1999 Bottom 10, According to James Berardinelli

These are presented in "reverse order" (the absolute worst, #1, is presented last):

10. Lake Placid: This movie was designed as a mixture of comedy and horror, but works as neither. For a glance at what Lake Placid was intended to be, check out Deep Blue Sea.

9. Teaching Mrs. Tingle: This terribly idiotic thriller from the pen of an overexposed Kevin Williamson (who compounds matters by thinking he can direct) has only one saving grace: Helen Mirren. Without her deliciously over-the-top performance, this would have been a shoo-in for the worst film of the year.

8. Bats: A lame excuse for a Halloween movie, Bats is seriously hamstrung by its PG-13 rating, which effectively emasculates any creepiness that the film could have had. Then again, given the performances and the script, an R rating probably wouldn't have helped.

7. Doug's First Movie: People get upset when I trash kids' fare like Doug's First Movie, but this is unbearable tripe - dull, unimaginative, and puerile. Of course, I suppose if you're an undiscriminating child under age 8, those things don't matter.

6. Inspector Gadget: One of Disney's worst efforts, right alongside of Mr. Magoo. Even Rupert Everett couldn't save this one.

5. Idle Hands: Mercifully, I have forgotten nearly everything about this horrible movie, except that I looked at my watch about 3 dozen times during the screening and had to surpress the urge to put my own idle hands around the throats of the people behind this movie.

4. Breakfast of Champions: Good book, bad movie. Admittedly, that's an overused refrain, but it's entirely appropriate here. One of those rare films when I got perilously close to walking out. As satires go, this is the nadir.

3. Wing Commander: A computer game recreated for the big screen, apparently with less plot and character development than in its original incarnation. Amazing.

2. Virus: A dull, plodding rip-off of nearly every interesting science fiction movie of the last two decades, Virus shows how bad some of this stuff can look when put through the cinematic recycler then pieced together by a hack director. As for lead actress Jamie Lee Curtis - she showed 1000% more intensity in H20.

1. I Woke Up Early the Day I Died: Ed Wood lives. I wish he had stayed dead.

Special Citation: Zombie! Vs. Mardi Gras: A list of the least appealing films of the year would not be complete without a mention of this movie, which is the worst piece of cinematic crap I have ever seen. However, since it was released direct-to-video, it can't officially be listed here. (Unfortunately, my citation of Zombie! as the worst film of all time has been used as a marketing tool, and unsuspecting consumers are out there paying money for this thing.)

© 2000 James Berardinelli

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