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13 Worst Movies of 2016

These are the thirteen worst movies of 2016. Your results may vary.

 

1. Pandemic

A virus causes zombie-like behavior around the world resulting in the collapse of civilization in this cliched POV video game-like horror film.

Impressive set dressing, such as the eerie shots of an abandoned LA, is combined with unconvincing CGI of downtown skyscrapers on fire. Multiple zombie heads getting completely smashed in and a Level 5 zombie chattering menacingly in a warehouse are some of the special effect highlights, but the rescue team’s bus has indiscriminately filthy windows and continuity-defying grating, and the boom and camera are often seen in reflective surfaces.

Pandemic has a few interesting twists and a female-centric plot, but it doesn’t shed much light on the zombie genre overall, and homages to Shaun Of The Dead and Night Of The Living Dead results in a been-there-done-that vibe.

 

2. JeruZalem

A young woman wearing irritating POV computer glasses travels to Israel and encounters a zombie-like paranormal threat in this confusing horror travelogue.

The scenes as the woman explores Jerusalem down narrow alleys, cobblestone streets, the Church of the Resurrection, King Solomon’s Quarries, and filthy club bathrooms, give an interesting view of the city outside the sort of travelogues which appear on the Travel Channel.

Unfortunately, at 50 minutes, the running begins. At one hour, enormous CGI Nephilim appear, towering over the city. Since they’re pretty cool, they’re only seen briefly and from a distance. Shaky cam, pixelization, and lines of dialogue consisting of ‘C’mon, c’mon, go, go, go’, follow. JeruZalem is an out of focus, confusing horror film about a contagious zombie-like demon disease. No, I’m not sure what that means exactly, either.

 

3. They’re Watching

A home improvement reality show sends a crafter and her boyfriend soccer player to film them as they buy a secluded, ruined shell of a house, where a crucial-to-the-plot-but-barely-mentioned witch was burned at the stake. Six months later, the film crew returns to see how the renovations have turned out for about 80 slow-moving, stagey, and remarkably witch-free minutes.

You can read my review of the film here.

 

4. The Curse Of Sleeping Beauty

An artist has a recurring dream about a woman sleeping in a bed in the middle of the desert. He inherits a creepy mansion that is inexplicably lacking in lamps, resulting in the interiors being perpetually dark. After he’s attacked by a succubus, the artist then asks the realtor if the house is haunted, which seems sensible, I guess.

Then he encounters threatening mannequins in the basement, and someone says the word ‘phenomenons’. An irritating IT guy shows up, then there’s a sped-up computing montage. The house becomes increasingly cluttered by mannequins, and a gooey veiled demon spins wires on a spinning wheel.

The film just ends, and I would have wondered if The Curse Of Sleeping Beauty was part of a franchise if I cared that much to investigate further.

 

5. Bleed

Two bougies and two bohos investigate a haunted prison in this confusing horror film.

Beginning as a well-shot, slowly-paced drama where the characters examine their relationships over glasses of wine, Bleed resembles a ghostly, paranormal Big Chill. Suddenly, a woman in burlap stands in a field holding a lantern, screaming. Then the crew heads out to the burned down prison in the woods that doesn’t seem particularly fire damaged.

Amidst the graffitied ruins of the prison, the somewhat psychic, pregnant, schizophrenic crew encounters animal bones, conveniently placed candles, and meat. Ghosts, demons, cannibals, and Appalachian stereotypes. A birth using hedge clippers to sever the umbilical cord from a jellied infant occurs.

Bleed has some intriguing ideas, but too many of them, and it’s often unintentionally hilarious.

 

6. Most Likely To Die

Imagine you’ve been invited to a high school reunion at a missing hockey player’s questionably isolated California mansion where a masked killer is on the loose, and Perez Hilton and Jake Busey are on the guest list. I know, right? Who would attend that? Although that plot set-up is horrifying on paper, Most Likely To Die is a nonsensical horror/thriller lacking horror and thrills. Be unavailable that weekend.

You can read my review of this film here.

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