While there have been a whole host of movies that we have heaped praise on and loved in 2014, there were some that did not live up to expectations and left us feeling a little disappointed. Which movie of the last twelve months left you feeling disappointed?
We take a look at the movies that really didn't deliver what we were expecting… and I have to admit, there were more than I was expecting this year.
The Divergent book series really is a terrific read and the first book in the Veronica Roth trilogy came to the big screen for the first time at the beginning of 2014. Neil Burger was in the director's chair, while Shailene Woodley was on board in the central role of Tris Prior. The impressive cast list was made up of Theo James, Ashley Judd, Kate Winslet, Zoe Kravtiz, and Maggie Q - the name just a few.
The Hunger Games has really set the standard when it comes to young adult adaptations that are set in a dystopian society, and while Divergent tries to rival this established franchise, I am afraid it does fall a little flat. Of course, Divergent is the first film in a planned franchise and because it is trying to hard to lay the foundations for those future movies, it almost forgets that it needs to entertain in its own right.
Perhaps it tries a little too hard to be the next major young adult franchise rather than just being an adaptation of a great book. Tris Prior and Four are two of the franchises best and most interesting characters and this movie focuses more on the relationship between the two rather than each character in their own right. Tris is trying to settle into her own life and figure out who she is, while Four is still struggling with things from his past - two incredibly interesting elements in the book that didn't quite translate well to the big screen.
Divergent was a box office hit when it was released back in March, but it didn't quite live up to the dizzy box office heights that perhaps were expected. Insurgent is set to be released in March this year, and the trailer already has some fans of the box complaining - what is it with that weird box? That is not pat of the second novel and I fear that this franchise is going to veer severely off course. I guess we are going to have to wait and see.
The original RoboCop was a bit of an eighties classic - even if I did watch it far too young and it scared me for life. I have to admit, I am surprised that it has taken until 2014 to see this film remade - it appears that Hollywood would rather remake just about anything rather than pen an original screenplay.
Anyway, Jose Padilha was back in the director's chair, while Joel Kinnaman took on the central role of Alex Murphy. Gary Oldman, Michael Keaton, and Abbie Cornish were also on board. If you are expecting a movie that will rival the adult only, super violent eighties film, then you are going to be left disappointed. Rated a 12A this is definitely much milder than its predecessor - that may come as a major left down for many.
Having said that, thee is no denying that it is fast paced and super sleek - if you are looking for a blockbuster to just kick back and enjoy, then his really does tick all of the boxes. This movie is packed with some terrific action sequences and they are really the highlight of the film; the battle between RoboCop and the drones at the end of the movie is particular good.
This is by no means the worst film that I have seen this year - far from it - but it just didn't live up to my expectations. I understand that having a lower certificate does open up the film to a wider audience, but everything that was in your face and shocking about the original has gone and you are left with a bit of a generic film, which is a major shame.
- The Monuments Men
I think that George Clooney has made some great movies in recent years with the likes of Good Night and Good Luck and the Ides of March under his belt - he really has made a seamless transition to filmmaker. I always look forward to his directing projects and The Monuments Men was no different. The Monuments Men was based on the book by Robert M. Edsel and Bret Witter and saw Clooney on the cast list alongside Matt Damon, Matt Damon, Cate Blanchett, John Goodman, Jean Dujardin and Hugh Bonneville.
The movie is based on the incredible story of a World War II platoon that is tasked with rescuing artistic masterpieces from the Nazis. This film's greatest strength is that it is telling a very different war story than we have seen before. Clooney doesn't depict the frontline and the bloody battles, instead focusing on this unique and forgotten tale. The story of The Monuments Men is one that has almost been lost, and it is fantastic to see this tale finally told.
This is the kind of film that I desperately want to rave about, as the cast is top notch and the premise is incredibly original and has bags of potential. Don't get me wrong, I did like this film, but I was just expecting something more. The movie skips from moment to moment and scene to scene and just lacks some cohesion as well as drive and urgency. However, it is an incredibly intriguing movie that mixes comedy, drama, and elements of heist.
The cast are on top form and there is a great bond between them, which results in much of the film's humour. But it was just a little lacking that something and that makes The Monuments Men quite a frustrating and unsatisfying watch. The ingredients for a terrific movie are all there but Clooney has just failed to bring them all together, which is a major shame.
- American Hustle
American Hustle was one of the most raved about movies at the beginning of 2014, as it won over the critics and picked up a whole host of Oscar nominations. For the life of me I cannot understand what everyone loves about this film - it really was the most disappointing film of the year for me hands down.
The movie saw David O. Russell back in the director's chair, while Christian Bale, Bradley Cooper, Amy Adams, Jennifer Lawrence, and Jeremy Renner made up the all-star and super talented cast list - however, even they were not enough to save this film for me.
Despite the fine performances from the entire cast, for me, these characters are just not compelling enough. They all have their interesting moments, but that interest is not built on or held by the script. On top of all that, the script does feel a little out of control as there is con after con after con, and it ends up a little convoluted and muddled.
The main problem that I had with this movie was I was bored rigid by it. I was expecting something that was fast paced and slick, instead I got a movie that believed it was funnier and cleverer than it actually was. I really didn't expect to dislike this movie as much as I did.
It really has been a very poor year for the horror genre and Annabelle was possibly the most disappointing of the lot. I suppose that it was inevitable that a spin off was on the cards after the success of The Conjuring - which happens to have been the good horror movie I saw on the big screen - and despite promising trailers, it really didn't live up to my hopes.
The Conjuring really was a classic old-school horror movie that built the tension scene by scene rather than relying on cheap scares - shame director John R. Leonetti didn't take a leaf out of James Wan's book when making Annabelle. This is just a lazy horror movie that takes aspects from other films in this genre rather than creating an identity for itself.
Sadly, it is quite poorly written and you get nothing more than a couple of scares. Annabelle was a character that was briefly introduced in The Conjuring and has the potential to be a very creepy film if handled properly - I am sure fans of the 2013 will be disappointed that they were not given more from this film and this character.
Annabelle is lacking scares, tension, atmosphere, and a great story - key ingredients if you are to create a horror film that will have audiences jumping out of their seats or sends a chill running down their spine. All the ingredients for a great horror movie were there, but it seems that poor writing and laziness were the two major aspects as to why this movie failed so spectacularly.
- Cuban Fury
We have been treated to some great British movies over the last twelve months, but Cuban Fury was one that really disappoint as it wasn't the laugh out loud comedy that I really was expecting it to be. British comedy movies have always been a treat and we have seen Nick Frost star in quite a few in recent years - sadly, Cuban Fury was not going to follow in the footsteps of Shaun of the Dead or Hot Fuzz.
Don't get me wrong, Frost himself gives a great central performance and shows that he really can carry a film; it was everything that let him down. I don't know about you, but I like plenty of laughs in my comedies - I find that it is a bit of a necessity with this genre - but Cuban Fury really didn't have all that many. It is one of those films that puts all of the laughs in the trailer and then has little to offer when you see the full movie.
Cuban Fury is a movie that we have seen so many times before and it really is far too predictable - I could forgive the predictability of the story if there were more laughs to enjoy. The whole thing was just a little too contrived for my liking. Frost was joined on the cast list by Olivia Coleman, Rashida Jones, Chris O'Dowd, and Ian McShane, and it is always a shame to see such talented actors not really given anything they can get their teeth into and really play with.
This really was a very disappointing watch and I did expect so much for from a British comedy that boasted such an excellent cast.
Other disappointing movies of 2014 include Into The Storm, A New York Winter's Tale, Sex Tape, A Million Ways To Die In The West, and The Amazing Spider-Man 2.