2016 was a huge year for the movie industry with many highly anticipated films being released after years of hype. Captain America: Civil War delivered one of the most exciting box office hits for the superhero movie genre raking in over $408 million. Deadpool was a surprise success as the fifth most successful movie of the year. Both were highly acclaimed but unfortunately, a few other superhero flicks managed to embarrass the genre.
The same applied to the animated movie world. Finding Dory finished with the most financial success all year grossing over $486 million. Zootopia had a 99% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and became a phenomenon. While these movies were targeted to children, it provided intelligent and compelling stories. A couple of other animated movies went the other route.
This can be said for just about every popular genre this year. The classics will live on for years but the negative memories stand out more right now. Many stinkers to hit the box office actually had the customer excited at one point. The results made us ashamed to ever show slight interest in them. We’ll break the worst of the worst down now with the fifteen most disappointing movies of the year.
The Ghostbusters reboot project has been in the plans for many years. It finally hit theaters in the summer of 2016 with decent reviews. Sadly, the movie didn’t live up to expectations making $128 million. That figure seems great on the surface, but it failed to meet what studios expected it to rake in. Ghostbusters didn’t make the top fifteen highest grossing films of the year and we’re unlikely to see a sequel.
The movie wasn’t bad by any means. Kristen Wiig did a great job in the lead character role. Kate McKinnon and Leslie Jones were hilarious in their roles. Melissa McCarthy didn’t have the best writing behind her character but didn’t take away from it. The sub-par story and lackluster writing doomed it from achieving the potential for a series as beloved as Ghostbusters. All of the fanfare for the movie was for very little success and negatively impacted the hopes of having another chance.
14. Jason Bourne
The Bourne franchise has been among the most exciting movie series of the past fifteen years. Matt Damon is the face of the movie and played the lead role for the first three films. As the Jason Bourne character, Damon missing the fourth movie titled The Bourne Legacy was a huge blow. The franchise felt like a shell of itself.
Damon returning for the 2016 release of Jason Bourne provided optimism with fans of the first few movies. People wanted to see it and it finished just outside of the top ten highest grossing movies of the year with $162 million. The overall reaction from viewers was disappointing. Jason Bourne only received a 56% positive rating score on Rotten Tomatoes. The movie felt like a parody of every other Bourne film and didn’t stray away from the same tropes. Damon couldn’t bring the magic back to a franchise going downhill.
13. The Angry Birds Movie
The video game franchise of Angry Birds became a massive success with children (and adults) all over the world becoming addicted to it. As a mobile video game, it helped usher in the new era of people wanting games on their phones. The success led to it branching out to consoles and shockingly a movie. The Angry Birds Movie was released in May. A movie being based off a phone app is still tough to process.
The Angry Birds Movie did an okay job in the box office bringing in the young audience and families. It finished outside of the top twenty high with a little over $100 million raked in. That’s definitely a success given the origin of the franchise. Unfortunately, the movie lacked creativity and proved why it should have remained a video game. With animated movies delivering a higher quality of entertainment, The Angry Birds Movie was mind-numbing and a huge mess.
12. The Boss
Another Melissa McCarthy movie makes the list with less endearing qualities than Ghostbusters had. The Boss hit theaters in April and achieved slight box office success avoiding competition of the bigger movies coming out in the summer. The movie did an atrocious 23% positive rating on Rotten Tomatoes with it being regarded as one of the worst overall movies of the year. It would be a difficult task to find someone to proudly admit their love of the film.
The Boss failed to write McCarthy in a way that spotlighted her comedic talents. Many movies cast her to play the lead role in a movie but pigeonhole her into the physical humor role. The other forms of comedic talent McCarthy possesses were hidden and it led to the movie suffering for it. The Boss belongs in contention for the worst movie of the year if everything was even.
11. Zoolander 2
2016 was a year full of many terrible sequels coming to the box office. The original Zoolander film was viewed as a success with it being funny for the time. Many years passed and they decided to go for it all with Zoolander 2 this year. A fifteen year gap in between movies is never a good thing. Zoolander 2 bombed big time in every facet imaginable.
Ben Stiller and company couldn’t bring back the magic to a new world of viewers that no longer cared for the unique brand of humor. It only made $28 million currently 78th among highest grossing films all year. The critical reception was even worse with 23% positive ratings on Rotten Tomatoes and scathing reviews. Fans and critics both hated the movie, and the original Zoolander movie is now remembered less fondly for the horrible sequel tainting the legacy.
10. Suicide Squad
The excitement for the unique DC project of Suicide Squad had a world of hype behind it. Will Smith had a starring role in a superhero movie. Harley Quinn was finally introduced into the DC Films Universe. Jared Leto appeared to have a new direction to portray The Joker. Suicide Squad should have been something special to help take DC movies into the future with a fresh direction to separate themselves in a positive direction.
Instead, Suicide Squad received horrific reviews for good reason. The movie lacked the creativity that should come with such colorful characters. All of the background characters were basically pointless. Smith’s star power as Deadshot and Margot Robbie’s portrayal of Quinn delivered positive results. The problem is the story revolved around the entire two rather than just two anti-heroes. Leto’s work as Joker left a lot to be desired and it’s unsure what the future holds for the franchise.
9. Huntsman: Winter’s War
Very few people were clamoring for a sequel to Snow White and the Huntsman but we somehow got one in 2016. The studios ditched Kristen Stewart and added Emily Blunt to the cast of Huntsman: Winter’s War in hopes of improving the results from the original film. Every single possible result saw the movie tank in the worst of ways.
Huntsman: Winter’s War grossed $48 million finishing well outside of the top fifty movies of the year. With such star power and name value attached to it, the movie did poorly. Critics destroyed it with an absolutely shocking 17% of positive reviews on Rotten Tomatoes. No one wanted to see and the people that had to watch it loathed the movie. The first film had originality despite the flaws. This one lacked a strong story and was another meaningless sequel.
8. How to be Single
The casting of the How to be Single stars provided hope for an intelligent romantic comedy. Viewers have started to expect more from the rom-com genre than the lazy stories and cheap laughs. How to be Single set the romantic comedy world back with one of the most sub-par movies you’ll watch. They wasted the comedic talents of Leslie Mann, Alison Brie and Jason Mantzoukas by writing the standard clichés of every rom-com.
How to be Single felt like a parody of a movie that actually thought it was being creative. Dakota Johnson could not thrive in the leading role and Rebel Wilson was grating to watch due to her character being off the rails in a way that didn’t provide much humor. It is better to risk putting it all on the line with a movie instead of playing it safe by trying to make the same old standard romantic comedy and adding talented names to try to make it stand out.
7. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows
The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise is one that is timeless. There’s just something charming about teenage turtles fighting crime and loving life in the form of eating pizza. The cartoon series on Nickelodeon has become a hit in keeping the brand alive after success in the 80s and 90s. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows however did nothing good for the reputation of the TMNT brand.
The first movie in the reboot series had a little more charm due to Will Arnett having a bigger role and the introduction story of the Turtles. Out of the Shadows failed to match that with lazy execution relying on the name value. Megan Fox remained as the star human of the film and Arrow star Stephen Amell joined the cast as Casey Jones. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles will likely churn out more movies in the future, but Out of the Shadows floundering at 31st overall in the highest grossing movies this year damaged the interest level.
6. Alice through the Looking Glass
You could feel the collective boredom from the people sitting around you if you went to see Alice through the Looking Glass in movie theaters. The combination of Tim Burton and Johnny Depp once again failed to bring the Alice in Wonderland franchise to the level many believed the creative minds would be able to. Viewers and critics alike turned their backs on the movie with flops in both respects.
Alice through the Looking Glass grossed $77 million domestically. Reports suggested the movie studio was extremely disappointed with the money loss based on theatrical returns. Rotten Tomatoes saw it get just 30% of positive reviews from critics and a 4.6/10 average rating from viewers. Critics hated, fans hated it, and the studio hated the results. Alice through the Looking Glass was a colossal failure with nothing positive to say about it.
5. X-Men: Apocalypse
Unlike many of the other movies on this list, X-Men: Apocalypse was not bad in the slightest. It actually told an interesting story and had some of the cooler elements of the X-Men. The problem is the overall film was mediocre in a world where superhero movies are judged harshly. Marvel Cinematic Universe movies create a stir every time one comes out. DC movies are polarizing but they at least get people talking.
X-Men movies released from 20th Century Fox get lost in the shuffle with a lack of presence compared to the other films of the year. It is rather sad given X-Men could easily be as popular as the Avengers if written and promoted the right way. X-Men: Apocalypse was yet another irrelevant movie that personified the average quality one could expect out of a film. It failed to make the top ten highest grossing movies of the year and received fewer than 50% positive reviews on Rotten Tomatoes.
4. Jack Reacher: Never Go Back
Tom Cruise appeared to have another hit with the Jack Reacher franchise making him the star of the successful book. The first Jack Reacher movie delivered box office success towards the end of 2012. It was understandable that they wanted a sequel, but Jack Reacher: Never Go Back could not duplicate the success. The sequel grossed just $58 million so far this year compared to the original raking in over $80 million.
Jack Reacher: Never Go Back also managed to have significantly worse reviews and it just lacked the original factor of the first one. Cruise returning to form as an action hero was fun to witness. The problem is this just relied on the original formula and added a lot of plot holes into the mix. Reacher having the weakness of a potential daughter to worry about was meant to add another dynamic to the character. Sadly, it seemed like a desperate change that didn’t connect and helped sink it.
3. Sausage Party
The world of adult cartoons is a bizarre one to forecast. Some come off intelligent and compelling, but many others are absolutely lazy and go for cheap laughs. Seth Rogen’s latest project of the animated movie Sausage Party actually received positive ratings from critics but it really just appealed to the lowest form of comedy. A film about foods in a supermarket realizing they are being purchased to be eaten is an interesting idea on the surface.
Rogen decided to rely on the unoriginal crude humor. A lot of the offensive humor turned off viewers no longer wanting that out of their comedy. One of our very own writers made a well thought out claim of Sausage Party being potentially the worst film of all time. The food orgy scene basically summed it up and was enough to make you roll your eyes at this movie being released in 2016. Unless you are planning to get stoned and want to catch food items make sexual jokes, stay away from Sausage Party.
2. Independence Day: Resurgence
The original Independence Day movie holds a spot in the heart of any 90s kids. Will Smith led the United States to rally the troops in stopping a hostile alien invasion. What more could you want from it? Luckily, Smith knew to stay away from the sequel. The horrible Independence Day: Resurgence damaged the legacy of the first one with an absolute stinker. They tried to capture nostalgia but that was extremely difficult without Smith as the face of the movie.
Another issue is it lacked the emotional connection to the characters. You felt for these people in the original film and getting lost in the story allowed you to look past the flaws. Independence Day: Resurgence didn’t have that going for it which caused the glaring flaws to be the main memory of the film. It lacked strong characters and the perception of the film was hugely negative. Independence Day: Resurgence received poor reviews and failed to make the top twenty highest grossing movies of the year.
1. Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice
There’s no doubt the biggest disappointment of the year in the box office world was Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. Remember that Captain America: Civil War perfectly told the story of beloved heroes battling to high praise when you think about how poorly Batman v Superman came off. The two biggest superheroes in the DC world faced off on the big screen in one of the highly anticipated movies of the year and it absolutely sucked.
DC saw the movie reputation completely fall downhill with Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice getting just an atrocious 27% of positive ratings on Rotten Tomatoes. The silly plot didn’t give enough reason to believe both of these beloved figures would actually fight. Captain America and Iron Man had valid rational for their battle in Civil War. A lack of reasoning for the Batman v Superman battle and the silliness of the entire story going forward was a kick to the gut of anyone wanting to have hope for the future of DC.