MRR's Five Biggest Movie Letdowns of 2012

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An epic sci-fi film based largely on the novel A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs. John Carter (played by Taylor Kitsch) is an American Civil War veteran who is miraculously transported to Mars, where he becomes known as Barsoom. He learns that the planet is dying from the loss of its atmosphere and water, and that only a peaceful alliance of its intelligent inhabitants can save the species of Barsoom from extinction. In the midst of his mission, Barsoom involuntarily becomes part of a conflict between the various nations of the planet, whose leaders include Tars Tarkas (Willem Dafoe) and Princess Dejah Thoris (Lynn Collins).
Photo Credit: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
December 26th, 2012

MRR's Five Biggest Movie Letdowns of 2012

Like all recent years, 2012 has seen its share of mega movie hits and flops. Sadly, not all films came close to rising to the success and wow factor of hits like "Les Miserables" or "The Life of Pi." Some slipped, stumbled, and fell flat. While a few viewers may have loved some of the famous flops, the vast majority of people certainly did not, and it showed in the reviews and box office. Whether audiences didn't care for the storyline or simply got lost in a web of bad acting, these films completely missed the mark in theaters.

"That's My Boy"

A possible nominee for Most Offensive Film as well, "That's My Boy" left a sour taste in the mouths of many viewers. Painfully unfunny at times and relying heavily on crude humor, the film wholeheartedly earned its spot on this list. Critics cried foul at the overall mean spirit of the film, which contained hefty portions of vulgarity and offensive one-liners. Fan-favorite Adam Sandler lacked his famous goofy appeal and instead morphed into the all-too-common inappropriate parental role. Completely absent were the tender moments and well-earned laughs of his past hits like "The Wedding Singer" and "The Waterboy." The film was a letdown for Sandler fans and casual viewers alike.

"A Thousand Words"

Eddie Murphy has seen better times in his comedy career. With an unlikable main character and ridiculous plot, this movie never really caught on with audiences. Jokes fizzled before they began, and secondary characters seemed to steal Murphy's thunder left and right. Audiences were left scratching their heads after a deep, unexpectedly emotional ending swallowed up any light, bubbly happiness they may have had lingering from the few funny lines. Even Murphy himself seemed devoid from the film, his usual charm and contagious humor entirely absent. With a bit more cohesion between emotions and a lot more of Murphy's famous energy and talent, "A Thousand Words" could have been much more enjoyable.

"John Carter"

This futuristic Disney film was intended to be a magical sci-fi adventure with its estimated budget of $250 million. While the massive budget of the film could have resulted in a cinema masterpiece, it seemed to bloat the movie into an oversized epic that relied too heavily on effects and too little on substance. Viewers agreed and shunned the film, leading to dismal ticket sales and the loss of a big chunk of change for Disney. Taylor Kitsch and Lynn Collins gave a valiant effort in their starring roles but unfortunately got lost in the blur of the film, which moved along cumbersomely. With a spunkier storyline and more memorable characters, "John Carter" could have been the sci-fi box office hit Disney wanted.

"The Oogieloves in the Big Balloon Adventure"

This big-budget children's movie flopped with adults and children alike. Parents cried foul at the lack of substance in the film, which centered around colorful friends planning a party. While certainly providing bright, bubbly, and attention-grabbing imagery, the limited action of the film led to mind-numbing lulls. Reminiscent of a watered-down version of the Teletubbies, this film lacked the pizzazz and character of typical children's movies. While intended for toddlers, the movie contained an odd assortment of advanced vocabulary beyond the years of the audience. The film would have been better suited as a television movie special or children's show with the addition of a few more splashes of fun and learning.

"One for the Money"

Commonly called lifeless by critics, "One for the Money" is a chick flick gone awry. With an all-too-familiar plot and oddly sexist undertones, the film never really caught on with viewers. While offering a fair share of zesty dialogue, it lacked the consistency that a movie needs to carry audiences along. Katherine Heigl was widely agreed to be miscast, seeming completely out of her element and a random choice. There are several instances where the film itself practically begged the silent audience to laugh, seemingly knowing its own shortcomings.

Every year has its ups and downs in cinema. From not-so-funny comedies to big-budget movies that got lost in their own mass, 2012 definitely had its share of flops. Whether audiences were groaning at tiresome storylines or outraged by offensive jokes, they made their displeasure known across all forms of media. With 2012 delivering these unfortunate films, hopefully 2013 will be a better year for moviegoers.