH
242. Office Christmas Party
243. Passengers
244. The Fundamentals of Caring
245. Trolls
246. Amanda Knox
247. Barry
248. Allied
249. Why Him?
250. The Siege of Jadotville
251. My Beautiful Broken Mind
252. Collateral Beauty
253. Spectral
254. HyperNormalisation
255. Boulevard
256. Train to Busan
257. Fifty Shades of Black
258. Certain Women
259. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot
260. Norm of the North
261. Tickled
262. Swiss Army Man
263. Therapy
264. Elle
265. No Men Beyond this Point
266. God’s Not Dead 2
267. Hitchcock/Truffaut

If you noticed any film on there that got released in Ireland in a prior year, first of all well done for reading through that, second please let me know and I’ll remove it.

Now with that onto the way, onto the:

So Bad it’s Good

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Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon: The Sword of Destiny

Making a sequel to a movie as beloved as Ang Lee’s Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon 16 years later with nearly none of the original crew (sans Michelle Yeoh) is a risky endeavour. Putting it on Netflix, a platform that has done well for dramas and documentaries but not so much genre films (their TV is killing it, of course), is also pretty iffy territory. That Sword of Destiny is overly flashy, incoherent, horrible looking, flatly staged, with terrible set pieces compared to its predecessor and even can’t be saved by the awesome might of Donnie Yen. The whole thing is a goddamn travesty. But man, does its goofiness really rub off on you! If you’re looking for a legitimate send up to a great martial arts film, please do not waste your time. If you want something that has the some really cheesy shit combined with some really over the top action in places, this is your thing. Fans of the original steer clear, fans of dopey, unaware action flicks enjoy.

6 Miranda Dr.

The Darkness

So if you read my analysis on The Accountant, you’d know that I really value the positive depictions of the autistic spectrum in film. While The Accountant does a relatively decent job with that material, this flick really fucking doesn’t. The entire premise hinges on this kid with some of the most typecast autistic characteristics ever depicted on film being possessed…or something with spirits that only he can see because he’s ‘unnatural’ or some bullshit. This kid has haunted autism-hauntism if you will (I can’t take credit for that joke). Their portrayal is so fucking offensive to me that it may have gotten on my shitlist…if the entire thing wasn’t so lazy, stupid and half-assed.
Hoooooooooly shit is this a fucking entertaining trainwreck! The best thing about incompetent horror films is that, when you’re in the mood, how bad they are is almost infectiously enjoyable. None of the scares even remotely work and a lot of them are comical, the story is so fucking stupid and takes way too long to get going, but mostly the acting is what brings in the laughs. Nobody gives a shit or are just terrible. Kevin Bacon (who is in this…) looks like he took half a bottle of Nyquil and Xanax every damn time he has to go in front of the camera. He does not give a fuck.
The depiction of mental illnesses and other cognitive disorders, especially in horror, is an important discussion. But don’t waste it on this trashy as shit film. Just enjoy the absolutely bonkers, funny ride.

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Gods of Egypt

I almost didn’t go see Gods of Egypt because of director Alex Proyas’ ridiculously childish rebuttal to critics of his work, but while they’re certainly not wrong, most undersell how *ridiculously* fun it is in a really, really stupid way. Gods of Egypt doesn’t try to run on creativity, or energy, or well-rendered effects, or logic, but it does have something inept around every goddamn hilarious corner, from terribly rendered ‘large’ people and half animal things to Gerard Butler. It’s got a great retro feel too, mostly because of how terrible and hokey it looks, but also because it’s a classic fun filled adventure with a…guy trying to get a…girl that I never gave a shit about, also giant Jaime Lannister. This doesn’t make up for the director being an oversensitive asshole, and if the whitewashing bothers you…I get that, but this really isn’t the hill you should die on. It really is one of those movies I’d throw on and have a laugh over, even if it is at the expense of Mr. Proyas’ ego.

shallows-ban

The Shallows

To those who thought this film was good…why? I mean, the premise is fairly solid, and I like shark movies, but it’s largely a tensionless meander with an actress who is not compelling enough to hold a movie by herself in the slightest. It also has one of the most gratuitous ass shots I’ve ever seen in a flick-it’s up there with Avengers. This movie absolutely knows its audience. I’ll grant you, however, it’s not a drag, and kind of hilarious where they try to have Blake Lively befriend a seagull. It’s filled with such eye rolling conveniences, and her ingenuity is way better than any human being sleeping in a bikini on a rock in the middle of a bay with a great white tailing her (I’ll give them credit that they DO explain why the thing stays around). There are some fun and silly moments here or there, but if it wasn’t for the ending I’d probably not put it up here. It’s more Wile E. Coyote than Jaws, and makes it entirely worth watching. Hell, the best thing about watching a cartoon is a build up to the punch. It’s a dumb little movie, but entirely inoffensive and definitely one to throw on to chill out and laugh.

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The Take

Idris Elba is a great actor, and has the presence and charisma to be a compelling action star. It’s a pity he doesn’t have the script. This is a really, really, REALLY dumb political thriller trying to say something profound out of the world’s reactions to fundamentalist terrorism and reactionary groups (it DOES take a subversive twist on it, admittedly). Outside of how poorly time this all feels, it’s a really silly conspiracy thriller that’s too self-serious yet managing to be ovTrer the top. And that combination is really kind of fun! This has a bit of an 80s-action flick feel to it, and thankfully our two leads (Elba and Game of Thrones’ Richard Madden) are strong enough that it’s not too painful to watch. It’s not a good movie in any sense of the word, but it has those stupid moments that make it surprisingly watchable all the same.
(note: This film was originally titled Bastille Day, but the producers chose to change that because of the real-life terrorist events that took place on that day)

triple-9-02-casey-affleck-woody-harrelson

Triple 9

So take an amazing cast of really talented, versatile and well established actors and place them in, like, a pretty generic gangster crime film with twists and turns coming out of their asses, and my God, is everything so goddamn entertaining?! From their pathetic attempts at shock gore, to Kate Winslet’s ever changing accents, Triple 9 takes every misstep you can in a movie without it falling into unintentional parody. The only thing holding the film together is that the cast are great and trying to give it their all, they’re just let down by sloggish and predictable direction and a laughably hammy and stock script. Still, it’s got a decent opening, and the daftness of the rest of the flick can be pretty entertaining, just probably not in the intensified gritty cop thriller they want it to be.

Read my Worst of (37-11) here and my Best of (36-11) here.

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4 thoughts on “2016: Watchlist/So Bad it’s Good”

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