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ReelTalk Movie Reviews
And the Losers Are...
by Adam Hakari

On January 31st, all of moviedom was abuzz when the Academy Award nominations were announced in the wee hours of the morning. But for more cynical film buffs, the real treat came the day before, when the Golden Raspberry Award Foundation released their nominees for the Razzies, giving notice to the worst flicks 2005 had to offer. While others are debating whether Philip Seymour Hoffman or Joaquin Phoenix will win the little golden guy for Best Actor, allow me to take you, dear readers, through what one organization has deemed the bottom of the barrel for last year's movies.

WORST PICTURE

Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo

Dirty Love

The Dukes of Hazzard

House of Wax

Son of the Mask

Although this is probably the strongest category of  nominees, I didn't think The Dukes of Hazzard or House of Wax were awful enough to be shuffled in among the year's worst. In my book, The Fog should have made the list instead. But out of this bunch, I have a hunch Rob Schneider's wholly unnecessary follow-up to Deuce Bigalow is going away with top dishonors. Still, if I had my way, Son of the Mask would get the di-stink-tion it truly deserves.

WORST ACTOR

Tom Cruise, War of the Worlds

Will Ferrell, Bewitched and Kicking & Screaming

Jamie Kennedy, Son of the Mask

The Rock, Doom

Rob Schneider, Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo

Okay, here's where the nominations start to get a little unfair. Knowing the GRAF's knack for not letting go of a grudge (as exemplified with Sofia Coppola's inexplicable nomination for her teeny, tiny part in The Phantom Menace in '99), it's not surprising they made a high-profile jump on the Tom Cruise-bashing bandwagon by nominating him for Worst Actor. Regardless of what I think about Cruise as a person, he's a pretty decent actor, and his performance in War of the Worlds was far from terrible. There were many worse screen turns last year (Ashton Kutcher, anyone?). Other than that, the Worst Actor line-up is pretty accurate. I personally thought Ferrell was a riot in Kicking & Screaming, but he definitely deserves the nod for the dreadfully unfunny Bewitched, as does Kennedy for a performance devoid of any energy or humor whatsoever. As for who'll win, I predict Cruise will walk away with it (based on dumb politics), although I hope the GRAF doesn't overlook Schneider and the eternally-lame Deuce Bigalow sequel.

WORST ACTRESS

Jessica Alba, Fantastic Four

Hilary Duff, Cheaper by the Dozen 2 and The Perfect Man

Jennifer Lopez, Monster-in-Law

Jenny McCarthy, Dirty Love

Tara Reid,  Alone in the Dark

No surprises here. These days, Lopez is like the Judi Dench of the Razzies, guaranteed a nomination for just about anything she turns up in. Reid undoubtedly deserves her nomination for playing an anthropologist (allow me to pause for a moment of laughter......okay, I'm done), as do Duff for her shallow, half-hearted turns and McCarthy for flat-out embarrassing herself. My bet's on Reid to win this one. 

WORST SUPPORTING ACTOR

Hayden Christensen, Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith

Alan Cumming, Son of the Mask

Bob Hoskins, Son of the Mask

Eugene Levy, Cheaper by the Dozen 2 and The Man

Burt Reynolds, The Dukes of Hazzard and The Longest Yard

Along with Worst Picture, this is one of the strongest categories in this year's Razzies competition. It's about time someone called Christensen on his whiny, faux-angsty performance as Anakin Skywalker, more akin to a bratty teenager with an attitude than a Jedi knight being slowly drawn to the Dark Side (although I thought his turn in Sith was a bit more tolerable than his work in Attack of the Clones). The other four nominees should share collective shame for appearing in their respective vehicles, all of which undermined their talents and had them sleepwalking through their roles (a word to the makers of Dukes of Hazzard: Boss Hogg is supposed to be fat!). I'd personally go with Christensen on this one, but because of Eugene Levy's double whammy of annoying characters, I'm betting he will walk away the winner here.

WORST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

Carmen Electra, Dirty Love

Paris Hilton, House of Wax

Katie Holmes, Batman Begins

Ashlee Simpson, Undiscovered

Jessica Simpson, The Dukes of Hazzard

If Jessica Simpson doesn't win this category, I'll lose any faith I have left in the Razzie Awards. Most of the other nominees are there as a result of the same logic that landed Cruise his nomination (although Electra's "white girl goes gangsta" turn in Dirty Love was absolutely unbearable), but I can write them off as filler meant to make Simpson's inevitable victory a little less obvious.

WORST DIRECTOR

John Asher, Dirty Love

Uwe Boll, Alone in the Dark

Jay Chandrasekhar, The Dukes of Hazzard

Nora Ephron, Bewitched

Lawrence Guterman, Son of the Mask

"Dr." Uwe Boll, the infamous target of many an Internet message board rant, makes his first Razzie appearance for Alone in the Dark, just one of the numerous video game-to-movie adaptations he has completely botched. But Boll has some competition, in the form of Ephron for screwing up Bewitched big-time and Gutterman for making a complete and utter mess out of Son of the Mask. As much as I'd like to see Boll get the dishonor he deserves, I have a hunch that Guterman will take this one.

For more information and more of this year's Razzie nominations, visit the Golden Raspberry Award Foundation's official website at http://www.razzies.com.

Who will join Freddy Got Fingered, Showgirls, and Catwoman as one of the worst movies ever made? Find out on March 4 -- the day before that other ceremony rewards the good movies. ;-)


                                                                                                                                                                               
 
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