The Most disappointing films of 2021! (in my not so humble opinion.)
Ah, it’s about that most wonderful time of the year, where I announce the most disappointing films of 2021!
Marvel's Black Widow
Ever since the Marvel Cinematic Universe was cranking out films left and right, I was one of the few who asked "where's the Black Widow " movie? Her introduction along with War Machine, was one of the many highlights I liked about the unjustly maligned Iron Man 2.
One of the most disappointing things about this movie, was the Supervillain Taskmaster who was one of the main draws of this one-off project and suffice to say, a piss poor version.
Instead of this badass mercenary and brash combat instructor, here we have is this mute pursuer who comes off as Winter Soldier knockoff, chasing Romanoff and
what’s predictable about this Taskmaster, is the character's reveal and tragic villain backstory. I called it as soon as I watched the Budapest flashback with Natasha attempting to assassinate Dreykov. Taskmaster was known for his bravado and capabilities to adapt the fighting moves of several combatants; this live action adaptation was more of a Darth Vader archetype than a the Comicbook antagonist.
Cate Shorthand's film shamelessly borrows concepts from Amazon’s Hanna series, Fx’s The Americans and videogame mechanics from 2010's WET where the heroine skydives navigating through falling debris. The third act throws in all the bells, and which is probably where most of the production budget probably went towards, via CGI, set pieces and choreographed fight scenes. Although the finale was a bit abrupt, it’s the sobering post-credits scene that closes Natasha's chapter and begins Yelena's journey as an MCU mainstay as the baton has been passed.
Kong vs Godzilla
The highly anticipated meeting of the monsters, was heavy on action but light on script, pacing and plot.How in the hell can you have a "Scooby Doo” gang of teens sneak into a fortified base and Kong having some magical battle Axe to take on Godzilla instead of using his natural braun? This was another dumpster fire courtesy of Warner Bros, not the first and certainly not the last when you scroll further down.
Michael B. Jordan is a solid actor, from his appearance as the ill-fated Wallace from HBO's The Wire to his scene stealing performance as Erik Killmonger in Black Panther and of course, the Creed films. So, when headlining Amazon's action thriller based on the Tom Clancy novels Without Remorse, what was presented from the promising trailer, was entirely different than what was seen in the movie. The "revenge" them was ditched for a dull contemporary narrative as in unraveling a Russian conspiracy and to add insult to injury, underneath it's layers, was a boring action flick that served as a tentpole for upcoming "Clancyverse" projects. Amazon and Jordan can do better than this!
Aside from saving graces like Joe Tslam's Sub Zero, fan favorites like Kabal, Kung Lao and Kano, Mortal Kombat is typical Hollywood popcorn fare just not in a very good way. It relies heavily on worn out cliches, thanks to lazy predictable screenwriting, a grandiose soundtrack, sloppy editing, profane "edgy" dialog with the noted exception of Kano, ABC Afterschool Special acting and to top it off, a generic protagonist who adds nothing to this movie, save for having a narrative to build from. Yeah, 1995's Mortal Kombat has its share of flaws, but it was more nuanced than what is presented here, even after 26 years!
Sorry not sorry MK fans, but this reboot is more of a 2-hour Easter Egg, and a rotten one at that.
Resident Evil Welcome to Raccoon City
I guess Paul WS Anderson is having the last laugh after all since both Resident Evil Welcome to Raccoon City and now his other "classic" Mortal Kombat gets the reboot treatment in one year and let's just suffice to say, that if you thought his first adaptation of Resident Evil was bad, try going through "Welcome to Raccoon City" and prepare to somewhat appreciate the earlier films based on the iconic Videogames!
I don't know where to begin with this dumpster fire, so we have a prologue that sets up a subplot later in the movie which is set in the nineties, 1998 to be exact and the fictional town called Raccoon City is now a ghost town as Umbrella pursues other lofty goals after contaminating the city's inhabitants with the G Virus. While I can respect the concept of blending the first two RE games into one storyline, as with many videogame adaptations, not enough attention nor effort was implemented other than Easter Eggs and callbacks, which includes "Moonlight Sonata" sans Jill.
And speaking of whom, Jill Valentine, Leon Kennedy and even worse. Albert Wesker was poorly miscast by a trio of generic actors who look as if they came from the CW Network, (Guess who actor Robbie Amell is related to?) bearing no resemblance nor accurate portrayal whatsoever, to their respective videogame counterparts!
At least the Amell's Chris Redfield, looks more like Chris than the "other guys" and WTF is up with Lisa Trevor coming off like the character Sloth from The Goonies?
When you have stoic characters such as Wesker and Kennedy acting like clowns or buffoons, you know there is serious problems with "Welcome to Raccoon City!"
The acting is boring and there are plenty of scenes that could have been either re-shot or edited out altogether. If there is one good thing I can say about "Welcome," is how the set pieces, mirrors that of the games, especially the Raccoon City Police station. This is another sad reminder, of how our expectations of favorite franchises are lowered due to basterdized adaptations, paid with little respect and creativity. Possibly the most disappointing and one of the worst films of 2021!
Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins
And speaking of ruined adaptations of beloved intellectual properties, “Heeeeere's Snake Eyes!"
Whoa, as if Sony broke my heart with the recent "Resident Evil" reboot, this one punches me in the gut as a longtime fan of G.I. Joe!
Directed by the guy from R.I.P.D (Already that's a red flag.) Snake Eyes is based on the iconic 80's G.I. Joe A Real American Hero line of action figures, vehicles, cartoons and most importantly, the Marvel comics-this is where the black clad Ninja Commando's mythos came into play, thus gained prominence as the most popular character from the franchise, thanks to Comic scribe Larry Hama.
Although Snake Eyes made his live action appearance during the two previous G.I. Joe movies, the third time is not by any means, a charm as this latest entry from Paramount desperately piggyback’s from Fox's disappointing Wolverine X-Men Origins
and as with "Wolverine Origins", this film opens with a flashback as "Snake" as a boy witnesses his father being shot and killed by some mysterious enforcer who pulls a "Two Face" move by rolling the dice deciding should this man lives or dies, yes this scene is clichéd as fuck especially when you discover how the titular character gets his name and what's worse, the plot shoehorns mysticism, plot cliches and "Snake" doesn't become Snake until the very end! This movie was worse than the previous Joe films, which at least were entertaining albeit flawed. I doubt there will be another G.I. Joe reboot until perhaps the next two decades. Oh well, there's always the upcoming M.A.S.K., Micronauts or ROM films. 🙄
Army of the Dead
Sure, Zac Snyder gained praise for his hotly anticipated Justice League cut, however, when his Zombie heist actioner "Army of the Dead “debuted on Netflix, well, it wasn't met with good reception. Former Wrestler Bustista deserves better than this as he has proven to be a solid actor. Just watch his brief appearance in Blade Runner 2047 if not his comedic timing from the Guardians of the Galaxy films.
The rest of the cast features Omari Hardwick (The infamous antihero "Ghost" from Starz's POWER) Garret Dillahunt of Fear the Walking Dead and most notable, a CGI Tig Notaro who filled in for another actor who was ousted due to allegations of sexual misconduct. Tig was one of the few saving graces but unfortunately, it’s not enough to redeem this mess of a movie with pacing is as slow as a shuffling Corpse. you're better off watching the Train to Busan sequel, Peninsula.
Aquaman and Saw Director, James Wan returns to his horror roots with 2021’s Malignant and despite a love letter and prologue reminiscent to 80’s thrillers such as The Reanimator and especially Basket Case, the movie often goes on autopilot and the cast for the most part, are forgettable except the comedy relief Investigator who is a spitting image of Comedienne Wanda Sykes! However, things get more interesting after an hour slog, where we have the creature go on a killing spree at a police precinct which was the main highlight of Wan’s film. Now don’t get me wrong, Malignant is not that bad, per se, but not worth all the hyperbole it has been getting of late. It had potential, but there was something missing..oh yeah, a better script!
Matrix Resurrections: More like "Resuscitation"
This “sequoot” from the popular Matrix franchise, depended on self-awareness as much as the action sequences, CGI effects and of course, nostalgia! The story feels disjointed at times and there were a few cringe inducing moments with our protagonists Neo and Trinity which reeks of the "Hallmark Channel” and as if that wasn't enough, the constant flashbacks displaying scenes from the previous Matrix films and constant callbacks had taken me out of the storyline to the point that even the action scenes left me unimpressed.
The pacing was very slow, for a sequel and most of the supporting characters, except Bugs are wooden and why was there a "reskinned" Morpheus and Agent Smith?!?Meta Matrix is both shallow and bereft of creativity compared to the previous trilogy and in many ways, unwarranted. Look, I love Nostalgia but not when it’s thrown out to capitalize from the masses who are fans of films, television series, videogames and other forms of media.
Glad to know that Lana Wachowski is abandoning the franchise and perhaps, Resurrections was made as a means of implementing a more cathartic resolution since Revolutions was a bit ambiguous, albeit more finite toward the end.
Bottom of the Barrel: The WORST films of 2021!
- The Tomorrow War
- Thunder Force
- Those who wish me Dead
- Halloween Kills
- Space Jam 2
- A Quiet Place 2
Marvel's Eternals has been reserved here as a placeholder, despite I have yet to see this abomination but nevertheless, I will cover it, within mid-January when it comes to Disney Plus. Stay tuned!😉 here's to hoping 2022 is a better year with much better films.