We’re now midway through our end of year review, and it’s time to look at the most disappointing films of the year. I felt that I had to make a separate category for this one, because there were so many film that had huge potential or excitement around them and they failed to deliver. But a lot of the films weren’t awful, they were just exceptionally middling film, which really should have and could have been great. That why today I’m picking the Most Disappointing films of 2016.
5) Suicide Squad – Controversial statement, but I really liked Suicide Squad. It may have been an incredibly dumb, and the third act might have been incredibly generic with sky beams and characterless enemies, but I did enjoy the film a lot. There are 3 great characters and performances; Will Smith as Deadshot, Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, and Jay Hernandez as El Diablo, and the humour worked for me. But Suicide Squad is also one of the most disappointing films, because it could have been so much more. The trailers were brilliant and promised a Guardians esq level of blockbuster, and the film just wasn’t that. I don’t think Suicide Squad is terrible, but it is still a disappointment. Review.
4) Secret Life of Pets – Was there a better or funnier trailer for a film this year than for Secret Life of Pets? The whole concept of ‘what do pets do when their owners are out’ made a great short. Unfortunately the film was basically a feature length mess, but one that I do think kids would love. I had some worries that the great trailer might not translate into a full-length theatrical film. Those worries did prove to be very fair as the story is ridiculous and felt as though it was being made up as it went along. I think this is now a very typical Illumination Studios film where the child audience is prioritised, rather than making a film everyone can enjoy. And that’s fine, but it does mean that I struggle to love their films. Review.
3) The BFG – Its Steven Spielberg meets Roald Dahl, it should have been great. Spielberg has shown before his ability to make a great kids film that can capture an entire audience. However the BFG was such a disappointment to me because it didn’t speak to me at all. It was a film that was aimed so heavily at children that, despite some of stunning beautiful moments, it was really hard for me to get invested in or love the film. I think it was perfectly entertaining for younger audiences, but as someone in their 20s I couldn’t help but feel let down. I expect better from Spielberg, particularly with such great material to work from. Review.
2) Passengers – I think the core concept for Passengers has such potential for a great science fiction romance film, but the execution is horrible. When you consider the talent involved in the film; with Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Pratt as the leads, as well as Michael Sheen and Laurence Fishburne supporting, you had to feel let down. I always want original Sci-Fi to do well; it’s my favourite genre of film. So when you end up ruining the film with a major plot point that made it so difficult to get on board with one of the major characters you have to question what they were thinking. I saw someone online a suggesting that if the film kept the story until the revelation of that point then changed it to be more of a psychological thriller or horror film it could have been something really shocking and interesting. But given that they were making a Sci-Fi romance it was the wrong direction to go. Review.
1) X-Men: Apocalypse – First Class breathed new life into the dying X-Men franchise and completely reinvigorated it after two appalling films. Then Bryan Singer returned and gave us an excellent film in Days of Future Past. So for us to have got this mess as the third film with the younger cast was easily the most disappointing cinema experience I had all year. All the ingredients were there; a classic X-Men villain in Apocalypse and being played by Oscar Isaac, reintroducing so many of the classic heroes like Cyclops or Storm, a now well established and popular cast, and Bryan Singer directed who hadn’t made a bad X-Men film. But boy was this a crushing disappointment. Everything was just a rehash of what had worked before in the series, so many of the new characters were just given no real personality or reason to care about them, and Oscar Isaac was wasted just shouting nonsense whilst covered in blue paint. There was a joke in the film about the third film in a trilogy always being the worst, meant as a dig at The Last Stand, but ended up being an extremely meta comment on their own film. Review.
Those were the 5 films that disappointed me the most during 2016. What films really let you down this year? Are there films on my list that you loved? Let me know in the comments.