Movie making is a complex art. It takes more than a good idea to make a good movie. There are plenty of great ideas that end up being terrible movies. Whether it's the writing, acting or poor pacing, these movies turned a great idea into a painful movie experience.
Synopsis: Hancock is a superhero whose ill considered behavior regularly causes damage in the millions. He changes when the person he saves helps him improve his public image.
Rotten Tomato Score: 41%
I still don't understand how they couldn't turn this movie into a success. It has strong actors like Will Smith and Jason Bateman, but more importantly it has a fresh take on a well known and tired genre. Instead of having a superhero who saves the day because of his strong moral code, what would happen if there was a super hero who was a bit of a jerk? How would people react to this man, and more importantly how would we react if he were the only super being on the planet? We all like to think we would be Superman but in reality many of us would end up like Hancock. The first act of the movie was great, it gave us a good insight into the character as well as hints to his origins. Then they added a weird romance plot and screwed everything up. It turns out that Mary is also a superhero and every other superhero paired off and died, but they split up so they lived. In the end Hancock almost dies but flies away from Mary and saves both of them. This could have either been a very dark movie or a very funny movie, they tried to do both and it became neither.
I'm all for dark movies but I understand why they scrapped the original ending, it was a tiny bit too dark. In the original, Hancock becomes obsessed with Mary, who's a human in this version, so he kidnaps her and almost rapes her. He stops himself before he does, but he gets angry so he kills a bunch of cops and then tries to kill himself, but he can't...the end. Yeah, I know the version we got isn't perfect but I guess it could've been way worse.
X-Men: The Last Stand
Synopsis: When a cure is found to treat mutations, lines are drawn amongst the X-Men, led by Professor Charles Xavier, and the Brotherhood, a band of powerful mutants organized under Xavier's former ally, Magneto.
Rotten Tomato Score: 58%
This rotten tomato score is too generous. Not only was this movie terrible, but it destroyed something with so much potential. The humans have created a cure for being a mutant and Magneto starts a war against the humans because he fears they will weaponize it. This movie has several moving parts that make it exciting, but also contributes to its downfall. Not only is there the cure storyline, but also the iconic Phoenix saga. Instead of dealing with these complex social issues or interesting plot points, Brett Ratner decides to kill or depower most of the main characters.
Shockingly that didn't make for a good movie.
Synopsis: A teenager with teleportation abilities suddenly finds himself in the middle of an ancient war between those like him and their sworn annihilators.
Rotten Tomato Score: 16%
Cards on the table, I actually liked this movie a little bit. It's about a guy named David who has the ability to transport anywhere he wants, and a group of hunters, led by a man named Roland, that try and stop him. It was a fresh idea, but it was executed extremely poorly. At its core this movie is about two guys who can teleport and a group of hunters who try to stop them. The movie focused too much on secondary characters and romance and not enough on the fundamental philosophy of the hunters. The hunters should be motivated by fear, by the fact that these Jumpers could wreak havoc on the world if they chose to. Instead Roland just says he hunts them because "only God should have the power to be everywhere." That's so stupid. This should have been a movie not about good versus evil, but about two groups trying to protect their way of life. David just wants to live his life and be happy, the hunters want to protect the planet from a potential threat. This should have been the main focus on the movie, not romance.
Synopsis: In a future where people stop aging at 25, but are engineered to live only one more year, having the means to buy your way out of the situation is a shot at immortal youth. Here, Will Salas finds himself accused of murder and on the run with a hostage - a connection that becomes an important part of the way against the system.
Rotten Tomato Score: 36%
I vividly remember being absolutely livid when I saw this movie. It was one of the coolest ideas for a movie I'd ever heard of. In the future they have perfected aging so people can stay 25, but because of population control, currency has switched from money to time. I thought this was going to be an awesome sci-fi movie about a future where people are paid in time, and this movie started off like that. It was so cool seeing people use their time at the beginning, but instead of diving more into how this world works, the movie just got bogged down with poor pacing and a preachy second half.
I wanted to see more of the world itself, how exactly this system works and how it was created. I also love the idea that there is an elite group of powerful people that are living forever. But instead of focusing on anything interesting, this movie concentrates on the main characters trying to bring the system down before it fully explains what the system is and how it came to be.
These four movies came to my mind immediately when I thought of this topic, but I'm sure there are more examples. Let me know what you think is the best example of a terrible movie that should've been great.