I was fairly fortunate this year and didn't end up seeing a whole lot of bad movies. Sure, Sunshine was terrible and baffling, I really don't even want to talk about Mother of Tears, Factory Girl was viewed almost entirely in fast forward and The Happening still has a very long wait on Netflix, so I have nothing yet to report on that front yet, but only two films really deserve to be on this list and I struggled mightily to determine which one would win the dubious title of Worst Movie of the Year.
On one hand there's Richard Kelly's follow-up to the surprisingly fresh instant indie classic Donnie Darko. It was a major disappointment, achingly self-indulgent and overblown. Thinking his work to be so important and worth you time Kelly explained, “Southland Tales was initially planned to be a nine-part 'interactive experience', with the first six parts published in six 100-page graphic novels that would be released in a six-month period up to the film's release.”
It's a mess and a it's shame and it's a total waste of an excellent cast: Buffy, Stiffler, The Rock, Timberlake, and the little old lady from Poltergeist?! Well done, Kelly! But then again, you also indulged Kevin Smith with a long and excruciating cameo. At the same time, there are moments when you really want to give it a fair shake, when you end up making excuses and thinking to yourself, “You know, if this were a completely different movie?quot;
But what's the greater evil, a painful, ego driven journey that aims too high, fails horribly and makes no sense OR a painful, ego driven journey (though not as long) with two booger jokes within the first fifteen minutes?
Perhaps the inclusion of The Love Guru is a bit unfair. Of course it's terrible, the only reason we watched it was to research Jim's ingenious Halloweeen costume. And while we had no intention of actually enjoying it, we were both truly stunned by how far it sank below even our lowest expectations. To put it lightly, it filled me with loathing. Ugh, Depends Adult Undergarment jokes? Really Myers, you sir are no David Foster Wallace! Oh, and why not throw in several exhaustingly boring hockey scenes inbetween piss and dick jokes? In case you were unaware, this movie is about the Toronto Maple Leafs winning the Stanley Cup. Thanks, Mike!
Myers says he's been wanting to do “this kind of work” since he was eight, a statement that makes a lot of sense since “this work” could only be appropriate and entertaining to a very unsophisticated eight year old. Urkle showed more wit. In another interview Myers immodestly claims he's 'Trojan horse-ing the wisdom of the east' – most evident, in my opinion, in the scene where Mini Me Verne Troyer declares, “If I sit here any longer I'll pop my dick bag”, and the scene where a hockey player gets his mojo back and regains his self respect by watching two elephants fuck on the ice.
To call this movie a piece of shit, something the Love Guru himself refers to (in a scene where he wonders aloud if he's crapped his pants) as “monkey monsters”, is an understatement. There are creepy scenes where the full grown head of Mike Meyers is super-imposed on the body of a child; a shot where he literally gets his head stuffed up his ass; and while there's no Kevin Smith cameo (small graces), Fergie's there if you want her – and I know you don't.
The biggest loser in all this, aside from audiences (who awarded Southland Tales with a measly $275,380 at domestic box offices and only another $81,028 world-wide; The Love Guru officially took home certified “bomb” status) is Justin Timberlake, who stars in both. Maybe next time he's a dick to a fan of his music that fan can bring these performances up. But these two films don't just share Timberlake, they both received some really harsh and hilarious words from critics:
“I hope Kelly's career survives Southland Tales, unless, that is, he plans to make more movies like this.”;
“When it's not being obstinately stupid, Southland Tales is just difficult to watch.”;
“No amount of reworking could salvage what was a misbegotten and unfunny idea to begin with.”;
“One of the most confusing, ridiculous, pretentious and disastrous cinematic train wrecks I've ever seen.”;
“The actors barely comprehend their lines. The pop-culture references are lame. Nearly every moment falls flat. And it's boring.”
The Love Guru:
“Dismal, laugh-free comedy that's actually painful to sit through“;
“The puerile levels to which it sinks make even Goldmember, the crudest of the Austin Powers movies, look like Brief Encounter.”;
“When not finding new names for willies, Myers – who also wrote the script – devotes the rest of the time to pitiful one-liners revolving around farting, snot and diarrhoea.”;
“No child under 12 should have to undergo it. The same, mind you, goes for anyone over 12.”;
“A film so numbingly unamusing that you seriously question whether you were mistaken to have ever found Myers funny.”;
“The Love Guru is insulting to anyone with a healthy sense of humor and the simple desire to laugh.”
Even porn girls don't like it.