Filmmaking is an art form, and like any other work of art, it’s up for the viewer to decide whether they like it or not. However, there are standard practices and techniques that make some films objectively exceptional, like Citizen Kane and The Godfather. However, just as there are film elements that make some movies inherently good, there are others that make films undeniably terrible. These are the films that missed the mark entirely and are considered to be the worst ever made.
Jaws: The Revenge Killed The Franchise
Jaws: The Revenge, otherwise known as Jaws 4, is the third sequel to Stephen Spielberg’s Jaws, and the final installment in the Jaws franchise. Released in 1987, the film follows a now-widowed Ellen Brody, who is convinced that a great white shark is seeking revenge against her family, even following them to the Bahamas.
Unsurprisingly, the film was not received well by critics and was finished at lightning speed in just nine months. The film received a score of 0% on Rotten Tomatoes, with Roger Ebert commenting that “it is not simply a bad movie, but also a stupid and incompetent one.”
Mac And Me Is Considered A Ripoff
Gracing theaters in 1988, Mac and Me is the story of an alien named Mac (Mysterious Alien Creature), who escapes from a NASA facility and befriends a boy in a wheelchair named Eric Cruise. Together, the two try and find Mac’s long-lost family. Although critics found Jade Calegory’s performance to be respectable, the film bombed at the box office.
The movie was criticized for taking numerous elements from E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial and for its blatant use of product placement for Coca-Cola and McDonald’s. Nominated for four Golden Raspberry Awards, it’s widely considered one of the worst films ever released.
Bolero Tried To Be Progressive And Failed
Released in 1984, Bolero features a newly-popular Bo Derek and was written and directed by her then-husband John Derek. After 23-year-old Ayre “Mac” MacGillvary graduates from a high-end British college, she sets off to find the right man for her first intimate encounter, wherever in the world he may be. The film was released without a rating for its explicit sexual content.
It was nominated for nine Golden Raspberry Awards including Worst Picture, Worst Actress, Worst Director, and Worst Screenplay. It found itself at the Razzies once again in 1990 when it was nominated for the Worst Picture of the Decade. The film made a mere $8.9 million against its $7 million budget.
Return To The Blue Lagoon Is As Uncomfortable As It Sounds
Starring Milla Jovovich and Brian Krause, Return to the Blue Lagoon is a sequel to the 1980 film, The Blue Lagoon. Based on the novel The Garden of Wrath, the film follows two children stranded on an island in the South Pacific.
As they mature, they become emotionally and physically attracted to one another and eventually fall in love. Rotten Tomatoes gave the film a 0% and commented: “Despite its lush tropical scenery and attractive leads, Return to the Blue Lagoon is as ridiculous as its predecessor, and lacks the prurience and unintentional laughs that might make it a guilty pleasure.”
Madhouse Tried Way Too Hard
Madhouse is a 1990 film starring Kristie Alley and John Larroquette. The film follows a stockbroker and his television reporter wife as they live the California dream. However, their lives are turned upside down when they are faced with a number of unwanted house guests.
The couple then teams up to rid themselves of their guests and achieve normality once again. The film received a 0% on Rotten Tomatoes as was described by LA Times critics Michael Wilminton as a film that “grabs you by the lapels and tries to shake the laughs out of you.”
Dream A Little Dream Turned Into A Nightmare
Released in 1989 and starring Corey Feldman and Corey Haim, Dream a Little Dream follows an elderly couple who end up in the bodies of two high school students. People assumed the film would be a success since it starred the ‘two Coreys,’ but they were sadly mistaken.
The film only made a mere $2,500,000 during its opening weekend with the following weekend gross dropping by 51%. Based on the nine reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, the film received a 0%.
The Slugger’s Wife Was A Strikeout
The Slugger’s Wife stars Michael O’Keefe and Risky Business actress Rebecca De Mornay. The 1985 film tells the story of a baseball player who falls in love with a singer. Yet, they aren’t meant to be, as their lives are heading in different directions.
Written by the renowned screenwriter Neil Simon, it was assumed that the film was going to be a hit, but audiences weren’t impressed. On top of a 0% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, TV Guide regarded the movie as “one of the most disappointing, least credible films about baseball in recent memory.”
Staying Alive Disgraced Saturday Night Fever
Staying Alive stars John Travolta, with Sylvester Stallone behind the camera as well as co-writing and co-producing with Saturday Night Fever producer and writer Robert Stigwood, and Norman Wexler.
A sequel to Saturday Night Fever, it was one of the two films Stallone directed and did not star in, although he has a cameo appearance. Somehow, the film was a commercial success, grossing almost $65 million at the US box office. However, it was trashed by critics who deemed it one of the worst sequels ever made.
Police Academy 4: Citizens On Patrol Was The Beginning Of The End of The Franchise
The fourth film in the Police Academy franchise, the 1987 film follows the Police Academy graduates as they’re put in charge to train a new class of recruits. One of the worst-rated Police Academy films, it was also the last appearance made by Steve Guttenberg as Carey Mahoney.
With a score of 0% on Rotten Tomatoes, it’s clear it didn’t live up to the success of the franchise’s previous films. Aside from receiving a 0%, Rotten Tomatoes went even further, calling the film “utterly, completely, thoroughly and astonishingly unfunny.”
Precious Cargo Wasn’t Willis’ Brightest Hour
Although Bruce Willis may be one of the biggest actors of his time, that doesn’t mean every one of his movies is guaranteed to be a success. This was the case for the 2016 film Precious Cargo. The movie follows Bruce Willis as Eddie Filosa, who convinces a crime boss to steal diamonds from another game in exchange for a woman.
Receiving a 0% on Rotten Tomatoes for its unoriginality, critic Peter Sobczynski commented, “You will be hard-pressed to remember anything about it even only a few minutes after watching it, which should come as a relief to everyone involved with its production.”
Not Much Was Expected Of Highlander II: The Quickening
Even though the original Highlander film wasn’t anything to write home about, not doing well critically or commercially, they decided to make a sequel anyway. However, people claimed that the sequel managed to get rid of everything that made the original bearable in the first place.
Released in 1991 and starring Christopher Lambert and Sean Connery, the film was described by Rotten Tomatoes as “hilariously incomprehensible […] Almost hilarious in its badness.” Surprisingly, however, the film grossed more at the box office than the original.
Pinocchio Is Downright Scary
In 1997, Roberto Benigni made a name for himself starring in the film Life is Beautiful which went on to win Best Actor, Best Foreign Language Film, and Best Score at the Oscars. The film put Benigni on the map, leaving many excited about his future career as an actor.
However, things took a turn for the worst when Benigni starred in the live-action Pinocchio in 2002. The English-dubbed version was panned by critics with the film being called “an oddity that will be avoided by millions of people” by The New York Times.
The Bad News Bears Go To Japan Was Embarrassing For The Cast
Sequels don’t always have to be far worse than the original film, but that’s exactly what happened with The Bad News Bears Go to Japan. The third film in the Bad News Bears trilogy, the movie takes the team to test their skills across the Pacific Ocean.
Described by Rotten Tomatoes as “horrendous” and receiving a 0%, even members of the cast knew that the film was terrible. Jackie Earle Haley, who plays Kelly Leak in all three films even called it “the worst movie ever made.”
Dark Tide Led To Dark Times
In 2012, Halle Berry mistakenly starred in Dark Tide, which follows a marine biologist struggling to stay in business after a few of her crew are eaten by sharks. Scarred from her experience, she refuses to go back in the water until she takes an offer from a millionaire for one last dive.
Earning a 0%, critics weren’t shy to share their opinion either. One commented that “no amount of breathtaking cinematography can save Dark Tide from its poor plot and dire dialogue.” Looks like it’s risky business to make a shark movie these days.
American Anthem Did Not Stick The Landing
When an Olympic gold medal-winning gymnast plays the role of a gymnast in the film, you’d figure that it would vastly improve the movie. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen at all in American Anthem, when gold medalist Mitchell Gaylord played Steve Tevere, an ex-football star who gives up gymnastics to work as a motorcycle mechanic.
The film turned out to be a disaster, scoring a 0% on Rotten Tomatoes, and Gaylord earning a Razzie for his performance. At least in 2007, he was named the seventh-best US gymnast of all time.
Gotti Missed The Mark For A Mobster Film
Released in 2018 and starring John Travolta, Gotti is a biographical film about the New York City mobster John Gotti. Overall, the film was a commercial and critical blunder, grossing just $6 million against its production budget of $10 million.
The film was criticized for its choppy editing, resulting in the movie being described as sloppy and boring. Some critics have even suggested that Travolta should have never taken the doomed role in the first place. The film was nominated for six Razzies, including Worst Picture and Worst Actor.
The Ridiculous 6 Turned Out To Be Controversial
It’s no secret that Adam Sandler’s films have taken a turn for the worse in recent years, and one of the best examples of this is The Ridiculous 6. The film follows six strangers coming together in the Wild West after discovering they have the same father and wanting to find him.
Rotten Tomatoes called the movie “a lazy and offensive attempt at a film,” stirring controversy over their depiction of the Apache culture. Released on Netflix in 2015, the film was surprisingly viewed more in 30 days than any other Netflix release, but that didn’t save it from the critics.
Bucky Larson: Born To Be A Star Is As Uncomfortable As It Gets
Produced by Happy Madison Productions, Bucky Larson: Born to be a Star follows a small-town bag boy named Bucky Larson who discovers his parents were famous adult film stars in the 70s. He decides to move to California to follow in his parent’s footsteps to be the next big star.
All 35 critics that reported on the film gave it terrible reviews with one noting that it is a “severely misguided and inept comedy incapable of even telling its single joke properly.” Critic Matt Singer went so far as to say that the movie was “soul-crushing.”
Fred: The Movie Is Painful On The Eyes And Ears
Lucas Cruikshank started out as a YouTube phenomenon. He was so popular, in fact, that Nickelodeon made an entire movie surrounding his character Internet personality, Fred. The film tells the story of Fred who is infatuated with his neighbor Judy, and when she moves away, he embarks on a journey to go find her and sing a duet together.
The film earned a deserving 0% on Rotten Tomatoes with critics and audiences finding the film extraordinarily annoying. One critic even paired it with the highly controversial A Serbian Film as his least favorite viewing experience of the year.
The Garbage Pail Kids Movie Is Sickening
Released in 1987, The Garbage Pail Kids Movie is a live-action film adaptation of the trading cards series. The film features seven of the Garbage Pail Kids who befriend a regular boy and try to assimilate into human society. The film was a box office bomb, earning just $1.6 million compared to it’s $1 million budget.
With a 0% on Rotten Tomatoes, there was also an almost unanimous agreement among critics that it was easily one of the worst movies ever made. Caryn James from The New York Times claimed the film was “too repulsive for children or adults of any age.”