10 Drama Movies That Looked So Good, But Were So Bad

10 Drama Movies That Looked So Good, But Were So Bad
10 Drama Movies That Looked So Good, But Were So Bad

No matter how much we know or how tediously we study the information, we’ve all been drawn in by a bad movie at some point in our lives. Sometimes we’re drawn in by an excellent trailer. Other times, a famous actor’s involvement convinces us to ignore the bad reviews and buy a ticket anyway. But one way or another, we’re left with no choice but to suffer through two hours of cinematic mediocrity.

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Of course, it isn’t easy to make a great film, and dramas are a tough nut to crack. In many cases, all of the pieces to build an Academy-Award-worthy film are there, but they don’t quite fit together, and, unfortunately, the film just doesn’t come together.

10 ‘The Book Of Henry’ (2017)

Image via Focus Features

It’s clear that a film just hasn’t worked when, not only is it panned by critics, but it also led to Colin Trevorrow being let go from his position as director of the final chapter of the Star Wars Skywalker saga (although the script for his version leaked online not so long ago).

Despite costing ten million dollars to produce, the film earned less than five million at the global box office and left cinemas almost as quickly as it arrived. The Book Of Henry is a moment to forget for all involved, including some exceptional talent such as Naomi Watts, Jaeden Martell, and Sarah Silverman. Thankfully, Trevorrow was hired to helm the upcoming Jurassic World: Dominion, allowing him to finish the franchise that he started.


9 ‘The Goldfinch’ (2019)

Goldfinch Ansel Elgort

Adapting books into films is a complex art that only a few writers can execute. Unfortunately for The Goldfinch, the script fails to capture the book’s magic, leaving audiences with a mediocre, averagely engaging film that critics reviewed harshly.

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The story follows a young boy who steals a priceless painting from the rubble when his mother is killed during a terrorist attack at the Metropolitan Museum Of Art. Nicole Kidman, Sarah Paulson, Finn Wolfhard, and Jeffrey Wright all deliver solid performances but are incapable of elevating The Goldfinch beyond the mundane script it is based on.

8 ‘The Snowman’ (2017)

The Snowman was a production beset with issues. Director Tomas Alfredson had a torrid time on the shoot, even claiming that the production was so rushed that he wasn’t given the time to shoot between ten and fifteen percent of the script.

Taking this into account, it’s no surprise that the film doesn’t live up to the director’s previous work, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy and Let The Right One In. The studio hoped The Snowman would kickstart a franchise following Michael Fassbender’s humorously named detective, Harry Hole, but the film was terribly reviewed and earned less than seven million dollars in the US and Canada combined.

7 ‘The Tax Collector’ (2020)

Shia LaBeouf In The Tax Collector

When it was first announced that writer and director David Ayer would be teaming with Shia LaBeouf again for a gritty crime drama, fans hoped the project would live up to Ayer’s previous work, including End Of Watch (which will soon be getting a TV adaptation at FOX) and Training Day.

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Unfortunately, the film marked a real low point in Ayer’s long and esteemed career. The film was predictable, illogical, and, at times, even hard to understand. The plot, which followed a “tax collector” working for a mob boss who’s thrown into trouble when a rival mob boss arrives, felt like Ayer was retreading old ground, and the performances leave a lot to be desired.

6 ‘Cats’ (2019)

Cats was an unmitigated disaster. From the terrifyingly bad CGI to the cringe-worthy performances, it’s no surprise that Andrew Lloyd Webber needed a therapy dog after seeing it. Despite amassing some incredible talent, including Idris Elba, Judi Dench, Taylor Swift, and James Corden, to name just a few, but it’s doubtful that any actor involved will look back on the project with a great deal of pride.

Cats was by no means a cheap film either, costing an estimated $95 million to produce and only recouping $73 million at the global box office. On the bright side, Seth Rogen got stoned and live-tweeted his experience of watching Cats, and it’s an absolute treat.

5 ‘The Room’ (2003)

The Room Tommy Wiseau

Perhaps the most beloved bad movie of all time, Tommy Wiseau wrote, produced, financed, starred in, and directed The Room, sparing no expense to create an absolute masterpiece of a terrible film. The Room is one of the most quotable films of all time, so much so that in 2018 a biopic exploring the friendship between Tommy and Greg Sestero that led to the creation of The Room, called The Disaster Artist, was released.

Thanks to its cult status, The Room has now turned a profit due to regular fan screenings in which audience members shout out their favorite lines and throw plastic forks at the screen.

4 ‘Glitter’ (2001)

Glitter Mariah Carey

Like many singers before and after her, Mariah Carey tried her hand as a leading woman in the much-maligned Glitter. Carey played Billie Frank, a young singer whose relationship with a DJ becomes complicated as she ascends to superstardom.

Mariah hasn’t been shy about stating how much she regrets her involvement in the film that made less than $6 million from an estimated budget of $22 million. Carey has taken a small number of acting roles in the years since Glitter, but more often than not, she cameos as herself as opposed to playing a fictional character.

3 ‘Playing For Keeps’ (2012)

Playing For Keeps Jessica Biel Gerard Butler

With Gerard Butler, Jessica Biel, Uma Thurman, Catherine Zeta-Jones, and Dennis Quaid all involved in Playing For Keeps, it’s hard to believe that the film is so devoid of charm. The film follows former football star George who, after falling on hard times, begins coaching his son’s team in an attempt to get his life back on track. Things aren’t easy for George, though, as he’s pursued by a string of attractive moms.

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If that sounds like a thin premise for a movie, it’s because it is. The film seems to run for an age and, without humor to keep us entertained, it’s hard not to lose focus on the wafer-thin plot.

2 ‘Gotti’ (2018)

Gotti John Travolta

John Travolta is an immensely talented actor who starred in some of the best films of the 70s, 80s, and 90s, but he’s struggled for meaningful roles in the years that followed. Gotti is certainly not a project that the star will remember fondly, given that it tanked at the box office, failing to recoup its $10 million budget, and was disliked by audiences and critics alike.

The film, which tells the story of crime boss John Gotti and his complex relationship with his son, managed to be both more expensive and considerably worse than the Gotti TV movie, which is an achievement in itself.

1 ‘Capone’ (2020)

Image via Vertical Entertainment

On the back of Fantastic 4, a film beset with production issues and universally panned when it finally arrived in cinemas; Josh Trank needed a win. He turned his back on super-powered individuals and big budgets in favor of a smaller, intimate story revolving around one of the most feared men in history. He made sure to get a leading actor worthy of the name, too, with Tom Hardy stepping into the shoes of an older Capone reflecting on the violence of his life.

Still, despite a solid performance from Hardy and the supporting cast, Capone somehow manages to fall flat. The main problem is that a forty-seven-year-old Capone isn’t exciting, and it would have made much more sense just to tell the story as it happened rather than forcing the audience to listen to a middle-aged, ill Capone recite the events of his life. Despite Capone’s lukewarm reception, Trank and Hardy will soon reunite on Blown, a limited series about the CIA.

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