Best Capitalizing on Someone Else's Trend 2005
The smarter Hollywood producer will not risk his wealth attempting to create new trends. The better thing to do is to keep a close eye on the trailblazing fools around you, and scoop the gravy from someone else's unrecognized genius. This is nothing new. Microsoft, Cialis, Pepsi Cola and countless others made billions by snatching others' innovations, as will every major pharmaceutical company in the world once the federal governments finally develops a cure for AIDS.
So, it was no surprise to us when we saw announcements for the kiddie-Christina flick The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe. Does anyone actually remember anything about this book other than similar animal/human hybrid freaks as The Lord of the Rings? We didn't think so. Possibly after watching the film, you'll recall a quiet time in the 6th grade when you perused through one or two of Lewis' tales, but now that the film's out, it "magical" again.
Worst Television Remake
It would seem that for the past 5 or so years, Hollywood's mandate has been to suck its own wee-wee by remaking once-successful television shows or movies. This year, undoubtedly the worst effort was The Dukes of Hazzard. We think that the film's producers wanted to make a mild tongue in cheek film, taking into account the camp-factor of the original series, but failed miserably when they also time tried to sell the film to a generation who had never watched the original. The result was a stink that inadvertently transcended cultures. In Russia, the translated title was "Idiots from Hazzard." In this case, nothing was Lost In Translation, to borrow from Sophia's movie, "Idiots from Tokyo"...
Worst Commentary About International Terrorism
This is the year that the average American became cynical about The War On Terrorism. Freshman year was over, and the US is now a seasoned sophomore, ready to experiment with bisexuality and cocaine. People no longer so much "fear" terrorism as they simply "don't agree" with it. This message has transcended simple 90 minute scripts talking about the issue. Small statements about terrorism have now become part of the four major food groups of any recent script. The lowpoint in 2005 was the stapled-on subtext in Flightplan when Foster accused the lone Arab dude on the airplane of kidnapping her daughter. It made us do that eye blinking, head shaking, "what the fuck?" thing when we saw it. We can only guess that whoever was responsible for that bit of stupidity wanted to repeal the rapidly building international stereotype about Arabs, but did it in such a way so as to make the whole thing worse. Really, we would much rather have seen the director stop the film, walk out onto the screen to tell us that "Arabs are good," and return us to the balance of the movie. Meanwhile, incidents of ponytailed German terrorists blowing up American skyscrapers continues to spin out of control...right.
Worst of the "Way Too Late" Attempts
Thankfully, most males stopped wearing ponytails and doing that one handed clapping dance thing sometime in the 1990's. Ricky Martin, Latino dance clubs and post 80's Miami scummy-ness were laid to rest sometime just before 9/11. Having said this, we're very confused as to why, or even how, The Legend of Zorro made its way onto the big screen. Why not do something glorifying the rise of the Internet? How about an entire film about American men with an affinity for goatees? We hear that the kids really like wearing baggy pants...maybe that'll be a good vehicle for an upcoming flick.
Most Incredibly Over Exposed Actor 2005
Last year, Colin Farrell was everybody's squinty-boy. He was the sushi-on-a-Moscow-menu of Hollywood. This year, the ubiquity crown goes to Elijah Wood, who simply can't stop appearing absolutely everywhere, all the time. If you look it up, there are not that many films to his credit in 2005. However, switch on any channel, and you'll see Lord of the Rings marathons, Elijah sightings, photos, articles, his image miraculously appearing in the side of a mountain -- it's become silly. Elijah, here's too you and see you soon. Real soon. Too soon.