For a man, asking for a list of the “worst romantic comedies of all time” would generally elicit the response: “All of them.” But there are many that even the ladies would agree are wrong — just god-awfully wrong.
Romantic comedies can be tough to pull off. Not only do you need a genuinely original scenario and actors with great chemistry, but you also need a cleverly written script not loaded down with trite, cliched dialogue.
Regrettably, too many filmmakers take the aforementioned list and do exactly the opposite.
Too many romantic comedies fall flat on their faces because current “it” actors are shoehorned into a lame story and given horrific dialogue. Let’s take a disturbing look at some of these movies now …
No. 5: “Gigli”
The casting of “Bennifer” (the oh-so-cute portmanteau of Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez) seemed like a no-brainer. They’re so hot, both separately and together, that they need to headline a movie. Regrettably, it didn’t turn out that way.
In fact, if you were to ask random passersby for an unsolicited list of recent awful movies, 2003’s “Gigli” would top that list.
But it wasn’t the horribly wrong casting of Jen and Ben that’s to blame, it was also the cringe-worthy dialogue (“It’s turkey time. Gobble Gobble.” If you haven’t seen it, count your blessings).
It made it a whole three weeks before it got its mercy flush from theaters. It has the honor of sweeping the Razzie awards that year, but, surprisingly, Affleck didn’t bother to show up for that one.
No. 4: “From Justin to Kelly”
Watching the tweens and teenage girls crying and going crazy over the latest “American Idol” makes you wish you had a time machine where you could zip forward 10 or 20 years, grab the aforementioned teen, drag them back to modern day, and remind them how stupid they looked freaking out for whoever TV told them was a great “musician.”
Kelly Clarkson and Justin Guarini were all the rage in 2003. Now, Guarini is a punch-line and 2003’s “From Justin to Kelly” has a lot to do with that scorn.
The movie had, predictably, horrid dialogue, awful dance numbers, and lip-synching so bad, it made kung fu movies look like Oscar-worthy pieces of work.
It’s enough to make you wonder if Clarkson has ever considered using the profits from her successful post-“Idol” career to buy up and destroy every last copy of the movie. Guarini would probably have to settle for renting a copy.
No. 3: “Good Luck, Chuck”
There’s a reason Dane Cook is so despised — he’s an awful, awful actor and comedian. For some reason, he was able to dig his gnarled claws deeply enough into fame to warrant a movie with super-hottie Jessica Alba.
Remember what we said earlier about the romantic comedy needing a genuinely original scenario? “Original” doesn’t mean “Lame.” Unfortunately, whoever thought up “Good Luck, Chuck” wasn’t listening.
The idea here is that whenever Dane Cooks beds a woman, the very next day she meets the man she will marry. Poor Dane is so downtrodden when he meets Jessica that he doesn’t want to lose her, so he avoids sex with her. The rest writes itself.
If only a writer had written the rest (and a casting director went with someone other than Cook), we’d have a better shot at a decent movie.
No. 2: “The Hottie and the Nottie”
“Paris Hilton is the world’s greatest _________.” You could fill in that blank with a lot of nouns, but “actress” would not be one of them.
Someone was asleep enough at the switch to think that her name would be a good draw to a movie, so they decided to recruit her for 2008’s regrettable “The Hottie and the Nottie.” Big mistake.
The movie was about … um, well, we’re proud to say we never saw it, and neither did the rest of the nation.
It was so bad that it averaged about five people per movie screen and was another flick from this list that swept the Razzies.
Advice for Paris: Stick to paparazzi video or anything where you’re filmed with a night vision camcorder.
No. 1: “Mr. Wrong”
In recent years, Ellen DeGeneres has become a highly respected talk show host. But a few years ago, she was helming her own sitcoms. Before that, she was a stand-up comedienne.
Oh, and she is gay. We all knew that, and no one really cared. But when she decided to make the 1996 flick “Mr. Wrong” with Bill Pullman and Joan Cusack, we couldn’t help but scratch our heads and say, “Why?”
For a romantic comedy (or any movie, for that matter) to work there has to be some plausibility. We have to believe that Superman can fly. We have to believe that a bare-footed Bruce Willis can stop a band of elite international terrorists. We have to believe that Ellen likes men.
Well, “Superman” and “Die Hard” did really well; not so much for Ellen.
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