Movies I Will Never Watch Again

September 7, 2006

A totally new category, and one I am sure to raise a few eyebrows. These are movies I now consider to be a waste of: a) 2 hours b) emotional energy c) money and d) everyone’s time who made them. Feel free to add your own to this list as you like.

1. How To Make An American Quilt. If you read the list of actors in this movie including Wynona Ryder, Anne Bancroft and Ellen Burstyn, you’d immediately think that it had brilliance written over it. You’d be as wrong as bees courting artificial flowers. The movie went way over budget, over time and over common sense. The plot is so stupid: Older women trying to tell a young woman about to be married that all men are scum. All the while making a quilt and smoking pot. The studio was so tired of all the overruns, that they ordered the director to get the movie out ASAP. In anger, she released it with very little editing. As a result, in the later scenes, you can see mike booms, other cameras and wires, actor’s mistakes etc. The DVD doesn’t contain these (it was cleaned up later), but the VHS version does. It is a waste of time and thought. Not that the moviemaker had much to work with: The novel was just as bad.

2. Ladykillers: Tom Hanks is as good a character actor as they come. Why they had to saddle him with this absolutely one-dimensional cast and a poorly re-written script is beyond me. Having a Wayans brother in it made it a complete disaster.

3. The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou: Oh Bill Murray…please divorce Wes Anderson and go back to making Groundhog Day 2 or What About Bob 2…instead he makes this one which is basically “The Royal Tenenbaums 2”. And the first of that name was torture enough.

4. The Royal Tenenbaums: See above on number 3.

5. French Kiss: I like Meg Ryan, love Kevin Kline…hated this movie.

6. At Play in the Fields of the Lord: Yes, missionaries have done things that are not right. But this movie doesn’t even get those mistakes accurately. It just assumes that all missionaries are wrong and their motives impure… and about hour 8 of this movie I couldn’t take it any more.

7. Zoolander: Even though it is a mock-out festival, there is only so much of Owen Wilson and his tranquilizer-replacement looks and Ben Stiller mugging for the camera that you can take. People keep wanting to find layers in this movie. It has layers the way that a septic tank has layers.

8. The Last Samurai: Tom Cruise cannot save this snore-festival. My son describes it as slowly pushing a pencil into your eye, stopping for several minutes and then pushing again.

9. Dune: A book that made me believe in world-building as a hobby became a movie that made me believe in fire-bombing movie studios.



  1. I agree wholeheartedly with all of your choices except Zoolander! Dave adn I really enjoyed this movie, aside from the unneeded orgy scene. Maybe we are sick and twisted, or maybe we enjoy movies without layers sometimes… since to laugh out loud is a wonderful escape from the wonderful and joyful yet strenous and often depressing task of becoming more like Christ! :O)

  2. You know, I think I am tired of Owen Wilson, who can’t act and isn’t funny. I look at the whole body of work he’s done and he has the same look and same voice and same personality in every movie. Zoolander did have some classic lines…oh well.

  3. OK – I disagree with two, maybe only one if you meant the earlier version of Dune…

    The Last Samurai is a keeper at our home. It is one of the better Cruise movies in recent years. We loved the slow moving tempo. The “love & respect” sub-plot is refreshing and feels culturally accurate, although I don’t know enough of the culture and era depicted to judge that.

    Dune – the original version was terrible and I would agree with you. I am no fan of David Lynch, except for “Short Story” a very atypical movie for him. However, Dune, the TV mini-series remixed on DVD, and the follow up Children of Dune by the same producers, except for gratuitous nudity, are much better. Give them a try, if you ever get in a “Dune” mood.

  4. Pierre: I meant the older version of Dune. I haven’t seen the other one…in fact, I forgot it even existed. Silly me.

  5. Last night Dave and I conjured up bad memories of lame and dissapointing movies to add to your list…what a waste of time and what a load of unhealthy images were forced down our throats!
    Many people will disagree with us, since most of these movies won awards of some kind from some twisted judge! :O)

    I will not give a review of each one, just this criteria:
    a – too depressing
    b – too dark/evil
    c – too much Hollywood idealogy about how life should be viewed.

    1. Talented Mr. Ripley – a & b
    2. American Beauty – a & c
    3. The Matador – a
    4. Sideways – a & c
    5. Ice Age 2 – b
    6. Lost in Translation – a, b, & c

  6. Dave and Mirabai:

    I completely agree about Lost in Translation and Sideways. You have to wonder why they were so full of angst…and what was with the scene in Sideways where he sneaks into the house to retrieve the wallet…did that have to go the way it did? I’m not sure about American Beauty, only because it didn’t tell us that is how Hollywood thinks we should live our lives…more how people may actually be living their lives…but then, that falls into the depressing and dark category.

  7. I agree about Ice Age 2…I can’t believe with that dark of a theme that it was a kids movie. Or was it?

  8. I thought of this post last night as we watched Zoolander. I rolled the first time I saw it and again last night. This would actually be one I would buy (albeit from the WalMart $5 bin.) Owen Wilson is irritating but if you look at him in just this movie – he fits the part. I’ll never look at a male model the same way again :-p

  9. By the way, what is with Owen Wilson’s nose? Are we not supposed to notice? Is it bad form to mention it?

    Okay, I will allow that my Owen Wilson antipathy allowed me to be swayed about Zoolander. I watched it again and admit it does have some really funny scenes in it. I especially like how they attempted to get files out of the Mac.

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