Movies are given the one responsibility to simply be entertaining. Some movies try to do more and some don?t, but most movies entertain at some level and therefore succeed at attaining their sole purpose.
While this task seems small and rather easy, some movies come along and really make audiences wonder “how” and “why” they were ever made.
Glitter is just the latest on an ever growing list of films that have been considered by some critics as the worst movies of their respective year.
A star vehicle for music star Mariah Carey, Glitter was obviously designed to establish her as an actress so she?ll have legs when her music career comes to its end.
But this is how the problem starts ? a gimmick.
Last year, someone came up with the idea to make a movie called Dude, Where?s My Car?
The pitch must have gone something like this: “It will star the horny guy from American Pie and throw in the horny guy from That 70s Show. One will say “dude” a lot and the other will repeat “sweet” throughout the film. The kids will love it.”
Unfortunately, a script had to be hashed out to last the remaining 85 minutes of film. A plot involving an alien-worshiping cult ensued and audiences started saying, “Dude, I want my money back.”
So there are movies that you know are going to be stupid and then there are disappointments.
Antonio Banderas starred in a pair of duds in 1999 with The 13th Warrior and Play It To The Bone.
Warrior sounded promising ? Banderas, still hot from Desperado, playing a romantic lead in medieval Arabia. But the subplot of his character?s banishment and lost love that was highly promoted in the trailers lasted only three minutes of screen time. The rest of the action involves slapstick battle scenes between 13 dimwits and man-eating beasts. Oh yeah, there?s a winner for you.
Bone, on the other hand, was written and directed by Ron Shelton. Shelton?s previous works included the sports comedies Bull Durham, White Men Can?t Jump and Tin Cup. Here, Shelton takes on boxing and fails miserably at every convoluted joke. Banderas and Woody Harrelson are friends who accept a boxing match the morning of the big event. Although it sounds promising, the bulk of the film is filled with road-trip scenarios designed to prove how idiotic two washed-up boxers can be when they bicker with each other. And the problem is, it?s not even funny. Dismal performances from Lolita Davidovich and Lucy Liu make this tired comedy unbearable. And the pointless finale confirms Shelton?s expired comedic license should not be used to waste our time any longer.
Other recent lows include 1997?s Seven Years In Tibet, the Brad Pitt sleeper about the Dalai Lama that should have been titled, “Seven Years In A Movie Theater,” as well as the recent Hamlet starring Ethan Hawke.
There should never be a time when an audience member wants to actually walk out of the theater. The problem with these films is they make this temptation desirable. These films have committed the cardinal sin by not entertaining.
Movies have one purpose and one purpose only. Once a movie has achieved the modest goal of entertaining its audience, it should be considered a success no matter how bad a critic bashes it. Unfortunately, in a day of number crunching and multi-million dollar studio films we are still subject to films that fail at even that.
William Albritton is a senior majoring in mass communications and is The Oracle movies editor. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org