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Seven Most Overrated Movies of 2005

May 15, 2006

In the continuing spirit of lists of movies of 2005 (and doing them when the average Joe can respond to them intelligently, not on Dec. 24, when a third of the movies haven’t even come out in most people’s hometowns), here is a list of what I consider the seven most overrated movies of 2005.

  1. Cache: So French, so acclaimed, so bewildering. I’ve never seen people walking out of a theater looking that perplexed. (Except for maybe when I saw Signs. So water kills the aliens, huh? That’s a good one.) Oh, and for all the reviewers who either suggested or stated explicitly that Americans can’t understand this movie because either a) we expect our stories tidy or b) we don’t know about French-Algerian history, fuck off. If I wanted to be condescended to, I would call up my college screenwriting teacher.
  2. Crash: Gimmicky as hell, and as my good friend Brendan Higgins said, “It’s about 10 years too late.” Worst Oscar Best Picture winner since, well, I’m not sure when. Oh and by the way, angry white people calling black bureaucrats “nigger” isn’t a problem in this country; calm white bureaucrats not promoting black people because they can’t picture them in positions of leadership is. Crash runs under the mistaken assumption that the problem of racism in this country is that it’s shouted, not that it’s whispered.
  3. A History of Violence: Good, interesting, entertaining, but it’s not at all the sophisticated exploration of American attitudes toward violence that the critics have made it out to be. I do like Maria Bello in a cheerleader outfit, though.
  4. Brokeback Mountain: Not as good as it is groundbreaking, and it suffers from film-making flaws. But unlike some people, I still think it’s great in some very important ways.
  5. Wedding Crashers: Pretty funny, but continuing proof that the best Hollywood comedies aren’t half as good as an average episode of South Park, The Simpsons or The Office.
  6. Capote: A great movie actually, but I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again–anyone who considers Capote a better movie than Kung Fu Hustle doesn’t like to be entertained.
  7. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory: It wasn’t that acclaimed, but the handful of critics who put this Tim Burton flick on their top-10 lists (according to, thanks Brad) are a handful too many. It’s terribly unfunny, boring, gutless and pointless. How the hell did the surrealist myth-maker who made the first two Batmans, Beetlejuice and especially Edward Scissorhands end up making useless remakes like Planet of the Apes and this? And what audience was he trying to appeal to exactly when he decided to show that Veruca Salt, Mike Teavee and all the other bad kids survived their “just desserts”?
5 Comments leave one →
  1. bro permalink
    May 16, 2006 8:25 pm

    obviously i agree on Crash- let’s make a paul thomas anderson-robert altman movie, only lets hit everybody over the head on race, and make every character a type rather than a real person (and if you disagree with that, i defy you to name one character in that movie).
    A History of Violence-what the hell am I missing? guy was bad, becomes good guy, is drawn back into being bad and eventually kills a mysteriously accented william hurt. i’m pretty sure we’ve seen this story a thousand times before. possibly the least interesting film cronenberg has ever made (although not the worst, that is indisputably the original Crash)
    Wedding Crashers- very funny bits, but needed some serious editing between the time they left the compound and will farrell appears.
    Cache- didn’t see it, but did see haneke’s last film- time of the wolf- which was also well reviewed. I’m all for ambiguity, but a some semblance of a story line or character arc would be nice

  2. Brad Glaser permalink
    May 17, 2006 6:45 am

    I’m gonna dispute your “indisputable” assertion that the original Crash is Cronenberg’s worst. I think it is a quirky masterpiece. It features a vintage Spader performance, some of Holly Hunter’s most affecting work. Far better than eXistenZ and, dare I say it, Scanners.

  3. bro permalink
    May 17, 2006 9:23 pm

    which part of indisputable dont you understand? although i admit i havent seen eXistenz

  4. May 17, 2006 9:54 pm

    I will add my disputation: are you saying that the first Crash is better than Scanners? Are you saying that it’s “far better” than Scanners? I can’t really attest to the quality of Crash–like the book, I only know the first half or so–but Scanners is one of the most disturbing horror movies of all time. I don’t know what the hell it’s really about, but who cares when you have an image as haunting as a scientist’s head exploding in front of a lecture hall.

    In fact, I think the top 10 horror movies ever might be my next post.

  5. Ryan permalink
    May 17, 2006 10:16 pm

    I will have a hard time reading your Top 10 horror movie list and not hear the voice of Jamie Kennedy’s horror movie buff character in Scream.

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