The 10 Worst Movies of 2021
By Abb Jones
COVID wasn’t the only pandemic we continued to endure in 2021. The year also witnessed a plague of truly awful movies – not surprisingly, half of our 10 worst are horror, with comedies, sci-fi/fantasy and even a musical making this year’s list. Here they are, in ascending order from #10 to THE absolute worst movie of 2021. (Click on the movie titles for the complete review.)
#10: Cinderella (Grade: D+)
Amazon’s bizarre, semi-modern take on the classic fairy tale stars a listless Camila Cabello as a fashion designer with modern day conveniences in an ancient land. An all-star lineup and a period mashup story ripped straight from Netflix’s way more charming Bridgerton couldn’t save this craptastic mess with its clunky dialogue, sluggish pacing and forgettable, poorly lip synched 1980s pop tunes. If you truly need a fairy tale fix, do yourself a favor and instead watch 2015’s vastly superior Cinderella starring Lily James and Cate Blanchett.
#9: Malignant (Grade: D+)
Even for giallo horror, the wacky Italian brand of horror, which embraces outlandish, almost comical scenarios, this film from The Conjuring‘s James Wan is an epic disaster. Annabelle Wallis stars as a Seattle woman who can visualize a killer’s brutal slayings as they happen. Girl, just take a xanax and go back to bed – there is nothing to see here.
#8: Paranormal Activity: Next of Kin (Grade: D+)
An interesting premise yet again fails to deliver in this latest entry in the played out, Paranormal Activity horror franchise. A young woman returning to an Amish community to learn about the birth mother she never knew soon regrets that decision in this scare-free film. A laughable, but mildly entertaining first shooter video game-type finale helps salvage this hot mess from total failure, but only barely.
#7: The Devil Below (Grade: D)
Will Patton stars in this abysmal horror film about a group of amateur spelunkers who stumble upon a bunch of subterranean creatures when they explore an abandoned coal mine in the Appalachian Mountains of Kentucky. The only good thing about this amateurish film with its ridiculously fake monsters in rubber suits and a total garbage story is a decent score and a cool setting.
#6: Chaos Walking (Grade: D)
Tom Holland stars in this bizarre, shockingly bad sci-fi/fantasy as a young man who defies his men-only tribe when he tries to help female visitor Daisy Ridley return to her home world. Men’s thoughts, called Noise, hover like sounds and smoky, colored images above their heads, and apparently they don’t like the gals to see. Intended as a symbolic story about sexism and toxic masculinity, a hokey, low budget setting and a feeble script can’t save this chaotic, moronic story from itself.
#5: Coming 2 America (Grade: D)
Some movies should never have sequels – 1988’s charming Coming to America being one of them. The only thing cute about this tired retread of the cute Eddie Murphy/Arsenio Hall fish out of water comedy is the title. This comedy is the equivalent of watching a couple of old guys tell really unfunny, offensive jokes that only they are laughing at.
#4: The Banishing (Grade: D-)
Every so often a movie comes along that is so dreary and dull that you wonder who on Earth thought making this would be a good idea? We give you The Banishing, a WWII-era horror starring Jessica Brown Findlay as a sexually frustrated wife who joins her husband and daughter at a haunted house in southeast England with a horrifying secret. The secret for us viewers is that it isn’t even remotely scary… or even interesting. Despite some solid production, this pointless snoozefest is as dull as day old dishwater.
#3: Old (Grade: D-)
This may just be M. Night Shymalan’s worst movie ever – and that’s really saying something. For a director who has failed to have a hit since his 1999 debut The Sixth Sense, this tedious body horror/thriller, about tourists stranded on an isolated beach where they age a lifetime within hours, is so shockingly stupid that you might think it is a parody of horror – only it’s not. Shymalan takes his Hitchcockian signature of inserting cameos of himself in the film one step further, giving himself an actual role in the film. Old also features another of his now infamous, silly “twist” endings, that serves only to piss off viewers who wasted a couple of hours on this dreck.
#2: Tom and Jerry: The Movie (Grade: F)
Who knew that HBO Max had such power to ruin such a wonderful childhood memory, the Tom and Jerry cartoons? Chloe Grace Moretz is the human star of this painfully humorless live animation/comedy about a down on her luck millennial who lands a job at a fancy New York hotel just days before a big, high profile wedding. The catch? She needs to rid the hotel of its unwanted animated cat and mouse, which oddly enough, have precious little screen time in the first place.
#1: Reminiscence (Grade: F)
When a mysterious woman goes missing, a memory detective in a dystopian, futuristic Miami uses a hologram machine called reminiscence to return to past memories to find her, in this nonsensical, totally confusing and pretentious thriller. If there is an actual plot here, director Lisa Joy (Westworld) and husband Jonathan Nolan (brother of Inception‘s Christopher Nolan) have hidden it well. Even reuniting The Greatest Showman‘s Hugh Jackman and Rebecca Ferguson can’t salvage this repellant film.
There you have it, The Reelness 10 Worst Movies of 2021. What was your worst film of the year?
Check out our list of The 10 Best Movies of 2021.
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