Spring Movie Preview: 5 Films not worth your Green

Winter might be the queen of bad movie season, but spring has plenty of weeds in need of killing too, you just have to squint a little harder. Rainy days in spiring lure a lot of moviegoers into bad films, but you can keep that umbrella for when you’ll really need it if you follow my advice.

As per usual, this list is loaded with awful rom com premises and family movies that will make you want to tear your hair out. I had added an untraditional sixth film to this list because I thought it only fair I add some other kind of genre to this list. Then in the midst of writing this post, the film was pushed back to May. At the same time, the five movies I put on this list for the winter received an average Rotten Tomatoes score of 18.6% and an imdb rating of 5.46, so I shouldn’t have felt obliged about anything.

5. She’s Out Of My League (Mar. 12)


The Word: Following a long tradition of loser-gets-hot-chick comedies comes the awfully titled She’s Out of My League, also known as “She Happens To Be Just Than Into You Kind Of.” Jay Baruchel, product of the Apatow factory of guys that play good lovable losers kicks off a huge 2010 with his first of two star vehicles (the other is The Sorcerer’s Apprentice with Nic Cage) plus voicing the lead in Dreamwork’s upcoming How To Train Your Dragon. The rest of the cast is unknown including co-star Alice Eve and Jay’s pals. The script was written by the guys behind Sex Drive and a film that’s actually on my good list this spring, Hot Tub Time Machine.

My Thoughts: Ever get the feeling that ten years later, comedies are still trying to hard to be the next There’s Something About Mary? The hot chick and the loser …  The trailer’s opening scene is of a lame guy and his group of guy friends explaining that he’s a “moodle.” How many times have films tried to introduce some slang vocabulary combining a word with “bro” or “man?” Well, that rubbed me the wrong way. The little every-ugy humor there was in this trailer is all kind of moot in my opinion with a typical bro comedy premise. No, moot is not a word I made up. (View Trailer)

4. Our Family Wedding (Mar. 12)


The Word: Another film following a tradition, but this is the tradition of ethnic family comedies where interracial marriage incites problems and a wedding is involved/in the title. Our Family Wedding stars Ugly Betty‘s America Ferrera playing a Latina woman who is engaged to a black man. But it’s really about their fathers, played by Forest Whitaker and Carlos Mencia, getting along despite their racial prejudice. The humor includes a sport for the rival fathers to take their anger out on each other with and a goat eating Viagra.

My Thoughts: Could a concept be any more exhausted than the family wedding comedy? I get that it’s being aimed at a black and Latino audience who tend to like movies with family themes and family humor because it’s inherent in the culture, but the cast is weak and there doesn’t appear to be an ounce of originality, minus maybe the goat. (View Trailer)

3. The Bounty Hunter (Mar. 19)


The Word: Gerard Butler has moved up the rom com chain fast. First it was Hilary Swank, then Katherine Heigl and now Jennifer Aniston, one of the genre’s royalty. Aniston continues to end up in bad/unsuccessful romantic comedies like last fall’s Love Happens, a member of the Fall Preview ’09 Red Flag list. Butler also keeps finding films that either do poorly or get poor reviews. The two hope to finally find some success for Sony in a comedy about a bounty hunter that gets assigned to drag his ex to prison.

My Thoughts: I haven’t even seen Gerard Butler in a romantic comedy and I’m already nauseated by the idea of another. The film seems loaded with a number of cliche exes-trying-to-get-back-at-each-other jokes. Hitch director Andy Tennant is a smart choice, but the script is by rookie Sara Thorp. Maybe some people don’t see it this way, but Anniston in any romantic comedy that doesn’t appear original or have other talents behind it is an instant red flag in my book. Other warning signs in my book would be someone getting tased and a punch to the nuts. Check and check. (View Trailer)

2. The Back-Up Plan (Apr. 23)


The Word: ::double take:: Uh … hello, J-Lo … ? In one of the more surprisingly desperate attempts at a comeback, Lopez stars in a romantic comedy for CBS Films, whose debut film Extraordinary Measures flopped faster than a fish on land. The Back-Up Plan shouldn’t change things much. Lopez plays a woman who wants a baby but hasn’t found the one, so she looks for a sperm donor — her “back-up plan.” But all goes wrong when she soon meets Stan (Alex O’Loughlin, star of the upcoming TV reboot of Hawaii Five-0) and then finds out she’s pregnant. The film is directed by Six Feet Under producer Alan Poul and written by television writer Kate Angelo.

My Thoughts: This film just reeks of total failure. For some reason comedies have swung in the direction of pregnancy ever since Knocked Up and never looked back. Now it’s Jennifer Lopez having a baby. She hasn’t been in a romantic comedy or notable movie since 2005’s Monster-In-Law. Coming out on Apr. 23 with three other films (the fourth just bailed for May), it should be a tough go of it. Deservedly so. (View Trailer)

1. Furry Vengeance (Apr. 30)


The Word: Brendan Fraser tried his serious chops with Extraordinary Measures back in January. Well, that didn’t work, so back to being in the most ridiculous family movies. Furry Vengeance stars Fraser as a real-estate developer who plans to rip out a forest in order to put up a new suburban community, which makes the woodland creatures around his new home very, very angry to the point that they pull pranks on him. At one point they drive his car. Think Dr. Doolittle meets The Great Outdoors meets Home Alone 3.

My Thoughts: Physical humor: does it ever get old? Yes, especially when it involves live-action animals. Fraser desperately overacts in this trailer for the little ones and at one point screams “Miley Cyrus!” as a mammoth boulder heads toward his car. Need I say anything more? If you have kids, watch this trailer enough to recognize it so that when it comes on TV, you can put your hands over your kids’ eyes so that they won’t ask you to see this film. (View Trailer)

Tomorrow I list my top five movies of the springs, so check back.


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