Stupid Movies

Since watching movies seems to be all i am doing nowadays (I don’t have a life!), I thought I might come up with one for movies that went the extra mile making them worthy of the dishonor. So herebelow are some of the movies I watched in the last couple of months. They are posted here in the order I watched them and come with my [short, sweet, unprofessional & not-even-edited] comment! “Yalewin yewerewere nifug aybalim” silemil teretu!.

Feel free to comment on my comments or visit Top Rated Movies at Rottentomatoes (my favorite movie critique site).


I would rather they called it “Bad Movie”. Keaton looks bored, and boring! Holmes looks washed out. And Queen ain’t convincing as a hard working single mother trying to secure a better future for her boys. It neither excites, nor teaches any [cool] life lesson whatsoever. You know.. those “First Sunday” types of movies who would end up with fellon realizing at the nick of time that family is the most important thing in the world, bla bla?! Never liked them, for the same reason I never liked feel-good Romance movies (they reek of bigger, uglier agendas that have nothing to do with neither love or family). But in this case, I’ll go watch those any time! – February 12, 2008


This movie is a DISGRACE!! I mean, I’ve never been a fan of neither Samuel L. Jackson (I think his creer started and ended at the McDowell’s joint on “Coming to America”) nor Hayden Christensen (even if I loved “Shattered Glass”! He is one dude who remains creepy even when he smiles; or lies in a hospital bed dreaming about his soon-to-be “fraud” girlfriend). But they out did themselves in this one.. In a really ugly way! – March 21, 2008


“A disappointing mess” is what i call it. It’s when the directors cast Jon Voight as “Eddie Maintenance” that they dug the hole for their downfall, as we say back here. Correct me if i’m wrong but has there ever been a movie in which you liked Jon Voight except maybe in “Enemy of the State”? And THAT only because, as Jason Lee’s character said, he does indeed look like he’s got “a serious calcium deficiency”. L.o.v.e.d. Jason Lee on it, by the way! – March 24, 2008


Ray Liotta is cast as a magician of the middle ages. What were they thinking?May 6, 2008


Features an Ethiopian “Archbishop” named “M’butu”! Need I say more?! It’s the kind of thing that makes you wonder if they ever give a shit or were having a blonde moment! – June 9, 2008


Cute though he maybe, Keanu Reeves is always a bad idea, for any movie!

Forest Whitaker is what Forest Whitaker was before “The Last King of Scotland”. Can’t make up my mind on whether the problem is him, or his eye. Makes concentrating on what he is saying difficult. Not that he can ever say it in the way you’d find interesting! So.. good riddance?!

Don’t even get me started on sweet “lova boy” John Corbett! As my favorite rapper of few years ago Eminem would say, “it’s dis-cuss-thing”.

The rest of the cast (some of them pretty good: like the very very very very very very cute rapper/actor broza who played the bad guy - “Common”, I believe his name is :-) – and my very favorite Hugh Laurie who can use the exposure, i guess) are simply wasted on this worthless piece of crap.

Have given it 2.5 out of 10. – June 21, 2008


Newyork Waiting

If somebody hadn’t told me this piece of junk was on box office for some time in 2006, and the DVD copy of “Slaughterhouse” wasn’t full of scratch, I wouldn’t have dreamed of paying a penny for a Love story. Watching a romantic movie gives me the same feeling seeing a child who can chew stake suck his mother’s breast does. Or an adult eating “dabo beshaai”: Nausea!! I guess it wouldn’t have looked so bad if it weren’t for the actress whose forced fragility and innocence makes you wanna slap her till she is black and blue, the exceptionally cute hero whose shrink’s bill you’d willingly pay for, and if the writer/director wasn’t trying to give too-obvious a lesson (on how it’s better to be with those that love you, than those you love). Had such a casual look about it and was exquisitely shot. Too bad those two don’t a good movie make. – July 23, 2008


Didn’t Carry me Away

Remember how eager I was to watch “Sex and the City: The Movie”, and even made a post entitled Still High on SATC about it?! Well, I watched it last night. My reaction? Embarrassment!! I mean, literally! Everytime a scene that made the sister’s soul cringle with disbelief appeared, like when Miranda told Big they were crazy to get married, I turned my head away from the screen and apologetically murmured “erm… this is embarrassing!”, kindda like Harry-Goldenblatt did when sweating all over infront of a pretty client he was hoping to impress.

[SPOILER WARNING]

Save for the introduction part, there doesn’t seem to be any “Sex and the City” tv-series material in “The Movie”. The difference is so apparent that one actually finds it hard to believe those people who created “Sex and the City” – tv-series, lived in the same town with these people who made a movie out of it. Or even in the same decade. I couldn’t imagine where all the smarties went; the comedy that sinks slowly and never really leaves; the brilliance, the homonymous, the shots that reveal more than words could ever do, the secret indicators one later makes a connection to and triumphantly cry “aha!” (except for the over-done scene where Stanford Blatch and Anthony Marentino are standing next to each other, with a silk flower pocking out of Stanny’s coat pockets, pointing to DUH matrimony.. nothing comes to mind); the witty retorts, the winks, the questions, the answers, the life long lesson, the cynicism; the Miranda we knew & loved; Carrie and Stanford’s friendship that lighted the screen every time it appeared; the 5th lady and Samantha’s cancer!

So I checked it. I went to google and read the credits, swearing I won’t be surprised if M. Night Shyamalan was the ingrate who wrote the screen play. To my surprise & satisfaction, it was written by Candice Bushnell (the creator) and Micheal Partrick King (director). Apparently, none of the co-writers, the whizzes who knew the single gal’s life, wrote what they know, and made the series an era all on its own have touched the material. So I wasn’t particularly surprised by the mess that followed:

  • Steve saying “you are such a good person, I can’t believe I did this to you” after looking like a dead fish and confessing to Miranda he’s cheated on her (that was not only the worst line a man could say to a woman he cheated upon, but the worst acting I have ever seen on SATC)
  • With “Mr. Big” continuing to be “Mr. Baby”
  • With Miranda telling him they were crazy to get married.
  • With his backing out at the last minute
  • With Carrie, as always, making excuses for him.
  • With a black girl who has no business in the movie taking half it’s time while we sat there “sleeping and watching” “sleeping and watching” before one moved away, and the other found the envelopes.
  • With a botoxed Samantha, a Samantha I found out I don’t care for anymore, dumping Smith Jerrod
  • and Carrie ending up marrying big (apparently, as long as she could get him to stay around long enough to say “I do”, she’s sure to live happily ever after)

I said none of these were surprising. But the following two were: surprising and disappointing!

First, the fact that the teacher doesn’t seem to have learned his lesson! The ladies are still counting “coloring outside the line” as a man’s pros. That sounds so “Season II”, doesn’t it? Back when Samantha still believed she was a lesbian, Charlotte left the cafe every time the “f” word is used and Carrie was young enough to convince us that, with the right surgeon, she could almost look pretty. These women are in their 40’s, ferChristsakes. Shouldn’t they be past this by now?!

The second and biggest flaw of “The Movie”, however, is that it doesn’t seem to make up it’s mind who to cater for. I remember Micheal Patrick King saying this about the series’ achievement on the Dvd extras. He said what “Sex and the City”, the series, did for the single gal was to “claim her”. A powerful statement! And a true statement!

God only knows who “The Movie” is trying to claim. It can’t be the audience the series couldn’t manage to get for the sex, although less talked about, was more figurative than usual. It can’t be the rest of us because a vital ingredient was missing out of the sex. It doesn’t have the balls!! Reminding one of EPRDF’s attempt to become the Ethiopian party it never was fooling nobody. Or the whore whose words no one would give credit to even after she became a nun.

“Sex and the City: The Movie” has become like the man who tried “to climb two trees because he’s got two feet”. And has, embarrassingly, failed!!

One word: Shame!

- July 31, 2008


What Happened in Vegas

Oh the usual!

Boy meets girl. They fall in love. He buys the ring, she buys the dress. They say I do. Unfortunately, this one isn’t as neatly tied up as that. Boy meets girl. They said I do. Then say I don’t. Court orders them to work on their marriage. And…they fall in love. But does that twist make the movie go down easily? Nope! Cameroon Diaz, who seem to be going to the dark side with every movie with no improvement to her acting, looks more frighetning than that bag of bones Keira Knightly these days that I’m wondering what I saw in her on “My best friend’s wedding” to root for her so. Ashton Kutchner is Ashton Kutchner. You know, Demi’s son from another father?, “That 70’s show” hunk who looks as if born with two left feet?, a man whose toy-boyish look makes one wonder if anybody takes him seriously and appear to be playing himself in every movie (except for that haunting psycho-thriller “The butterfuly effect” that wouldn’t have needed good acting to be gruesome) with a mouth full of teeth? And, watch out ladies and gentleman, he isn’t afraid to show it!

Final verdict: If only they let “What Happened in Vegas” stay in Vegas!

- September 15, 2008


Numb

I’ve always seen Matthew Perry as a kindered spirit. He’s funny, insecure and always screwing it up with the ladies. An observation the result of my “Which friend’s character are you” quiz at Crazy for Friends bear witness to. Ofcourse I’ve failed to warm up to the sitcom ever since Ross found out about Monica and Chandler. It’s all Monica’s hysteria, Pheobes bad acting and dumb Joey-jokes after that. But I’ve seen some of the actors (Aniston & Perry) with favor. I’ve wished them luck in their personal life and the big break. So I was more than excited to find a movie with Matthew Perry as a leading star in it yesterday evening. I had bought all the stuff I need to cook a luxurious dinner earlier. But settled for crackers just so I could get to the movie faster. Half an hour later, I was back in my kitchen waiting for the frying pan to warm so I could start preparing the luxurious dinner. The only good thing about “Numb” is it’s title. “Make sure” it seems to forewarn “that your limbs don’t fall off with bordom”. The rest is a spoilt infantile man’s journey through life from which he’d come out as a spoilt infantile man. It seems the directors, who weren’t too good to begin with, couldn’t decide what to make of the movie so simply decided to bring the first girl back and roll the credits. I wouldn’t envy them their headaches, but Matthew Perry has disappointed me to no little degree. Doesn’t the man have any integrity at all? Or, as Jimmney Cricket once observed, does Hollywood rob you of your integrity also?!

- September 24, 2008


Knowing

This might have actually been the one Nicholas Cage movie I’d have liked. It’s got a tricky beginning, a predictable yet interesting midriff and an intensity for an environemtal-friendly movie only Shyamalan’s The Happening creepiness could top. More importantly, the protagonist and the beauty he tries to save don’t fall in love; inspite of being single parents and going through the same experience with their kids. But when the big secret is revealed, you feel as if you’ve been kicked in the stomach by a younger brother wearing a vicious ቆዳ ጫማ. Such a low kick, too, you can’t help but chuckle at the pain it caused. There is atleast a redeeming quality to this movie at the very end: everybody else [abbreviated by EE] dies. Yes, the world finally comes to an end and not even Nick Cage’s character could save it.

Good luck with finding the theme!

- July 08, 2009


Brüno (2009)

Sacha Baron Cohen may have committed the gravest mistake of polishing his Brüno persona, but you don’t have to make the mistake of paying good money to watch it. When you hear how young men and women in their late teens and early 20s were leaving the theatre in disgust before we got half way through the movie, you’d understand Brüno is no Borat. A younger, sexier, wannabee brother who mistakes shocking your senses for tickling them, don’t know how to work and exploit ideas when he sees them you would have prefered has remained in “the closet”?!

Maybe!

Ich want mein money back! :cry:

- July 12, 2009


Shutter Island

This isn’t exactly a bad movie. But for the believer in the Scorsese/DiCaprio duo, another “The Departed” it is not.

There, ofcourse, are the basics. Grit, pomp and lots of gore. Creepy island with it’s creepy inhabitants shut-off from the rest of the world — with no escape except through a dock guarded by edgy men in arms. A repeated reference to Nazi camps. The murder of innocents. All fire-works before the counting down begins. Colors of kaleidoscopic variance; promising much but, unfortunately, failing to deliver.

Say you haven’t seen all the twist-ending movies Hollywood has come up with (and don’t know how traps and clues are carefully laid to catch the unwary “temelkach” off-guard in the last few minutes); even then.. you gotta be really thick-skulled and uniquely unimaginative if you failed to see “the revelation” coming [and dismiss it thinking Scorsese would know better] atleast once. Why “The Departed” had a better twist-ending; and an obsecure movie with no names in it entitled “Mad House” a more convincing and haunting story line.

Spoiler Alert

Shutter Island is as hallow and pretentious as Alaska’s Ex-governer. The clues never trick. The acting & distractions are annoying; proving more pointless than the acting and distractions of one Identity; which actually has a twist-ending that no one ever saw coming – if a little hard to swallow. And, when all is said and done, we learn the guy we invested so much into isn’t the “awful criminal” that committed “such henious” crimes everybody tries to make him appear but a grief-crazed father who chose to believe his version of the story.

[Big deal!! If that was what makes "criminally insane", the whole America would have ended up behind bars. Or hospitals with barred doors and electric fences.]

Alas, that isn’t the only point on which the movie falls [flat]. The casting is, almost, ridiculous. Here is Leo, the picture of the tortured soul if I ever saw one, trying to make us decide whether he’s a good guy in the wrong place. Or the wrong guy in the right place. [Apparently] The mirror can’t have two faces! As if that wasn’t enough, we are led to believe Mark Ruffalo’s character may have a darker “shade” to him than meets the eye. Ruffalo, a genuine good guy who seem to wear his heart on his eye-lashes, can only convince as the passive love interest of some eccentric single gal in her late 30’s looking for a heart to call home — or change her “good girl Meg Ryan” image by baring some well-protected flesh.

However, these two would appear more convincingly cast when compared to Michelle Williams: whose bad acting topped with red lipstic and child beauty pageant-queen looks, makes her role of a manic depressive wife slightly comical. A female protagonist of “Get Smart”? Sure. A slutty little sister of one of “Charlie’s Angels”? Even better! But a mother who drowns her three kids in a nearby lake, lines them up in the kitchen table and goes to have lunch on it, meh.. a bigger shoe she can not fail to fill!

Could that, i wonder, describe the whole futile endeavor of “Shutter Island”?! Or was it just a bad novel to adapt?!

[By Scorsese?!]

- February 26, 2010

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14 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Tsegaye  |  April 25, 2008 at 10:30 pm

    Lol.
    Well, I think Samuel Jackson is a good actor. I didn’t watch any of those movies, except for Shooter. Did you notice the first setting is in “Ethiopia”? I was like WTF? But the focus of the movie wasn’t exactly geography so I forgave them.
    By the way, this is why I choose to download (you know..uhh) movies rather than pay for them.
    On the other hand I pay money for original contents mostly found in independent movies/international movies.

  • 2. KNIGHT  |  June 14, 2008 at 11:15 pm

    …hahaha… i haven’t watched any of these movies listed above nor do i plan to watch em’. but all i can say is, OUCH!!! in the name of the cast and the crew….

  • 3. abesheet  |  June 16, 2008 at 9:17 am

    I know I should leave this page for the professionals, like yourself KNIGHT ;) (LOVED those moving pictures you made for your classes over at habeshafriends) but thought I might get my money’s worth back. If you have anything to say on any $tupid movie, feel free to post it here and it will get published.

  • 4. ABIE  |  June 17, 2008 at 1:33 pm

    I saw In The Name of The King last Thursday. I agree with you, I didn’t really care for Liotta’s perfomance at all but overall, I really enjoyed the movie. Thought it was different. I love Jason Statham. I haven’t seem all of his movies but I’ve so far enjoyed him in Transporter I & II.

  • 5. Xendu  |  September 11, 2008 at 10:16 am

    Interesting blog…

    On the subject of bad movies… well… I was a bit surprised at your unconventional choice to highlight the worst of what you’ve seen rather than the opposite..

    Come to think of it, over 90% of movies released are way way deficient in almost all categories of what constiutes a good film.

    So why not focus on the good ones (those few, those very few…). And change “Stupid Movies” -> to “Screen gems” ? :-) eh?

    Here’s my starter suggestions for this list of ‘good distractions’
    (from stuff I’ve checked out in the past 2 weeks or so…)

    1. Adaptation (2002)- Nic Cage finally for once challenging this curious hollywood stigma of bald leading guys by leaving out the wigs… Poor maligned ras-berhas everywhere, rejoice!… As a soon-to-be initiated member, I will stick by the side of a balding actor (except denouncing all movies with Nicholas Cage since 2002)!

    But seriously, this is a good movie… a bit convoluted, perhaps – you be the judge on the details…. But you can trust me on this: you won’t feel like you’ve wasted your time afterwards.

    2. Narc (2002) – Jason Patric & Ray Liotta – man what an excellent performance from the two… Loved the technical aspect… great direction. Somewhat conventional storyline… but man, the atmosphere is intense – scenes are washed out, and it is cynical, gloomy, cold, desperate… but it’s done with a nice touch… Such a ‘rawness’ to it which doesn’t feel as Hollywoodized as the rest..

    3. Surfwise: The Amazing True Odyssey of the Poskowitz Family- a good documentary … I think more of us should spend more time engaged in efforts to look at life from viewpoints *COMPLETELY* (did I say that loud enough?) different from ours and our estabilished ideas and convictions. What does it mean to be alive? To raise a family? Work, Leisure, Success? What are all these?… Such questions will stare at you through this story. It revolves around one physician’s decision to step out of the ‘road’ and hike into a new, strange existence….

    Well..those make up the good I’ve seen recently… Sorry for the long post, guys…will try not to do it again.

    Abesheet, I hope you take my advice and add a column with the good stuff you’ve enjoyed on the screen… Unless you have a facination with writing scathing reviews, I think a “good movies” column would also work better as a nice gentle nudge to help guide folks in their choice of movies (for those tiring of the review-aggregating-percentage-spouting system of Rottentomates)

  • 6. abesheet  |  September 12, 2008 at 5:52 am

    Hiya Xendu,

    Thanks for the suggestion and AWESOME lists of your favorite movies. I was thinking that same question, why i am only doing review on bad movies, and the answer i come up with is: there isn’t much you can say about a good movie while there are dozens including lessons to be learnt on $tupid ones. Not to mention a lot more fun ;) . I guess the fact that i started the page as a place to rant out my movie-frustrations didn’t help. But i’m sure i would get round to it when i see an exceptionally good movie, like KABLUEY for example. I thought it was awesome. The only Lisa Kudrow movie i actually liked. Inept Salman, played by Scott Prendergast who is also the screen writer and director, was indeed one hero “we can all relate to”. A hero who looks nothing like it (as all real-life heroes should, i guess). Lol. I don’t think i can say much more 8) .

    P.S. If you’d like to recommend movies you think are good, i can create you a page, “Xendu’s fav movies”, for example, and we can post them here.

  • 7. Xendu  |  September 13, 2008 at 11:32 am

    Ms. Abesheet:

    Kabluey… Not sure how that escaped my radar-sonar-telescope super-combo early-detection monitoring system (in short, R.S.T.S.E.M.S. :-)) I have in place to keep a close eye on the Biosphere of movies…

    Haven’t even heard of it before now… But I’ve placed it on top of the download queue…:-) (If the law ever catches up wth me on this one, I’ll put all blame on you for any digital piracy felony charges… :-)

    BTW, the world of digital piracy is a very strange one, isn’t it?… Sheer theft. Engineered for efficiency and simplified for the massses. Immoral, illegal and yet not a drop of guilt felt… Even the damn Pope could do it and feel entirely righteous…Click, Click, Click… and one has just completed participation in an organized looting of someone else’s property… And you can walk away scot-free…and straight away plan an evening to enjoy your loot while sipping on a cold one… – just like I’m planning to do with Kabluey… Hey..no time for moral qualms right… No wussies in piracy… A real man just clicks and waits till the progress bar completes. Then double-clicks and lets illusion ensue… :)

    Anyway…assuming that you’ve seen all the three films I’ve written about… Your approval is really great to hear… I’m glad to meet someone who’s enjoyed them al!! A lady who’s into movies like these… I’m glad.

    The Oracle was right…The Prophesy is being fulfilled. Womankind shall now say No to chick-flicks once and for all and follow in the footsteps of Abesheet! The world feels like a better place :)

    I’ve found that Narc, in particular, just rubs some the wrong way. But how can anyone sit through the opening few minutes of that movie and still fail to be extremely engaged by the story and atmosphere??? If I had kept a record, I’m sure the first viewing of that scene had speeded up my pulse by about 60%… Different strokes for different folks I guess…

    Abesheet, thanks a lot for the offer… I think it’d be cool to give it a shot… but hey, a word of warning: I shall bear no responsibility to any impact on your readership numbers as a result of my posts! hehe
    Hit me at (Xendou at gmail dot com) when you get the time so I can have your email and…

    Finally! my debut into the blogosphere…*gigles* ..ermm..

    Let me go before the I rub out the last few letter prints remaining on the keyboard

    – peace

  • 8. Xendu  |  September 13, 2008 at 11:37 am

    looks like an error on the strike tag… Would be nice if WordPress allowed comment edits for visitors…

  • 9. abesheet  |  September 15, 2008 at 9:53 am

    Hello Xendu,

    Thank you SO much for your comments. I’m afraid my response is going to disappoint you, though. I haven’t watched those three movies. Not because I didn’t want to (except maybe hesitate a bit before opening the bag to pay for a movie Nicolas Cage stars in, even my lil bro Babi, who is an action movie fan as all young boys should until their personality is formed enough to decide they can do without a “macho” façade to appear cool or manly, was planning to spit on the guy if he ever found him). But because Prison Break, 24 & Beyonce seem to be the kind of movies video shops in addis are interested in these days. The customer is the king in this case. But..I will the first chance I got. And you’ll be the first to hear about them, I promise! Regarding the “Cool movies according to Xendu” section, I’ve seen your comments both here and at Arefe’s and i trust your judgement. So it would be an honor to have you as a contributor. The address is: abesheet@gmail.com.

    Looking forward!

    P.S. Your last comment is my prayer too. Imagine all the embarassment it would have saved me (writing personal emails to arefe to edit or delete that comment i made earlier, etcetra) if there actually was one. Well, “bilT lij yesetutin yizo yaleQsal”, what? It maybe arguable, the fact that this sister can be referred to as “bilT” especially by those who came right after she’s finished writing a post or comment, but “yeyazutin yizo malQes” seems all we have-nots can do. For now!

  • 10. Ras X  |  December 9, 2008 at 6:06 am

    Okay, for once, I would like to hear your choice for best winter season movie. Then, since the year is ending, your oscar nominees for 2008. Or better yet, just the ones that you’ve seen.

  • 11. endris  |  February 2, 2009 at 12:34 pm

    are you sure about that

  • 12. rooster  |  June 24, 2009 at 9:00 am

    how about reviewing amharic movies. would love to hear your comments. Nice blog

  • 13. Carrie  |  March 3, 2010 at 5:27 pm

    Very cool site…I agree with so many of your ‘stupid movie’ choices!!

  • 14. Loots J  |  September 1, 2011 at 8:26 pm

    I have not had a chance to read too much. I did like some of it, but I
    did not think you gave Bruno a far review. Many people did not realize that most of the outlandish parts of the movie were done to point out the viewer’s own misgivings about gay men. He was actually almost killed in making the movie by people in Isreal, and almost arrested several times through out it. I will finish reading more later.

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