Howie picks the 13 worst movies of 2005 |

Howie picks the 13 worst movies of 2005

Howie Nave

Movies from 2005 will go down in part as the year that gave us sequels, prequels, remakes and movies based on so-so television series from the ’60s and ’70s. In other words, Hollywood really gave us some of the worst motion pictures in recent memory.

As a follow-up to last week’s annual “Top 10 Best Movies,” here is the always-dreaded “Worst Movies” category. However, limiting the selection to just 10 doesn’t and cannot do it justice. No. Even 13 isn’t enough, but my editor informed me that my initial request for a “25 Worst Movies of 2005” would take up too much valuable space, hence the compromise at 13. I can live with that, since the number “13” to many represents all that is unlucky, especially in a gambling town, and I was very unlucky having to watch these movies.

There are only so many hours in one’s lifetime, and I felt betrayed when adding up the hundreds of hours that I’ll never get back from the movies I had to watch in 2005. With that said, I hope this list will at least spare you the pain I had to endure watching these duds and, as an added bonus, I took the liberty to re-name what these movies should have been called.

So, in no particular order (because they were all bad), I give you my “13 Worst Movies of 2005.”

“Are We There Yet?” (should have been titled “Is This Over Yet?”)

Few people remember this movie as it was released early in the year. The studios tend to treat January and early February as a cinematic trash bin, dumping all the leftovers into a big heap just hoping we’ll all go digging for scraps. After two back-to-back clunkers in ’04, Ice Cube is back, this time taking an all-too-familiar formula and forming a family-friendly film that won’t have you asking “Are We There Yet?” but rather, “Is it over yet?”

“Alone in the Dark” (should have been called “Alone in the Theater”)

I guess so called “star power” doesn’t always succeed when you have a miserable plot or lack of one. Starring Christian Slater, Tara Reid and Stephen Dorff, this horror/suspense flick was just plain horrific. The acting was so bad, I thought Ed Wood had risen from the dead just to direct this. Based on the Atari video game, someone should have noticed that the machine was unplugged. Game Over.

“Son of the Mask” (should have been called “Son of a Bitch”)

Why was this movie even attempted? Jamie Kennedy (“Malibu’s Most Wanted”) plays Tim Avery, an aspiring cartoonist who works as a guide for Animagine, like a Universal/Disney factory run by Daniel Moss (Steven Wright). Daniel has branded Tim as “lacking spark,” and so in typical defeatist behavior grabs some old green mask that the dog dragged in as his costume for the company Halloween party. But none of this plot stuff matters. The focus of the film is a 20-minute CGI face off between Tim’s attention-deprived, mask-possessed dog and demon baby. Because even with a new leading man and a more family-friendly rating, some things never change: “Son of the Mask” is nothing but special effects, which is a big yawn with no interesting story.

“House of Wax” (Should have been titled, “Paris Hilton Died: No Sequel Necessary”)

This movie is an insult to the original, which starred Vincent Price. When the wax figures actually come across as being more believable than the fleshy ones, you know something is going wrong. This was your basic stupid teen vehicle trying to get that demographic out to see stars Elisha Cuthbert (“The Girl Next Door”), Chad Michael Murray (“One Tree Hill”), and Jared Padalecki (“Gilmore Girls”). It’s actually a blessing when the human characters here are killed off because that way even if there were a sequel we would get a new cast of degenerates and no Paris Hilton.

“Miss Congeniality 2: Armed and Fabulous” (should have been titled, “Miss Annoying: Harmful and Offensive”)

After Sandra Bullock’s performance here, I thought her career would have been relegated to “Love Boat” type shows, but fortunately her appearance in “Crash” (My Top Ten Favorite Movie of 2005) redeemed her. She can act.

“Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo” (should have been called “Makes the French Look Good”)

Why Rob Schneider makes movies is beyond me. This is the follow-up (i.e. another sequel) to his “Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo,” the 1999 bomb that almost caused the Y2K epidemic leading into this century. Now he’s in Europe along with Eddie Griffin who plays TJ, his pimp. The whole movie is whorish and just proves that Schneider will prostitute himself anyway he can to try and convince himself (and the studios apparently) that he is in fact a bona fide movie actor. I mean, why not just get Pauley Shore and Tom Greene on board to complete this Bermuda Triangle of vomit?

“Stealth” (should have been called “Stealth, or What One Calls a Movie that Nobody Watched”)

This movie was more like “The OC” with wings. Would have been nice to see the machines beat out the human element here. In a nutshell we have three sexy stealth bomber pilots who are forced to fly with EDI (Extreme Deep Invader), a computer-manned prototype plane that specializes in extra-precision bombing. No need to worry because the bombing started once the movie started with an extreme emphasis on the word “bomb” here. What was Jamie Foxx thinking?

“Doom” (Need I say more?)

Based on the popular video game of the same name, this should have been called “Tilt” because from the beginning it’s quite apparent that not enough tokens were fed into this machine to create anything of substance. I’m a huge fan of The Rock, but this time out, he should have stayed on earth rather than go to Mars where the action takes place. He probably should have gone to Uranus because it sure felt like that’s where they dug up this story.

“Into the Blue” (should have been titled “Into the Red, Because We Didn’t Make Any Money”)

Oh sure, the cast is hot (Paul Walker, Ashley Scott, Scott Caan and Jessica Alba) and the location is one long infomercial for the Bahamas, but once they hit the water this movie evaporates. It may be paradise out there in the blue Caribbean waters, but the story just drowns and sinks from there. Where’s a shark when you need one?

“Domino” (should have been called “Somebody Just Shoot Me”)

Starring the lovely Keira Knightly from Jane Austen’s “Pride & Prejudice,” this story about former model turned bounty hunter Domino Harvey is a dud. This movie was like shooting blanks because it never hit its target. What a waste for veteran actors Mickey Rourke and Christopher Walken to be in this film. The title was rather appropriate because, like a domino effect, once the first one fell the end result was a chain reaction where everybody fell flat.

“Yours, Mine, and Ours” (should have been called “You Can Keep it, It’s not Mine and Hours of Torment”)

Yet another remake from the people who seem to name their second kid “Sequel” in Tinsel Town. How two very talented actors, Dennis Quaid and Rene Russo, wound up here is the big mystery of last year. What is it about over-bloated, Brady Bunch families with bratty kids that seems appealing? Every overused cliché you could think of was the plot for this movie. Toss in a pig for a pet and you have the perfect formula for the most non-kosher piece of nonsense since Donald Trump’s hair on a windy day.

“Dukes of Hazzard” (should have been titled “The Kings of Crap”)

What? Yet another movie based on a television series that was marginal? Where does Hollywood come up with such original brainstorming ideas? Starring Seann William Scott and Johnny Knoxville as cousins Bo and Luke, “The Dukes of Hazzard” was probably best known for its big stand-out star, Jessica Simpson who, like her lip-syncing sister, Ashlee Simpson, lip-syncs her acting abilities here, making the General Lee out to be a method actor. The General Lee is the duo’s ’69 Dodge Charger, in case you didn’t know.

“Bewitched” (should have been called “Betrayed”)

A major disappointment because both its stars, Nicole Kidman and Will Ferrell, are charming but have a chemistry very similar to that of oil and vinegar. Writer/director Nora Ephron just can’t seem to utilize the talents of either star, so what we get is a weak effort with scattered laughs every now and then. I just wished Samantha would have twitched her nose just enough to make this whole thing disappear from the screen and my subconscious.

Dishonorable Mention:

— “Fun with Dick and Jane”

— “XXX: State of the Union”

— “The Honeymooners”

— “Fat Albert”

— “The Perfect Man”

— “Cheaper by the Dozen 2”

– Howie Nave is host/manager of The Improv comedy club inside Harveys and reviews films for seven radio stations throughout northern California and Nevada, including the Sirius Radio Network every Sunday evening. He hosts “Howie’s Morning Rush” on Tahoe’s KRLT radio and you can see his film reviews every Friday morning on KOLO ABC TV Channel 8 and weekends on KMTN television here in South Lake Tahoe.

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