Discovering good movies, one bad movie at a time

Midway is an English-language film financed substantially with Chinese money, directed by a German, about one of the defining American victories of World War II. If you’re thinking that means it’s probably a muddle, I have good news: you’re not wrong. We could put it another way: you know how Roland Emmerich has kind of […]

There are so, so many things wrong with Independence Day: Resurgence. It’s hard to decide where to start, but I think this is the one that pointlessly annoyed me the most: it is a massive waste of potential. Not, of course, the potential of being the 20-years-later sequel to Independence Day, one of the biggest, […]

Every week this summer, we’ll be taking an historical tour of the Hollywood blockbuster by examining an older film that is in some way a spiritual precursor to one of the weekend’s wide releases. This week: after twenty years, Independence Day: Resurgence is upon us. Because why wouldn’t it be. To begin with, it really […]

The foremost of all the non-pressing questions I have regarding the 1998 American Godzilla – pro tip: there is no such thing as a pressing question about the 1998 Godzilla – is whether or not it’s the worst film of the Godzilla franchise. And I suppose I should really first ask the question if it’s […]

Throwback mania has been pillaging the visual style and narrative form of ’70s and ’80s movies for a while now, so I guess it was always going to be the case that we’d eventually get a ’90s throwback; though the word “throwback” suggests something a little bit more self-aware and ironic than White House Down, […]

“There’s nothing I like less than bad arguments for a view that I hold dear.” -Daniel C. Dennett The Day After Tomorrow is, in a certain light, one of the very oddest blockbuster movies of the 2000s. One of the immutable truths of blockbuster filmmaking is that most really expensive Hollywood tentpoles go as far […]

Let us, just for the moment, set aside the gross intellectual dishonesty underpinning every single story beat of Roland Emmerich’s Elizabethan political thriller Anonymous – a herculean task, I will admit. But simply because Emmerich and screenwriter John Orloff and a whole bunch of classically-trained British actors who, in a happier world, would all know […]

Roland Emmerich’s newest disaster epic 2012 is absolutely a bad film, and it would be a disservice for me to argue otherwise. At the same time, it’s so deliciously trashy in its badness that it’s actually a bit of fun if you go in ready to laugh; whether with the film or at it, I’d […]

I feel sorry for Roland Emmerich. No, really, I do. By all rights, he should be a notorious figure if ever there was one, but beyond a vague sense we all share that his movies all pretty much suck, he has no real name recognition. It’s not like the phrase “There’s a new Roland Emmerich […]