Tag Archives: Hot Pursuit

Worst Films of 2015

Now that I’ve gotten by Best Films of 2015 out of the way, here are the worst.

Special Mention

Southpaw – I kind of wish I gave it a lower rating than 2 stars because it deserves a place on my list. Okay, so it’s not one of the top 10 worst films of 2015, but it certainly is my most disappointing film of that year for all the lazy boxing cliches and complete lack of real-world authenticity. Read the full review by clicking on the title because I don’t want to go through all my grievances again.

Dishonorable Mentions

Aloha, The Boy Next Door, Fifty Shades of Grey, The Lazarus Effect, Unnatural, The Vatican Tapes, Deep Dark, Blunt Force Trauma

Some of the usual suspects here, but also a lot of low budget horror movies.

The List

10. Point Break

Huge budget. Huge stinker. This film deserves a spot on my list for destroying the memory of one of my favourite films growing up. They really should have changed the name of the film and the characters and marketed it as a different movie. Wouldn’t have made it less shit, but it would have made it less offensive.

9. Extraction

Bruce Willis is heading toward Nicolas Cage territory. This vanilla action-thriller offers virtually nothing new, interesting or exciting.

8. The Transporter Refueled

Was never a big fan of the Transporter franchise, even when Jason Statham was headlining it. Exchange him with significantly less charismatic Ed Skrein (he was OK in Deadpool as the villain), make the production shittier by 40%-50%, and this is the film you end up with.

7. Poltergeist

I recall the original 1982 Poltergeist was scary. I will recall the 2015 remake as laughably bad. Zero tension, zero atmosphere, zero scares. It’s a complete and utter mess.

6. Area 51

I was a little excited by this movie because I used to be obsessively fascinated by Area 51, the place where the government stashes all the secret alien stuff if conspiracy theorists are to be believed. But they really dropped the ball on this one. Part of it is the low budget (looks and feels cheap), part of it is the awful found-footage trope, and part of it is that it’s just plain bad. I almost feel bad for putting this film on the list because it’s so amateurish.

5. Hot Pursuit

In any other year, this might be the worst comedy of the year (see below). I like the actresses (Reese Witherspoon, Sofia Vergara), but this was just so lame and cringeworthy that I couldn’t help but feel extremely disappointed — for them and for myself.

4. Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension

This entry should come as no surprise to anyone who has followed my Worst Of lists, as Paranormal Activity is always bound to make an appearance. The scariest part of this film is that it could actually be the worst of the entire franchise. Shudder.

3. Mortdecai

I didn’t believe in the rumours so I checked it out for myself. Huge mistake. This was one of the few times in my life that I’ve actually felt embarrassed for the actors in a movie. It really is that criminally unfunny.

2. The Gallows

The premise of a death haunting a school play seemed like a decent idea, and yet somehow the filmmakers made the worst of it. The result was a shoddy, nonsensical production and an unwatchable horror flick without any scares.

1. Lost After Dark

If there is one thing this year’s Worst Of list has taught me, it is that I need to stay away from low-budget horror movies. This sorry excuse of a slasher movie that tried to pay “homage” to the crap slashers of the 80s was the worst of them all. This film was so bad that it went beyond “so bad it’s good”.

And there you have it.

Hot Pursuit (2015)

hot pursuit

Reese Witherspoon, Sofia Vergara. A screwball buddy comedy about a rookie cop tasked with escorting the wife of a crime boss while being pursued by baddies. I wasn’t optimistic, but after hearing Grantland’s Wesley Morris sell it on a podcast as a female version of the 1988 classic Midnight Run, I thought perhaps the film could surprise me.

Wrong. Wrong wrong wrong wrong wrong. Wrong!

Hot Pursuit turned out to be everything that I feared it would be, but worse. It’s well-intentioned as a “female-driven” comedy that’s aiming to be a lighter, PG-13 version of The Heat (with Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy), but in all honesty it’s completely stupid and lacking in all that makes a good comedy, from wit to coherence to likable protagonists. Worst of all, it’s criminally unfunny; I didn’t even crack a chuckle on the laugh meter throughout the entire 87-minute film. Do you know how hard that is? I guess the combination of predictable jokes that continuously go down the most obvious route and over-the-the slapstick humour just didn’t do it for me. My wife laughed a few times, but only at how moronic the gags were.

Sadly, the film attempts to give us nothing new and appears content with a run-of-the-mill plot featuring all the usual cliches, comedy tropes and characters. There are basically two running gags about Witherspoon’s and Vergara’s characters that are repeated every few minutes, and both of them are based on their physical attributes. Some of the other jokes can also be regarded borderline sexist, racist and even homophobic. It’s the opposite of a progressive film.

I generally like both Witherspoon and Vergara and have seen them be funny in other roles. Here? Not so much; they are more irritating than charismatic, wasting an opportunity to showcase their respective strengths in this odd-couple coupling.

I’d forgotten after all these years that Witherspoon was once a fantastic comedic actress who carried Legally Blonde to unexpected heights. In Hot Pursuit you can tell she’s trying, but can’t compensate for the poor writing and plain stupidity to avoid becoming a goofy caricature. She’s far too pathetic to be endearing.

Vergara, on the other hand, is so grating in the film. It’s basically the same schtick she pulls in Modern Family, except without the good writing to play to her qualities. Instead, she’s just an annoying voice that won’t stop blabbering.

It may seem like I hated this movie but I don’t. There’s nothing in it that offended me or angered me. I’m just disappointed by how bland and unfunny it was. I don’t think any of the previous films directed by Anne Fletcher have received rave reviews, but this has to mark a new low for her. When a comedy ranks below 27 Dresses and The Proposal in my book you know it can’t be good.

1 stars out of 5