With approximately 45 days left in the season, some very clear winners and losers have emerged from the pack of summer movies for 2009. “X-Men Origins: Wolverine” and the reimagining of “Star Trek” opened the season nicely in May, while the pairing of Michael Cera and Jack Black in “Year One” didn’t exactly set the box office on fire.
As of mid-July, though, some movies have distinguished themselves as a complete waste of time and money. The movies that make up the list of worst summer films for 2009 actually had some promise, but failed to live up to their potential:
Worst Films of Summer 2009 #5: “Terminator: Salvation”
The latest entry in the “Terminator” franchise, this one makes the list because it is overlong and overdone. Christian Bale takes on the role of John Connor, the man that legends say will save mankind from the artificial intelligence called Skynet. After 25 years, fans have been hoping for some kind of closure on the series, but this film offers no salvation at all.
Worst Films of Summer 2009 #4: “Land of the Lost”
Sid and Marty Krofft were the kings of Saturday Morning television back in the 1970’s, and “Land of the Lost” was one of their crowning achievements. With Will Ferrell in the lead role of Dr. Rick Marshall, however, the film adaptation of the Krofft series is a confusing, offensive mess.
Anna Friel, who was great on “Pushing Daisies,” adds some life to the film as Holly Cantrell, but director Brad Silberling slowly strips her of clothes and dignity. Matt Lauer from “The Today Show” has the funniest cameo in the film when he and Ferrell’s character have an exceptionally bad interview.
Worst Films of Summer 2009 #3: “The Proposal”
The summer movies of 2009 include a fair number of romantic comedies, but “The Proposal” is one that’s rather indecent. Sandra Bullock plays a Canadian book editor working in New York, but she desperately needs a Green Card. To stay in this country, she gets her assistant Andrew (Ryan Reynolds) into marrying her in return for a promotion at work.
The Alaskan scenery that serves as the backdrop for most of the movie is gorgeous, but Bullock’s character is so obnoxious that Andrew should have put her on the first plane back to Canada himself.
Bullock and Reynolds each have done sweet romantic comedies, but this “Proposal” should never have been made.
Worst Films of Summer 2009 #2: “Bruno”
Sacha Baron Cohen took America by surprise in 2006 with “Borat,” a film in which ordinary people became comic foils for a fictional reporter from Kazakhstan. Baron Cohen’s follow-up, “Bruno,” is about a self absorbed Austrian fashion reporter who wants to become famous. Unlike “Borat,” this film is a 90-minute love letter to Baron Cohen’s penis because that particular organ gets more screen time than anything or anyone else.
Worst Films of Summer 2009: #1 “I Love You, Beth Cooper”
Hoping to capitalize on Hayden Panettiere’s “Heroes” popularity, this sloppy teenage comedy insults the intelligence of the audience on every level. Paul Rust plays a high school valedictorian who uses his graduation speech to finally profess his love for pretty Beth Cooper, played by Panettiere.
Rust’s character is unlikeable and Panettiere seems totally bored with her juvenile role. It’s not surprising that in the week before “Beth Cooper” opened, Panettiere talked about dropping her towel in a locker room scene that’s pretty reminiscent of “Porky’s.” The studio obviously needed to fill seats on opening weekend before word-of-mouth put this film on Double-Secret Probation.