The 5 Most Disappointing Movies Of 2010

Published 4 years ago by , Updated September 18th, 2012 at 7:51 am,

Screen Rant Most disappointing movies of 2010 The 5 Most Disappointing Movies Of 2010

Another year of movies has come and gone – and everyone is producing lists of their best and worst movies of the year. We have already unveiled what we thought were the 10 worst movies of 2010 and the top 10 movie moments of 2010 but we thought we would also do a list highlighting which movies we found to be the most disappointing.

While 2010 brought us its fair share of thrills, excitement, drama and laughs in such films as Inception, Kick-Ass, Black Swan and Toy Story 3 (to name but a few) the year inevitably brought us its fair share of disappointment, too.

NOTE: To be clear, this list is not representative of what we consider the worst that cinema had to offer in the past 12 months, as some of the selections do have redeeming qualities. Rather these are the movies that we expected a lot from – but they just didn’t quite deliver. For our “worst” list, click on the link above.

So let’s get to it, shall we? Here is Screen Rant‘s selection of the most disappointing movies of 2010 in order of release (and don’t forget to vote in our poll on the last page):


Alice in Wonderland

alice in wonderland full banner The 5 Most Disappointing Movies Of 2010

We start off with Alice in Wonderland, popular Gothic director Tim Burton’s take on the classic Lewis Carroll tale about a girl who falls down a rabbit hole to the eponymous land of Wonder (or “Underland” as it’s called in this version). Burton put a fresh spin on the material by making Alice a few years older and purporting that she’d already been to Wonderland and just couldn’t remember, although the residents of the weird and wonderful land certainly remembered her (“It’s the real Alice!”).

When it was announced that Burton was going to be taking on this classic tale it was like a match made in cinematic heaven. The filmmaker’s off-beat, quirky and distinctive style seemed perfect for the story, and getting his faithful movie star Johnny Depp to play The Mad Hatter was a perfect piece of casting if ever there was one.

So where did it go wrong?

Alice in Wonderland trailer image The Mad Hatter The 5 Most Disappointing Movies Of 2010

Well, first off, the 3D format of the film didn’t serve to enhance the titular Wonderland but rather detracted from the experience. 3D is supposed to immerse you in a film’s world, not give you a headache – the scene in which Alice tumbles down to Wonderland, for example, not only had my head banging and spinning but my stomach was none too pleased either!

Aside from the 3D, Burton’s version of Wonderland was just a little too zany and overly busy, with the bright visuals getting annoying very quickly and characters that, despite being distinctive on paper, became sort of indistinguishable from one another. The plot didn’t help matters either, with a narrative that was muddled and often confusing instead of suspenseful or exciting. All this led up to what has to be the most disappointing final showdown of the entire year.

Burton and Depp’s seventh collaboration wasn’t a total disaster, with some fun to be had in segments here and there, visuals that are stunning (before they got quite tiresome) and some inspired casting including Michael Sheen as the White Rabbit, Helena Bonham Carter as the Red Queen, Stephen Fry as the grinning Cheshire Cat and, of course, Depp as The Mad Hatter. However, to our disappointment, this particular vision of Alice in Wonderland wasn’t the magically memorably ride we were hoping for.


Clash of the Titans

Next up we have Clash of the Titans, the one and only remake on this list (if you can believe it). Director Louis Leterrier (The Incredible Hulk) had some of the richest mythology in history (no pun intended) to play with and a budget that could be used to run a small country. And yet, despite all it had going for it, Titans was indeed one of the biggest disappointments of 2010.

Despite having more big-scale action sequences than you could shake a stick at, there were only a couple that were in any way memorable: The scorpion attack scene in the desert and Perseus (Sam Worthington) flying on Pegasus, ducking and diving around the dreaded Kraken. Apart from that, the action scenes were either bland, boring, unmemorable or just plain silly. The latter description also applies to the dialogue, which seemed to try everything it could to stop us from being able to take it seriously.

clash of the titans 3d The 5 Most Disappointing Movies Of 2010

A special mention must go to the disappointing 3D. Instead of shooting the film using 3D cameras, as should be done, Warner Bros. decided to shoot Clash of the Titans using standard cameras and then convert it into 3D during post-production over a very short 8-week period. Who would care, right? 3D is 3D no matter how it’s done, isn’t it. Wrong! Titans had some of the worst 3D in recent memory, with most of the visuals looking less like a realistic enhancement of the onscreen events and more like cardboard cut-outs looming out of the screen at the audience. Quick tip, Hollywood: If you’re going to go the 3D route then do it properly.

So while there is admittedly some fun to be had with Clash of the Titans, overall it was a huge disappointment, made all the more dissatisfying because of the fact that it arguably had one of the best trailers of 2009.

Continue to the most disappointing superhero movies of 2010…

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  1. How about Legend of the Guardian…? Wait. I didn’t expect sheet from it. So that doesn’t count.

    It would have to be Tron Legacy. It could have been great if it was made outside of Hollywood.

    • I definitely agree with Legend of the Guardians being a disappointment…
      I actually found it a bit confusing. It didn’t really seem to know which audience it was aimed at. It was far too violent to be a “family film”, yet not really material for the “older crowd”.

      I was also expecting (maybe too much) to be visually stunned by what I saw. It was good animation. But the overall art direction of the film was relatively bland. I remember in particular one scene where we have this “wondrous” music playing and the young owl is look around at the “wonderful” vistas of the city of the Guardians.. and what does the audience see? Nothing. Just a close-up of that young owl’s face. That was one scene I was expecting to be blown away by. But there was absolutely no sense of wonderment. At least, I didn’t feel it. (nice soundtrack, however)

  2. The only exception I take to this list is Alice In Wonderland. Im not saying it’s a great movie, just that I knew full well what I was in for, beforehand. It’s a Tim Burton movie afterall.

  3. Pretty good list, I dont agree with Tron Legacy being on this list though. It wasn’t that big of a disappointment. I do agree however, that the ending was pretty boring. I guess on the DVD/Blu Ray release they will have an alternate ending.

  4. I thought Ironman 2 was a good film. Wasn’t better nor was it less good than the first film. I liked both Ironman films both the same really, Maybe the first film little bit more of-course. Imo i woulddn’t say SHIELD subplot detoured from Ivan Vanko & Justin Hammer that much, it wasn’t till like halfway thru the film till that happend and little bit more at the end. Someone beat me to it but from what i heard im surprised Jonah Hex wouldn’t be one of the 5 most disappointing films of 2010 instead of Ironman 2. I didn’t go see it in theaters cause i wanted to wait for the dvd but my friends went and regret goin and didn’t like the film very well.

  5. Tron Legacy is my favorite movie of 2010.
    I didn’t like Alice in Wonderland, Iron Man 2, Clash of the Titans, and The Last Airbender. I like the original Clash of the Titans and Alice and Wonderland.

  6. I’d say if you followed the genius that was Avatar: The Last Airbender from beginning to end, Shyamalan’s disaster was by far the biggest disappointment of the year.

  7. Clash of the titans was by far my most disappointing movie of the year. the trailer looked so awesome and me and my buddies saw it in 2-D. The script was the killer for me i could not take it seriously. I am interested to see what they do with the sequel

  8. I think some are missing the point of this thread. These movies all had great buildup, people were expecting to be blown away. All of them missed the mark. While I did enjoy IM2, Tron and Avatar, they were disappointing because I expected stellar and got OK; CotT was also Ok as well as AiW, but I wasn’t as psyched for those as IM2, Avatar and Tron.

  9. Tron 2 veered into hippie land way too much for me.

  10. Alice was brilliant…..which also shows in world wide box office and BD and DVD sales….really do not understand why it made the list……TRON has to be number one as far as the 3 year over hype and failed on multiple levels.

    • @”really do not understand why it made the list”

      B/c a film’s box office gross doesn’t equal it’s quality.

      • Transformers 2 anyone? :-)

  11. I can see from a general anticipation standpoint the validity of this list. I myself have only seen Clash and IM2 (and likely Tron next week). Of those two, neither of them were high on my “must-see” list. From Clash I was expecting crap, maybe a good mindless action movie, and nothing more. I myself enjoyed it, but I also didn’t have the displeasure of experiencing the atrocious 3D.

    As for Iron Man 2, I actually was surprised by how much I did enjoy it as I didn’t particularly care for the first one. Yeah, the S.H.I.E.L.D. plot was rather shoe-horned in, and the final showdown was pretty much a rehash of the first film’s, but overall I found myself enjoying it more than the first.

  12. Agree with all but Alice. The only movie I saw twice this year. I agree about the 3D criticism though. The movie didn’t really need or rely on it.

  13. I liked Iron Man 2, mostly because of the easter eggs that hinted at Black Panther and Namor, plus it had a lot of Marvel Comics lore, such as the hinting at cold war era S.H.I.E.L.D and more on The Avengers. The story itself was rushed and sort of weak. I did like how they combined the Crimson Dynamo and Wiplash and Sam Rockwell was very good as Justin Hammer.

  14. The Last Airbender makes me feel sad inside.

  15. Iron Man 2 a disappointment? Pfft. It was as good or better than the first one.

  16. Really?!? With all the bad movies this year those are the top five disappointments..

    • Steve,

      For the maybe FIFTH time (not at you personally, just in general). This is NOT (I repeat NOT) a “worst movies list.” It is a list of films that we expected MORE from than they delivered. High expectation films that didn’t meet those high expectations.

      We explain that in the third paragraph, but I see that as soon as I publish this comment I’m going to need to go and highlight it in bold.

      For our list of the worst films, go here:


      • Vic…

        Unfortunately, you will probably have to say it 47 MORE times. It just seems to be how such things go. On the “Inception” Ending Explained thread (which, granted, IS a tad bit longer than this one :) ), there are still people coming in that actually say, “Gosh, I don’t know how nobody has noticed this before, but…” or the ever-popular “Well, I have a theory that is different than EVERYBODY else’s”…despite the fact that their respective points have already been made dozens of times!

        C’est la vie! :)

        • I have to say you’re a model of patience on that one, Archaeon. Fair play to you for sticking with it there!

          • The Big Dentist…

            It’s actually quite a lot of fun…when it’s not irritatingly frustrating.


  17. iron man 2 was really disappointing for me casue the first 1 was awesome and agreed on clash of the titans it sucked big time

  18. Once again Hollywood shows that they have not a clue what people really want to see. Every single one of these movies were huge box office hits,and fans loved them. Yet here you are whining about how disappointed you are. Get over it and go watch 5 outstanding movies again.

    • Yes, I suppose we should apologize for expecting movies to be excellent after months and months of build up, prior excellent films in a franchise or a director’s resume, etc.

      Damn… I think I’ll go watch Transformers 2 again and revel in its awesomeness. After a couple of beers and a few shots, then maybe I’ll appreciate it as much as I’m sure you do.

      Best regards,


      • dang, Vic, dang….!!!

  19. No way! Iron Man 2 was VERY entertaining. I thought it was comparable to the first one, and in no way is that depressing! Plus the addition of Scarlett Johannson, Sam Rockwell, and Don Cheadle were all to the series benefit.

    • I agree Jon!

  20. Yeah, I’ll say that Iron Man 2 was the most disappointing one for me. I didn’t care about the others, so it almost goes without saying. It wasn’t bad, but the decision to make Tony Stark into a complete ass kind of took the fun out of it for me. That didn’t remind me of the character I grew up with.

  21. I just saw Tron: Legacy myself today.

    It is good, but it is disappointing.

    My disappointments fall into three categories:

    First, the music. To be fair, the score by Daft Punk was far better than I’d expected, but then again, given what Wendy Carlos did with the original, I was expecting something akin to Salieri pinch-hitting for Mozart. To say that Daft Punk are not in the same league as Wendy Carlos would be putting it very mildly.

    Second was the absence of Dr. Lora Baines, and her software alter-ego, Yori. I would say that Cindy Morgan’s absence from Tron: Legacy was as senseless and inexcusable as that of Barbara (“Agent 99″) Feldon from “The Nude Bomb.”

    Finally, the distinctive surreal visual texture of the “Electronic World” scenes in the original — necessitated as it was by the limits of CGI at the time, and the use of backlit animation, and of sets so dark that depth-of-field was measured in fractions of an inch — was sorely missing. Everything in this film’s “Electronic World” scenes just looked too much like ordinary actors, sets, and props, with a bit of neon clothing.

  22. ….Iron Man 2? What the hell is that doing on the list?

    • Because we found it to be disappointing.

  23. tron legacy was awesome

  24. Tron: Legacy was perfectly servicable as a fun summer movie. The story was no worse than Avatar’s recycled “white-imperialist-goes-native-becoming-best-native-ever” and was a fun slice of science-fantasy. At least instead of referencing tired anti-colonial polemics it drew on the eternal archetype of the heroe’s journey for its inspiration. It’s ok to dislike Tron: Legacy for what it is, but man is it getting tiresome reading people hating it for what it wasn’t.

  25. I agree 100% with the list with the exception of Tron Legacy which I really enjoyed. I didn’t expect a deep plot, although it would have been welcomed. I went in anticipating a shallow movie with great VFX and that’s what I got. I totally agree with the comments on Tron, I guess I just wasn’t “disappointed” by it. It really comes down to what the viewer expected going in.

    For that matter, I suppose I didn’t expect much more out of Alice, but I really wished I hadn’t seen it in 3D – your analysis is dead on with that one

    Good article

  26. @Ross Miller we? who is we? do you speak for all the posters on this site and just talk for everyone? Each person does not have their own voice or opinion? Just what you say? I have been coming to this site for months and I totally disagree with you. Iron Man 2 was the best movie of 2010 for me. If you disagree, fine. But dont make your opinion the same for everyone on this site. Vic I do like you site but IM2 does not belong on list of most disappointing movies. Clash of the Titans was massively disappointing by far. Im glad I did not see it in 3D. What was WB thinking when they converted it at the last minute?

    • I’m guessing Ross meant the crew at Screen Rant found when he said “we”.

    • By “we” I did indeed mean me and rest of the team. I didn’t just write the list up of my own accord, choosing all the films on the list myself. We decided as a team which films we collectively found disappointing.

  27. Iron Man 2 had so much going for it :’( At least it wasn’t so bad.
    Clash sucked.
    Alice was boring.
    Last Airbender..horrible.
    Tron Legacy was a let down.

  28. Ross, you could not be more wrong about Tron. I found the script to be tightly focused, and really enjoyed the little things like The Black Hole references at the beginning (totally cool, and that movie seems to hold up well over time). If I could have asked for more, I wish Boxleitner would have been more of a focus. What I would have given to have Rinsler remove his mask to reveal Tron, to the surprise of Flynn!

    Beyond that Ross, I think you missed the boat on this one. Tron was one of the best films of the year, and I’ll watch it for a third time on Sunday.

    • Many, many reviewers and “regular” folks would disagree with you.


  29. Wow this post has really hit a nerve with a lot of people.