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Most Enjoyable & Most Disappointing of 2006
by Tony Medley
Here’s my list of the most
enjoyable and least enjoyable/most disappointing/most overrated films I
saw during 2006. The negative category includes some films that, while
not the worst, were disappointing or overrated, or, while enjoyable, had
- Blood Diamond: Leonardo DiCaprio joins
the ranks of Bogey and Newman as screen anti-hero icons.
- Apocalypto: This tension-filled, gory
chase movie recreates what it must have been like in the 15th
Century America rainforest as the Mayan Civilization was dying.
- Babel: Brilliant, but it takes
- Little Children: Even after 2 hours, 17
minutes, I can’t get enough of Kate Winslet.
- United 93: Director Paul Greengrass
wins the battle with Oliver Stone of 9/11 movies hands down.
- Nannie McPhee: The most underrated film
of the year.
- Thank You For Smoking: This was a good
year for films when this isn’t the best.
- Notes on a Scandal: When Cate Blanchett
drops those horrible accents, she can act up a storm.
- Flyboys: Tony Bill makes one of the
best war movies ever.
- The Devil Wears Prada: Emily Blunt tops
a terrific Meryl Streep in a great entertainment.
- Invincible: With spectacular
performances by Greg Kinnear and Mark Wahlberg, sports movies don’t
get much better.
- The Nativity Story: A
faithful rendition of the story of the
birth of Jesus without being too gushingly devout, with the best
Mary (Keisha Castle-Hughes) ever seen on film.
- Man of the Year: Robin Williams finally
makes a good movie, only to have it ignored because of dismal
- Somersault: Abbie Cornish au naturel,
but this film has much more.
- Hard Candy: A compelling tale of a
sexual predator who gets his comeuppance, you should pardon the
- Stranger Than Fiction: Will Ferrell
finally drops his buffoonery in this Kafkaesque adventure,
highlighted by the performances of Ferrell and Emma Thompson.
- Tsotsi: A realistic rendition of life
as we don’t know it that held me in its grasp.
- Heart of the Game: A documentary about
girls’ high school basketball? You gotta see it to appreciate it!
- Déjà Vu: Not “The Final Countdown,” but
still a terrific time warper.
- Basic Instinct 2: So bad it is
entertaining; with a performance by Sharon Stone that rivals
anything in 1936’s “Reefer Madness.”
- Borat: You’ll never go broke
underestimating the taste of the American public.
- The Da Vinci Code: Director Ron
Howard did a wonderful job of capturing the
spirit of the book by producing a slow, boring, factually absurd
- Letters From Iwo Jima: So the brutal
soldiers of imperial Japan were just nice young guys like our
marines, eh? What is Clint Eastwood’s next excursion into moral
equivalence, a film showing Hitler as a normal guy, no different
from Churchill and Roosevelt, because he wrote a letter that
indicated that he loved his dog?
- The Good German:
The Bad Movie.
- Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby:
Hard to believe there were four movies worse than this Will Ferrell
- Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest:
Is it over yet?
- Glory Road: If you wait long enough,
you, too, can create a legend where one didn’t exist.
- Bobby: Since this is pure fiction, it
might as well have been entitled “Dennis.”
- Infamous: Enough, already!
- Annapolis: Sitting through this bomb,
one realizes why the Naval Academy refused to cooperate.
- The Night Listener & RV: Robin Williams
strikes out again and again.
- Click: Good idea; terrible translation.
- The Pink Panther: Like Diogenes’
fruitless search for one honest man, Steve Martin is still searching
for one good script.
- Marie Antoinette: Sofia Coppola proves
she really can make a movie slower and more boring than “Lost in
- Hollywoodland: Fails in every possible
- Scoop: How long can Woody Allen get all
these A-list people to work for scale with such inferior material?
- Sir, No Sir: Most soldiers in every war
don't want to fight. Not all of them whine with the success these
- All the King’s Men: Any film with Sean
(“Look, Ma; I’m acting!”) Penn has an unfair advantage in competing
for least enjoyable category.
- Shadowboxer & Ask the Dust: Don’t
people like Cuba Gooding, Jr. and Colin Ferrell read these scripts
before they sign on?
- Hoot: Nobody gave one for this inane