Wednesday, February 1, 2012

2011 Year in Review: Worst Performances

Worst Actor: Danny McBride in Your Highness – I think McBride can be funny in small doses, but when he is asked to carry an entire movie, his shtick wears thin quickly. In this film, he is not hip or funny, which he tries so hard to be, but simply annoying and unfunny.

Runners-up: Nicolas Cage in Trespass starts out trying to use the same clipped, nasal voice he used in Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call, New Orleans, but abandons that half way through, but no matter how he talks, he is still awful in the film. Nicolas Cage in Season of the Witch is perhaps an even worse performance, as he is completely unbelievable as a Medieval Knight in this groaner of a film. Mickey Rourke in Passion Play makes the mistake of thinking a movie that has Megan Fox with wings should be played completely seriously – this is the type of film I would expect him to make BEFORE his comeback. Anthony Hopkins in The Rite tries to go over the top, as he has so often before, but his crazy act grew stale a decade ago. Jason Momoa in Conan the Barbarian has little more than muscles to offer this updated Conan. Alex Pettyfer in I Am Number Four is a completely and totally blank action hero in this forgettable, would be franchise. Shia LaBeouf in Transformers: Dark of the Moon says his character arch through the three films is now complete – and the fact that he could say that with a straight is better proof that he can be a good actor than anything on display in this film. Keanu Reeves in Henry’s Crime is far too passive for a character that has to drive the entire plot of this awful bank robbery/comedy.

Worst Actress: Nicole Kidman in Trespass. I have often defended Kidman from those who say that her face is an expressionless mask, as normally I find her work to be wonderful and risk taking. But in Trespass, she simply gives more fodder to all of her detractors, and sadly, I have to be one for this film – her worst performance ever – by far.

Runners-up: Frieda Pinto in Muriel is completely miscast and perhaps proves that she is little more than a gorgeous face, as she can’t carry this role at all. Emily Browning in Sleeping Beauty and Sucker Punch is as empty and hollow as the movies she is in. Miranda July in The Future tries so very hard to hip and clever, and instead she is just really annoying. Megan Fox in Passion Play got dealt a horrible role, but still, she didn’t bring anything at all interesting to it. Kristen Scott Thomas in Sarah’s Key is so self serious and self involved and dour that it hard to watch.

Worst Supporting Actor: Cam Gigandet in Trespass again has me wondering how he continues to get work. I have yet to see him in a good movie – and he seemingly shows up in a ton of movies each year. In Trespass, I wondered the entire movie if his character was supposed to be mildly retarded or whether he was just plain dumb. I still have no idea.

Runners-up: Brian Downey and Gregory Smith in Hobo with a Shotgun made a truly awful father-son villain team – there is a difference between fun over the top acting and awful over the top acting, and these two don’t seem to know it. Ron Perlman in Season of the Witch and Conan the Barbarian was awful in two movies – he was great in Drive however, so perhaps we can forgive him. Colin Egglesfield in Something Burrowed was a romantic leading man completely and totally lacking in charm or a sense of humor. Harrison Ford in Cowboys and Aliens again makes me wonder why he continues to act, since he quite clearly doesn’t give a shit.

Worst Supporting Actress: Rosie Huntington-Whiteley in Transformers: Dark of the Moon replaced Megan Fox, and in doing so makes Fox look like Meryl Streep in comparison. She’s beautiful, sure, but there’s nothing else there.

Runners-Up: Olivia Wilde in Cowboys and Aliens once again has to play the “perfect” human, or at least some outside force’s idea of perfect, which must be getting tired for her. Kate Hudson in Something Burrowed was annoying and shrill, making me wonder how anyone in the movie put up with her for so damn long. Angela Bettis in The Woman continues to show that other than weird ticks, she can’t really do anything else. Vanessa Redgrave in Anonymous makes Queen Elizabeth I into a dottering old fool – and worst still, not a very entertaining one. Jordana Brewster in Fast Five proves why unless it’s a Fast and Furious movie, she doesn’t getting many acting jobs.

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