Unspooling '04's Worst


WaPo's Desson Thomson offers this list of the year's 10 lousiest movies. Spike Lee makes #1 with She Hate Me; Catwoman also ran. Is it worse for arthouse director John Sayles (Silver City) that he made the cut, or that he's forced to share a list with with Hilary Duff (Raise Your Voice)? Writes Thomson, "Sure, there are those who don't think of Hilary Duff as a corporate package of cheesy mediocrity. I envy their bliss."

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  1. I watched the Gerry Anderson shows (Fireball XL-5, Supercar, Thunderbirds) as a young boy in the sixties. For folks like me, the Thunderbirds movie was OK, but I can see where other audiences wouldn’t like it.

    Worst DVDs I saw this year:
    – Coffee & Cigarettes (pointless self-indulgent scriptless crap.)
    – The Punisher (Travolta for some reason did not show up, despite the possibilities of the juicy villain role.)
    – Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas (I know, not a 2004 film, but really really bad.)

  2. “What The —- Do We Know” a load of scary New Age nonsense posing as a documentary on quantum mechanics. The part where the clincally depressed girl gleefully throws away her meds for a life of tree-hugging and crystal worship was pretty frightening… I think it was supposed to be uplifting.

  3. I would call Coffee and Cigarettes one of the most disappointing movies of the year, but not one of the worst. I expected a lot more from Jim Jarmusch and that cast. But I still thought a few of the segments (like the one with Bill Murray and the one with Alfred Molina) were very good.

  4. Over the Christmas weekend I saw most of the Sci-Fi Channel original movie Puppet Master vs. Demonic Toys and that was no gem.

  5. Two films, not bad, but worthy of serious criticism:

    – Dogville. The ending really shocked me; how often do you get to see a baby machine-gunned in the head at close range in front of his mom? Do Caan and Kidman symbolize God and Christ? I liked Dancer In The Dark better.

    – F911. The only film I saw in the theater this year. I was stunned by the unquestioning praise of fellow viewers. People in the parking lot seemed to think they’d seen the Revelation.

    Two Starkly Contrasting Music Doc DVDs:

    Compare “Festival Express” to “Tom Dowd: The Language of Music.” Both are worthy as docs, but contrast the content:

    – In FE, the music is bad, the performances are worse, and the fans are shit-for-brained selfish stingy pinheads. (To nobody’s surprise, Eric Alterman loved it.)

    – In TD:TLOM, you see over a hundred minutes of genius-at-work, amongst an eclectic group of musicians. You’ll learn something. (But you can safely stop the tape at the point where they bring on Lynerd Skynerd and the Layla doodoo.)

  6. Obviously, you can get enough of that wonderful Duff.

    Ms. Lohan, on the other hand, was marvelous in Mean Girls. I rented it `cause I’m a Tina Fey fan. Honest.


  7. Good DVDs I saw in 2004:

    – City of God. If you rent the DVD, please, please make sure to watch the extras, which are even better than the feature.
    – Control Room. Absolutely unique, … and I’m speaking as a Bush-backer and Iraq War hawk.
    – Man On Fire. A significant contribution to the Revenge Genre. I love Denzel playing a hardass (e.g., and especially, Training Day.) Far better than any of the Death Wish revenge films.
    – Shrek 2. Somehow, these Shrek movies are even more magical and fanciful than the fairy tales they lampoon. You have to see them to understand what I mean.
    – Noi. This is not a great film, but well worth your time. I have to admit I laughed at the very end, because it was so ridiculously over-the-top tragic. Notable for its exploration of about fifty different kinds of wan light.

    Movies I want to rent that aren’t found at Hollywood Video:
    – Battle of Algiers
    – Blind Shaft
    – Homo Sapiens 1900

    Good list of 2004 movies:

    Happy New Year!

  8. I know that it’s fun to put together “10 worst” lists, but this was still a pretty horrible article. I mean, way to go out on a limb calling a Hilary Duff movie bad, and the commentary is basically the kind of lame jabs at safe targets that would fit in at People.

  9. Thanks for giving away the ending of Dogville before I’ve seen it.

    I saw both Moore’s F911 and Mel’s Passion in theatres. Both audiences acted like they had seen Jesus.

  10. I didn’t see most of the movies on the list–if you expected Catwoman to be a good film, then you got what you deserved.

    The worst movie I saw this year was “Birth” starring Nicole Kidman. It was terrible. The acting was good; the plot was ridiculous. Maybe it was the director; maybe it was the editing. Whatever it was, it stunk.

    P.S. TWBA, knowing the ending of Dogville doesn’t ruin the film. Be forewarned, I saw it in an arthouse in Santa Monica and, even there, half of the people in the movie got up and walked out in the first hour. It’s produced like “Our Town”, walls in the town are, essentially, chalk on a board. The situations and images are emotionally grueling.

    It’s a very interesting film.

  11. Thunderbirds,
    I have to agree with you, ‘Man on Fire’ was an awesome movie.
    I kind of liked ‘Spiderman 2’, (not a great movie, but I haven’t been able to watch many movies this year.
    The much talked about ‘Team America’ was good too.
    Old school, and Starsky and Hutch, were pretty good too.
    As much as I detest Micheal Moorer, I have to say that F911 wasn’t the worst movie by far.

  12. The movie I enjoyed least this year was “Around the World in 80 Days,” even if it did star Jackie Chan.

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