1- Final Destination 5: Director, Steven Quale (review)
Sadly, and against many other reviewers opinions on this here website, Final Destination 5 was my biggest let down of 2011. Why? Because I was SO damned excited to see it, I was literally bursting with excitement! All this talk of it being the best one yet, the 3D being fantastic, clips, trailers and even a short video showing audience reaction while watching some of it at a special advanced teaser screening. I couldn’t have been more excited, and couldn’t have felt more let down after leaving the cinema. In fact, I very nearly walked out of this one. A real shame because it had so much potential, and in all fairness, the opening scene was superb. It all went badly downhill after that!
2- Vanishing on 7th Street: Director, Brad Anderson (review)
After directing one of my favourite horrors of the Noughties, Session 9, and following that with the equally brilliant The Machinist and Transsiberian, the prospect of a new Brad Anderson film had my horror juices flowing. The fact it was going to be a sort of apocalyptic horror about a small group of survivors who had to stay in the light as dark, horrible things were lurking in the shadows had a great premise. The gorgeous Thandie Newton and the always brilliant John Leguizamo were starring, so what could go wrong? Well, everything went wrong, and I mean everything. A terrible film that lacked any depth, or even any tension. A very poor horror which felt, for the first time ever, that Anderson was out of his depth. Roll on his next film, All Lost Souls, which will hopefully put the director back on top.
3- Hatchet 2: Director, Adam Green (review)
What the Hell happened here? How could the memory of such a classic first film be so badly damaged by this dreadful, mess of a film. It was as if the entire cast forgot how to act, poor attempts at comedy rarely worked, and sadly our new heroic villain in horror, Victor Crowley, became almost laughable. Granted Green still delivered on the inventive kills which were part of the first films charm, but the rest of the film was lacking in every department. The original is now legendary, a cult classic that every horror fan should have seen, the sequel deserves to go in the bin, and stay there. With any luck, Hatchet 3 will bury part 2’s painful memory.
4- The Green Lantern: Director, Martin Campbell (review)
Another film which I sadly got over excited about, even with people telling me this was going to end up rubbish, I stuck by it. I pushed and pushed this film here at HCF with numerous clips, trailers and images. I campaigned that the film would be awesome, and each and every clip and trailer just got better and better. What the Hell happened? I went to the cinema all excited, like a kid at Christmas, and came away feeling flat as a bloody pancake! A miserable, silly and painfully confusing film which got carried away and lost in its own Universe and didn’t seem to want to let anyone else join in the fun. Blake Lively was nice to look at though!
5- Battle L.A: Director, Jonathan Liebesman (review)
The trailer promised big budget special effects and action a-plenty, and yes that is what we got, in fact that is all that we got! One big, long action scene that lost all impact half way through and became a sluggish, painful gung-ho disaster of big speeches and big effects that became increasingly irritating. I like a good action set piece as much as the next person, but when that action scene drags on for nearly two hours, it tries my patience!
6- Conan the Barbarian: Director, Marcus Nispell (review)
What happened to the promised 18 certificate with all the glorious violence we were expecting, what happened to the pace and interesting story, what happened to Rose McGowan’s eye brows, and Steven Lang’s credibility, and just what the Hell happened to Jason Momoa? I was SO looking forward to this, and after seeing the clip of Conan as a boy murdering those attackers in the woods, it begged the question “what could possibly go wrong” The finished God damned film, thats what went bloody wrong. Seriously, cheesy doesn’t even come close, the film was often wet, pathetic and attempted comedy that was so bad it hurt. And who the Hell wrote the script, it was dire, and why on Earth did each big moment need to be emphasised as if we the viewer had missed it?
7- The Ward: Director, John Carpenter (review)
Oh dear, John Carpenter what happened to your big return to horror? Hopefully this is not a sign of the times because we have a new films due next year from some legendary directors, but with Carpenter and Wes Craven showing they have lost their edge, this is not a good sign for our fallen idols. The sad, and most annoying thing about The Ward was not the fact the film was so bad, but the fact it actually started to get good in the final five minutes, and then it finished. We had to endure nearly 90 minutes of this tosh before any sort of classic Carpenter moment came, too little too late and a real shame.
8- Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark: Director, Troy Nixey (review)
Nothing with Guillermo del Toro’s name attached should ever be of low quality, and in all honesty, Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark had quality all over its production values, its setting and its cast, it just wasn’t scary, in the slightest. The idea of a good old fashioned horror yarn, set in a creepy old house in the country and with not an ounce of torture porn in sight was too good not to miss. The fact Del Toro had stated the made for TV movie had been the only thing to ever truly scare him meant that this film should have delivered on its promise. The sorry fact is that today’s horror fan has moved on, and tiny little creatures like what appeared in this, were just not scary. The cast all did their best, but the film felt like it was missing something, tension, scares, creepiness, Hell, for a horror it was missing almost everything that makes our wonderful genre so great.
9- Transformers: Dark of the Moon: Director, Michael Bay (review)
Supposedly the darker, more brilliant response to the very poor Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, part 3 was a long, long, long film that seemed to take a lifetime to actually get anywhere. The final forty minutes were breathtaking in the cinema in 3D, but weigh that up against the first two hours of twoddle it hardly seems worth the pain. Michael Bay basically got a great big head, thought his film was great while the majority of movie fans hated it. It wasn’t great, it was boring, and was in no way dark. No doubt every movie fan on the planet will instantly forget how bad this was and encourage a fifth film by going to see part four, but will they be so forgiving if Bay screws it up AGAIN!
10- Shark Night 3D: Director, David R. Ellis (review)
Oh dear oh dear. For a film that promised all these Sharks, it didn’t deliver at all. Thankfully the film did deliver on its promise of hot chicks in bikini’s, and Sara Paxton looked ultra sexy in 3D, but almost every Shark was hidden by bubbles from the sea, and rarely did we ever get to see any of those much needed money shots. The film was enjoyable, the cast (most of them) were likable, but it was just the lack of actually seeing Shark attacks which went some way to ruin my enjoyment. There was one scene in this which made me think “wow”, but the rest was just the usual nonsense and a ridiculous, lazy plot only helped ruin what could have been a really great film.
Coming next, My Top 15 Worst Film of 2011