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Thursday, July 21, 2011

Movies That Got Far More Credit Than They Deserved

Movies That Got Far More Credit
Than They Deserved

A Simple Plan (1998)

Based on the high ratings given by both critics and audiences, I expected nothing but a top-notch crime thriller. What I got was a decent, but far from great film, that despite its clever twist and turns didn't shine with originality nor with an impressive execution. I actually couldn't believe that the genius Mr. Raimi really directed this.

Gladiator (2000)

How this one managed to beat "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" at 2001's Oscars is still a mystery to me. Not that it was bad or anything, but I didn't find anything special or thrilling or epic about it. In my book, "Gladiator" remains one of the most overrated movies in cinematic history.

Ghost World (2001)

With a 92% at Rotten Tomatoes and a score of 7.7/10 at IMDb you'd immediately think - Wow, this one has to be great! Unfortunately, it's not. Despite being somewhat refreshing, "Ghost World" is just too moody, unappealing, tedious and often difficult to watch. Is there someone who can explain me its greatness, please?

LinkSession 9 (2001)

I know what you think right now - "You didn't get it, dumbass!" No, I DID, but I just found it to unimaginative, painfully slow, utterly boring and lacking in actual scares and chills. Watchable, but nowhere nearly as great as its worshipers claim it is. Sorry.

Lost in Translation (2003)

...or more like lost in execution. Unlike her uber-talented father, Sofia Coppola proved herself as one of the most boring filmmakers working today. Every single one of her movies is death tedious, incoherent, poorly-paced and downright bizarre, with the unbelievably overrated "Lost in Translation" being the most unpleasant of them all.

Cold Mountin (2003)

Depite its excellent production design and the incredible performances from the entire cast, "Cold Mountain" ended up as a flat, unengaging and painfully uninteresting war drama, that received far too many awards it didn't actually deserve.

Closer (2004)

I know this film has many admirerers, but for me, it just didn't work. At all. The bottom line is this: Great cast - so-so movie. It's as simple as that.

The Polar Express (2004)

What was that hype all about? Can someone please tell me? Not only the animation was incredibly clumsy and unpolished, but the whole feel of the movie was so melancholic and depressing, I couldn't believe it was meant for children. If I had a kid, I'd never take it to see such a grim animated movie like "The Polar Express".

Serenity (2005)

I know that many of you will hate me after I say this, but the ugly truth is, "Serenity" is just average - nothing more nothing less. It was based on a TV series, and unfortunately it felt exactly like a TV production. I reckon most people loved it only because they felt nostalgic about the series. Admit it!

No Country for Old Men (2007)

Aside from Javier Bardem larger-than-life performnce, "No Country for Old Men" is just the typical Coen film - a bit arthouse, a bit overwritten, a bit lazy, and overrated as hell. Maybe I should have included "True Grit" in that list as well... How about that, Coen fans?Link


Budd said...

I thought Lost in Translation was great, it was slow, but I didn't mind. Serenity was exactly what it was supposed to be, an extension/wrap up of the show. It was great in that view. The only other movie on the list that I have seen is ghost world and it wasn't all that.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Cold Mountain and Polar Express, yes. But I do love my Serenity!

Unknown said...

What are you talking about? ;)Most of the films on here are incredible. Some could have been a bit better, sure, but I loved them. Especially Serenity, Gladiator, No Country, Lost In Translation and Ghost World.

I do agree with you on Closer and Polar Express. I did not like either one of these films.

I can't believe that you actually thought CTHD was going to win. This is Hollywood we're talking about. They have their favorites and nothing shakes that.

Lee won Director for Brokeback Mountain. It was clearly a superior picture once again, but it was too controversial to win Best Picture. CTHD was a martial arts film. Those never win even though they do garner acclaim.

The Academy is notorious for awarding ok work because they missed the boat when that person was at their very best.

I feel your confusion and pain because I still can't understand how Kim Basinger won an Oscar for acting. She is so godawful and she's done nothing but B movies ever since.

George Beremov [Nebular] said...

And I thought it was dull. Serenity had that cheap feel about it, like it's been directed by a complete amateur.

For me, Ghost World was all that and more.

George Beremov [Nebular] said...

Alex, I know you love Serenity.. a lot. It was a big let down for me... probably one of the biggest. Sorry.

George Beremov [Nebular] said...


Yeah, right. Incredible my ass.

Serenity was deeply disappointing. Gladiator was even worse. Sorry, I don't like the Coens nor most of their films. They promise a lot, but end up pretty ordinary. Ghost World depressed me. I found it quite ugly.

Of course I believed it's going to win. Ang Lee won for Best Director CTHD as well /did you forget that?/. Also the film won best foreign movie.

Sorry, Mel, but CTHD was much more than just another martial arts movie.

I;m not confused, hon.. I'm just mad at them. Tasteless bastards! LOL. :)

Hey, did you get my e-mail? Just yes or no :)

Unknown said...

No I didn't forget, hon, Lee was only nominated. Steven Soderbergh won that year for Traffic. The guy was nominated twice that year, his other nom came from Erin Brockovich.

CTHD only won 4 Oscars much to my disappointment: Foreign Language, Cinematography, Original Score and Art Direction. We know CTHD is more than a martial arts film, but the Academy voters didn't see it that way, unfortunately. They are tasteless bastards most of the time. :)

You're probably right that Firefly colored my view of Serenity, but I don't care. :) I loved that movie and will argue to the death about its awesomeness. And I did love Gladiator, I was totally captured with the story. Did I think it was better than CTHD, hell no, but there you go. :)

Got your email and I am writing my response after this post, sweetie and you shall have it tomorrow when you wake up or sooner if you stay up late. Hugs!

George Beremov [Nebular] said...

Mel - Well, it seems I'm the one that forgets. LOL. Damn Soderbergh! :)

Deep inside me, I knew it won't going to win, but as we say here in Bulgaria: The hope dies last, if that makes any sense :)

I loved both Erin Brokovich and Traffic better than the "meh" Gladiator.

Thank God you did. I thought it got lost somewhere over the network :) Looking forward to it then! :) Hugs!

Mel Chesley said...

Wow, out of that whole list I have only seen two. Gladiator and Polar Express.
If someone says something is "Excellent! A must see!" and I see the previews, I usually end up ignoring it and passing it by. :D
Have I mentioned I love your posts?

Michele (TheGirlWhoLovesHorror) said...

I remember really liking the book A Simple Plan but can't remember the movie that much... I think it was okay, but not stellar.

And yes, I'm a big fangirl for Firefly so I love Serenity for that. But I showed it to a friend who never watched Firefly and he thought the movie was cool.

Gladiator has lost its shine for me. And Cold Mountain.. bleh! I took a class in college called Film and Literature so we had to read and analyze that book and movie. Definitely would not have been my choice!

filmrruss said...

Loved Gladiator, especially when I first saw it at the cinema and I was right at the front. Woah! I felt like I was in the battles!

Serenity I also love, but admit it is probably seen through Firefly-tinted glasses. I think the one-shot steady cam through Serenity at the beginning is brilliant; far better than anything they did on TV.

I totally agree with you about Cold Mountain though. That Sucked! It was basically Renee Zellweger being irritating for a couple of hours! The highlight was Brendan Gleeson, as he usually is.

The only other film on your list that I've seen is NCFOM, which I though was beautifully shot, but only alright otherwise. But I know that you don't like the Coens.

George Beremov [Nebular] said...

Caledonia, thank you so much. I'm so happy when someone tells me he/she likes my posts. It makes my day :)

You've seen only two? You're a lucky girl then! :) Avoid the other 8 at all costs. Not that they are terrible, but not worth the time.

George Beremov [Nebular] said...

TheGirlWhoLovesHorror, the movie wasn't bad at all, but it doesn't that great either.

I was shocked by how average Serenity actually was. I've never seen a single episode of Firefly, and if it's like Serenity, I'm glad I haven't.

IMO, Gladiator has never had a shine. Maybe a small one :)

George Beremov [Nebular] said...

Russ, I thought Gladiator was just okay. Same thing About Serenity and the rest of the others.

I don't expect anyone to agree with me - it's a personal opinion. :)

Yep, I don't like the Coens. I don't hate them either. I just think they receive much more credit than they deserve.

Maynard Morrissey said...

It's ages ago since I last seen 'Simple Plan' but I remember that I enjoyed it quite well.

Gladiator - ok but nothing special.

Session 9 - interesting but definitely too slow.

Lost In Translation / No Country... - I love them both!

George Beremov [Nebular] said...

Maynard, I didn't say that any of these films was horrible or bad, I just thought that they were overpraised.
Lost In Translation / No Country both had this melancholic moody feel about them, which I hate a lot.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Melissa said it best - those of us who were big fans of Firefly simply ate up Serenity, as it gave our favorite show the big-screen treatment it deserved and wrapped up a series cancelled way too soon. (Although my wife had never seen the show and she dug the movie.) Just something about the science fiction - adventure - western mix, with a good dose of humor, that does it for me.
Oh, and I'll announced my next blogfest in August - think you will really dig it!

George Beremov [Nebular] said...

Alex, I'm not taking the series into account and I'm judging the movie for what it was.
I hated the execution of it - it really let me down.

Another super-cool blogfest? Bring it on! Can't wait! :)

Maurice Mitchell said...

You're right. "Crouching Tiger" stands as one of my favorite movies EVER. "Gladiator" is OK, but not really re-watchable. "Serenity" was great if you're a fan because so much changed. Beloved characters died and secrets were revealed. I guess if you didn't watch the show it would feel kind of pointless.

George Beremov [Nebular] said...

Maurice, "Crouching Tiger" is timeless and my second favorite movie ever, right after "Hero".

OK is the the word that perfectly describes "Gladiator". I haven't seen the series and probably that's why I found "Serenity" to be rather unimpressive.