If we were to make a full list of movies that “should have never been made,” it probably would stretch from here to the moon. That’s just the sad truth of Hollywood, especially today, where the film industry seems to spit a constant spew of garbage into our faces. And the worst part is, we gobble it up eagerly. Is no one else noticing how bad films are getting? Sure, bad movies are nothing new, but go back a few decades and terrible movies were pretty rare. Nowadays, it’s the good movies that are rare.
How do we stop this from happening? We can’t, because we don’t control Hollywood. But we can offer some sage advice to the producers who are living comfortably in their Beverly Hills mansions: Think really hard before you go ahead with a terrible movie. There are all sorts of warning signs that should turn you off a bad movie pitch right away. These signs are pretty simple. Is it the premise of the movie completely ridiculous? Is it another terrible remake? Is it politically incorrect? Is it going to offend people? Is there even any point in making these movies? Things like these should be a good indicator of whether a movie is going to fail. But too often, these telltale signs are ignored. And the saddest part is that these movies are often so hyped up that they actually make a lot of money in the end. Here are 15 movies that were doomed to fail right from the beginning – but no one could see it coming.
15. Pearl Harbor
Pearl Harbor is one the most well-known train wrecks in movie history. But the truth is that it should have never seen the light of day. There are so many complaints people made about this movie, it’s hard to list them all. Everything was attacked viciously by critics and viewers alike, from the CGI to the acting, to the sheer unbearable length of the film (almost 3 hours). But the most poignant criticism came from the veterans that survived Pearl Harbor during World War 2. These were the people who the movie was based on, these people were supposed to feel honored by this homage to their sacrifice. Instead they felt insulted. Why? Because it was such a bad movie that they didn’t even want their names associated with it. Veterans claimed that the movie was too gimmicky, and that it glorified the deaths of their brothers in arms. Also, they pointed out several historical inaccuracies, such as the fact the Japanese Zeros were painted green instead of white.
14. White Chicks
This movie was one of the weirdest things to ever spew forth from the random ideas Hollywood comes up with. It’s hard to imagine, but there must have been a time where producers were so lost for ideas that they actually sat around a table thinking about ideas for movies until one of them said, “What if we have two black guys that pretend to be white chicks?” Instead of shooting this idea down before it had the chance to see the light of day, the producers around him actually encouraged this idea, saying something like,”Yeah! That’s a great idea!” This movie would be funny if it wasn’t such a blatant example of a complete double standard. What do you think would happen if there were two white actors who disguised themselves as black people, complete with blackface and everything? They would be absolutely crucified by the press and condemned by the entire world, and it’s weird the same thing doesn’t happen when the roles are switched…
13. The Love Guru
This was Mike Myers on his last legs. It was clear that this usually hilarious dude had completely run out of ideas when he released The Love Guru. For one, the movie was not funny. I don’t know exactly what happened but Mike Myers’ jokes just didn’t stick the way they usually did, and anyone who watched this movie noticed there were a lot of uncomfortable silences in moments where you knew you were supposed to be laughing, but it just wasn’t funny.
There’s also the obvious race element that makes this another movie that should never have seen the light of day. Pretty much the whole movie is Mike Myers making (bad) jokes about Indian people and their culture. As many critics and regular movie-goers pointed out, it takes a whole lot more than a funny Indian accent and a stupid mustache to make a funny movie. He should have just made another Austin Powers movie instead, he definitely would’ve made a lot more money.
12. The Passion Of The Christ
Huge alarm bells should have been ringing when Mel Gibson announced he was going to make this film. Why? Because the guy is completely off the chain. I don’t think even he would dispute this. He’s been caught in violent rages so many times that by now people have just accepted he’s one of the most “eccentric” people in Hollywood. So why, WHY would you put this man at the helm of a movie like this? To be honest, the movie received mixed reviews, with a lot of people (mostly Christian) loving it. But one thing had to be said about this movie – something was clearly “off.” For one, and this is something the critics all pointed out, the film is incredibly violent. Some of the scenes of Christ getting tortured go way overboard, and seem to drag on for way longer than was necessary. But what else did they expect with a guy like Mel Gibson at the helm of this film?
11. Johnny Mnemonic
Before The Matrix, there was Johnny Mnemonic. This such a huge disappointment because it had the potential to be so amazing… The movie was actually based on a short story written by William Gibson, the legendary science fiction writer. For those who don’t know, William Gibson was the man who imagined the Internet before it even existed. And yes, that is a VR headset in a movie from the 80s in the picture above. It was like this guy could see the future.
William Gibson was also the first one to have coined the term, “The Matrix.” So it’s oddly fitting that Keanu Reeves starred in both Johnny Mnemonic and The Matrix. What did not match, however, was the original short story and the movie itself. The movie really didn’t do the original book justice, and failed to bring to life the rich world that William Gibson had imagined. The worst thing about this is that it really discourages future filmmakers from taking a stab at William Gibson’s stories, which are quite wonderful. Someone should have taken a closer look at this script and seen that it was not fit to see the light of day.
10. A Dog’s Purpose
A Dog’s Purpose was a movie that came out quite recently, in 2017. But it should have never been released. First of all, the premise is boring and has been done before. Who really cares about a dog who can reincarnate? This is just a low balled attempt to appeal to dog lovers everywhere. But the real reason this movie should never have been made is much more sinister.
As you probably heard, this movie was shrouded in controversy after a video surfaced of the filming process. This video showed a dog struggling in the water while the filmmakers watched idly by and did nothing. The dog at one point gets pulled under the water and is obviously in distress. This just goes to show that the message, “No animals were harmed in the making of this film” isn’t always exactly true. This movie never should have been made, because animals simply shouldn’t be subjected to this kind of treatment, just so humans can get a movie that isn’t even entertainment.
9. Zoolander 2
Why, oh why did they make a Zoolander 2? Wait, I know the answer, and it’s painfully obvious… They did it for the money! But in the process of their obvious money-grabbing tactics with this painfully inadequate sequel, they absolutely ruined the reputation of the original Zoolander. This movie just didn’t stack up to the original comedic masterpiece that was Zoolander. The jokes seemed stale and forced, and most of the humor was just recycled references to the old movie. Those jokes were mildly funny, but virtually all of the new elements they tried to add fell flat on their faces. In summary, when Justin Bieber is the funniest actor in your film, you know you have a problem. The filmmakers behind this should have had a little more self-respect before they sent this movie to print. But they did their job in fooling everyone into buying tickets to this piece of garbage, and in that they fulfilled their main objective to make as much money and completely milk a great movie for all it was worth.
8. Starship Troopers
Let’s be clear – I actually liked Starship Troopers. It had a strange kind of charm, and It was full of amazing action. It looked great for a film made in 1997, and was thoroughly entertaining. I liked Starship Troopers, but I could have loved it, if it had been executed a little better. I am a huge fan of the books, and I actually saw the movie before I read the books. A few years after watching the movie, I picked up the book, written by Robert Heinlein, and suddenly realized how short of the mark the movie had fallen. The book described a world that was about ten times more awesome than the movie had depicted. First of all, the Mobile Infantry were supposed to be fighting the arachnids in giant mechanized powersuits, à la Gundam Wing. In fact, Robert Heinlein was probably the first person to imagine power armor. In addition, the political structure of Earth’s society was much more complex in the book, and the director of the movie took a major shortcut by lazily throwing in vague Nazi references. Not only was this an unimaginative move, it was also misinterpreted by the public and the media, who quickly labeled Starship Troopers a Nazi propaganda film.
7. Beauty And The Beast (2017)
This is one of the more recent films on this list, and you may have already read my article on why this movie never should have been made. Summing it all up into one paragraph is a challenge. First of all, there was never any need to remake this film. The original was not only a near-perfect telling of this age-old story, it was also relatively young, having been made in 1991, which really isn’t that long ago. You can understand why other, older Disney movies have been remade, but you’d think they would at least wait 30 years before digging this one up from the grave. In addition, the movie had some seriously questionable and politically incorrect features. These include adding a “token gay man,” which was hyped up as Disney’s first inclusion of an openly gay character, an obvious attempt to market the film which had nothing to do with their willingness to include minorities. Second, the whole story is about a young girl who gets held against her will by a strange man with anger issues in a castle, and she eventually becomes romantically involved with him. Hardly an appropriate story in today’s world.
6. Jack And Jill
This was one of Adam Sandler‘s lowest moments. Even he probably wants to forget Jack And Jill ever happened… But he won’t forget the nice paycheck he got from making it. This is Sandler’s attempt at the quintessential “guy dresses up as a girl” comedy. But unlike classics like Mrs. Doubtfire, this movie offers very little in the way of laughs, unless you’re laughing at it ironically, and in that case the movie is hilariously bad.
It’s widely considered to be one of the worst movies of all time, and is considered to be even worse than the much hated Battlefield Earth. And that’s saying something. But the worst part about this movie is that it actually made a ton of money – close to 150 million dollars on a budget of almost 80 million. As we’ve seen again and again, Adam Sandler has reached the point where he makes a movie that is absolute garbage, and people will still go and see it because of his reputation from previous films. Where is the oversight here? Why isn’t anyone looking over Sandler’s shoulder, and telling him, “Hate to break it to you man, but that’s a terrible idea for a movie.”
5. Teen Wolf Too
Just when you thought Teen Wolf couldn’t get any worse, along came Teen Wolf Too. Unless you’re like watching movies that are “so bad they’re good,” you’ll probably agree with me that this movie should never have been made. Almost everyone agreed with that statement back in 1987 when this movie was released. Pretty much every single film critic in the world gave this movie a negative review. It holds a rating of 7% on Rotten Tomatoes, and it didn’t fare much better on Metacritic, earning an overall rating of 8 out of 100.
So why was this movie even made? The fact that it’s a sequel should be a major hint. Like most of the sequels on this list, the film was made for the sole purpose of cashing in on the popularity of the original. These movie producers know all too well that all they really need to do is put about 50% of the work in when making a sequel, because they know that people will see the movie regardless.
This movie is about a man who lives as the only normal sized person out of his family of “Dwarfs,” or little people. This man is Matthew McConaughey, and that pretty much tells you all you need to know about this movie. Never heard of this movie? That’s because it went straight to DVD. Yep, it’s one of those movies. This is a movie Matthew McConaughey probably wants nothing more than to forget entirely, but we won’t let him because people need to be aware of the past in order to learn from their mistakes. And this was a major mistake. This was supposed to be a feel good movie about dwarfs, but it came across as being totally insensitive. It portrayed dwarfs as something to laugh at, and people did not appreciate this. Some critics even went as far as to call this movie a “hate crime.” It received a rating of 29% on Rotten Tomatoes. Whose bright idea was it to make a rom-com with dwarfs? Did the producers seriously think this would go down well? Clearly, this movie should never have been made.
Teeth is one of those movies you regret watching immediately after finishing it. The amount of nightmares this movie must have given people, I can only imagine. What I’m most concerned about is if this movie actually discouraged people from having sex. It’s the kind of movie that has images that stick in your mind and won’t go away, flashing in your thoughts when you least expect it. For those who don’t know, Teeth is a horror movie about a girl who had a set of razor sharp teeth in her vagina. Whenever she tries to have sex, her vagina ends up biting the male appendages clean off.
While the movie clearly has some shock value, I think they went a little too far with this one. The idea of this movie is so bizarre that it borders on the ridiculous, and as a result it’s hard to take the movie seriously. Still, despite its strange premise, the film actually got very positive reviews. So maybe it’s just me, and the fact that I can’t get those images out of my head, that makes me think this movie should never have been made.
2. Iron Sky
What’s better than a movie about futuristic Nazis? How about futuristic Nazis… from space! If that doesn’t sound too exciting to you, don’t worry, you’re not alone. Iron Sky is considered one of the worst movies ever made. The story is simple: Nazis attack Earth with flying saucers from their top-secret base on the moon. Nothing more, nothing less. It received mostly negative reviews, with critics from Rotten Tomatoes giving it an average score of 36%. The truth is that it was actually a pretty cool idea, but the execution was way off. Someone really should have been there to point out the flaws of the movie. Adjustments could have been made to the script to make this movie more bearable. The finished product failed to really make an impact. It was obviously intended to appeal to cult movie enthusiasts, but it never achieved cult status. And it wasn’t quite bad enough for it to be a “so bad that it’s good” kind of movie. In the end, Iron Sky became stuck in the no-man’s land of mediocrity.
1. A Thousand Words
The movie to top it all off is the film that is universally considered the worst movie ever made, Eddie Murphy‘s A Thousand Words. This movie scored a rating of 0% on Rotten Tomatoes, which is actually kind of impressive. Movies have scored a rating of 0% on the site in the past, but never with such a high profile film. Scores that low are usually reserved for films that were made with extremely low budgets. The whole premise of the movie is that Eddie Murphy can’t talk because of a curse, so for the whole movie he’s trying to communicate without words, as the title of the movie suggests. As many critics pointed out, this has all been done before, and to see this type of humor repeated again leads to a very boring movie.
Movies are always a risk to make, and it’s sometimes it’s not quite clear whether a movie will become a blockbuster or a total bomb. But if the movie got a score of 0% how exactly did they not see this coming? Were people too afraid to tell Eddie Murphy the truth, that this movie was going to be a huge embarrassment? Or was everyone just blissfully ignorant of the monstrosity they created? I guess we’ll never know, because you’d be hard-pressed to get even a single word out of Eddie Murphy about this flop, let alone a thousand.