Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Worst critic of the year?

Erik Childress maintains a "Quote of the Week" page on's Criticwatch. Erik has also done the exhausting, mind-numbing, and frankly painful task of collecting the worst quotes from the worst critics (dubbed "quote whores"*) and even has a top ten list to go with it. Note that critics end up on this list not just for having silly opinions. Rather, they end up there because they a) give great praise to films that don't deserve it, b) make ridiculous comments that are tailored to be picked up as a blurb on an ad or c) usually both.

Ben Lyons is only number ten on the list (tied with his Dad, Jeffrey Lyons), so Erik believes that there are nine critics that are even worse. Number one on the list said the following (you have to click on the link to find out who that is--those of us who grew up in the Sacramento area will be familiar with the name and wonder how in the hell he became a movie critic):

Will Ferrellicious! You’ll laugh so hard you’ll dribble. (Semi-Pro)
Funny and smart. Steve Carell brings it! (Get Smart)
Everything a romantic comedy should be! (Fool’s Gold)
The best date movie of the summer! (Sex and the City)
Fun and Hysterical! Zack and Miri is the best date movie of the season. (Zack and Miri Make a Porno)
Epic. Glorious. Unforgettable. (Australia)
Spectacular! Visually stunning. It will blow your mind. (Speed Racer)
Amazing! Mind-blowing! (The Day the Earth Stood Still)
Hysterical! Bernie Mac is at his absolute best! Perhaps the best buddy picture ever! (Soul Men)

Also, Erik summarizes the 20 dumbest comments made by critics this year:

20. Who-Ray for Horton! (Horton Hears a Who) – Joe Neumaier

19. In this family, just about everybody’s funny. (Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins) – Chicago Tribune

18. The Buzz is out . . . (The Secret Life of Bees) – Prairie Miller

17. Super hilarious! Funnier than Spiderman and Batman combined! (Superhero Movie) – Steven Chupnick

16. Chimptastic! A barrel of fun families will enjoy. (Space Chimps) – Scott Rolfe, Dove Foundation

15. Crude, lewd, rude and very very very very funny. (My Best Friend’s Girl) – Daily Star

14. A veritable Cluckwork Orange… (Poultrygeist: Night of the Chicken Dead) - Variety

13. This is the winner that will take it all! (Mamma Mia) - Ray Bennett, Hollywood Reporter

12. Semi-Pro puts the fun in funkedelic. (Semi-Pro) – Lisa Johnson,

11. With great power come laughs. (Superhero Movie) – Staci Layne Wilson, Scifi Weekly

10. This year’s Oscar race starts with Sleepwalking. (Sleepwalking) – Rick Bentley, The Fresno Bee

9. It rekindles the great Hollywood romances. (Twilight) – Richard Corliss

8. It’s one of those movies audiences of the future will look back to…when they want to know something about how life was lived in America. (Stop-Loss) – Scott Foundas

7. Imagine what Michael Moore might produce if we forcibly administered truth serum to him. That would be Expelled. (Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed) – Joseph Farah, Washington Times

6. This is what Star Wars fans have been waiting for. (Star Wars: The Clone Wars) – Mike Sargent

5. Dempsey, with his relaxed charm, and Monaghan, with her soft and peachy sensual spark, rise to the challenge of making friendship look like the wellspring of true love. (Made of Honor) - Owen Gleiberman

4. It’s the ingenious and inspired comedy that we remember from Airplane! (An American Carol) – Ain’t It Cool News

3. A terrific film with an Academy Award winning performance by Greg Kinnear. (Flash of Genius) – Larry King

2. For the Christmas season, prepare to be baptized by the Basinger. (While She Was Out)

1. The most visually inventive, trailblazing film of its kind in light years. (Wanted) – Pete Hammond

Erik continues:

OK, sorry, but we couldn’t resist pointing out Hammond’s quote as one of the dumbest ever printed on a movie ad or spoken by anyone on our Watch list. It’s only appropriate then that we end this year’s piece with maybe my favorite quote of the year, spoken by this site’s own Rob Gonsalves. I believe it perfectly sums up Pete Hammond, Ben Lyons and all the whores and sluts we’ll continue to keep an eye on in 2009.

“Light years measure distance, not time, you fucking clown shoe.”
– Rob Gonsalves,

* I tend to avoid using a term like "whore" because it has offensive connotations, although I have a bit less of a problem with "dumbass" and "star-fucker".


Anonymous said...

Jesus... These people just ride the Hollywood dick and beg for more. These critics need more critics.

Anonymous said...

Owen Gleiberman is not a "blurb whore". Although I do not particularly like him, he's a respectable critic in no way comparable to Jeffrey Lyons.

Scott said...

Probably not, but I think he ended up on this list for what seems like excessive praise for a film that almost nobody liked.

Torley said...

I'd nominate Mike Blasky as being an even worse critic than Ben Lyons.

Be sure to see his "scoop" on Twilight, too. ;)

Scott said...

A student writer at a school newspaper? Sorry, that doesn't even come close to Lyons. And at least he encourages us to boycott Twilight rather than hype the trailer like Ben did.