6 Bad Special Effects (From Not That Long Ago)
While movies often thrill us with mind-blowing visual effects (like the Death Star explosion, or Wesley Snipes blinking) sometimes they're disappointingly terrible. Sure, the effects industry often works tirelessly to achieve perfection (or in some circumstances, to remove gaping cat anuses) for whatever reason, some big Hollywood movies from the early 2000s look less impressive than the average Sharknado sequel today. We weren't exactly wowed by ...
X-Men: Origins: Wolverine -- Logan's Claws Look Like Cartoons
There are obviously a lot of problems with 2009's X-Men Origins: Wolverine, ranging from the fact that it was made during a script writers' strike to Deadpool looking like a middle-aged Slipknot groupie. Adding to the movie's garbage dump of a reputation are some shockingly unconvincing special effects. Some of the movie's CGI would be embarrassing for a student film, let alone a blockbuster that cost $150 million dollars, or roughly 50 Russell Crowe divorces. Like when Logan pops his claws for the first time, his iconic Adamantium blades straight-up look like they belong in Who Framed Roger Rabbit.
And just in case you were in danger of forgetting about all of that janky CGI, they threw a de-aged Patrick Stewart into the film's closing moments. And by "de-aged," we mean he looks like an inflatable Picard sex doll come to life.
Somehow this looks more dated than the original X-Men, a movie that was released on VHS.
The Ending of Harry Potter Looks Like a Crappy School Play
The epic conclusion to the Harry Potter franchise, The Deathly Hallows Part 2, found Harry defeating Voldemort and death itself -- but not middle aged schlubbiness. Just like in the book, the story wraps up with a flash-forward to Harry and his pals as adults sending their children to Hogwarts, despite the fact that they were almost murdered there like hundreds of times. And the whole thing just looks, well, off. Harry's supposed to be around 36, but the effect is unconvincing. He has the patchy sideburns of a high-schooler, the jowls of a senior citizen, and everything else looks the same.
For Ginny and Hermione, it seems like the make-up department just gave them mom haircuts and Nordstrom blouses then called it a day. Meanwhile Ron has an awkward combover and an unflattering paunch.
Insanely, this was actually the production's second attempt at filming this scene. They had to reshoot it because originally they went "too far" with the old age make-up. For example, Ron originally looked like he just did a stint in Azkaban for selling Polyjuice Potion out of the back of an unmarked van.
The filmmakers even "debated" whether the scene needed to be included at all since it "wasn't really necessary," but they were afraid of pissing off the fanbase. So despite the fact that this series gave us convincing scenes of flying cars and noseless warlocks, even in two tries they couldn't make this epilogue not look like the world's least watchable middle-school production of Our Town.
The Hobbit Movies Look Like Commercials
At this point, making fun of Peter Jackson's trilogy of Hobbit movies is like beating three dead horses that really should have just been one shorter horse. We all know that the movies were so full of digital technology, so much so the production actually made Gandalf cry. But some of the series' effects are almost impressively unimpressive. Remember when all that gold melted at the end of The Desolation of Smaug? It was supposed to be an exciting action sequence, but it ended up having all the realism of a mouth-watering close-up from a Twix commercial.
And apparently between The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, the standard for epic battle scenes fell to the point where everyone was cool with a CGI Billy Connolly riding a warthog in what looks like a pop-up ad for a spyware-infested iPhone game.
The Day After Tomorrow -- There are CGI Monster Wolves For Some Reason
Audiences didn't love The Day After Tomorrow (which is probably why we were spared the sequel Two Tuesdays From Now) but not the real-life sequel we're currently living in. Midway through the movie, New York freezes over in a surprisingly short amount of time, putting the end to most human life. Towards the end of the movie, Jake Gyllenhaal runs afoul of a pack of wolves who have escaped from the Central Park Zoo. Unfortunately, they look less convincing than the wolves you're occasionally forced gun down in Red Dead Redemption.
While none of them are revealed to be Sirius Black in animal form, these wolves are weirdly super-powered; they can catapult themselves across rooms because of ... climate change?
Thankfully, Jake and his friends escape the wolves and hole up in New York Public Library where they stay alive by burning books that were hopefully all written by Dr. Phil.
In Time -- Did They Just Film a Hot Wheels Car?
"What if Justin Timberlake's boyish youthfulness could be used to shine a light on America's income inequality?" is a thought someone once had, wrote down, and spent tens of millions of dollars filming for some reason. The 2011 sci-fi movie starred Timberlake as a factory worker in a craaaazy future where currency is time. Meaning rich people might be super-old but still look 25 thanks to genetic engineering technology that isn't ever fully explained. The most inadvertently memorable part of the movie, though, is the car chase. Timberlake and Amanda Seyfried are fleeing for their lives and don't notice a spike strip in their path.
The car flips -- but oddly, in this big-budget studio movie starring the guy who brought sexy back, the filmmakers seemingly just tossed a model car down a dirt hill, not unlike a kid fed up with playing Hot Wheels.
Of course, this wasn't necessarily the biggest problem in a movie featuring magic time watches that can kill you.
Everything About Green Lantern is a Goddamn Nightmare
In 2011, just two years before DC launched their own cinematic universe, came Green Lantern, a movie so crammed full of CGI they couldn't even be bothered to make a physical costume for Ryan Reynolds, who presumably performed all his scenes naked. Perhaps the most terrible part of this turdwich of a movie was the villain Hector Hammond, a scientist who goes full Elephant Man thanks to the influence of Parallax, a giant glob of Lovecraftian dog poop.
In the end, Parallax sucks the life force out of Hammond -- a feeling most audience members watching Green Lantern could relate to.
Then in a climax that's pretty much an embarrassment to computers everywhere, this happens:
People paid actual American dollars to see this ... in a movie theater ... within the last decade ... on purpose. Yup.
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