At some point I’m going to have to see “Gigli.” It keeps showing up in every “worst movie” list I see, and appears again in the 2009 Razzie Award nominees as compiled by Rotten Tomatoes. Since it was made in 2003, it’s nominated not for worst movie of the year, but worst movie of the decade, where it’s competing with stuff like “Freddy Got Fingered,” “Swept Away,” and of course that perennially reeking pile of excrement known as “Battlefield Earth.”
For me, the Razzie Awards have come to eclipse the Oscars for sheer enjoyment. I love them because they demonstrate annually that A-list fame doesn’t inoculate against catastrophic embarrassment. I love seeing a few Hollywood demigods ridiculed for these one or two precious days of the year when the Razzies are being talked about. People like Ben Affleck, J. Lo, Madonna and John Travolta (we will pass over Tom Green, who is simply pathetic) can use a bit of humility from time to time, right? And without the Razzies, from whence would it come?
The only downside to the Razzies is that the films thus honored are so bad that nobody’s seen them. Including me. So instead of formulating my own witticisms about how crappy they are, I have to trust to others. I have no doubt that a film registering a 6 or 7 on the Rotten Tomatoes scale stinks to high heaven, but sometimes I think I should have a whiff myself. So one of these days — I won’t say when — some of these movies might arrive at my door in red Netflix envelopes, and I will disavow all knowledge of how that came to be. But I will watch them.
In the meantime, check out this lineup of the worst movies of 2009 and let me know how many you’ve seen. Don’t worry about blowing your cover; nobody reads this site anyway. As for me, I’ve seen a smallish portion of only one movie on this list: “GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra.” A relative who shall remain nameless brought it to my home. From the title, I thought it would be a thoughtful rendering of the Jane Austen novel by the same name. But instead it was about … well, have a look. Let me know what you think. Significantly, of the five nominees for worst picture, it is rated the highest. That should give one pause.