In any case, what good are 25 movies if one cannot rank them? 25, as the Associated Press and other venerable institutions are constantly reminding us, is a number that was more or less invented for the purposes of ordinal ranking. So here goes. For now, I'm going to begin with #25 through #21.
Wow, this sucked. I mean, there's no shame when the funniest joke in your movie is Mark Wahlberg’s unexplained shirtlessness. But when even Wahlberg’s mysterious torso is almost entirely unfunny -- and yet still the best thing you've got going -- then things are really grim.
Steve Carell and Tina Fey didn't just phone this one in, they telecommuted. Was this entire movie shot via Skype? You could say that Carell's unctuously wimpy husband and Fey's brittle, chafing wife are the perfect roles for them -- or you could just say, man, I am so sick of those two losers. Which I am. Please shrink yourselves back into the little talking box, Mssrs. Carell and Fey, in the manner of Mike Teevee. Your fake-nerdy bullshit, and your self-deprecating self-love -- bourgeois pride in being bourgeois, really -- are not wanted on the big screen.
Hooray, a subtitle! What fun. Do you think director Chris Columbus, not convinced that there were sufficient syllables in his title, pushed for additional sub-heads? Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief: The Vengeance of the Immortals: Until The End of Time? Should have done.
Sure, it's a clamorous hodgepodge of random Greek mythology, teen movie cliches, and Uma Thurman, but it also features Sean Bean as Zeus and Kevin McKidd -- Vorenus of HBO's Rome! -- as Poseidon. Rad.
I guess by now I'm starting to doubt my premise that this is the 23rd best film of 2010.
Common plays Scott McKnight, a star guard (for the Nets!) who seems to be a cross between Jason Kidd and Ray Allen, which is confusing, because he actually looks strikingly like Bryon Russell. After the sexy but empty Paula Patton dumps Scott to try out for Season 2 of VH1's Basketball Wives, personal trainer Queen Latifah is there to make things OK. Oh, if only we all had Queen Latifah to minister to us in our times of injury and pain!
I have no further comments, but based on this clip alone Dwyane Wade and Dwight Howard were shamefully underutilized in this film.
The preview makes it seem like this is a loopy, charmingly indie psych ward slapstick starring Zack Galifianakas. In fact, the actual movie is an earnest, nauseatingly indie psych ward spirit-lifter starring someone named Keir Gilchrist, with occasional appearances by Galifianakas. Plus a soundtrack by Broken Social Scene. Disappointing.
Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck, how could you make Sugar and then make this? How could you?
Proving that a sub-head is not required to craft the movie title of the year, and probably indeed the milennium.
Further proving that even a return to 1987 cannot breathe fresh life into the sad remains of John Cusack's career.
And finally proving that Rob Corddry's goggle-eyed intensity can be pretty funny for 90 seconds or so at a time -- "If I wanted to kill myself, I'd fucking kill myself. I'd be awesome at it. A shotgun to the dick!" -- but 90 minutes is altogether too much.
Still and all: my guess is that when movies #20 through #10 or so have all faded from memory, I will continue to cherish these glorious seven seconds, perfectly delivered by Craig Robinson: "Must be some kind of... hot tub time machine."