I love movies, but when it comes to seeing them in theaters, I have to pick and choose sparingly due to finances. Very rarely does a year ever come where there is close to a movie coming out every month that I want to see. 2016 has been one of those years so far. There have just been so many interesting films dropping from superhero blockbusters to Disney movies to video game adaptations. The spectrum was wide, and it had me hooked.
However, as I went to go see each and every one of these movies, I found myself surprised. This is the year that has come out with the most movies I want to see, but it is also the year where I’ve been the most disappointed with the end result. I don’t outright hate these movies, I just was left feeling a bit underwhelmed more than anything else. There was only one movie this year that I actually loved enough to see a second time and that was Captain America: Civil War (and no, it’s not because I’m a Marvel fanboy; I just really enjoyed it from a cinematic perspective).
2016 is about half over now, but we’ve still got plenty of movies to go, so it’s quite plausible that there could be more diamonds in the rough before we start singing “Happy New Year.” But for now, here are ten of the biggest movie disappointments of this year so far.
Keep in mind that this is a combination of critical reception, as well as my personal thoughts.
10. Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice
When making this list, this was the first movie that came to mind. I had high hopes for Batman V Superman, seeing as Batman is my favorite superhero of all time. Unfortunately, I left feeling that it could’ve turned out better. Granted, I didn’t hate the film, and still had a good time with it, but I did recognize some problems. It was oddly paced, there were almost too many plots to handle, there was a lot of setup for Justice League, and Doomsday was not the Doomsday that I feared from the comics.
9. The Finest Hours
A Walt Disney production that took the true story about the SS Pendleton, which was broken in two during a severe storm, and told the tale of how the Coast Guard then planned a dangerous rescue to save the crew, despite the terrible weather. How could you go wrong with that? Well, unfortunately, it didn’t quite live up to its premise or inspiration. There was a deafening lack of urgency throughout the entire movie, and after the actual rescue happens, it slows down to a bitter crawl. There’s also an issue with lighting, and many shots are almost too dark to see.
8. Zoolander 2
After the success of the original Zoolander, Ben Stiller finally returns as Derek Zoolander as he resurfaces to get back his spotlight. The first film was unique, quirky, and hilarious. Unfortunately, its sequel relied too much on its predecessor for the jokes, and ended with a film that’s largely the same. Typically with comedies, sequels are never as good as the original, because it’s hard to maintain the tonality of the franchise while at the same time coming up with new and fresh material for audiences to soak in. Ultimately, this one will be forgotten, if it hasn’t been already.
7. Alice Through The Looking Glass
I wasn’t a huge fan of Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland. While I did enjoy some of the re-imaginings of the classic characters, such as the Cheshire Cat, the overall experience felt very weird, and not lovably weird as per usual with Tim Burton. When they announced a sequel, I wasn’t excited to say the least, but was hoping that after many years, they fixed a few things in the franchise, on top of a director. However, the movie ended up being less inspired than its predecessor and was creepy as opposed to just being weird.
6. The Huntsman: Winter’s War
Snow White and the Hunstman was not a terrible movie. I liked it for what it was, understood it had some problems, enjoyed it, and moved on with my life. When they announced a sequel, I was a bit taken aback as to how they would handle it. When I heard it would largely be an original story, I was on board. With creative freedom, they could essentially take it whatever direction they wanted to, on top of Chris Hemsworth being the lead role. However, Winter’s War managed to fall short of even Snow White, and was memorable for seemingly nothing.
5. Ratchet and Clank
Being a Ratchet and Clank fan for years, I was excited to see that this movie was coming out. On top of that, when I heard they were rebooting the franchise to allow for this movie to be telling a new story, I was even more excited. The teaser got me a little hyped, but the end result horribly disappointed me. The movie felt like it was going through the motions, the jokes mostly fell flat (apart from that Wilhelm gag), and I never got the sense that Ratchet and Clank had developed their trademark friendship that spanned galaxies. I hope this doesn’t mean they’re cancelling the Sly Cooper movie, but maybe that’d be for the best.
4. The Divergent Series: Allegiant
I’ll be honest, I don’t really like the Divergent series at all. The first movie was okay at best, but when I saw the second one, I felt like I had just wasted $8 and would’ve been better off buying a second-rate meal from Taco Bell. However, the budget was still riding over $100 million for Allegiant, but I still didn’t have high expectations. Somehow, the film still managed to be disappointing to audiences, even more so than the last one. Luckily for me, I made my way to Taco Bell instead of seeing it.
3. X-Men: Apocalypse
That end credit scene for Days of Future Past left me wanting more in a good way. I was among the most excited for X-Men: Apocalypse, specifically because I love the titular bad guy. Unfortunately, the film isn’t as good as First Class or Days of Future Past, and left me underwhelmed, solely because of how they handled Apocalypse. He is supposed to be one of the most frightening villains in the Marvel universe, and I never got that sense throughout. And yes, he still kind of looks like Ivan Ooze.
I was never much of a World of Warcraft fan, but when I saw the trailer for the film, I was kind of impressed. Warcraft has always been a movie that was on my radar. Perhaps it would’ve been the first really good video game movie. Nope. It’s definitely not bad, but it tries to do so much in its run time that it ends up falling flat in some areas. Don’t get me wrong, the effects are top notch, and with what they had to work with, it turned out pretty good, but it never felt the fantasy epic that I was promised.
1. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows
After the disappointing 2014 reboot, it seemed like the creators were ready to fix all the problems they had. The turtles are the main characters, Bebop and Rocksteady are in it, Casey Jones is played by one of my favorite actors, etc. And from what I’ve heard, a lot of the problems have been fixed, except for the plot and pacing. It’s much better than the first film, but it still has enough problems to keep it from fulfilling the hopes we all had for it.