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Cinema heroes exist to be everything we're not. Therefore we want them to be crack shots, kung fu masters, tactical geniuses and furious, furious fornicators.

So why is it that we barely blink when they spend the entirety of the film puttering about and screwing things up? Here are six movie heroes who did their jobs so damn poorly that, in retrospect, they'd barely make good sidekicks.

6
RoboCop

RoboCop is our second favorite robotic police officer from Detroit (our fave is obviously the Motor City's O.G. killbot, ED-209).

Why He Should Be Good At His Job:

He's a cop and he's robot. Period. There is no fudge factor, no gray area. He is literally programmed to do things by the book.

Why He Sucked At It:

Let's analyze RoboCop's very first case step-by-step.

A perpetrator wielding a machine gun is robbing a convenience store. RoboCop arrives, is promptly shot 30 times and shrugs off the bullets like NERF darts, and proceeds to disable the crook's firearm by bending its muzzle. Now that the criminal is disarmed it's time to slap on the handcuffs and...

BOOM! ROBOCOP CLOTHESLINES THE SUNUVABITCH INTO A FREEZER! BLAM! CRIPPLETASTIC! WOMP!

Our cyborg hero then leaves the store... without arresting the guy. OK, so it was his first day on the job--maybe he had the first time jitters. Perhaps he'll show a little more restraint with his next case ...

KAPOW! HE CASTRATES THE BASTARD WITH GEOMETRY!

Again, RoboCop makes no real effort to apprehend the crooks. It goes on like this for the next 90 minutes. All in all, RoboCop arrests only one criminal during the entire movie. The rest of his time is spent alternately maiming people (three guys) or blowing them away (he racks up a body count of 16).

This is pretty confusing as RoboCop is, in fact, hardwired to be a good guy and has the free will of a VCR. Who the hell programmed him to be a cop? The T-1000?

And we're not even going to get into the time RoboCop stole that nice Korean family's fridge.


"YO I'M ABOUT TO EAT!"

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5
Danny Ocean (and the Other 10 guys) from Ocean's 11

Danny Ocean and his gang are the world's greatest thieves. Their chosen vocation is stealing the world's valuables to a tasteful jazz-house soundtrack.

Why They Should Be Good At Their Job:

Well, the other characters in the movie keep insisting they're the best. And between the 11 of them, they possess more combined skills than MacGyver with an iPhone. Their roster includes a Chinese gymnast, the guy from both Hotel Rwanda AND Hotel for Dogs, and three of People magazine's "Sexiest Men Alive"... including two two-time winners!

Even though Andy Garcia's casino mogul knew Ocean was up to something, Danny's team nonetheless robs his casino easily. They even have enough time to reminisce in front of the Bellagio's fountains about the halcyon days of Las Vegas. You know, before Sammy Davis, Jr. started hanging with Richard Nixon.

Why They Sucked At It:

For a bunch of dudes robbing a vindictive millionaire, Ocean's 11 were plum awful at concealing their identities. Indeed, if it hadn't been for Ocean's 12, we just would've assumed that days after the first movie, the LVPD would've found a circle of 11 dead men in the Nevada desert with their heads up each others asses.

Things immediately go sour when Danny Ocean introduces himself to casino owner Terry Benedict at the start of the film. As the caper progresses, six of the 11 show their faces to Benedict during the pre-heist setup.

And they're not sporting hilarious prosthetic noses or $1,000 fat suits, mind you--they show their unadulterated, handsomely chiseled mugs to Benedict himself, point-blank and under memorably wacky circumstances in a camera-filled casino.


Above: a bad disguise.

These guys built a 1:1 replica of Benedict's casino vault and a robotic getaway van. You'd think they'd pony up for one or two dollar-store fake mustaches.

Of course, the first 10 minutes of the sequel show Benedict catching all 11 masterminds, thereby proving that, without question, they are shitty thieves. And given that Ocean's 12 was borderline unwatchable, we'd have preferred just imagining the "dead-in-the-desert-with-heads-up-their-asses" scenario.

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4
Johnny Utah from Point Break

Keanu Reeves plays Special Agent Johnny Utah, college quarterback turned FBI agent turned undercover mole in a gang of surfers/bank robbers, in the greatest movie about surfing, bank robberies and people of all time.

Why He Should Be Good At His Job:

He's played by Keanu, brah. His limited vocabulary and vacant gaze will aid him immeasurably in infiltrating a band of free-spirited wave junkies.

Plus, his quarterback training gave him the power to punt Rottweilers.

Why He Sucked At It:

Johnny Utah had his space cadet surfing persona down pat but apparently showed up hungover to the rest of FBI academy. Why do we say this? Because he was a totally incompetent as an undercover cop.

Throughout the film, Utah breaks almost single tenet of undercover work, from "Don't befriend your target" to "Don't sleep with your target's ex-girlfriend" to "Don't partner up with Gary-fucking-Busey"...

...to "Don't reveal your identity to the target during a pointless chase scene and get pissy and unload your firearm into the sky in a suburban neighborhood."

By the end of Point Break, Special Agent Utah makes zero arrests, gets Busey and most of the robbers killed, and allows Bodhi, the ringleader, to escape and commit suicide by riding the bitching-est wave of all time.

Since Bodhi died in Utah's custody, there's a possibility Johnny could do some jail time. Looks like the only thing he'll be riding for a while is a lifer's raging hard-on.

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3
Father Lankester Merrin from The Exorcist

The exorcist from The Exorcist. If you've been seduced by Satan, bedazzled by Beelzebub or just want some free wine and wafers, then Father Merrin is your go-to guy.

Why He Should Be Good At His Job:

Father Merrin is the Vatican's point man when it comes to Satanic possession. When a little girl from Georgetown starts inexplicably acting like GG Allin, her mom hires Merrin to exorcise the demon. The man's street cred alone should be enough to kick Lucifer in his fiery red nutsack.

Why He Sucked At It:

When a film begins, the audience is generally treated to a scene of the protagonist doing something totally gee-whiz--be it Indiana Jones cracking his whip or pornstar Lisa Ann getting manwiched by a gang of lost pizza delivery boys.

In a movie titled The Exorcist in which Father Merrin is the titular exorcist, he doesn't perform an exorcism until the last quarter of the movie, and even then Merrin doesn't deliver. His grand duel with Satan ends with him dying of a heart attack off-camera, leaving only the odor of his evacuated bowels and wafts of "Tubular Bells" as evidence of such a showdown.

Thanks for all that unnecessary build-up, movie. You should've just named yourself The Expendable Guy.

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2
Obi-Wan Kenobi from Star Wars

Oh shit, we went there.

Why He Should Be Good At His Job:

He has telekinetic powers, can outrun a '69 Camaro, kick heroin in a day and deflect lasers using an even bigger laser... all while sporting the burliest beard this side of Kashyyyk.

He's Obi-Wan-Goddamn-Kenobi, and if it hadn't been for that Jedi vow of celibacy, he would've been all over more coed rump than butterfly tattoos.

Why He Sucked At It:

The entire Star Wars series is one long story of Obi-Wan falling asleep at the wheel. Despite all his vaunted Force and beard powers, Obi-Wan fails to prevent almost every major tragedy in the franchise's history.

Let's start with a critique of his precognitive Jedi mind tricks. In The Phantom Menace, Obi-Wan rightly calls that training Anakin Skywalker is a very bad idea. Even Yoda and Samuel L. Jackson concur, and when the most badass man and Muppet in the universe agree with you, you know damn well you're onto something.

Had Obi-Wan just Force-punted the brat from Jingle All The Way out a window right then and there, we would've been spared two films of Hayden Christensen (and treated to three new films of Han and Chewie: Intergalactic Party Cruisers). But no, he takes Anakin under his wing and adopts a million-man clone army along the way.

Oh, and did we mention that all the clones are of Jango Fett, the murderous bounty hunter who tried to kill Obi-Wan multiple times? Doesn't he notice that cloning the galaxy's deadliest hitman a bazillion times over is a totally Sithy thing to do?

Well, when Anakin and the clone army inevitably starting killing everybody, Obi-Wan finally gets his shit together long enough to lop 75 percent of Anakin's limbs off. And instead of ending the whiny Sith, Obi-Wan leaves.

He just fucking leaves the scene.

Come on, Obi-Wan, it's Darth Vader! He chopped up a hundred younglings just hours earlier! Also, it's not against the Jedi Code to mercy kill someone if he's slowly and painfully burning to death. Obi-Wan just trots off, leaving Vader wiggling around like a grilled Vienna sausage for the Emperor to find, repair and turn into a cybernetic James Earl Jones.

Obi-Wan's contingency plan is even more inept. When Darth Vader comes back to bite him in the ass, Obi-Wan picks the worst alias possible. Did he really think hiding as "Ben" Kenobi, the guy living down the road from Darth Vader's relatives on Darth's home planet of Tatooine was going to fool anyone?

We're not sure who's more incompetent: Obi-Wan (whose pseudonym included his last name) or the Empire (which--with its nigh unlimited resources--should've found Kenobi in 20 minutes, not 20 years).


This took too long.

So now that we've hit a new low and knocked the Jedi master who helped raise us down a peg, is there any cinematic heroes left who are above our rebuke?

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1
God from Evan Almighty

Jehovah, Yahweh, The Alpha and the Omega. He also invented the Batmobile.

Why He Should Be Good At His Job:

He's God.

Why He Sucked At It:

God instructs Congressman Evan Baxter (Steve Carell) to build an ark so his family and neighbors can survive a horrific flood in their Beltway suburb. The cause of this deluge is a burst dam, which was shoddily built by corrupt Congressman Justin Long (John Goodman).

In the end, Evan learns the value of an A.R.K. (Act of Random Kindness), Long is exposed as a crook and Washington D.C. is ravaged by a tidal wave. Wait, what?

Look, we understand that the Lord works in mysterious ways. We also get that in the original Noah story, God punished mankind for devolving into a bunch of raging douchebags.

But in Evan Almighty, in the process of punishing only one (one) dude and teaching another guy to be a marginally better human being, God wreaks Hurricane Katrina, Jr. on a million or so Washingtonians.

Of course, Evan Almighty was a PG-rated family comedy, so we don't see any corpses. But seriously, you can't flash flood D.C., with its subway system and marshy topography, and expect everything to end up all sunshine and lollipops.

And even if you did save everyone using God Magic, did we need the collateral damage? Seeing as how the film contains such profound themes as "the environment is good" and "government waste is bad," it makes zero sense that God would engineer an ecological catastrophe that basically defunds FEMA for the next decade.

We forgive you for not making any you-damn sense, Lord. After all, Brick Tamland was created in your image.


"Thou shalt love lamp."

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For villains who were terrible at their jobs, check out The 6 Most Pointlessly Elaborate Movie Murder Plots. Or find out about some real people who sucked at their jobs, in 5 Horrifying Tales Of 911 Incompetence.

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