Category: Articles

Favorite Films of 2023


This is a really hard year to make this list. Like, I think this is my most ever 4 out of 4s in a long, long time. I was also delayed because one movie I knew I would love, I couldn’t watch until very early March, and I was willing to wait for it. But regardless, a lot did not make the list, let’s highlight them now!

This list includes:

Sisu, Next Sohee, Guy Ritchie’s The Covenant, Superposition, My Animal, One Day All This Will Be Yours, Pianoforte, Asteroid City, Corner Office, The Wonderful World of Henry Sugar, Peter and the Wolf, Io Capitano, To Kill A Tiger, All of Us Strangers, Subtraction, Tetris, Society of the Snow, Concrete Utopia, Upon Entry, The Holdovers, Stamped from the Beginning, Black Ice, Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret, and Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One.


15) And the King Said, What a Fantastic Machine

Why is it on the list? I love giving shoutouts to lesser known movies that just are amazing and for whatever reason, don’t get noticed, or take forever to get released. Is this movie out yet? I don’t know! But I saw it at SIFF, and it was such a creative and fun documentary about the camera, its impact on the world, and its use for destruction. The trailer itself is such a great trailer, and I hope more people get to see it in the future.

Best moment? Hearing the story for why this movie is titled as it is!

Any Best Awards? Best Documentary of 2023!

14) Anatomy of a Fall

Why is it on the list? Apparently this film wasn’t picked for France’s Best International Film choice, due to some politics and they went The Taste of Things instead. But it was such a wild decision, because it is clear to everyone that Anatomy of a Fall was amazing. It won several Foreign Film awards, above The Zone of Interest, because of its compelling characters and story, but at the Oscars it didn’t have the chance, and was still nominated for Best Picture. Anyways, Sandra Hüller, was in both of those movies anyways, and her character here was just a mysterious force. Did she killer her husband? I don’t know! Maybe!

Best moment? The recordings!

Any Best Awards? Best French film of 2023!

13) I Like Movies

Why is it on the list? Well, I like movies, so it just makes sense. The lead, Isaiah Lehtinen, was captivating as just a not great person, having meltdowns, and yet, having dreams. As someone who has been around movies for so long, I have met people like his character before. I have been his character before. It was entirely relatable, and fit a very specific niche that it was nice to rediscover. And also its called damn I Like Movies, what is not to love??

Best moment? I laughed really hard when the movie Happiness was brought up.

Any Best Awards? Best Canadian Dream film of 2023!

12) Godzilla Minus One

Why is it on the list? I am not a Godzilla fan of any strong regard. I have seen I think, four or five Godzilla movies at this point. I really enjoyed the one with Bryan Cranston, but I have never had a desire to go back and watch the old ones. I don’t think I’d appreciate them. Like most people, I didn’t know that this movie was coming out when it did, but the positive word of mouth blew me away and I went hard to find a theater to see it. It blew me away! To take such a personal story, of survivor’s guilt, post World War II, veterans who wanted to still prove themselves as not failures, and attach it to a Godzilla film? Amazing. And Godzilla was downright terrifying when he came after those boats and planes early on. I love how personal the whole thing felt.

Best moment? Appreciating another countries patriotism.

Any Best Awards? Best Kaiju of 2023.

11) The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial

Why is it on the list? William Friedkin is an amazing director, bringing us hits like The French Connection and The Exorcist. And he died last year. A shame! But it happens. And his last directed movie was The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial, which was mostly ignored overall and went straight to streaming, so damn it, I am not ignoring it myself. I haven’t seen anything about The Caine Mutiny series of films ever in the past. This is my first, I don’t know if its the same story over and over again. But this one is a very strong court room film, over a Navy incident, with one epilogue scene outside of the court room. And everyone involved just brings it so hard on their acting! Not to mention Lance Reddick, in one of his final roles as well. This is a court room film I can watch again and again, just because of the acting talent at hand.

Best moment? The Epilogue really puts a lot of people, and me, the viewer, in our places.

Any Best Awards? Best courtroom drama of 2023 (sorry Anatomy).

10) Biosphere

Why is it on the list? No, not a sequel to Biodome (if so it would likely be number 1). This film only stars two people: Sterling K. Brown and Mark Duplass. And they are in a sphere to live, eat, and live, alone. Something shitty happened in the world, and life as we know it is gone. But they are both survivors. One, a scientist, one, the president, and childhood best friends. And this is them trying to live, cope, and survive further, knowing that the human race is mostly done for. And hell, it is even their fault. At the same time other things happen that I will not get to.

Best moment? When things advance for all of humanity, I will say.

Any Best Awards? Best small cast of 2023.

9) River

Why is it on the list? This is the second film by this group of people. The last one was Beyond the Infinite Two Minutes, and it made my top five film of that year. This film, explores a similar concept. Where every 2~ minutes, they find themselves back where they were two minutes ago. They remember what they did. Their conversations. But they are looped back to the start. And in this hotel of guests and workers, trying to figure out just how to STOP this time loop, of such a short amount of time, is extremely frustrating to figure out. But at the same time, sometimes you have to stop and smell the roses.

Best moment? Wondering just how they could create a film with similar themes as their last one, but in an exciting and new way.

Any Best Awards? Best time loops of 2023.

8) American Fiction

Why is it on the list? The first 90 seconds of American Fiction should have you hooked. A film where the protagonist has to complain about a world accepting only certain black stories, while giving us a story focused on a family in a world losing their mind it seems. Jeffrey Wright gives such a commanding performance and I love seeing him in more leading roles. I also loved Sterling K. Brown‘s story here, and wanted more out of him (hey he is in this top 15 twice!). This is a film, a satire, and its funny as heck. The arc of the characters, dealing with grief, and just moving on in general, just…ahhh. Fiction is weird like that.

Best moment? The various debates between authors, and the finalist, for the Book Award.

Any Best Awards? Best fictional authors of 2023!

7) Blackberry

Why is it on the list? The realistic camera office environment choices, like it was filming The Office without people staring at the camera, started this movie off on a hectic number, and in many ways, the hectic feels never really ended. It wasn’t as hectic as an Uncut Gems, but it did start us off with nerds with a great idea who couldn’t get finances, and very clearly a crook who had a do whatever it takes attitude. The perfect pairing. Glenn Howerton is of course the stand out of this film, getting to play Jim Balsillie, a famous asshole, and he plays it hard. I am stoked to see finally a movie tackle the weird Balsillie trying to buy an NHL franchise movement of the 2000s. Because this is what I think is the true story now, and no one can take it away from me.

Best moment? “I’m from Waterloo where the Vampires hangout!” will live rent free in my head for years. Also just in general, getting to see that NHL drama in film.

Any Best Awards? Best product placement film of 2023 that didn’t get nominated at the Oscars!

6) Barbie

Why is it on the list? Look, Barbie’s success as a great film was NEVER a surprise. It had Greta fucking Gerwig behind the director’s chair, and after Lady Bird and Little Women, with her own wonderful acting career, we know she is just spitting fire. So yes, I was there weekend one for Barbie’s release, I was with the trailers. And everything is just tip top perfect from this film. The casting, the practical sets, the nice meta storyline, and the wonderful ending.

Best moment? No it’s not the Ken moment I swear. It is the constant references to history, other films, and existential dread.

Any Best Awards? Best satire, best product placement film of 2023 that DID get nominated at the Oscars! And best male power anthem in a film about women power of 2023.

5) Theater Camp

Why is it on the list? Honestly, trying to figure out my top five was hard. At some point in the year, Theater Camp was number 1. And then it wasn’t. And then it was. Same can be said about most of these films! Theater Camp is great because first of all, we don’t get nearly enough Mockumentaries as a genre, and sometimes when we get them, they also can be shit! It is like Christopher Guest is trying to hold up the entirety of the genre on his back, and we need more people to get in line. Thankfully, Theater Camp does just that. A big cast of characters that are fun, a lot of quips, and a zany touching emotional ending that in no way should have worked, but then it does.

Best moment? Joan the Musical finale. I cried.

Any Best Awards? Best fake musical and best mockumentary of 2023!

4) Poor Things

Why is it on the list? Look, the reason this list took forever to make is because I KNEW, I would love Poor Things. Everything screamed this is a movie I would totally want to hang out with and watch many times to really get its weirdness. And there is many a weirdness! The colors, the sets, the costumes, the camera angels. My man, Yorgos, just is a director of pure cinema. He has visions, and he knows how to work. Despite wanting so much for Lily Gladstone to win for Best Actress, I knew Emma Stone absolutely crushed it and deserved this second win. Hell, it should be her third win, but she didn’t win Best Supporting Actress for Birdman, despite my hopes.

Best moment? The progression of abuse stories that Willem Dafoe suffered from his scientist dad.

Any Best Awards? Best absurd film of 2023!

3) The Teacher’s Lounge

Why is it on the list? Movies that make me uncomfortable mean they are doing what they set out to do. Movies that can make me uncomfortable without the use of graphic violence and horror? That is something special. Something to give you that extreme angst and sadness, just from standard, regular events. Or things just spiraling out of control. The Teacher’s Lounge does that, in Germany, with a teacher who is going by the BOOK in terms of empathy, giving students second chances, and just doing everything right, but nothing working as it should. Her colleagues, her principal, her parents, and students, all turning on her. But at the same time, because it isn’t set in America, we know it isn’t going to end with a school shooting, which is also very nice.

Best moment? The on the record newspaper conversation dupe.

Any Best Awards? Best Teacher PTSD, Best Realistic depiction of Teachers, and Best International Film of 2023!

2) Flora and Son

Why is it on the list? NEW JOHN CARNEY ALERT. NEW JOHN CARNEY ALERT. Finally. His fourth movie, an Irish film again, and highlighting new actors I did not know of before. And yes, its another story about regular people discovering music and making a band, shush. When it works, it works. This time we get to see it with a mother son relationship, dealing with divorce, new loves, and going against the legal system that isn’t a fan of repeat offenders. Eve Hewson at the lead is wonderful, and I hope to see this be a breakout moment for her.

Best moment? The together dates through the screen.

Any Best Awards? Best “family” film and musical film of 2023!

1) Oppenheimer

Why is it on the list? Is this a surprise? It is a surprise to me. Now, notably, I did make this list before the Oscars happened. It just took me forever to write. Since the list already is out WAY later than normal anyways, it felt really hard to get pen to the paper, so to speak. But I digress.

I knew Oppenheimer was in my top five. I had it shifting around, but when I sat and stared at my top fifteen for just so long, I knew Oppenheimer just had to be the top. I didn’t think Flora and Son had enough to just really earn it. But Oppenheimer has literally everything in it. Multiple storylines, a shit ton of actors giving great performances. It is a biopic, it tells a compelling story with complex characters. It sounds good, it flies by timewise (in my opinion), it is amazing on the big screen, and still great on the small screen. Cillian Murphy, I am just so proud of him, this thing was a long ways coming for his career, and he finally had such an intense and subtle role at the same time to display his craft. Oppenheimer is a top tier cinema.

Best moment? The boom.

Any Best Awards? Best Biopic, Best Drama, Best Non-Linear Story, and Best Film of 2023!


Thanks for reading! If you disagree with part of this list, let me know. If there is something I missed, let me know.

And as always, I accept hate mail via the post office, email, or tweets.

Least Favorite Films of 2023


A lot of these had the potential to go the shitty distance, but they weren’t picked overall. This list includes: Skinamarink, Renfield, Vacation Friends 2, About My Father. It also definitely includes the Disney short, Once Upon This Studio.

And in terms of random documentaries, I could have included: Cocaine Bear: The True Story, Rob Schneider: Woke Up In America, and Take A Chance. Yes, I put a stand up special in there. Rob Schneider has passed the deep end.

15) Good Burger 2
Why is it on the list? Good Burger 2 is another sequel, decades after the original, that only tries to re-use the same jokes from the original and fail to live up to anything like its predecessor. Besides the recycled material, and worst plot, Kel Mitchell has to show he does NOT have it like he used to. He has not been acting, he has been out of the game, and it is painful when the Ed character is on the screen. As one of the main two characters, he is on the screen a lot.

Worst moment? The Ed Robot ending.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Attempt At Nostalgia Cash-Grab of 2023!

14) Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken
Why is it on the list? It is wild how one animation studio can be consistently so inconsistent. Dreamworks has forever been plagued with both terrible movies, and pretty damn good movies. The good ones just happen to be in the Shrek, Panda, and Dragon universes, and basically everything else falls short. This Kraken movie, with an uncomfortable animation style, came out just six months after Puss in Boots: The Last Wish, and feels like something made for TV. It seems to only exist to attack The Little Mermaid, which had a 2023 live action release, and never feels more than a petty rushed hack job.

Worst moment? When the film feels like a weird combination of Luca and Turning Red from the last few years.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Jab At Disney Film of 2023!

13) Dog Gone
Why is it on the list? Almost every year we get some movie about having a dog, that caters to the same specific group of people. Over half of the time, the pet dies and some people cry. But every once in awhile, you just get a basic pet missing movie. And unfortunately for this one, the fact that the dog is missing is entirely the fault of the shitty owner, who we have to watch make plenty of bad decisions throughout the film. Some people maybe just shouldn’t be pet owners. This one amps up the melodramatic moments though, deciding to make both the dog, and the owner, sick. Hooray!

Worst moment? Getting the local media in on the missing dog search.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Dog Movie of 2023. (This beat out of Strays for me!)

12) Mafia Mamma
Why is it on the list? Do they make good movies about the mafia anymore? Honestly, I feel like I can’t think of any. They peaked in the 80’s and 90’s and just said it was good enough. Mafia Mamma reminds me of the very bad The Family film a decade ago, but the thing is, I actually remember The Family. Or at least parts of it. I watched Mafia Mamma months ago and its all already gone from my head already. This was not Toni Collette wanting to make a good movie, but just wanting to make a paycheck.

Worst moment? I’m sorry, I don’t remember a single scene from this movie.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Mafia Movie of 2023!

11) Expend4bles
Why is it on the list? Look, no one is going to say the first 3 Expendable films are solid cinema. Not at all! I thought they were all already average to bad. But amazingly, this one decides to go and be even worse. This has the worst action, and worst cast list, out of any one of the series. I am here to watch a bunch of action stars together, and this one just decides to give a couple of them, with a lot of filler. Add to that, the terrible plot, terrible death fake outs, and just… bad all around aesthetic, it is actually a disgrace they ruined the already mid name of the franchise.

Worst moment? There was a fight scene between Fox and Statham, meant to be a sexy flirt couple fight. That one takes the case.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Action Film of 2023!

10) Baby Shark’s Big Movie

Why is it on the list? Look, I didn’t even know there was a TV show based on a song that got really popular. And it is likely for preschool aged kids, because my own kid in elementary school definitely did not want to watch it. But weirdly enough about this movie, is that it ended up having a similar plot to Trolls 3, but worse, with worse music. Another strange aspect is that K-pop band ENHYPHEN plays fish versions of themselves, but I didn’t even know that until the end, because I had no clue that it was a real band. I just assumed it was some parody of other bands. That I guess was the biggest stars they could find.

Worst moment? The Stariana song that was seemingly on repeat throughout the movie.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Musical and Worst Tiny Shark Movie of 2023!

9) Meg 2: The Trench
Why is it on the list? The first Meg movie wasn’t a great movie. It was a silly giant shark action film. It was unbelievable, but it had some level of entertainment. The Meg 2 decides to make the sharks an after thought, with the majority of the film being a corporate conspiracy movie instead, until the very end. And to think this one had Ben Wheatley behind it for directing purposes, and most of his films have been passable, if not great before this.

Worst moment? Literally everything about corporate conspiracies and sabotage.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Big Shark Movie of 2023!

8) Fool’s Paradise
Why is it on the list?I can be one of the people who is excited to see Charlie Day do things and succeed right? I want him to branch out, outside of IASIP. I liked him as the scientist in Pacific Rim. I liked him in that rom-com recently. But he has a lot more misses, and his first directed film is just so oddly placed. I cannot tell who this movie was for. He forgot to make the film entertaining, and it just felt like an incredible slog to get through.

Worst moment? When Day’s character doesn’t speak.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Directorial Debut From a Well Established Actor of 2023.

7) Ghosted
Why is it on the list?  This couple has about as much on screen chemistry as a fish and sand. Evans and de Armas act like they have never met another person before. It has so much generic action, with a dull plot, and everything about it is dull. The fact that it was directed by Dexter Fletcher, who gave us Sunshine on Leith, Eddie the Eagle, and Rocketman is just astounding.

Worst moment? Honestly, any time we see the two on screen together, I slightly doubt it. I bet the whole thing was filmed separately. That is the only way to explain why it came across so flat.

Any Worst Awards? Worst on screen chemistry and worst Action Romance film of 2023.

6) Buddy Games: Spring Awakening
Why is it on the list? Buddy Games, when it came out, was a pretty bad film. I didn’t dislike the cast overall, but the execution was something dreadful. It ended up being my 10th worst film of 2020. For some reason, a sequel was made, also straight to DVD, with the same cast returning, for more shenanigans and more made up rules for whatever these games end up being. Josh Duhamel is the director of these films, and it must be the strangest, weirdest, passion project of his. I don’t get it.

Worst moment? The actual events of this film have been mostly blocked from my mind.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Sports Movie Sequel of 2023.

5) Sound of Freedom
Why is it on the list? You have probably heard of this movie. It is about a true story of CHILD TRAFFICKING. So therefore you need to watch it or else you are a pedophile, idk. It involves a group of people, who went to South America, to free kids from child trafficking. And this is about them doing just that with a couple of groups. Now, of course, the events of this film are greatly dramatized. The ages of the kids shown are almost never that young. And the real fact that by going to these places and pretending to be buyers, and needing so many kids and so young, they created more child trafficking because the bad people needed go steal more kids.

Anyways. No one wants child trafficking, but a movie making the real events seem more sinister and lie about what the heroes did, and giving money to the makers of this movie, does nothing to stop child trafficking.

Worst moment? After freeing the first big group of kids (which only existed because of their demand for this many kids), the therapists with them on the capture site, had them sitting and clapping their hands to roughly the “We Will Rock You” beat. And that was it, that was the activity. And somehow, the main character looked on the group, and asked another if he heard it, “That is the Sound of Freedom…”

Any Worst Awards? Worst film based on some Q-anon stories and people of the year.

4) 80 For Brady
Why is it on the list? I honestly don’t know who this movie was made for, or who it was meant to appeal to? Based on a true story of…women who are old and like Tom Brady and watch football together. So they filled it with a lot of actresses who have tons of awards between them. To talk about old ladies going to the Super Bowl, against all the odds? And hell, during the super bowl, shenanigans occur, tickets are lost, and hell, they actually end up effecting the game that leads to Tom Brady winning a super bowl. But like, this is set in the real world? In a real super bowl championship, with a score that for sure happened?

What is the… goal of the film is really the question I have to ask myself?

Worst moment? At one point, some characters are on drugs. Oh golly, old women getting high.

Any Worst Awards? Worst “Simpsons Did It” film, Worst Ensemble of talented actors, and Second Worst Sports film of 2023.

3) Lady Ballers
Why is it on the list? Well, let’s take a movie where the coach, a washed up and broken man, decided to grab his successful team from many years prior, and have them wear wigs to be women and win that championship instead. No, this is not a 90’s movie. This is a movie attacking the woke culture of the liberals of course. Honestly, finding this to randomly watch, I did NOT know it was The Daily Wire film, which is set out to destroy the woke Hollywood. The first idea of this was to make a documentary, but it turns out they couldn’t just get guys to say they are women and join a women’s team. You know, because there are rules, it takes times, it requires usually a lot of hormone therapy, before any of this is allowed.

So of course, they instead ignored that, made the movie as if any of this was doable, and clapped their hands on their backs happy to say they really got those liberals with this one. No one should watch this anti-trans film, and honestly, if I knew about it ahead of time, I would have given it the hard pass.

Worst moment? There was an upper elementary school aged kid used by her father, the coach, to teach the team what is acceptable on their transition. That one for sure because of the way they presented the information.

Any Worst Awards? Worst satire(?), worst comedy, and worst sports film of 2023.

2) Paw Patrol: The Mighty Movie
Why is it on the list? The first Paw Patrol movie was rough. It was pro-Cop, even in areas of that they had no jurisdiction in, and just confusing overall. So what happens with the sequel? All of the characters get SUPER POWERS. And now they are super heroes, with somehow more super vehicles than before. That is fine, if not unnecessary.

But why is it bad? Well, their focus on this movie is on one of the two lady puppies. Who loses her powers, and then immediately gets abandoned by the team and told she cannot help anymore. Even though they aren’t doing much more than what they did before. Now she is useless to them without powers? Add to that the other lady dog, introduced in the first movie, who never got powers for most of the film either, and not just was sidelined, but forced to watch even younger puppies (since they are all puppies?). This film gets to be pro-cop, while also anti-women simultaneously. Can’t make this stuff up.

Worst moment? Literally any time there was a junior Paw Patrol group, who apparently were taken from their families and now lived with them, to be watched by other baby dogs?

Any Worst Awards? Worst sequel, worst animated film, worst coproganda, and worst misogynist film of 2023.

1) Bezos
Why is it on the list? Look, when 2023 started, I didn’t know I’d get to have a BioPic about the founder of Amazon so early in the year. Because who wanted this? No one asked for this. I did sort of expect it to be this dreadful. Watching a rich and successful man, get hundreds of thousands of dollars from his parents, and dreaming of starting a company just to fight book sellers. Hell, this has Kevin Sorbo as the CEO of Barnes and Noble, so you can judge the whole film solely on that. But Jeff is shown as a determined, kind, slightly smug individual, who clearly isn’t working well with his wife, and just wants to make money more than anything, even when he exploits the time of his early workers.

But this is like, a praise film at the same time. The funniest part is that this is based on a biography about Bezos officially. It is in the Zero To Hero series, which, if you can see on this link to amazon itself, is a book for children.

Worst moment? The eventual reveal of his company name of Amazon.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Biopic, Worst Movie based on a Children’s Book, Worst Drama, and Worst Film of 2023.

Thanks for reading! If you disagree with part of this list, let me know. If there is something I missed, let me know.

And as always, I accept hate mail via the post office, email, or tweets.

Worst Films of 2022


A lot of these had the potential to go the shitty distance, but they weren’t picked overall. That includes The Greatest Inheritance, Minions: The Rise of Gru, Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank, Breath, Titanic 666, Deep Water, Blacklight, and The 355.

Also I decided this time to not include some documentaries, which a few of them could have battled for the number one spot. Shame on these stories meant to be derisive and full of lies: The Real Anthony Fauci, What is a Woman?, and 2000 Mules.

15) Snow Day

Why is it on the list? Not often do you have a remake of a mildly popular film from over 20 years prior. But in Snow Day, we are given a remake, while also turning it into a bad musical. I will go out and say I don’t remember a lot about the first Snow Day, I don’t think I even saw the whole thing. Nickelodeon hyped it as their own movie. Oh well. But this one has to be worse. It is a musical, but all of the songs are just sort of generic poppy sound and don’t feel like they belong in the world. They don’t move the plot forward. And of the three plotlines we have, only one of them is remotely interesting. And yes, it is about terrorizing the snow plow driver. The other two are creepy and terrible.

Worst moment? I wish I could remember any song, so let’s just pick the first one.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Musical of 2022!


14) Firestarter

Why is it on the list? Stephen King adaptations are almost always hit or miss, and this one is a huge, huge miss. I don’t know how close it is to the book, to the previous film version, none of that matters. Because at least this version is bad. I started playing Tony Hawk Pro Skateboarder halfway through this movie, no longer able to give it my attention, and now whenever I go to play the game anymore, I think of this film. It is affecting my nostalgia, and that shouldn’t happen when its a movie from the current year. Bad effects, bad story, and something that should just be set aflame from its namesake.

Worst moment? Liar, liar, pants on fire

Any Worst Awards? Worst Remake of 2022!


13) The Ice Age Adventures of Buck Wild

Why is it on the list? There are quite a few reasons to not like this movie from my point of view. The first film I thought was okay, but I haven’t liked a single sequel after it. They went to great lengths to make the first one accruate-ish for science reasons and timing. Close enough, and then threw it all away. This one takes the characters you know and maybe love, and says no you get some other people. Do you want to see some opossums fawn over a legendary character, and find him? And then mostly still not give you that character? Not me, not on my watch. It doesn’t help that the studio that made this series was dissolved after being bought, and this was going to be a TV show, that I guess wasn’t good enough. So they scrapped the episodes to piece together this horribly pointless film. As long as you can get some money out if, I guess?

Worst moment? I’m sorry. I don’t remember a single scene in this movie.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Scrapped-TV-Show-Turned-Film-From-A-Dead-Studio of 2022!


12) Bring It On: Cheer or Die

Why is it on the list? Franchises that last 7 movies are usually remembered fondly. I think most people you ask about Bring It On will tell you they only saw the first one, maybe a random sequel. Almost all of them were straight to video, and all of them were lesser quality. It is sad, they could have done great things. So if a franchise does a direct turn, and tries a new genre? It is worth noting and checking out. Thus we have this sequel that gives us a horror film! But is it good? Nope. The deaths are poor, the acting is worse, there is barely any cheerleading in it. Hell, the ending reveals don’t really make a lot of sense. Why was this one especially bad? Because it was made for Syfy. Which has decided to intentionally make shitty films for some reason. I won’t get into that now.

Worst moment? The killer reveal.

Any Worst Awards? Worst sports film of 2022! (Worst seventh film of a franchise in 2022!)


11) The Munsters

Why is it on the list?  Ugh. See. I understand why this movie was made. I do. I understand the point Rob Zombie made with it, and casting his wife in it. I get it. Honestly. I understand the campiness of the original show and trying to match that silliness. And yet somehow, none of that matters, because what was given to us was just a trainwreck from start to finish. I wish I could have laughed. I wish I could have cried. I wish I could have cared. But trying to match a tone, and yet still somehow missing the charm the entire time is just insulting to both us the viewers and the original source material.

Worst moment? Where the fuck are the other characters in this reboot?

Any Worst Awards? Worsts Television-Show-Turned-Reboot of 2022!


10) The Wolf and the Lion

Why is it on the list? This is a movie that looks like it wants to be telling a true story. It isn’t. It is just a random animal story to be cute with baby animals that grow up into still cute adult animals. This is one that should probably be rated G due to how little conflict exists. Sure, she wants to keep the animals, and various groups want to take them away. At least one of the groups makes a good amount of sense to take them away. The circus one sucks, sure, boo the circus. But it felt anti-science with its narrative as well. I guess she really needed to have her cool island and wildcats to be able to play her instrument again. Sure. Okay.

Worst moment? The convoluted setup to get our character a wolf and a lion.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Convoluted Plot Set Up of 2022!


9) The Cellar

Why is it on the list? Suggested to me purely for being terrible, The Cellar did not disappoint. With arguably only one good scene in the film, the initial disappearance of the daughter, it was filmed to the brim before and after it with just absolutely dreadful horror shit. Nothing felt scary. It felt too silly early on to create the circumstances of her disappearance. The parents didn’t feel believable. And the film just kept digging a hole deeper and deeper up its own ass with its conspiracies and ancient histories and math cults. I almost died watching this film in terms of second hand embarrassment. And I watched it alone.

Worst moment? Anytime math cults were brought up. It made me groan.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Counting of 2022!


8) Spiderhead

Why is it on the list? This is a more well known item on this list, one that came out at some point and apparently everyone decided to watch it! I don’t know personally if anyone in particular liked this movie. If they did, it was because Chris Hemsworth had a fun look to him I bet. Miles Teller is also being pushed to us more and more as someone we should care about for whatever reason. I liked him a decade ago. As for this film, it was a movie that was already pretty bad throughout it, but got seemingly worse at the ending. I was shocked. It was laughably bad and what was meant to be pretty serious twists, and chases, and people yelling. I wrote before that this would have worked really great as a short film. This one had too much plot that felt like filler.

Worst moment? Everything in the final act.

Any Worst Awards? Worst “Twist Ending” of 2022!


7) 1Up

Why is it on the list? I generally hate it when my opinions align with people I dislike, but that is bound to happen now and again. For example, the movie 1Up. A poorly budgeted film about college esports competition. The fact that it is about diversity and inclusiveness is not the problem. The problem is the movie itself is just regular amounts of bad. A woman is treated badly by a sexist captain of their college e-sports team, so she quits and makes her own gender specific team. And eventually they have to compete (spoilers) against the original team, and winner take all, including existence at their college!  The insults are corny, the plot is a groan, the conflicts between characters is just so fake feeling. It feels like a movie to appeal a Buzzfeed quiz crowd, which makes sense, because it was made by Buzzfeed.

Worst moment? Trying to take Ruby Rose‘s character seriously as a gamer professor.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Sports Movie of 2022!


6) Morbius

Why is it on the list? I assume people would expect this, but maybe just not this high up. Morbius is a movie I got to see early, and sang its terribleness from before day one. I sometimes sleep in a theater, but rarely is it at a 1pm showing in the middle of a great day (normally it would be at night!). Morbius has almost nothing working for it. It was a bad movie, where the scene in the credits made it worse. The confusion around what occurred at the end of Spider-man: No Way Home still seeps through these movies, because the crossovers aren’t making sense. My full review goes into a lot more details, but honestly, Morbius is so bad, the memes to mock it for being bad are also bad.

Worst moment? Thanks for meeting me, Doc. I’ve been reading about you. I don’t know how I got here … something to do with Spider-Man. I’m thinking of putting a team together. Do some good.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Superhero Film of 2022!


5) Jurassic World: Dominion

Why is it on the list? I flash back to myself as a kid at 4 or 5 years old. I don’t think Jurassic Park is the first film I saw in theaters, but I know it is the first film I can still remember seeing at theaters. This franchise has not affected my life path at all, and I wouldn’t say any other Jurassic film is necessarily good. The entire Jurassic World trilogy is rather stinky and basic. But this one feels insultingly bad. Bringing in all of the fan service they can from the original film, instead of just smaller bits and parts like the previous movies. It seemed like a no brainer, a slam dunk even! However, it also made the mistake of needing to follow the plot of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, which had its own terrible plot lines and releasing dinosaurs into the world. Did the fact that dinosaurs were now able to roam the world matter? Not at all. Instead we got a long film of bad decisions and forgettable scenes.

Worst moment?  The main plot points (clone daughter, programming locusts) don’t really excite in a dinosaur movie.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Fantasy, Worst Trilogy Ending, and Worst Adventure Film of 2022! (Worst sixth film of a franchise in 2022!)


4) Redeeming Love

Why is it on the list? When I went to watch this movie, I didn’t even know it was some “modern version” of a bible story. It is inspired by the book of Hosea, or whatever that means. This is about a bachelor farmer, doing good at his job, praying for a woman when he goes to town, and sees the local top prostitute and takes it as his sign. He swears to save her from her life of sin, and make a real honest woman out of her, and pays a lot of money just to talk to her in her “sin den” as he may have called it at some point, I don’t remember. The entire thing felt creepy. He was slut shaming her, and deciding he needed to make her his wife, not based off of her personality or intelligence, but purely based on her looks. Strange idea of a charming romance character.

Worst moment? When he buys her freedom after she gets beat up.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Slut Shaming, Worst Bible Retelling, and Worst Romance of 2022!


3) Blonde

Why is it on the list? Speaking of people getting beat up we have Blonde. Disguising itself as a biographical film about Marilyn Monroe, it is instead a film based on the book, Blonde: A Novel, by Joyce Carol Oates. That book is in the genre “biographical fiction” which is apparently, “a type of historical fiction that takes a historical individual and recreates elements of his or her life, while telling a fictional narrative,”. Oh, so, taking a person and some moments of their life that are famous and just sort of making it up. Inherently, I don’t hate that for a film, although I would rather it be obvious that is what is occurring. However, in this movie it just feels downright creepy. This movie, and this story, about a woman who became famous and was exploited throughout her life and just…exploits her further. Decades after she died. Making up stories that are extra worse in her life, adding more abuse and ridiculousness to it. It feels like it is done in the poorest of taste.

I am not inherently against biographical fiction. For example, one of my favorite movies, Steve Jobs, is clearly in that same genre. The conversations that take place in those press release conferences didn’t happen, but at at least indictive of real arguments and controversies that happened, and it didn’t go out of the way to give Jobs excessive praise or scorn either. It gave a realistic portrayal of the man, without stomping on him at the same time. However, in Blonde it feels like that was the main attempt. To just fuck up Monroe’s life even further for the viewer to just have to gasp, cry, and shake their head in sadness.

Worst moment? The opening forest fire scene should have told me to just turn it off, but alas.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Biographical Fiction, Worst NC-17 Big Release Film, and Worst Drama of 2022!


2) Texas Chainsaw Massacre

Why is it on the list? Look, I am not an expert on this franchise. I have only seen two of these films, the other being Texas Chainsaw 3D. And miraculously, this 2022 iteration is still somehow the worst version I have ever seen. It is meant to be another modern sequel to an original that ignores other versions, because that is fun, and also, have almost identical titles. This one was questionable early on, as it seems our main characters were people who wanted to revitalize a dead town, buying up property and putting money into it. Is that bad? I don’t know. But in this film it is the worse that they would do that, and also, eventually, we get Leatherface showing up ready to kill zoomers and millennials who are just terrible I guess.

I need this to be clear. At some point, a party bus arrives in the town, with influencers, people having a good time, and he pops on the back of the bus. Spoilers I guess, but sure enough, he kills the whole bus, because these people are so pathetic and young and on their phones that they can’t do anything at all to help themselves. It was the biggest goddamn boomer fantasy in a movie I have seen in so long. People who were around when the first film came out probably would love this scene.

Worst moment? The bus scene. I cannot and will not stop talking about how bad it is.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Horror Movie, Worst Party Bus (see another), and Worst Movie for Boomers of 2022! (Worst ninth film of a franchise in 2022!)


1) Pinocchio: A True Story

Why is it on the list? Pauly Shore doesn’t act much more. And he honestly hasn’t really done it in the last 20 years, mostly playing himself in films. Then Guest House happened, which also made a worst of the year list, and he decided acting is fun again. So why not voice work? Why not? Well, honestly sure, why not, I can see him doing fun animated characters. But apparently one of the worst animated flicks of the decade was his time to breakout into the medium, and it helped create a perfect storm of ghastly material.  You see, because here he is voicing Pinocchio, which is a very well known character and story, and at no point would anyone see the story and think Shore’s voice is the best fit.

Did they know we would be in the middle of bunch of Pinocchio films when this one came out? No idea, but it does hurt it further. Did Shore know that this Euro based production company would be using CGI that looks like it came from early 2000’s Nick Jr. shows? No idea. Does the fact that this story has almost nothing in common with any Pinocchio story, and feel like a last second addition? Yes, yes it does. Complete with a talking horse.

I am inherently fine with movies to be different than the source material. I try to go out of my way to avoid books to not know about the source material more. But its harder with more and more iconic stories. And so if you are going to go far away from the source, you should have great reasons to. This story is just so incredibly generic and bland that it does nothing for the Pinocchio game, nor animation, nor fiction in general. It is low effort from everyone involved, and a pain to sit through. I generally start with a disdain for stories that label themselves as a “True story” version of the events of well known stories as a crutch to tell it in a new way. Couple that with all of the other issues, and this one had no chance. Movie is so bad, most of it you can’t even tell he is supposed to be a wooden boy.

Worst moment? Just pick one from the trailer. Which immediately goes out of its way to tell a pop culture reference.

Any Worst Awards? Worst Film, Worst Voice Acting, Worst Animated Film, and despite Disney’s best attempts, the Worst Pinocchio Film of 2022!


Thanks for reading! If you disagree with part of this list, let me know. If there is something I missed, let me know (but I probably saw it and reviewed it on this very site!

And as always, I accept hate mail via the post office, email, or tweets.

Best Films of 2022


These honorable mentions are all 4 out of 4 films from my site this last year, who didn’t make my top cut of 15. We have: Hatching, The Janes, Emergency Declaration, Unidentified Objects, Sidney, Barbarian, She Said, Brian and Charles, Navalny, The Fabelmans, Happening, and The Whale.

Also these films are ones I never got the chance to see, but based on word of mouth, might have made the list, who knows: EO, Return to Seoul, Saint Omer, The Inspection and Women Talking.

15) The Outfit

Why is it on the list? When it comes to what makes a movie just barely make the list, why The Outfit over something else in the honorable mentions? Well, for a few reasons. The Outfit is a limited cast, so we have quite a few people getting to shine and act.  A film that could have been a play, and is set in entirely one location, but somehow was not a play first. I’d argue the top four actors in this do a phenomenal job and do a lot with what they are given. And yet why is this on top of the Honorable Mention pile? I just goddamn love it when names are so chef’s kiss perfect. The Outfit is about a tailor who makes suits, dealing with the mafia, who are also nicknamed The Outfit.

Favorite moment: The part inside of the tailor’s place of business. >.>

Best Awards: Best Title Pun of 2022!


14) I Want You Back

Why is it on the list? Look, I am as shocked as you are. I don’t think I have…ever…had a RomCom in my top 15. I could be lying, but I do not want to check. I Want You Back was likely my first 4 out of 4 in 2022, and carried by the wonderful cast that just has great chemistry with each other. I have Jenny Slate in a surprisingly big number of 3 or 4 films on my rankings, and Charlie Day is almost the opposite. But even when you can tell how the film is going to end, as per RomCom rules, this journey was certainly worth it. From hallway crying to devious plots to relationships old and new. I Want You Back is the thing to ever use those four words in succession. I swear.

Favorite moment: Suddenly Seymour…

Best Awards: Best RomCom of 2022!


13) On The Count of Three

Why is it on the list? Well, first of all, it starts with a dark and morbid topic. Two friends both happen want to kill themselves, because of their problems in their life. So they agree to kill each other instead, at the same time. But first, why not have a great last day on Earth? Do things they always wanted, get some revenge, get some good buzzes. Whatever, because fuck the consequences. If they are going to die anyways, who cares? Well, this isn’t some strong vigilante male fantasy film, don’t worry. But it does deal with real issues, and both of the leads are completely believable in this film, and take us on an incredibly interesting journey.

Favorite moment: The therapist’s office.

Best Awards: Best Suicide Pact of 2022! (erm)


12) Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio

Why is it on the list? 2022 was the year of Pinocchio, but not in the good way. Three of them were released, one of them pretty dang good, one of them basic as hell, and one of them bottom of the bargain bin barrel. In another year, maybe I wouldn’t love this one as much, who knows. But given its competition, it gets elevated on that fact alone. Unlike the Pauly Shore film, which also takes liberties with the story, Guillermo del Toro‘s vision doesn’t change the crux of the story, but instead sets it in a more realistic world view. And he makes it really sad, and so we have to think about death more now because of him.

Favorite moment: The afterworld.

Best Awards: Best Animated Film and Best Pinocchio of 2022!


11) Dual

Why is it on the list? A lot of the reason why Dual is on here is to highlight it, because I didn’t know anything about it. It was just some random movie I decided to watch because of the leads, with no buzz or hype from the community around it. Or at least none I could see. And with this movie, I got a very unique satire, dealings with issues that could theoretically be an issue in a future where we can create perfect clones of people. The absurd rules around it just add to fun. Aaron Paul’s character is so ridiculous, despite giving the “serious trainer” vibes that it was just hilarious and worth the time commitment for the movie.

Favorite moment: The training.

Best Awards: Best Legal Proceedings of 2022!


10) The Antares Paradox (La paradoja de Antares)

Why is it on the list? Out of films you probably haven’t heard about, this one is probably the top of the haven’t heard about list. To be honest, not even sure it counts as this year, since I saw it at Fantastic Fest and don’t know if its even been released? It is a story of a woman who works at an observatory, specifically with a group searching for signs of extra terrestrial life, and hearing a signal. But thanks to plot, things start going wrong, with her life falling apart at that same night, all while she is trying to just confirm the signal isn’t a mistake. All of the other characters are just faces on screens or voices on the phone, so Andrea Trepat has to carry this whole movie mostly on her own. I thought it was a gripping character study and a tense situation with a whole lot of shitty people and circumstances rolled into one.

Favorite moment: The rage I got over a sister and a nurse being the worst.

Best Awards: Best Bottle Movie of 2022!


9) The Menu

Why is it on the list? Honestly, The Menu was the last film I saw to make it onto the list, just based on when I could finally see it, early in 2023 on streaming. I had hyped the film in my mind for months, just based on the actors alone. Ralph Fiennes, Anya Taylor-Joy, Nicholas Hoult just sounded like a good time. I didn’t even know what the plot was, just something at a restaurant! Instead I got to see an intense dark comedy, going to quite a few extremes, to drive home an obvious point. Rich people suck. But it isn’t a one sided coin. A lot of people suck. I know its profound, but that is where my eloquence lies. I think it did a much better job at this sort of point than say, Triangle of Sadness, which also came out this year, but meandered around the point instead of attacking it head on (which The Menu did, over, and over, and over).

Favorite moment: Tyler’s Bullshit. And the rest of his shit too.

Best Awards: Best Roast of the Rich and Privileged of 2022!


8) The Northman

Why is it on the list? Robert Eggers has only directed three movies, all of which are at least great, and two of them have now made my top of the year lists. The Northman came out in the first third of 2022, and to me felt like one of the bigger reasons to start going back to movie theaters. As a visual medium, watching this one the large screen just really drew me in. Everything felt designed to give as authentic an experience as possible for this story, because Eggers wants accuracy in his period pieces. The plot did not go the way I predicted, and I was constantly surprised when it went more brutal, and even less brutal, than I expected. It made me want to roar in testosterone for quite a few of the scenes.

Favorite moment: That Willem Dafoe scene early on was an unexpected trip.

Best Awards: Best “Revenge” of 2022!


7) Holy Spider

Why is it on the list? Holy Spider is a movie I didn’t even hear about, until it was put on the shortlist for Best International Features at the Oscars. It is a Danish film, about a serial killer who lived in Iran in the early 2000s. The man targeted prostitutes and considered himself a Holy Warrior, and when he was caught, he had a lot of support for doing nothing wrong. While slightly fictionalized on how he was caught, Holy Spider captures the essence of the era, with a more pro-Journalistic slant (which I love in my movies). The man who played the killer fully committed to the role and it was just so eerie thinking about how easy killing these women was. I know that Iran had a problem with the movie, and the actors who portrayed these people, so hopefully nothing really bad happens to anyone involved getting this real story out there.

Favorite moment: The “execution”

Best Awards: Best journalism Film of 2022!


6) Aftersun

Why is it on the list? Honestly, I have a hard time describing just why Aftersun is such a treasure of a film. A dad takes his daughter on a vacation. The dad is going through a lot, but trying to give his daughter a good time, before she goes back to her mother. And it is just them trying to live the best life they can, despite not being in great circumstances. It is just dripping with raw realistic situations, that I feel like I know the actors and that this is a true story. It is bittersweet, sad, emotional, and one that also somehow brought me joy.

Favorite moment: Mm-noom-ba-deh /  Doom-boom-ba-beh / Doo-boo-boom-ba-beh-beh

Best Awards: Best Drama of 2022!


5) The Banshees of Inisherin

Why is it on the list? Losing a friend can be hard. Especially if it is suddenly and only one person knows why. Martin McDonagh has created one of the strangest period piece films I have ever seen. Stemming from a very simple plot, with simple characters, in a very small town area, it tells a story that certainly spirals out of control. I mean, you just have to believe people when they do what they said they are going to do sometimes, you know? It was a very different sort of “small town drama” movie, that was also by far more hilarious than it seemingly had any right to be. Sometimes you gotta laugh to keep yourself from the more disturbing elements.

Favorite moment: When Colm gives Pádraic the finger.

Best Awards: Best “English Language Film that you should use subtitles for”, Best Break Up, and Best Dark Comedy of 2022!


4) RRR

Why is it on the list? There were way too many movies that were over 3 hours this year. Movies are getting longer and longer with no notable breaks. I remember complaining in 2012 that so many were just 2.5 hours. But its grown! Well, for a film like RRR, a movie right over three hours long, and one that captivated me the entire three hours. There was never a dull moment in RRR, from its over the top action scenes, to its even more over the top action scenes. The middle dance scene was a nice surprise, and just…well, its one of those films you just have to see and believe at how it can go 11 out of 10 the entire time.

Favorite moment: Too many. The solo policeman against the crowd to the jungle revenge finale. All of them are memorable.

Best Awards: Best Friendship, Best Dance Scenes, Best Foreign Film, Best Action film of 2022!


3) Emergency

Why is it on the list? When I read the plot of the movie, I honestly didn’t imagine how serious I would be able to take it. When the “incident” occurs, that makes them question calling the police or taking things into their own hands, on paper, it sounded silly, but in the film, it made a whole lot of sense. Now another issue that can happen in these sort of films is that the difficulty of driving places will seem too convoluted and ridiculous, but honestly, it was never that ridiculous feeling. Unfortunate things of course, but given the theme and type of night, it was all within reason. I am more disappointed in myself that I didn’t see this when it first got on Amazon and I didn’t get to see it until the end of the year.

Favorite moment: When everyone gets together on the side of the woods.

Best Awards: Best film depicting American Race Relations, Best College Film, and Best Thriller of 2022!


2) Cha Cha Real Smooth

Why is it on the list? This is the second feature film written and directed by Cooper Raiff, who also is the main star, after his first film, Shithouse, which I did not love! In this film I was immediately drawn into the main character, and his dealings of hopelessness and lost. The backstory made sense, and it is believable for him to start being a party starter right when Bar Mitzvah season starts off. For whatever reason, every choice Raiff makes, even the bad ones, I agree with, because goddamn is he charming. But even better, one of our leads, Vanessa Burghardt, playing an autistic kid at these parties, is actually autistic. It comes across as authentic, because it is authentic. Unlike some other recent films reviewed by this site.

Favorite moment: His first accidental gig as a party starter.

Best Awards: Best Autistic Character, Best Party Starter, and Best Comedy/Drama of 2022!


1) Everything Everywhere All At Once

Why is it on the list? Are you shocked? I don’t think you are shocked. This movie went straight to the top of my list when I saw it on St. Patrick’s Day 2022, and never left. Eventually the hype for this movie built amongst the normies, and word of its excellence spread. I for one thought that I might not have this one at the top of my list starting like, three months ago, because then the normies would win. I should be shocking people with these lists. Rarely is it an obvious title.

But goddamn it, I watched it as my final film of 2022, and it still holds up. People like it, movie critic or otherwise, because it is a universally amazing film, dealing with great themes and camera work and acting. This film is better than their first film, Swiss Army Man, which also was in my top films of the last decade. There is nothing bad about this movie, and I hope we can all celebrate it for decades to come.

Favorite moment: Rocks.

Best Awards: Best Sci-Fi/Fantasy film, Best Rock Scene, Best Bagel and Best Film of 2022.


Thanks for reading! If you disagree with part of this list, let me know. If there is something I missed, let me know (but I probably saw it and reviewed it on this very site!

And as always, I accept hate mail via the post office, email, or tweets.

Worst Films of 2021


Here are the other films this year I gave a 0 out of 4 to, in no particular order: A Week Away, Dave Chappelle: The Closer, F9, Rumble, Sensation, Taking A Shot At Love, The Boss Baby: Family Business, The Ice Road, The Never List, The Retreat, The Unholy, and Zeroes and Ones.

15) Secret Magic Control Agency

Why is it on the list? With so many terrible movies, why does this animated movie make the list instead of a new Boss Baby? Well, for one, this movie is lazy. It makes Hansel and Gretel the main characters. Why does every Grimm brothers story adaptation need to have them as the lead? Are they even trying? This one started to do something different, by having them being adults and having some angst in their past. Cool. Grown ups. Then nope, convoluted plot later, they also are now going to be kids to solve this boring ass mystery. The animation is poor, the story is extremely poor, and at no point was enjoyment derived.

Worst moment? The logic that a great trained spy needs to work with a criminal to save the day.

Any Worst Awards? Worst use of Grimm brothers material in 2021. (This was hard to come up with).


14) The Addams Family 2

Why is it on the list? I certainly didn’t like the first film, The Addams Family, but it had a couple of nice moments. Some clever stuff. The animation style threw me off, and it didn’t feel like they tried too much. The sequel is worse. It goes through a classically boring plot line of “what if one of them isn’t actually a family member,” when we all know they are. It is a plot line that has no pay off, and oh what is that, a road trip movie as well? Fan-fucking-tastic.

Worst moment? I am pretty sure this is a movie with a science fair with a volcano again, so I am picking that by default.

Any Worst Awards? Worst animated sequel film of 2021.


13) Caged

Why is it on the list? Even if you have never heard of them before, low budget shit movies are still shit movies. Caged is a story about a guy in jail, for murder, and then specifically about solitary confinement. He gets harassed by guards, we have flashbacks to exactly one scene on a boar between him and his wife, and then he starts to hallucinate and freak out. But honestly, this is one of the situations where the ideas behind this movie aren’t terrible, but the execution is a barely a whisper. The lighting, the visuals, the sounds, it just draws to a horrible experience for the viewer. No, it is not putting us in his situation, it is just putting me in a situation where I have to strain to tell what is going on and I have determined nothing worth my time.

Worst moment? The very slow flashback on the boat, that kept returning.

Any Worst Awards? Worst prison sentence of 2021.


12) Narco Sub

Why is it on the list? There is a good chance you haven’t heard of Narco Sub, and there is a better chance some biases affected this pick. The director at this point had only been known for doing mostly music based films, with dancing and weird graphics, or short films. None of which I would say made a whole lot of sense. This is the first example of making a longer film, but it is also an action film with explosions and drugs, hooray!  Unfortunately, or, as expected, the plot of this film makes very little sense. The characters actions are questionable, the fact that they even feel the need to do this strong war on drugs at this point is questionable. The payoff by the end is not worth any reason to keep watching it.

Worst moment? I tried to block it all out of my mind, but I remember some mansion scene at the end with the finals deaths, so definitely that one.

Any Worst Awards? Worst drug busting of 2021.


11) Tom & Jerry

Why is it on the list? I am never someone who got behind the idea of Tom & Jerry as an amusing idea. Jerry is a pompous dick. He is a mouse in some person’s house, who doesn’t want a mouse stealing the food and damaging the interior, and the cat is supposed to help get rid of it, but when Jerry succeeds it is awesome? Damn, Jerry, go to a different house. In the movie it is more of the same. For some reason they have animosity, and once again, Tom has to get the mouse out of the house. But this time it is a fancy hotel, with guests, and standards, that don’t include damn mice in the kitchen. Arguably even worse standards. But what makes this film actually terrible is to take cartoon physics and violence and put it in the real world, with almost no consequences. Sure, they show the damage that a giant fight dust cloud makes, but it seems in a world where these cartoon animals just exist and are okay with each other’s existence, somehow these two cause giant danger messes. Honestly, the wanton violence and destruction was so odd in this film, and it even turned my kids off from watching. I am also annoyed I can’t call this the worst film that had animated and real life people together.

Worst moment? Jerry destroying tom’s piano. He was using that to make money. He was a cat who could play piano!

Any Worst Awards? Second worst animated/live action film. Worst animated film based off of Hanna-Barbara.


10) Vanquish

Why is it on the list? Vanquish is a film that apparently actually went to theaters last year in April. It very quickly went to VOD on after that, and then everyone promptly forgot it existed. Honestly, I think if we didn’t have the weird theater situation last year, this one would have gone straight to VOD because no one would care to see it in theaters. Morgan Freeman in a film is a sure sign that things aren’t going to be great, and Ruby Rose seems to do a lot of roles to show that she can’t act. So why not combine the two into a dumb plot where her daughter is kidnapped and in danger unless she goes and takes out all these people in one night. Sigh. None of this film feels original, it is just the same old shit.

Worst moment? The ending twists, that everyone can see miles away.

Any Worst Awards? Worst action-drama film of 2021.


9) Karen

Why is it on the list? Because of course it is on the list. Karen is a BET channel exclusive, that wanted to make a Jordan Peele movie with no subtext, no good acting, and everything is entirely on the nose, including constant metaphorical winks. Having a white woman named Karen be racist and call the cops on people doing no wrong? Great, works well. But damn the hyper level overacting, like a soap opera on steroids, turns what could be a great thriller idea into a mess where everyone will just laugh at it and mock it relentless as it scrolls across the screen. Maybe that sounds like a good time, sure, but it is still a bad film. And why does she look like a Wayan’s brother is wearing her face as a mask?

Worst moment? The party crash scene was particularly cringe, but so was the calling of the cops.

Any Worst Awards? Worst white bitch of 2021.


8) The Hitman’s Wife Bodyguard

Why is it on the list? Coming from someone who didn’t love The Hitman’s Bodyguard, for a myriad of reasons, I am honestly shocked they could make a sequel that somehow felt a lot worse. I am not saying that shifting the focus to Salma Hayek‘s character and increasing her screen time is bad. They just did everything somehow worse. One of the only personality traits Ryan Reynolds had was his strict focus on safety, and after one movie of keeping it, they threw it out the window in this one. Once again, we have a terrible plot for our characters, and everything is a loose explanation between bad comedy scenes and average action scenes. And for some reason, Morgan Freeman shows up again, which as I already stated is a bad sign. They really kept his appearance under wraps, its because people know it would lessen the film.

Worst moment? The adoption scene.

Any Worst Awards? The worst action film, the worst action-comedy film, and the worst Morgan Freeman of 2021.


7) Music

Why is it on the list? Hey look, Sia directed a movie. Oh no, Sia really directed a movie and made a lot of decisions. For whatever reason, in this movie, she decided she needed the main character to be quite Autistic, nicknamed Music, and listening to songs all day. And then we get a normie family member who has to take care of her, and so we have a film about a person struggling to deal with someone with Autism, and less about Autism in general. Maddie Ziegler, who Sia puts in everything she can, plays Music, and goes into some very uncomfortable territory with what feel incredibly offensive. When this was all pointed out to Sia, and that they could have actually hired someone with Autism, she instead attacked her fans and made a movie she wanted. It had a lot of fun colorful song/music videos, which seems to be the real point of the film, stuff that we see in Music’s head. And it decided to offend everyone in the process.

Worst moment? Learning how to properly tackle and take down Music if she needs it?

Any Worst Awards? Worst musical, worst film about disabilities, and worst director backlash of 2021.


6) The Kissing Booth 3

Why is it on the list? Honestly, I am more surprised at how I thought five films were somewhat worse. Let me change the order real quick….no it is fine. The Kissing Booth 2 ended up with my worst film of 2020, for all the reasons anything is a bad move, and I wouldn’t really describe 3 as a better film though. The only reason it isn’t “as bad” is because this one objectively has an ending which notably the second one lacks an ending. The same cast of characters, making more confusing stories and moments where our lead absolutely has no boundaries with those she finds to be friends and lovers. And we have people practically stalking her to win her over? That shit ain’t cool. Get this child written nonsense out of here.

Worst moment? Mario Kart, a new list approaches, and the fact that this movie doesn’t end with all the characters in an orgy, since it seems to be going that direction this whole trilogy.

Any Worst Awards? Worst romcom, worst romance, worst “third film” in a franchise of 2021.


5) Space Jam: A New Legacy

Why is it on the list? Is the original Space Jam movie good? Probably not. But it certainly has some level of heart. It keeps things relatively focused on the Looney Tunes characters, and their attributes. It had, mostly low stakes, and only affected Michael Jordan and the Tunes. So what does the sequel do? Well, it first has an extremely similar plot, but HIGHER STAKES. (It also has characters both acknowledge with some jokes of the similar plot, while also not really acknowledging that the events in Space Jam happened, just to keep us confused).

Now, millions of people might die. Now we have all of these WB properties as cameos. At the same time, we have a game that doesn’t matter or has to happen. It just takes Lebron talking to his kid and being honest about what the App is trying to do, and they wouldn’t play the game, everyone could go home and they can be good. But no, we get a shitty sports game where LITERALLY the points are all made up. And at that point, there is nothing to root for. We don’t have any traditional rules to follow. It is just something that resembles basketball, with no real way to tell what one side has to do to win. That isn’t fun. That is confusing.

Worst moment? To be specific, it is when WB made a movie that wanted to have a humor and plot to appeal to kids, and stick it full of references to films before the year 2000 that a lot of them haven’t seen, to appeal to adults, who will hate this movie. And the background members of the audience.

Any Worst Awards? Worst movie with a mix of live action and cartoon characters, worst sports movie, worst sports cameos, worst film cameos, and worst movie dad of 2021.


4) God’s Not Dead: We The People

Why is it on the list? I am pretty sure every film in this franchise has made my worst of the year list, but surprisingly, never been the worst film. They all have similar problems, so it feels repetitive to write about it at this point, but still important. This is a franchise that wants to make big political statements with religious characters, to show that religious values are being attacked in the USA and the law is out to get them. The war on Christianity is real. They usually have real law cases in question in the credits that relate to the events in the film. And finally I checked them for this one. None of them match what is going on in this film. All of these law suits are generally about families who are suing school districts for teaching their kids they don’t want them to learn, or for being accepting of gays and trans kids. They let that moment out of the bag near the end of the movie with a big rant too, about evolution and gender. Is this what this about? Really? These films just make straw man arguments, make anyone not religious as a bad guy, and basically cartoon character villains who just want to oppress the fuck out of everyone.

Worst moment? Ending rant and the Muslim girl subplot finally returning from the first film.

Any Worst Awards? Worst fourth film in a franchise of 2021. And every other award I could give to this movie, instead will go to the number 3 film.


3) Roe v Wade

Why is it on the list? Oh? A movie about the supreme court case of Roe v. Wade that went to the Supreme Court and made sure that everyone in the United States needed to legally have access to abortions as a medical procedure. Surely nothing can go wrong with this.

Ohhh. Well. Sure. If they make a movie that is just highly propaganda for the Henry Wade side of Roe v. Wade. Henry Wade was a district attorney in Dallas, because Texas outlawed abortions and made it a criminal case for doctors. This went to the Supreme Court, and the rest is history. A history that is slowly but surely being ticked away and made more and more bare so that eventually it will be overturned, and then one group of people can celebrate the oppression of women in the United States. Where depending on where you live, you might have more rights than another state, in a country people call full of freedom.

Honestly, this movie was just disgusting. They made the lawyers look gross on the Roe side, the client look inept, doctors who did abortions as greedy/evil and also Jewish. This film that was made before 2018 actually, had a lot of names signed on who walked out, including the director, realizing this was a biased trash film that existed purely to attack women making a hard decision, and adding more unnecessary public pressure to not allow women choice. It feels like a follow up to Unplanned, but it turns out those were different people involved.

Worst moment? The behind the scene dialogues from the supreme court that no one would know, and the abortion jingle.

Any Worst Awards? Worst religious film, worst drama, worst political film, worst use of washed up celebrities, and worst piece of propaganda of 2021.


2) Earwig and the Witch

Why is it on the list? I remember seeing Earwig and the Witch relatively early in the year. It is the first CGI film from Studio Ghibli and it was a big deal. At the same time, it should be considered a big deal for how BAD it was. It is a film with a orphan who is probably a witch, getting adopted by a witch purely to be a cleaning hand in their house. This girl is absolutely the worst, getting in trouble on purpose wherever she goes, complaining, and whining. And you know what? She doesn’t change the whole movie. She wins what she want and is a brat the whole time. When her missing mom finally shows up, the film unexpectedly ends. The whole movie sounds like it was meant to be 25 minutes long and an introduction to a more interesting movie. Instead, it is drawn out, has bad morals, has a trailer that absolutely makes it look like a very different focused film with a musical element, and definitely the worst ending of a movie the whole year. I knew when I watched it that it had to be near the top worst endings ever, and it kept its pedestal the whole time.

Worst moment? The ending.

Any Worst Awards? Worst magic, worst bratty child, worst pet, worst trailer, worst ending, and worst animated film of 2021.


1) The Terrible Adventure

Why is it on the list? I think I developed actual pains watching The Terrible Adventure. You go in expecting it to be about a bad trip, not realizing that the bad trip was actually the decision to watch this film. It was clearly made on a shoestring budget. The audio is off throughout the film. I feel like most, if not all characters had to redo their dialogue after the fact, so it the sounds/words said don’t always match the mouth movements. The director cast his own kids in this film, that is hardly about environmentalism, and more about nepotism.

The kids are meant to be smart, so that they can solve these puzzles to win a hidden prize. However, they don’t come across smart in their actions and the puzzles are either so obvious, or so out there that of course only the “smart” characters can get it, when in reality it is just gibberish. The contest itself makes little to no sense. We have the dad character being abused by his ex wife, as she yells at him and physically throws objects at him, with the daughter just laughing to the side like this is normal. The ice cream bad guys are worse than cartoon characters. They are just nonsensical plot clouds that float around, sound strange, and interact with the characters when the writer decided them to, whether or not it made sense. There was one guy who I think imitated being Hispanic, which they all probably thought was hilarious for him to put on an accent, ignoring their own shitty racist decisions.

I can’t believe how bad this film was, nor could I believe the high ratings. This is what happens when you make a movie that no one sees, except your friends and family, and all the friends and family love it because they know the people involved.

Worst moment? (Gestures around wildly at the whole thing).

Any Worst Awards? Worst casting, worst comedy, worst villains, worst riddles, worst plot, worst casting again, and worst film of 2021.


Thanks for reading! If you disagree with part of this list, let me know. If there is something I missed, let me know (but I probably saw it and reviewed it on this very site!

And as always, I accept hate mail via the post office, email, or tweets.

Best Films of 2021


These honorable mentions are all 4 out of 4 films from my site this last year, who didn’t make my top cut of 15. We have Malcolm & Marie, Raya and the Last Dragon, Rita Moreno: Just A Girl Who Decided to Go For It, The Guilty, Encounter, The Novice, and Flee.

Also these films, that for Oscar awards counted as 2020, but as far as I can tell are 2021 movies and things got really weird for them for regular best of lists and I didn’t know what to do: Judas and the Black Messiah, Our Friend, and The Father.

15) Together Together

Why is it on the list? Together Together is a baby surrogacy movie, but not a standard one. It is actually outside of the norm because it does NOT involve the main leads falling in love. It is perfect in that regard. A rich guy wants to be a dad, he hires someone much younger to have it, and she is going to use that money for college, and that is it. Sure it still talks about the weirdness of their “relationship” and the struggles over that time, and their boundaries. But it feels real and, I cannot state this enough, it has them NOT decide to date or marry as a result, which is super healthy for this type of movie to do.

Favorite moment? The ew moment and why Anna says ew.

Any Best Awards: Best pregnancy of 2021.


14) King Richard

Why is it on the list? Because Will Goddamn Smith surprised me. Look, when I first saw the trailer, I thought it was messed up. A Williams sister movie that…is more about the dad and his relationship with his daughters, and less about the sisters themselves? That seems pretty messed up. But a few notes: One, Will Smith nailed it and was clearly acting and not being Will Smith. Two, it was very emotional. And three, the Williams sisters agreed to back this story and love their father’s contributions to their careers and are behind it, so who am I to judge on the vehicle for the first movie about their lives.

Favorite moment? The constant focus on education and childhood over purely sports success.

Any Best Awards? Best sports movie of 2021.


13) Shiva Baby

Why is it on the list? Shiva Baby makes me feel so uncomfortable! It was almost the levels of uncomfortableness as Uncut Gems, despite being way shorter and much smaller stakes. It really draws you in and makes you feel claustrophobic, with pretty swell acting as well. And let me be clear, it is funny with its awkwardness, and this is just a film I have decided to not go back and check out, because, yuck, not ready for it still.

Favorite moment? Probably one of the earliest reveals in terms of why things are uncomfortable at the Shiva, because then it just continues to spiral.

Any Best Awards? Best young life crisis of 2021.


12) Being the Ricardos

Why is it on the list? Because Aaron Sorkin written movies often make my lists. And his directed ones make it two-thirds of the time, apparently. I love, love, love, love, love the dialogue. I do, it is true. I think the stars Nicole Kidman and Javier Bardem are especially strong and extremely charismatic together. The weird beginning introduction interview, that is barely used after it is unnecessary for this story, but it doesn’t overall detract from the wonderful screen presence that this movie gave me. Hell, it made me slightly care from

Favorite moment? J. Edgar Hoover and the writer’s room banter.

Any Best Awards? Best behind the scenes of 2021.


11) tick, tick…BOOM!

Why is it on the list? This was one of my most anticipated films of the year, because, well, every musical was anticipated basically. But this one was directed by Lin-Manuel Miranda. The first one he has ever directed. Based on a famous musical creator who died tragically early. And also based on a musical he made. There are a lot of layers and different time lines in this story. And it is all swept together nicely through Andrew Garfield‘s wonderful acting and singing. God damn, this was a unique experience and it is so hard to describe at the same time.

Favorite moment? 30/90, Boho Days, and Therapy.

Any Best AwardsBest theater cameos of 2021.


10) Encanto

Why is it on the list? That is a silly question. Have you seen it? Disney had two great animated hits this year, and I also loved Raya (it was in the honorable mentions) and it was hard to find out where it would land with Encanto. I did put Encanto on the top, partially because yes it is a musical (oh hey, Lin-Manuel Miranda reference again). But the story was wonderful in that it had a less obvious villain. The movie wasn’t solved by the main character suddenly getting powers, like a lot of stories of those who lack. And damn, it is one that can make me cry.

Favorite moment? Surface Pressure. Yes, better than We Don’t Talk About Bruno.

Any Best AwardsBest house of 2021.


9) Spider-Man: No Way Home

Why is it on the list? FOUR movies were added to the MCU this year, with only one being a Sony movie. And that one made the list. This was my most diverse year for MCU ratings (2, 3, 1, 4 were the ratings of those released in the order they came out), which is also a first. But what did Spider-Man: No Way Home do? It gave us an emotional arc that now seems like it was 21 years in the making. Obviously some of the things it did weren’t planned 21 years ago. But it gave closure to things we never thought we would get. It gave us hope that the ever churning big media machine that cancels projects that under perform at the Box Office can eventually surprise us with something new. It was an ambitious event, it could alienate tons of audience members, and yet it proved that despite that, people wanted to see it and love it nonetheless. And it made me cry.

Favorite moment? The MJ save and the Green Goblin turn.

Any Best AwardsBest Superhero film, best Fantasy film, and best nostalgia of 2021.


8) Annette

Why is it on the list? This was definitely a hard one to rank. It took me three sittings to watch the first time because of how uncomfortable and strange things got. I knew it deserved my highest honors, and that I would likely never see it again. But then? I did see it again, all in one sitting, months later. Annette is a visual and musical and strange-ical trip. Nothing normal about this film. Adam Driver puts his whole body into the role. Despite strange on the outside, you can tell everyone takes it very seriously, which adds to the eerie music and tunes throughout. The final scene in the visiting room? That one is so goddamn rough, but one of the best scenes of the year.

Favorite moment? The prison visit and the boat trip.

Any Best Awards? Best fourth wall breaking, best use of puppets in 2021. Also best use of really putting your whole goddamn body and focus into one strange role of 2021 for Adam Driver.


7) The Mitchells vs. The Machines

Why is it on the list? The last few years have had a lot of animated duds, so surprise surprise when two of them make my list and a third was really close. I probably would not have even noticed The Mitchells vs. The Machines coming out when it did, back in March, but I am glad word of mouth happened, because I was not ready for this (road) trip. The humor is constant, the visuals are unique, we get a lgbtq main character whose sexuality is irrelevant to the plot, and the voice acting is also extremely strong. I have seen this one a few times from last year, and it still feels refresh, and doesn’t feel like it will be that dated in the future either. Congrats, you beat the Disney/Pixar machine for me.

Favorite moment? Furby.

Any Best Awards? Best animated film and best traditional comedy of 2021.


6) In The Heights

Why is it on the list? In a year with so many musicals, one of the first I saw this year ended up as my favorite. And I mean that as a traditional musical, even though the music and sounds are anything but. Technically, two other films after this are also kind of musicals, but not in the same sense that this one or other traditional ones are. The songs from this musical were stuck in my head for months. I ended up watching this movie the most out of any movie last year, four times, twice in theaters and one of them in IMAX. But the soundtrack alone would bring my numbers up more. It was even hard to pick a favorite moment. And, of course, our third Lin-Manuel Miranda note of this list.

Favorite moment? Honestly, most songs. In The Heights, 96,000, It Won’t Be Long Now, Benny’s Dispatch, Piragua, Champagne.

Any Best Awards? Best Lin-Manuel Miranda cameo, best intro, and best “real musical” of 2021.


5) Riders of Justice

Why is it on the list? Riders of Justice is a film that was never on my radar, until once again, it came out and had a lot of word of mouth praise. I was extremely surprised by the direction and plot of this film. Is it a standard mystery revenge plot action film? Sure, parts of it. But it also has extreme amounts of humor, heart, and based in a world that is trying to change from the macho “ah shoot those who wronged you!” cinema of the past. I was surprised throughout at how touching it was, and how on point and accurate it was dealing with these social changes and people who were unwilling to think about those change. You can go in expecting a lot, and still find yourself surprised by this one.

Favorite moment? Threats in the car and dinner scenes.

Any Best Awards? Best action film, best twists, and best “woke” film of 2021.


4) The Killing of Kenneth Chamberlain

Why is it on the list? Speaking of movies that one wouldn’t have noticed. I didn’t even notice The Killing of Kenneth Chamberlain despite it being nominated for two spirit awards. And I would have been so distraught with myself if I didn’t watch this one for this list, because it is intense, sad, and anger inducing in such a short time period. It is a true story, it is real time, and the dialogue is based on the real events as well since the whole thing was recorded on his side of the door. One of the best movies out there to really drive that ACAB motto home, even if one of them tried to stop it, he didn’t try too much.

Favorite moment? As a tragic film, this is hard, but I guess the window cop scene.

Any Best Awards? Best drama and best true story of 2021 and worst police of 2011


3) Beyond the Infinite Two Minutes

Why is it on the list? (Third time in a row). Oh hey, a movie that I would have never seen except…well, it was actually sent to me as a screener, as a festival movie last year. It is coming out wider this year, and Beyond the Infinite Two Minutes was the most creative movie I have seen this year. Seeing a screen that is yourself two minutes from the future, and then not too long later, two minutes in the past, doesn’t seem like a big window. But the technical skill to pull this off, to prerecord these videos, to set up the timing, it is an ambitious project for a group of unknown people, and it is the type of film that I hope is studied for its brilliance in the future.

Favorite moment? The long look into the future.

Any Best Awards? Best science fiction, best drama, best use of technology, most creative, and best foreign film of 2021.



Why is it on the list? When I saw CODA, I assumed it would actually finish number one on my list. I didn’t know what else was coming after, if anything would knock it down (and it ended up losing to something that came before it, go figure). But CODA is one of those perfect feel good movies. It has lights amount of romance. It has struggle. It has a feel good ending. It has some singing, and it is kind of like a musical but only somewhat. It involves a part of the world a lot of us normies don’t have any clue about. It does clever things with its filming technique. And it makes me cry every time. CODA should be seen by everyone, even with some of its R rated content, I wouldn’t worry too much about showing my own kids. It is sad, heart felt, and just goddamn wonderful.

Favorite moment? Hands down, (or maybe hands up?), Both Sides Now.

Any Best Awards? Best feel good story, best title pun, best “sort of musical”, and best Comedy-Drama of 2021.


1) Bo Burnham: Inside

Why is it on the list? I loved Inside from the moment I saw it the first time on my home screen. I was anticipated for the teaser trailer. And honestly, it was far better than I even expected it to be. It grew on me over time, from an already high standing.

Let me be clear: I think Bo did something here that has honestly never been done before. Sure, stand up specials usually have only one writer/main actor. And sure, movies have been made before by one person doing the whole thing. But this is still different. It is a chronicle of his and a lot of other people’s year, in a year unlike many others. It shows growth and change over that time, from the music and lyric choices. Its slow descent into more and more madness and apathy, starting with funny haha clever jokes to more extreme pieces of music. Bo has done a great job in the past of opening up, but he has never felt more open. I hope it is all sincere, and I feel like we as a society are better for those who have seen it and also opened up their own feelings. Inside is raw. Inside shows Bo’s inside. Nothing sexual. Just feelings.

And if anyone does anything like this in the future, it will always be compared to Bo’s. I can’t see anything similar topping this either, without standing on the shoulders of this project as a comparison.

Favorite moment? Welcome to the Internet and All Eyes on Me.

Any Best Awards? Best stand-up special, best “documentary”, best soundtrack, best “documentary musical”, best song, best “comedy film”,  and best FILM of 2021.


Thanks for reading! If you disagree with part of this list, let me know. If there is something I missed, let me know (but I probably saw it and reviewed it on this very site!

And as always, I accept hate mail via the post office, email, or tweets.

Dr. Seuss Experience

The Dr. Seuss experience is currently in Houston, Texas until August 15, and tickets and information can be found here.

Seuss, Seuss, everyone loves Dr. Seuss. Some people love it enough to use it as a political pawn for some reason. Here is a clip of Ted Cruz reading from Green Eggs and Ham so you can have a little bit of annoyance in your life.

When I found out that there was something called a Dr. Seuss Experience coming to Houston, I was curious. I had been getting ads for this for months, and when I looked it up, I still really didn’t understand what the hell it actually was. Weird buzz words like the next big Instagram trend. And some pictures. But also…what is it really? I don’t want to keep asking. I want answers. So I went with my kids.

First of all, it is much smaller than I expected. It is meant to have rooms and themes from nine famous Dr. Seuss books. The beginning large section that connects the rest of them is a large “balloon” maze, with words hidden on them, to help complete a phrase from Oh, The Places You’ll Go!, which is optional like everything else. You don’t have to use the maze to get to any other room, but it is still the central hub, and presumably the place where the costumed individuals will hang out.

For the rest of the rooms, I will separate them into The Good, the Okay, and the Bad.

This cat in the hat stands on a throne of lies, not games!

The Good:

The Lorax Rooms: The Lorax room had three parts to it, one with a Onecler wanting to tell you a tale and giving you a path, to see the desolation of the forests, or just go to the beautiful not destroyed trees. The desolation section doesn’t really have much going on in in it, nor did the entrance, but the room with the Truffula trees is gorgeous. They have a few of them, there are swings, and the color scheme of the lights makes you feel like you are in a dream.

The Grinch Room: This room is medium sized, with a darker hue with Christmas lights and stars lighting it all up. This room is actually a game, with a large central piece representing presents The Grinch had stolen. It has an ever moving wheel around it with about 20 or so boxes. The goal is to use basic fish hooks to hook presents from the center ring, to bring back to your teams side. This thing is automated, in that it is a 60second game, with a timer for you to see, and after it finishes with a small delay, it will continue regardless of anyone being there at all.

The fishing was hard, the time limit was stupid, and it was dumb to be automated since they had people in there anyways, but it still was fun to get to try and do something. We had more fun when we ignored it and just tried the fishing aspect of the present hunting, which depending on how full it is, could be hard to do.

The true meaning of Christmas is always presents.

The Okay:

If I Ran A Circus Room: This one can stay okay, despite being a bit disappointing. There are two components to it. The large component is a swing carousel, that mostly fits the young only. Not that you’d want to ride it, because it goes incredibly slow around. You can easily walk faster at a regular pace than this thing ended up spinning.

There is also a wheel to spin! It has no prizes. Just pictures from the books, with a guide to act a certain way if something comes up. Really basic, but you can tell there was some level of effort in this one, even if the individual items themselves are bit disappointing.

Wocket in Pocket Room: The point of this room, which is a fully decked out living room from the book, is to listen to the narrator describe funny things around the room. Strangely enough, we don’t get any actual wockets in pockets. There is a Nink in the Sink, and things like that. Kids can run around to try to find what is being described, and some of the items are interactive, like the books on the bookshelf or various cabinet drawers. Not a whole lot to do here, but the aesthetic is nice, and a sofa you can sit on with a Bofa, so that is fun.

Did I Ever Tell You How Lucky You Are Room: This is a room that is likely the most interactive. There are three-four elements that one can interactive. A random device on the wall that you can put balls through that will split them back out. A device that makes some balls float. A wall with gears on it that you can take off and rearrange and still gear them. And some big car thing, that is supposed to do something, but didn’t do anything in when we were there. When they told our kids they can remove the gears, my youngest picked up a decoration gear on another wall, and thought it was okay. They definitely panicked about that.

Although there is multiple interactions in this room, this book itself is such a weird one to pick given other famous Seuss books that were ignored. I haven’t read this in awhile, so I don’t remember how the objects in this one actually related to the book. Hopefully they did. But thematically, this one screamed out the weakest theme .

I’ve seen people riot over getting a chance to spin a wheel.

The Bad:

Cat in the Hat Room: That’s right. The Cat in the Hat room is bad. It has decorations all around it on the side, books and stools and tables on top of each other and placed in a way to be clearly a decoration. We have a Cat in the Hat in the corner, as a decoration, and an animated fish in a bowl who talks occasionally. The attendant told us to make a mess, it is okay, and all that meant is to take some colorful handkerchiefs and throw them around. There were two large boxes in the middle that would shoot up air when the attendant hit a button, so you could throw them up on it, and…that was it.

Like, there is nothing else to do. A room with a border that didn’t have interactions, and talking fish cartoon, and place to throw around handkerchiefs. I can see photos on their site of that room with people moving around stools/books/etc but that was definitely not something happening in my experience. What a waste.

Horton Hears a Who Room:  The room here looks great, and can be fun to crawl around in. It has these plant/bushes all around so they could crawl through them. The point of the room is to listen for the Who, and find them, a whisper or a faint sound.

I have no idea if that room even worked. We looked for awhile, as did another family, and got nothing. The attendant said that the voice changes where its coming from every once in awhile as well, so she didn’t know where it would be. But after five or so minutes, this is a lot of effort for zero payout. (If we heard the whisper, it would have not felt worth it either).

Sneeches Room: The biggest let down by far. We were excited for Sneeches. And what we got was a room with, maybe up to 20 Sneeches? Probably less. But with nothing to do in those rooms. When you enter, you can go in a 6 ft by 6 ft square roughly, one of those plastic barriers, with the Sneeches around you. And then they just have mirrors on all the walls and behind you. So it looks like there is a lot of Sneeches. If you arms are long, and take bad pictures because of the mirrors, and then you will be disappointed and leave.

Why did the Onceler have to mess this place up?

Overall, the only thing to point out is that this exhibit should have Dr. Seuss characters show up in costumes to interact with the youth and families. I could tell from the pictures it should be at least Cat in the Hat and Thing 1/2, but they also said Grinch and Lorax!

My family was there for almost two hours, and in the first 30 minutes we got to see The Lorax, and after that, nothing else. That is extremely disappointing. How long would one have to wait for these guys for pictures? The site says it should only take about an hour to experience it all, but to take your time. You’d expect this to be part of the experience. How long do you have to wait to get to see a Grinch for pictures? It was another aspect that left us disappointed.

Also the gift shop was very odd, as nothing had prices on it, which is a pretty scummy tactic, making us go back to ask for specific item prices and let our kids know that things are marked up so high.

This was an overall okay experience. But I got to go into it for free, and have my parking paid for. If I had to pay for it, I would likely be furious by this whole thing. More than $30 for an adult ticket is ridiculous, with a kids ticket being somewhere in the $20s. It’s not ridiculously expensive, but it is more expensive than the value gained from the experience. Don’t even bother with a VIP experience ticket. All of my experiences with this had limited number of people in each rooms, so I am not sure how much more limited it would allow, since they are keeping people allowed in low for COVID reasons right now.

2 out of 4.

Disappointed!” – Hercules

Worst Films of 2020


This was a bit of a harder list to make, because honestly, I didn’t put a lot of effort into my worst of the year list after I knew I had a solid 15. The one that really should have made this list is definitely Brahms: The Boy II, if anything by title alone.

15) Max Cloud

Why is it on the list? I went in hoping that Max Cloud would become an indie hidden gem, a simple plot about being sucked into a video game, but it never delivered. As a comedy, I never laughed. As a fan of video games, it never really felt like one either. As a fan of campy 90’s superhero things, it fell flat on that as well. There might be worse movies out there in 2020, but I like to make sure on my lists I include films that weren’t popular as well, because there are quite a few like this out there.
Least favorite moment? The scenes where we see the bad guys talking and planning.
Any Worst Awards? Worst Sci-Fi film of 2020.


14) The War with Grandpa

Why is it on the list? It is very clear that Robert De Niro gave up worrying about his acting legacy a decade ago, and agrees to random garbage because it is easy to collect fat paychecks. Some people probably see movies because they liked him in the gangster films, so let’s see him kill a kid. Oh, they don’t kill a kid in this movie? Fineeeee. Instead, this is just another film where coincidences and accidents move the plot when convenient, and where violence and shenanigans are glorified for absolutely pointless reasons.
Least favorite moment? The Christmas themed birthday party.
Any Worst Awards? Worst war of 2020.


13) John Henry

Why is it on the list? Honestly, I wanted this to be amazing. I didn’t go in hoping for crap! I love Terry Crews, and I want Terry Crews to be John Henry, why not, he has the look. But this movie was made with plot on the backburner. They wanted a modern story where a guy took a sledgehammer and stopped something or beat something with it. In this case, some drug car. And the journey was not worth the ending. 
Least favorite moment? 
Look, any moment he is not doing some sledgehammer stuff (99.99% of the movie) is the worst. 
Any Worst Awards?
Worst use of a folk hero in a modern setting of 2020.


12) Dolittle

Why is it on the list? Do I have to explain this one? As soon as the first poster dropped and was shown to be coming out in January, we all collectively knew it would be bad. RDJ was going to get a fat cash of money for starring in this zany kids movie that would suck. I avoided it for as long as I could, but my dedication to my craft meant I had to watch it and by golly, is this just a slow nonsense piece of poo. 
Least favorite moment?
 The initial secluded compound really set the tone early for how shitty this movie would plateau at. 
Any Worst Awards?
Worst remake that no one asked for of 2020.


11) Fantasy Island

Why is it on the list? I took forever to watch this one and remember people absolutely ragging on it in February. This movie had no pandemic problems. When I watched it first, I thought it was bad, but not the worst. Then it got a little bit better. Then it got a whole lot worse by the end. It very much is a film that goes crashing down for trying to do too many twists and turns. Gotta keep it simple, especially if you want to franchise. 
Least favorite moment? 
The last twists and the dark eyed zombies. 
Any Worst Awards?
Worst television show revival turned horror movie of 2020.


10) Buddy Games

Why is it on the list? With a cast like this, there were a lot of people I enjoy in things (and then there was Nick Swardson who I no longer really enjoy in things) so I thought this would be a fun romp if anything. Unfortunately, the plot is shit, the acting is shit, and honestly, the rules about their competition never really end up making sense. If there are rounds, we should be able to tell who is winning and who will be in the finals, but it felt really random. Extreme amounts of basic jokes later with physical humor, and you get this movie from the early 2000’s. 
Least favorite moment?
I’ll keep it simple and go with the final three competition.
Any Worst Awards? 
Worst “sports” movie of 2020.


9) The Turning

Why is it on the list? Look, in a pandemic year, horror shouldn’t have a lot of bad titles. They are cheaper to make, they can be done with a few people, and you know, horror. But because of all of this, it is also low hanging fruit, so there are a lot of duds. While watching this one, I really couldn’t tell you the main plot. Tutor gets spooked by kids? I guess? It just has a forgettable a dull plot, there is no reason to even think of revisiting it to figure out the point. 
Least favorite moment?
Most scenes with Finn Wolfhard.
Any Worst Awards? 
Worst horror movie of 2020!


8) Infamous

Why is it on the list? Has social media gone so far? Yes. Our main character wants to be internet famous so much that she is willing to do anything to get that notoriety. Well, not make an OnlyFans, anything but that (also real life reference). So they do crimes and post it online in masks to get famous? Oh goodness no. I don’t want to watch a film about that, pretend to idolize that, or even care if the characters learn a lesson about that (they don’t). Get that weak stuff out of here.
Least favorite moment? When our main character decided showing their face on her social media was totally worth it. 
Any Worst Awards? 
Worst use of social media on screen in 2020.


7) Superintelligence

Why is it on the list? If you want to make a movie about modern technology and AI’s becoming advanced enough to affect anything it wants in the world around it tech wise? Sure, I am fine with that. But this film decides to go the AI and do nothing worthwhile. It wants to study a human and makes her life better and challenges her to do things, then we get some big threats, and then the movie ends. They forgot to add an exciting plot, however. 
Least favorite moment? 
When it goes from incredibly low stakes to high stakes to low stakes. 
Any Worst Awards? 
Worst James Corden and worst maybe evil AI of 2020.


6) The Last Days of American Crime

Why is it on the list? Slogging in at 149 minutes, The Last Days of American Crime presents a not too distant future where crime will be eradicated thanks to some mind control chips. It is so bloated and features twists, but really, this is the type of film that would benefit from a quick clean crisp story. I lost interest so fast, it is like the inverse of a credit card for college students.
Least favorite moment? The general plot line of this movie honestly feels very insulting in terms of “dystopian futures” to be honest. 
Any Worst Awards?
Worst crime, worst based on a graphic novel, and worst “long film” of 2020.


5) Guest House

Why is it on the list? Pauly Shore hasn’t acted in something as a character for a long time, and this is his triumphant return. It is more R rated and lewd and even worse than the films that made him famous. At least those other films had funny moments or interesting characters. This one is just debauchery for the sake of it, with a piss poor plot to boot. This will not be a triumphant return to cinema, and it wont be COVID’s fault.
Least favorite moment? The party scene in the backyard that led to an arrest felt particularly egregious.
Any Worst Awards? Worst resurgence of a 90’s star and worst comedy of 2020.


4) Artemis Fowl

Why is it on the list? I won’t go into how this movie is so different than the books, because I never read the books. That is indifferent to me. It is, however, and objectively bad movie. The characters, the plot, the graphics, the action, all mold together into a big ball of who gives a fuck. I don’t care about the lore if the lore and story are bad. If the lore is also unoriginal, it is hard to care later. But with a lead that has the charisma of cold spoon, there’s nothing for me in this fantasy spy picture.
Least favorite moment? Colin Farrell is in this one. Why though?
Any Worst Awards? Worst graphics, worst spy, and worst fantasy of 2020.


3) The Last Thing He Wanted

Why is it on the list? This movie is probably the lowest (highest?) rated of the bunch that you probably missed. I know I never noticed it until I looked for bad movies. This one was on Netflix. It is going for a cool journalism “all the government is corrupt” angle that a lot of movies go for. Except this one lacked any excitement. Or real stakes. Or great acting. Some big names, but oof, what a stinker and a sleeper. 
Least favorite moment?
The dreadful ending that got us through the final twist. 
Any Worst Awards?
Worst stacked cast, worst thriller, and worst journalism of 2020.


2) Trump Card

Why is it on the list? I hope you didn’t expect this movie to not be on the list. Every movie Dinesh D’Souza will ever make will likely make these lists. It is too easy at this point. A documentary full of lies and gaslighting? A documentary trying to say obvious falsehoods like Trump isn’t a racist or sexist? During an ELECTION year? Get out of here with your bullshit. Begone
Least favorite moment?
He used the city I live in as a backdrop to pretend that Trump cares for LGBTQ+ rights. 
Any Worst Awards? 
Worst movie to heavily feature the director, worst propaganda piece, and worst documentary of 2020.


1) The Kissing Booth 2
Why is it on the list? Ah, Joey King, one of my newest and strongest films. Bringing down films one at a time. This isn’t a film that is bad because of Joey King though, it is bad for every single minute the film it is on, and Joey King is also bad in it. This is a sequel that shouldn’t be happening to one of the worst films of 2018. And they didn’t even give a full movie this time, forcing me to watch another installment in 2021. Well, I will save a space for that one on my next list as well. 
Least favorite moment?
Only one? Well, I didn’t get to do a review of this one (I still could I guess) so here are a few. The cheating, the cliffhanger, the ridiculous way the lead treats the people around her, the subplots, the forced attempt at making this film have anything really to do with kissing booths. 
Any Worst Awards? 
Worst romance, worst film based on a book, worst sequel, worst Netflix release, and worst film of 2020!


Thanks for reading! If you disagree with part of this list, let me know. If there is something I missed, let me know (but I probably saw it and reviewed it on this very site!

And as always, I accept hate mail via the post office, email, or tweets.

Best Films of 2020

Here are not only the films that made 4 out of 4 on my website from 2020 movies, but also ones that I struggled to see if I could include on the list. Surprisingly, three of these are documentaries (with two documentaries also making the top 15).

The Prom, Feels Good Man, Words on Bathroom Walls, The Fight, and Boys State.

15) The Wolf of Snow Hallow
Why is it on the list? The second film from Jim Cummings, it reflects and carries on many of the themes from his first film, Thunder Road. It is doing it in a different genre this time, but it feels like the same character, experiencing some amount of growth, with still a big set of issues. If you want to experience a long panic attack along with the main character, this film really makes you feel antsy.

Favorite moment? The townspeople interrogations and the many breakdowns.

Any Best Awards? Best film starring the guy who wrote and directed it also of 2020. [Surprisingly not the best “werewolf” movie of 2020?]


Over the Moon
Why is it on the list? Despite being a film I thought I would just brush off, it took me away with its passion and heart that it presented in the beginning of the movie. The loss and the longing felt by the lead was so strong, I was captivated the rest of the film. It goes into basic animation territory in the middle, and I don’t love the graphics on the moon too much, but it also nails the emotional payoff of the ending, and the reason for the entire journey.

Favorite moment? The Rocket to the Moon scene and montage.

Any Best Awards? Best film-I-thought-would-be-terrible-but-I-actually-loved-and-cried-during-multiple-times and best film featuring a song about ping pong of 2020.


13) Collective
Why is it on the list? I love documentaries. I am less likely to say I love foreign movies, but I do like watching foreign movies in theaters. I didn’t get to see this one in theaters. But it still captivated me from beginning to end. A sports magazine did some reports on a tragic event, and this hero journalist for them kept up with it, finding layers of governmental corruption? Holy shit. Is this made up? This is their watergate scandal. Good job Romania. Well, bad job for the corruption, good job for the journalism.

Favorite moment? Every new reveal and escalation as things grew more corrupt.

Any Best Awards? Best foreign film and best foreign documentary film of 2020.


12) Palm Springs
Why is it on the list? Palm Springs, to me, was a breath of fresh air. It took a couple of months during quarantine for movies to still start to come out slowly on streaming services, and I know that Palm Springs came out in a pretty busy weekend. I expected nothing and would have never known of its existence without others letting me know, and what it did to the genre was very unique and worth the set up to discover. Our leads were wonderful together, and it also hyped up science, so what is not to love?

Favorite moment? The initial reveal with what the hell was going on, the physics montage, and the J.K. Simmons home visit.

Any Best Awards? Best science fiction film of 2020.


11) Promising Young Woman
Why is it on the list? This is an interesting movie for me, because honestly, I went back and fourth which how much I liked it. Part of me was upset about a few aspects, part of me loved everything. And that is really why it dropped out of the top 10. I love the performance from Carey Mulligan, I love how the story goes against expectations of the plot line and really keeps the viewers guessing. The ending is completely unbelievable as well.

Favorite moment? The daughter abduction.

Any Best Awards? Best film surprise third act of 2020.


10) Sound of Metal
Why is it on the list? If I didn’t first hear about this film from other critics, I would have assumed not much going into this film, and probably skilled it. I loved Riz Ahmed as the lead, and his journey from sound to lack of sound. The meanings of the title, how they incorporated hearing loss, and the use of sign language make this a film

Favorite moment? The audio tricks and the real deaf actors.

Any Best Awards? Best film featuring sign language and best film featuring metal in 2020.


9) Minari
Why is it on the list? Minari comes in quiet, and stays relatively quietly throughout the picture, but feels like an old friend you haven’t seen in a long time. It is familiar, but it has a unique air to its story. It is well acted, without having to be showy about how well acted it is. It tells a story about hope, success, failures, and relationships and growing up in a specific place, in a specific time. Most of us can probably say we don’t have the same experiences as the main character in this film, and it gives a unique look into a unique story of history.

Favorite moment? The fire and the crop successes/failures.

Any Best Awards? Best film that uses subtitles occasionally, and best film set in Arkansas of 2020.


8) Spontaneous
Why is it on the list? Spontaneous is certainly not a movie I expected to be on my top list when I started it, nor did I know about it going into it. I saw a single post about its existence, months after its release date and just decided to give it a whirl. And what a whirl it was. I’ve only seen Katherine Langford in other projects, never as the lead, and she absolutely blows this movie up with her performance. And it was nice to see Charlie Plummer as well, in his second movie based on a YA romance novel released this year. Damn, he made me cry in both films as well.

Favorite moment? The entire romance and the dwindling class size.

Any Best Awards? Best YA novel adaptation and best romance of 2020.


7) One Night in Miami
Why is it on the list? Although about a fictions conversation, the men in equation where all real and presumably pretty accurate towards their thoughts and feelings on various topics discussed in the film. I wouldn’t have ever dreamed about bringing together these four names for a night of conversation and camaraderie, but that is one of the many reasons I am not a playwright or screenwriter. The discussions they had in the film resonate with today, and it becomes a wonderful learning and emotional experience.

Favorite moment? When the power went out at the show.

Any Best Awards? Best first time director and best discourse of 2020.


6) The Trial of the Chicago 7
Why is it on the list? At this point, it’d probably be really hard for me to not absolutely love an Aaron Sorkin movie. He is directing more so that does add some potential problems, like Molly’s Game wasn’t his best work. But this is some of his best work for sure, carried by the strength of the actors and the dialogue. Like Molly’s Game, some of the problems lie with the director choices, and he should hopefully get better.

Related, and cheating this onto the list, this film pairs really well with Mangrove, also available on streaming, and something you should see as well.

Favorite moment? The mistrial scene and the grammar epiphany scene.

Any Best Awards? Best ensemble cast and best Aaron Sorkin of 2020.


5) Wolfwalkers
Why is it on the list? First of all, have you seen their previous work? The Breadwinner and Song of the Sea? Both amazing, with wonderful animation. This one takes the cake and is their best work. From the cinematography to the story it is so full of wonder and magic. The main characters are both strong and unique in their own rights, but lets go back to the ANIMATION oh my goodness, gorgeous. Like stained glass windows some times. Fuck, Wolfwalkers blows out all of the animated competition this year, by far.

Favorite moment? The split scene cinematography and the art style in general.

Any Best Awards? Best animated film, best foreign film (Irish), and best fantasy film of 2020.


4) Totally Under Control
Why is it on the list? This one is pretty easy to talk about and explain. Hey look, a documentary about the 2020 pandemic, and the lack of leadership from the American government. It has first hand accounts from people involved in teams that were supposed to work and repeatedly got hindered for reasons. This only deals with a few months of the response too, and can’t wait (unfortunately) for the sequels that give us the informed part two and or three of these chucklefucks in charge who have no regard for human life.

Favorite moment? The dirt on the white house planning team volunteers who were told to stop the virus.

Any Best Awards? Best political documentary (there were quite a few this year…) and best documentary of 2020.


3) Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
Why is it on the list? Strong strong strong. This film is led by Viola Davis who transformed herself to play the lead, and Chadwick Boseman, who shined brightly as the smooth talking upstart looking to advance his own career. Based on an August Wilson play, quite obviously, the many cast members work together to tell a quick story but one with passion and justice in mind. I don’t know who will be nominated for best actor, but if Boseman is, I have a good chance of supporting it, despite his unfortunate early passing.

Favorite moment? The stutter success and fail and the conclusion.

Any Best Awards? Best play to film, best non-live musical performance, and best dialogue of 2020!


2) Hamilton
Why is it on the list? This is definitely a film I didn’t expect to be on this list early in 2020, because damn it, this was supposed to come out in 2021. But thanks to other delays, they decided to release this one really early, and, It. Is. Perfection. I saw this the most out of movies released last year, and I’d watch it again in almost any moment (assuming I had the time for it). Something that can always pick me up, and the result of years of hard work, it deserves everything and more.

Favorite moment? One Last Time, The Ending, and Farmer Refuted (so much better visually).

Any Best Awards? Best soundtrack, best musical, best taping of a live show (sorry David Byrne), and best Lafayette of 2020.


1) Never Rarely Sometimes Always
Why is it on the list? For sure, this one was a hard choice, and yet, an easy choice. I saw this movie in February of 2020 and it absolutely blew me away. It was my number one pick halfway through the year, and it maintained that status despite a good onslaught (eventually) of other films. It did that by telling a realistic and heartfelt story, a powerful story about a struggle many women have or attempt to go through.

The crying questionnaire scene hit me SO HARD and the whole thing wrapped together and made so much more sense. And it did it without having to directly tell you what happened prior to the film, but the pieces are there.

And sure, if anything, this serves as a good antithesis to my 2019 worst film of the year.

Favorite moment? The questionnaire scene where the title comes from.

Any Best Awards? Best drama of 2020, best realistic fiction of 2020, best woman power film of 2020, and best film of 2020.

Thanks for reading! If you disagree with part of this list, let me know. If there is something I missed, let me know (but I probably saw it and reviewed it on this very site!

And as always, I accept hate mail via the post office, email, or tweets.

Interview with Steve Byrne – Director of “The Opening Act”

[Editor’s note: This was meant to be a video interview and going great, until about the last two minutes. Then my computer froze. Much embarrassment. It was finished on a phone where I had to write down answers on notes. Most of the interview the phrasing is accurate as the audio recording saved, magically.]

Review of The Opening Act can be seen here!


Gorgon Reviews: Thanks for stopping by Steve.

Steve Byrne: Thank you for having me, I appreciate it!

GR: First question, what is the first movie you remember seeing in theaters growing up?

SB: Superman! Directed by Richard Donner, starring Christopher Reeve, that’s the first film I remember seeing.

GR: You are the first person I’ve interviewed who had that answer just ready to go, usually people are caught off guard and have to think for awhile.

SB: (laughs) Well its my favorite movie of all time, I remember seeing it, yeah.

GR: Do you remember how old you were?

SB: Well, I must have been 3 or 4 at the time, I just remember a second of it. I remember seeing it. And then I remember seeing it on TV when I was a little kid too, and just being enamored by it. And to this day it is probably one of my favorite films.

GR: Steve, what movie made you cry the most?

SB: (Cringes) Okay this is going to be embarrassing, and I am sure you heard this before from other people. I’ve only seen my father cry once before in my life, and it was when his father died, and my daughter has seen me cry during episodes of Shark Tank, okay?


GR: I let loose pretty easily. I would say I’ve seen Up quite a bit, and and that first 8 minutes of Up has gotten to me every single time. EVERY single time I watch that. And it is on quite a bit in our household, I just get misty eyed.

GR: I am surprised I got such a real answer there, because that question was in your stand up special almost a decade and a half ago. (Steve laughs again). So you had an episode of Comedy Central Presents in the mid-2000s and at the beginning of your movie, you featured a lot of clips from that series. How much did that show mean to you and help advance your own career?

SB: Comedy Central Presents was the first thing I had, at the time it was like, all the young comics in New York City, and across the country, it was their first real kind of break. And for sure that was my first break. Absolutely, without a doubt.

That and BET’s ComicView. (Laughs a lot). I did ComicView twice for some reason, I don’t know how I ended up there, but I got a standing ovation the first time I did it. So that has probably something to do with it. And I got a lot of college work out of it. But Comedy Central Presents was the cool one. I was like, “Yeah, alright, I made it. I’m on my way!”

GR: I watched a lot of those myself during that time so when they all started flashing across the beginning of the movie, I realized I’ve seen all those specials, and that is when it clicked that I knew your name before from your special there.

GR: Stand up and acting have a lot of similarities, but what made you want to transition to directing instead?

SB: Well, I, wrote this script, as an exercise, just to see if I could write a screenplay, if I’d have the discipline to do it. And I thought, well, if I am going to invest my time in writing something, why not write about something that I want to see, and I’ve never seen something from A-Z a film about stand up comedy.

So I just wanted to write about that, and then when it was actually being made, Vince Vaughn [Producer] asked me “Do you want to be in it? It’s being made, what do you want to do?” and I knew I was too old to be the MC of the feature and I am too young to be the headliner. So I thought, “To hell with it, I’m just glad it is being made!” So he said, “Why don’t you direct it?” and I had never directed anything before but he said, “Well you never wrote anything before either, but now you did it, and it’s your story, so direct it!” So I said okay. Never contemplating how overwhelming it was, but I am glad I did it, I am glad I was the purveyor of this story, and I’m really proud of it.

GR: Ah, never had any intentions of being a director until it happened.

SB: Exactly, I knew if it ever got made I’d be too old to play a kid in his 20’s, going on the road for the first time, but I wanted to write a film about a kid driving to Las Vegas for his very first time in his 20’s. Not a man driving home from Vegas in his 50’s. Which uhh, could have been me.


GR: How much of this was based on your own life?

SB: Oh the minute Will hits the road in the film, everything that has happened in the movie has happened to me. That’s why you can’t make this stuff up. All the comics that are in it, they’ve said the same three things to me after they screened it. 1) I loved it, 2) It was so authentic, and 3) And you just retriggered horrible memories from the first few years of my comedy career, now I need to go see my therapist again. So I was really happy to hear that.

GR: How did you pick Jimmy Yang for the lead of this film?

SB: (Sighs), Well, I didn’t pick Jimmy Yang, he held me up at gun point, after a missed connection on Craig’s List, he met me in Wal-Mart,

GR: And he said “Gimme Dat Dick!”

SB: That’s right, yeah, “Gimme Dat Diiiick!”. Good call back by the way. [Editor’s note: That is a quote from the movie.]

SB: When you’re casting this, because it was semi-autobiographical, I thought I might as well cast somebody that kind of looks like me, and I didn’t do it for diversity sake, I hate when people do that, I hate when people make it an agenda, it is certainly not that. But there are very few stand up comedians that are Asian, and there are very few stand up comic Asians that are also working actors, so Jimmy was the first one we went to, Jimmy took it and I didn’t have to talk to anyone else after that.

GR: Was there any celebrity that was the inspiration behind Billy G?

SB: Ah yes, there was an inspiration behind Billy G. His name is Billy G, because he was named after Billy Gardell. And most people know Billy Gardell from the show Mike and Molly, I’ve had a lot of mentor’s along the way, and I’ve had a lot of people give me sage advice, and I toured with Billy Gardell, along with brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

[Editor’s Note: This is when my computer froze. I know, in the middle of a probably touching answer. Once my compute restarted, it also decided to do an update and I realized it was a lost cause, but Steve waited for me to get back on Zoom on my phone, and we finished the interview there.]

GR: Okay, one of the things I really appreciate is the is that all of the side characters in this film have personality and a reason for existing, without still taking away from Will’s story. The DJ is mysterious and crazy, but it never gets fully explained. Chad is an interesting comic, the girlfriend is actually supportive the whole time…and then there is Chip. What is up with Chip?

SB: (Laughs) Well, Chip is like the gatekeeper to Will’s dreams. He is the one who ultimately is giving Will a shot by letting him MC at the club, and there are a lot of managers like that who have to book for multiple clubs across the country, so if Will can succeed, it leads to a lot more opportunity. And uhh, he is based on two managers in particular, ones who pushed a lot of boundaries.

GR: You mentioned earlier that all of these things happened to you. So you had the radio interview gone wrong, the hecklers and all of that?

SB: YES! In Raleigh, NC was the story about going to the trailer park with the girl who had a, well, Marine boyfriend. The Radio interview was from LA, and the hecklers was in Dallas.
[Editor’s Note: I hope I got the cities right for that. Damn chicken scratch notes.]

GR: Thank you so much for stopping by to talk Steve, sorry about the tech issues there. The Opening Act opens this weekend at least in The Alamo Drafthouse if not more places.

SB: Thanks for taking time watch and review and give the film some buzz. I appreciate it.