Disaster Movie’s self-fulfilling title is more of a disclaimer to audiences. This spoof is as funny as haemorrhoids, with half-baked pop culture references and corny first draft writing that leaves the visual gag department to fend for itself. Besides some half-decent ‘replica’ garments from the costume department, the effects are dismal.
As long as there’s a steady slew of indiscriminating spoof fanatics, these genre movies will continue to plague the Earth. Directors Jason Friedburg and Aaron Seltzer are not even Ed Wood bad, they’re only in it for the money, and are clearly the only ones laughing… on their way to the bank.
Worst bit? That moment when you realise rock bottom is as good as it gets.
Farce of the Penguins (2006)
While it’s intended to spoof the documentary March of the Penguins, the real farce at play is how America’s Funniest Home Videos host, Bob Saget, managed to get any support for this cutting room floor production. He must have some dirt on all the ‘celebrity’ voice stars, or perhaps he recorded their voices at some charity auction.
The humour is puerile, the parody is wafer-thin, the voice-overs are poor and the story is non-existent. This is one movie that is best watched on mute, or not at all. Rather gather your friends round to do your own voice-overs than listen to this low budget drivel.
Worst bit? The total loss of respect you experience for every voice “talent” you recognise.
Naked Space, formerly known as The Creature Wasn’t Nice (1981)
Mr. Rubberface himself, Leslie Nielsen, stars in this spoof that attempts to lampoon deep space sci-fi using retro spacecraft dashboards that could have been constructed from a junkyard. It’s jam-packed with throwaway performances, cheesy special effects, even cheesier sound effects and a stupid plot involving a piece of protoplasm that turns into a singing-and-dancing alien monster.
Naked Space is so atrociously bad that you will feel like you’re being brainwashed Clockwork Orange-style. It is difficult to believe that the cast did not actually conspire to make the worst movie of all-time.
Worst bit? The space crew’s reactions to seeing the monster’s claw gesturing from around a corner.
Alone in the Dark (2005)
No worst-ever movie list would be complete without including a ‘film’ from German ‘director’ Uwe Boll. The despised director, infamous for making box office flops to exploit German tax laws, reached an all-time low with this adaptation of the atmospheric video game, Alone in the Dark.
The movie title, Christian Slater, and Tara Reid are the only points of interest in a film that fails horribly in every department. The pithy script, bad acting, poor production values, ridiculous editing and ‘adaptation’ woes make this Uwe Boll’s worst film of all-time, a difficult feat when you consider his extensive collection of prize-winning turkeys that also includes BloodRayne and Blubberella.
Worst bit? Tara Reid’s co-starring role as a talking mannequin.
Battlefield Earth (2000)
John Travolta and Forest Whittaker co-star in a notoriously bad sci-fi film that frequently makes worst movie of all-time conversations. This campy schlock-fest is aggressively bad, ugly to the core, illogically plotted, poorly choreographed, badly written, rounded off by terrible acting, while loosely assembled by director Roger Christian.
Mistakenly branded as Scientology propaganda by some, Battlefield Earth cleaned up at the Razzies in its year. With lines like “I am going to make you as happy as a baby Psychlo on a straight diet of kerbango”, it’s not difficult to see how this abomination has earned its place among the worst in cinema history.
Worst bit? The bar scene featuring this absolute gem: “While you were still learning to spell your name, I was being trained to conquer galaxies”.
Stephen "Spling" Aspeling will be hosting a special screening of THE LEGO MOVIE in 3D, directed by Phil Lord and Christopher Miller (Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs) and starring the voice talents of Will Ferrell, Will Arnett, Elizabeth Banks, Chris Pratt and Morgan Freeman. The Ster-KinekorMovie Buffs screening will take place at 7:30pm for 8pm on Thursday 13 March, 2014 at Cavendish Square, Cape Town. Book Tickets | FB Event Page | SPL!NG FB Fan Page | The Lego Movie Film Review
About the film
While most people who grew up with LEGO have a soft spot for the famous building block toy brand, it’s still considered to be a rite of passage for kids. The Lego Movie's all about entertainment and laughs for everyone, thanks to Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs directors, Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, who truly understand the creative force behind the long-running toy series. Expect a dazzling mix of realistic stop-motion and CGI animation, laugh-a-minute pop culture gags and a stellar voice cast. This “story about a nobody who saved everybody” is creative, funny, silly and dare I say touching.
About the event
The special THE LEGO MOVIE advance screening will be held at Ster-Kinekor's Cavendish Square cineplex. As your host, Spling will introduce the preview and draw prizes. THE LEGO MOVIE will then be screened and followed by a post-movie discussion and a complimentary cappuccino, tea or coffee in exchange for your movie ticket at Tribakery, Cavendish. Normal ticket prices and discounts apply.
About the host
Stephen "Spling" Aspeling has been a film fanatic since he first watched the psychedelic elephant dance in Dumbo in the early '80s and a movie critic since 2007. More About Spling
It's been 8 years since Zack Snyder's adaptation of Frank Miller's graphic novel 300 hit the big screen. The standalone film blazed with battle cries, cutting edge visuals and ancient Greek "This is... SPARTA!" machismo. It set in motion the careers of its director, Zack Snyder and Gerard Butler.
No wonder Snyder wanted to rinse and repeat. While mostly unnecessary, a sequel to 300 was almost inevitable after films like Immortals and Clash of the Titans tried to capture the same "God of War" hungryaudience that wanted more primitive grit, blood-thirsty savagery and Greek tragedy.
While attached as producer and screenwriter, Snyder handed over the reins of the 300 chariot to Noam Murro. While best known for the snarky comedy drama, Smart People, Murro wouldn't be the first person you'd think of to direct an action movie. Yet he was attached to direct A Good Day to Die Hardat one point, which means that it wasn't just Snyder who thinks he could do blockbuster action.
300: Rise of an Empire happens at the same time as 300, except at sea. The navy was pretty different back then and they've used blue capes as opposed to the red ones in 300. To stack the odds against them, it's the massive Persian navy they're dealing with under the leadership of "Joan of Arc" wannabe, Artemisia. As if being outnumbered wasn't enough... the Spartan B-team are composed of farmers and whoever's willing to die for Greece.
Murro uses flashbacks of Gerard Butler to leverage his gutsy performance and to summon up nostalgia. It's a double-edged sword, giving the sequel more credibility yet simultaneously drawing contrasts between the leads and films.
Sullivan Stapleton has the look of a hero, as similarly poised as Luke Goss was to Jason Statham, when he replaced him in theDeath Race series. Unfortunately, he's so busy trying to sound "unAustralian" that his performance parallels that of Sam Worthington in Clash of the Titans rather than his predecessor's. You just don't feel as compelled to charge headlong to certain death under the leadership of Stapleton.
"THIS IS NOT... GERARD BUTLER!"
Eva Green, while introduced as beautiful, is about as menacing and ugly as her co-star Lena Headey was in Dredd. Her rise-to-power back story is quite ludicrous, yet she's given god-like status as commander of the Persian navy. She adds some much-needed femininity to the Game of Thrones style drama and you'll struggle to forget the power "tussle" between her and Themistokles.
Game of Thrones actress, Lena Headey, reprises her role as Queen Gorgo. Her part, along with David Wenham's and Rodrigo Santoro's as Xerxes, is mainly there to recall and parallel 300: Rise of an Empire with the original. However, it seems that she's destined to have a more influential role in what they've primed as a trilogy.
300: Rise of an Empire is redeemed by its book ends. The film starts well with a tremendous action sequence and some epicLord of the Rings style scene-setting, complete with montages and narration. The Game of Thrones level performances and back-and-forth drama filler eventually make way for a pulse-racing and cutthroat battle.
The visual effects are just as important to 300: Rise of an Empire as they were in 300. While the graphic novel to celluloid transition was seen as a breakthrough in the original, the sequel's novelty is all about the 3D. The visuals are still spectacular with more variety in each sea attack, however they've employed a very distracting way of creating greater depth. As if the 3D wasn't enough, a constant stream of grass cuttings, flames or sea-spray drifts across the screen.
300: Rise of an Empire has a number of film references, whether intentional or otherwise. The hunchback is similar to Gollum from The Lord of the Rings and the face paint used by some of the warriors is reminiscent of The Joker from The Dark Knight.
The 300 series remains spoof-worthy, throwing an outnumbered makeshift navy of chest-waxed Greek farmers against a superior Persian navy... with explosive blood, and a "sea horse" scene to rival Arnold Schwarzenegger in True Lies... you can't take it too seriously or you'll miss the point.