The Worst Films of 2011

There are two things you don’t want to watch getting made – sausage and the official Film School Rejects’s year-end worst-of list. Hideous, dirty, bloody, illegal stuff; many animals die in the process (disclaimer – no animals were harmed in the making of this list). It’s a fool’s errand, a losing battle, a terrible way to dig up the past pains of the year’s biggest flops – reverse therapy for cinephiles. But damn if the results aren’t hilarious.

For this year’s Worst Films of 2011 list, our own Kevin Carr and myself teamed up to pick the most wretched of the wretched, the worst of the worst, the Adam Sandler films we’re all struggling to forget. There were many emails and even more tears. I doubt we’ll ever be able to look each other in the eye again. By the time Sir Carr and I were done volleying bad films back and forth at each other via the electronic mail system like a game of cinematic badminton that absolutely no one was capable of winning (and, really, how does one win badminton?), we were far too exhausted to even attempt to number the following twenty-two films in any kind of order. No matter, they’re all bad. We’ll leave it to you, dear readers, to take to the comments to call what you think is the worst (and what we’ve, quite unforgivably, left off).

Jack & Jill

When I first heard about this movie, it was on South Park, and I thought it was a cruel joke made up by Trey Parker and Matt Stone. Then I saw the trailer, and I was still convinced that Adam Sandler was going to show up on The Tonight Show, saying, “Surprise! Gotcha!” But no. This movie was unfunny on all levels, with the power to wilt the human soul and send people into a deep depression. Adam Sandler has become unfunny enough in his pathetic attempts to do family films. Putting him in a dress and making him be a sexual turn-on to Al Pacino just made the world a worse place. Poor Al Pacino. KC

Beastly

I’m sorry, but why does this film exist? It’s a reworked Beauty and the Beast story that stars one of the Olsen twins (which one? who cares!) as some sort of teenage sorceress who dooms Alex Pettyfer (a hyped-up British star who has already made himself a bad reputation in the biz) to life as what? a dude with some bad tattoos and piercings? He’s a teen! It’s what teens do! But who can save him? Only the girl from the High School Musical movies and also Neil Patrick Harris as a blind tutor who cracks wise when he’s not trying to choke his sobs over being a part of this, dare I say, beastly mess of a romance. KE

Big Mommas: Like Father, Like Son

Did you know that Box Office Mojo has an entire genre category devoted to “Fat Suit Comedies”? It seems that 2011 was a banner year for these films, which sadly made decent money but couldn’t draw a laugh from any respectable audience member. Between Adam Sandler and Martin Lawrence, the moviegoing audience can make a clear case for cinematic terrorism. Please stop, or we’ll send in the troops. KC

Red Riding Hood

Yet another “reworked fairy tale” engineered for the Twilight set – and even they couldn’t be bothered with Catherine Hardwicke’s take on the scarlet-hooded lady fair and the wolf she loves. All those capes and beasts? Who knew Hardwicke was such a fan of The Village? KE

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part I

Say what you want about these Twilight films, but they have a hard-core, rabid fan base. And while most people whose ovaries aren’t pumping out gallons of estrogen at the site of a shirtless Taylor Lautner will tell you these films are quite terrible, the first three films seem to have some entertainment value somewhere. But Breaking Dawn is something special, that is, especially bad. From chess-playing vampire honeymoons and ludicrous bed-breaking virgin sex to C-section via vampire teeth and a werewolf mind-raping a newborn, this film revealed what a farce this entire series is. And just think…as awful as this movie was, we’ve got the second half coming out next November. Whee! KC

Your Highness

2011 was a heartbreaking year for fans of filmmaker David Gordon Green, who used to craft deep-feeling and hard-hitting dramas with a magical little spin (even his romance All The Real Girls feature some moments of off-kilter humor and whimsy). But after the success of Pineapple Express, everything changed, and Green’s bread and butter suddenly became big, commerical comedies that felt more like in-jokes with his pack of equally-as-talented friends than something mainstream audiences could enjoy, old fans be damned. A comedic send-up of 80s medieval films? Sounds good on paper, but what an unfunny snooze on-screen. KE

Just Go With It

In contrast to Steven Spielberg releasing two spectacular films at the end of the year, Adam Sandler has graced the screen twice with godawful movies. As bad as Jack & Jill was (and believe me, it’s bad…just scroll up on this list), Just Go With It adds the box office poison of Jennifer Aniston into the mix. Sandler may be one of the nicest guys in Hollywood, but his treatment of the public is just shameful. Not only does he have to give us these suck-fests each year, he gets to squish up against Brooklyn Decker’s glorious ta-tas in the process. Bastard! KC

New Year’s Eve

I’d say that I don’t know what the movie-going public has done to deserve director Garry Marshall’s heartless, soulless, and mindless multiple storyline holiday films crammed with stars, but I know already – they’ve bought the tickets. Like last year’s dismal Valentine’s Day, New Year Eve’s tracked a bunch of luckless losers searching for love (even if they weren’t sure of it) on the final day of the year. If the most moving and amusing sequence you can squeeze out of such a film is an end-credits gag of Zac Efron dancing, you better just stay the hell away from Arbor Day. KE

Hall Pass

Remember when the Farrelly Brothers were funny? Or even remotely in touch with their audience? It’s hard to watch a movie like Hall Pass and recall their unbelievably hilarious films like Dumb and Dumber, Kingpin, and There’s Something About Mary. Somehow, these director brother duo replaced clever comedy with casting their friends and forcing slapstick. I’m not saying that Hall Pass is the worst thing the Farrelly Brothers have done (because we’ve got the sure-to-be-painful The Three Stooges coming out in 2012), but it’s close. KC

The Sitter

The second of David Gordon Green’s comedies for the year, The Sitter was somehow even less funny, sharp, or relevant than Your Highness – quite possibly the only claim to fame it will ever hold. If Green’s skewering of 80s medieval adventure films was flaccid, his take on 80s babysitting adventure films was just flat. Clocking in at less than eighty minutes, the film was an excrucitating watch and, like New Year’s Eve, was only lifted by the dancing on one of its co-stars (in this case, Sam Rockwell as a deranged coke dealer). KE


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