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The 10 Most Disappointing Movies of Summer 2016

18 August 2016 | Features, Film Lists | by Ryan Anderson

most disappointing movies summer 2016

The summer time has been the home of blockbusters and surprise hits for decades now. We did not have the most classic summer series of blockbusters this year, but we did have a few hits (Finding Dory, Captain America: Civil War), some bombs (Ice Age: Collision Course, The Darkness) and some disappointments (see below).

Here, I have collected some of the biggest disappointments of the summer. The films were chosen by critical, commercial, and viewer success, or lack thereof.

Most of these films had some level of hype to them and were highly anticipated by fans and critics alike. However, they were disappointing in some fashion. I’m not saying these films are bad, but maybe not as good as they could have been.

 

1. The Legend of Tarzan

The Legend of Tarzan

Yes, another film about Tarzan. This one features lots of CGI, a darker tone, and lots of shirtless Alexander Skarsgård. The Legend of Tarzan was Directed by David Yates and written by Adam Cozad and Craig Brewer, the film stars Alexander Skarsgård as the title character, with Samuel L. Jackson, Margot Robbie, Djimon Hounsou, Jim Broadbent, and Christoph Waltz in supporting roles.

A really great cast and a superb director in Yates, who directed the last four Harry Potter films, could not save this film. I don’t know if too many people were surprised that this was not that great, but based on the trailer and who was involved, it at least looked pretty good.

However, The Legend of Tarzan received a rating of 35%, based on 192 reviews, with an average rating of 5.1/10. It was praised by many for having more on its mind and making Tarzan more a of multi-leveled character, but blasted for its generic plot and sluggish pace.

As Peter Travers said, at least it is watchable, in summertime, that can be enough praise for a movie. I don’t know why we needed another Tarzan feature, but we got one, and it was disappointing. The film also failed to recoup its massive budget, so many we won’t get another Tarzan feature for awhile.

 

2. Suicide Squad

suicide-3

This entry really depends on who you ask. Many fans and some critics were completely satisfied with Suicide Squad, which is of course based on characters from DC comics. Many critics however, found the direction and editing choppy, the plot muddled, and the characters thinly-written, though the cast’s’ performances received praise.

I don’t think the film deserves its 27% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes or its score of 40 out of 100 on Metacritic. Those both seem too harsh to me.

Admittingly, I am not the biggest fan of all of the superhero and supervillain movies, but I thought Suicide Squad was pretty good. I would least give the film around 2 ½, 3 stars out of 4. However, due to the film’s hype and never ending publicity for the quality of the final product, I had to place it on this list.

Besides the film overall, some were disappointed in the actual amount of screen time and characterizations of the Joker and Harley Quinn. Screentime more Jared Leto as the Joker and as critic David Fear from Rolling Stone noted they underserved both Harley and the actor playing her, Margot Robbie.

Many did say they thought Leto’s and Robbie’s performances were the standouts from the film and can’t wait to see more from the characters in the future. Overall, the quality of Suicide Squad and if someone found it to be disappointing varies from person to person, but because of the never-ending hype and the less than super amazing end result, Suicide Squad lands here.

 

3. Warcraft

Warcraft

It seems like every time someone tries to adapt a video game franchise in a movie, it fails miserably, at least on the critical end of things. Warcraft is no exception.

Adapted from the Warcraft series of video games, games brimming with success, a huge fan base and tons of lore. Yet, the film was not financially successful enough, thanks to a $160 million budget. It is the highest grossing video game adaptation of all time, grossing $433 million worldwide, and it was still a financial disappointment.

It was a critical disappointment on top of that. Rotten Tomatoes gave the film a rating of 29%, based on 185 reviews, with an average rating of 4/10.

The adaptation itself was itself critiqued for being ridiculous because the original game was not supposed to have a deep narrative. Many saw problems in the lack of character development, overuse of CGI, and sometimes clichéd dialogue.

It was almost too strong of an adaptation, to a point where to the more casual audience member; the story doesn’t make much sense. There is too much lore and core specifics from the game that it alienates casual audience members.

The film was really a waste of director Duncan Jones, who is quite talented when not surrounded by such mess. To top off the disappointment, we are getting a sequel to this movie.

 

4. Independence Day: Resurgence

Independence Day Resurgence

We waited 20 years for this? Independence Day: Resurgence was included on my list of films to look forward to this, as some of the cast of the original was coming back and it could be a humorous yet human enthralling adventure we all wanted. No. It was explosives, some funny bits, and more overblown action sequences.

Roland Emmerich, the director of the first film returns to wreak more havoc on the big screen, and takes whatever emotional and human aspects we saw in the original and tosses them out the window. By the end of the movie, I didn’t care if these people were gonna die, “I say, let ‘em crash”.

There was no emotional connection and the Earth ending consequences didn’t seem too dire to anyone involved in the picture. It should be dumb fun with a bit of sap, but it ends up being dumb.

The main problem I have with the film is it completely sets itself up for a sequel, which has not really even been planned that thoroughly. This Hollywood need to constantly make everything into a franchise is just becoming too much.

Why can’t we let the movie stand by itself and decide later if it needs a sequel? We are probably gonna get it, because Resurgence was financially successful and the ending of the movie is so sequel oriented that it makes no sense without one. What a mess!

 

5. Alice Through the Looking Glass

Alice Through the Looking Glass

A Memorial Day bust, the third in recent memory from Walt Disney Studios, including Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time and Tomorrowland. We didn’t really need the sequel to 2010’s Alice in Wonderland, but it made a billion dollars at the box office so Disney was for sure going to make another one.

This sequel is not helmed by original director Tim Burton, who now serves in the executive producer role, but it is still very Burtonesque. All of the original cast comes back in their roles including Johnny Depp as the Mad Hatter, Helena Bonham Carter as the Red Queen and Mia Wasikowska as Alice.

Much like the original film, what they create is beautiful to look at, but overall mediocre in execution. I, like many, were hoping they would rebound and create something different enough from the original story to be different and better.

The film, unfortunately opened the same week as X-Men: Apocalypse and could not keep up, earning just $27 million dollars in the first weekend, down 70% from the original’s opening weekend.

I would have to agree with critics Matt Zoller Seitz, who called it the most offensive kind of film, “one that spends an enormous amount of money yet seemed to have nothing on its mind but money.”

The characters were not fleshed out well enough and did not really respect the source material, which is what I always wanted out of these films, but Hollywood tried to make them into loud and crazy blockbusters and it worked the first time, but not the second. Disappointing because I thought they could turn the franchise around, but they just drove it into the ground.

 

 

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  • Unkle Dee

    The Neon Demon is not a dissapointment for me. Like most movies by Refn it got mixed reviews. But its ####ng Refn. Its stylish surreal campy horror (with fantastic sountrack) as director intended, and its one of the most interesting movies of summer so far, the most cinematic for sure. For me The Nice Guys was dissapintment. Its art direction is neat, but dialogue and writing overall is a miss. After fantastic Kiss Kiss. And speaking about Tarzan.Yeah, its kind of mediocre, but I wasnt excpecting shit from this kind of cgi hollywood stuff, but really enjoyed it, nice old school adventure, awesome Samuel L. Better than soulless independence and shitty suicide squad

  • Jed Leland

    Give Neon Demon a second viewing.

  • Nick Owens

    See, the thing about lists like this is that it’s completely a matter of opinion, and many people will agree and many people will disagree with the list.
    For example, I thought Suicide Squad was great, I am a comic book fan and I didn’t find the film disappointing at all.

  • Bobby Calloway

    I must be the odd one out. I thought Suicide Squad was garbage but I loved X-Men: Apocalypse. I do admit though that it wasn’t anywhere near as good as Days of Future Past.

  • Juan Miguel Carvajal

    Suicide Squad deserves less than what it got. I feel i lost my money on its ticket. It is so bad i’d rather eath poop than watching it again. Terrible style, terrible joker, and most of the characters are really bad developped. The humour it’s just poor and forcing it to be funny in a lot of parts.

  • Rudi

    The Neon Demon: best movie I’ve ever seen – 10/10
    X-Men: Apocalypse: Best X-Men together with X2 – 9/10
    Suicide Squad: Just simple, effective fun from beginning ’till end – 8/10
    Warcraft: Jones did a great job by making a fan movie that’s even easy to follow by people that don’t know the games – 7/10

    And I’m not one to give high marks usually. So to put it mildly, I don’t agree with this list at all. Although ID2 is a clear 1/10.

  • Joao Ribeiro

    Anyone who includes Neon Demon in such list shouldn’t be allowed to talk about film.

  • Special_One

    How can anyone be disappointed by any of these films? If I were to make a “10 films of 2016 that will definitely suck”-list at the start of the year, I would have included like 7 or 8 of these.

  • Jon Hironimus

    The list is fine, I suppose, but I stopped reading the commentary under each heading due to the apparent lack of proofreading. I re-read the following sentence four times without success in finding its intended meaning:
    ” Screentime more
    Jared Leto as the Joker and as critic David Fear from Rolling Stone
    noted they underserved both Harley and the actor playing her, Margot
    Robbie.”

  • frozengoatsheadupanunsarse

    I’ve only seen X Men: Apocalypse of these, and would agree that it was disappointing. If it had focused properly on Magneto becoming a fully fledged evildoer and the development of Storm, Cyclops, Nightcrawler and Jean/Phoenix, had a more engaging Apocalypse, and less crowd pleasing but empty stuff like the Wolverine cameo, rescue scene and firing of the nukes, it could have been superb. As it was it started strong but ended muddled and not really coming off.

  • hsmsgh

    why is The Neon Demon disappointing? You are being disappointing TOC

  • I would say The Neon Demon is the exact opposite than dissapointing. I love Only God Forgives and Drive, but after hearing that Nicholas Winding Refn was coming out with a new movie after OGF got so much hate, I was expecting the worst, and the movie was fucking amazing!

  • Marc Miralles

    I think that Suicide Squad shouldn’t be in this list actually, as a “disappointing” movie. I’m not saying that the movie is good at all, but just the contrary, I think it’s an awful movie seen from the plot and common sense point of view I guess. But the thing is, I didn’t expect just anything good out of this movie in the first place, so, at least in my case, I don’t think I could speak of a disappointment mainly because I already expected shit from the very first moment 🙂

  • AirieFenix

    I always think about this “most [number] disappointing [things] of [year]” very subjective.

    We can argue about a movie being a good or bad movie in general, but discussing what we expect from them is different from to person. X-Men: Apocalypse isn’t the best X-Men movie, far from it; it’s not even a great action movie. But since I wasn’t expecting a lot, it turned to be a good surprise.

    Suicide Squad was a mess from start of production to release so I literally expected nothing. Warcraft, meh, I was kinda waiting for a big flop.

    Independence Day: Resurgence was kind of a mix if you asked me. Honestly I couldn’t expect a lot from it, it’s a Emerich movie after all but somehow I hoped it turned to be a decent catastrophe movie, maybe because I used to like the first one a lot as a kid. I think a four hours movie (I mean, a two-parts movie) would improve ID:R a lot. Not quite like making it actually GOOD but I do think the script was rushed at the last moment because they realized so many things were happening at the same time.

  • John Le Rouge

    They forgot Star wars the sh** unleashed