Life is too short to spend your time watching bad movies and television, so I do my best to avoid both. But, you know, we all make mistakes. I’m not kicking down here—these five productions all had reasonable budgets and star power, yet somehow came to much less than they should have (listed in alphabetical order, with movies and streaming series combined).
The Boys in the Band: Do yourself a favor and watch William Friedkin’s far superior 1970 version of Mart Crowley’s play instead.
Hillbilly Elegy: A remarkably bad movie based on a self-serving book that has absolutely nothing to say to anyone about anything.
The Last Thing He Wanted: Joan Didion’s novel may well be unfilmable, and this sincere effort by a talented director (Dee Rees) and able cast does nothing to contradict that point of view.
Rebecca: If you’re taking on Daphne du Maurier’s Gothic romance, and inviting comparisons with Alfred Hitchcock, you’d better come up with something better than this weak tea.
The Trial of the Chicago 7: The subject is an important episode in American politics, but a cast to die for can’t save Aaron Sorkin at his most ponderous.