Summer 2009: The Season Of Bad Movies [Updated]

Published 4 years ago by , Updated February 15th, 2014 at 4:24 pm,

summerpostersmain Summer 2009: The Season Of Bad Movies [Updated]

Well, the summer movie season is officially over, and while box office earnings are way up, it seems like the quality of the films have actually gone way down.  But for every few badly-written movies (like X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Transformers 2, and G.I. Joe–though some will say it’s not that bad), there was a diamond in the rough like District 9.  So why were so many movies so bad in the summer of ’09, even if they did make a lot of money?  Hint: The Writers Strike!

Before the summer began, I wrote an article about how the 2007 Writers Strike might affect the summer 2009 movies.  I speculated that back in 2007, studios were nervous about how long the writers strike could last, leaving them with a possible lack of films for the fall/winter 2008 and all-important summer 2009 season (early May to late August 2009). To make sure they had big films lined up for Summer ’09, the studios pushed to have their big-budget scripts quick-finished before the Writers Guild of America’s (WGA) contracts were up in November 2007 and the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) in summer of 2008.

So what happened? Movies like Wolverine, Transformers 2, GI Joe, Angels and Demons, Terminator Salvation, and others got thrashed by critics (and our own, brave reviewers here at Screen Rant), for their lackluster scripts that showed every sign of being half-cooked. Now, some of you might thing bad scripts and summer blockbusters go hand-in-hand – but let’s be honest, when was the last time there were so many stinkers that came out in one summer?  Sure, many of these films made a lot of money, but how much of that profit hinges on moviegoers looking for affordable entertainment and “stay-cations” in this bad economy?

It’s very well known that most of the summer ’09 films were rushed into production. Angels and Demons was delayed a year due to the Strike, but that didn’t seem to help make the final product that much better; Michael Bay has said in interviews that he worked out the overall story of Transformers 2, all the way down to the action AND comedic bits.  However, when the WGA strike ended, writers Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman were joined by fellow writer Ehren Krueger to try and get the script for TF2 hammered out in a matter of three or four months to meet the production start deadline.  At that rushed pace, the script was bound to suffer.

summer 2009 wolverine optimus prime transformers 2 Summer 2009: The Season Of Bad Movies [Updated]

Several Big-budget franchise installments failed to live up to the hype.

Here’s a quick recap of some of the more disappointing movies this summer:

  • Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen
  • Terminator: Salvation
  • Angels and Demons
  • X-Men Origins: Wolverine
  • Year One
  • Public Enemies (this one is open to debate–it seems kind of split on how people and critics liked it–Vic liked it)

(Continue to pg. 2 to see which movies of Summer ’09 were actually good!)

–~~~~~~~~~~~~–

star trek header Summer 2009: The Season Of Bad Movies [Updated]

I am ashamed to admit I missed J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek (you can count on me to see the re-release in IMAX), which many feel is the best Trek in years, movie or TV.  But consider this:  J.J. was frustrated because he couldn’t make any changes to the script leading up to and during a good part of the production, because of the WGA Strike. Could Star Trek have been even better than it was?  We may know when the sequel hits.

Marvel took a hit with its one-time plans to have at least Thor out this summer, thanks to the WGA Strike (and a projected $300 million budget for the film), which forced it into re-writes and delayed it until 2011.

The good news?  There were a few diamonds in the rough this year, including:

summer 2009 star trek district 9 inglourious basterds Summer 2009: The Season Of Bad Movies [Updated]

Blomkamp, Abrams, & Tarantino helped shed some light on a dismal summer

There are other highlights, of course, many of which were independent films made outside the Hollywood system – there is hope!  And let’s not forget: many of those indie directors who did well this summer might just end up handling big-budget movies down the line (See: Jon Favreau and Christopher Nolan). Could we see District 9 director Neil Blomkamp finally get handed the keys to the Halo franchise? Stay tuned to find out.

So, looking ahead, what can we expect for the summer of 2010?  It’s safe to assume that things will be a lot better, quality-wise.  We have Iron Man 2, Toy Story 3, Inception, and many promising prospects – plus, now that the studios have ample time for scripting and on-set re-writes, it looks like the bar for summer movie scripts might get raised back to average… We hope.  Summer 2009 has proven that blockbuster movies need to have at least  a little bit of mind to go along with their “mindless entertainment.”

Here’s a perfect little clip that sums up the Summer of ’09, courtesy of Quentin Tarantino and Rachel Nichols (G.I. Joe) on Jimmy Kimmel Live:

Did you think that Summer ’09 at the movies was as disappointing as we did? Sound off in the comments.

Source: /Film

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TAGS: 500 days of summer, angels and demons, district 9, gi joe, moon, public enemies, star trek, terminator salvation, the hurt locker, the wolverine, transformers 2, up, year one

60 Comments

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  1. What seemed strange to me was that several things I enjoyed others didn’t. “Star Trek” for example I liked the prequel comics, which I read after seeing the movie, more than the movie. After having seen all of “TOS” numerous times, “TNG,” most of “DS9,” “Voyager,” and “Enterprise” plus all the movies, I’m throughly burnt out on time travel movies. But keep in mind, over the course of the summer, I’ve read “Time Ships” and six other novels dealing with time manipulation of one sort or another. About 2917 odd pages, fine paper back print. Plus movies like 2007′s “Time Crimes.”

    “Transformers 2″ I was pretty blasé about, but used it as an opportunity to get my sisters’ opinion, seeing that she liked the first one and typically hates the genre. She felt this was inferior because it was too much about the robots and not the people. Which most posting their opinions seem to feel the reverse. I also talked her into seeing “GI Joe” which I think we both enjoyed more but not as much as say the third installment of “Indiana Jones” or “Jaws” which we saw together in the past. I think overall “D9″ was better than any of the other movies I saw this summer. The political undercurrents were timely and while it has been done before it’s been awhile for this one. For the volume of movies with action in them It’s been a rather lackluster season. Here’s hoping for better stories in summer 2010.

  2. @boborci

    Email headed your way.

    Vic

  3. This really was the year of bad distribution.

    “Moon” showing on 11 screens, “Hurt Locker” and “Fanboys” both playing in only limited markets.

    Besides the horrible short sided distribution I felt that “Moon”, “District 9″, and “Hurt Locker” were all remarkable films. They made up for the Terminator Salvations and Land of the Losts.

  4. That is an excellent point 790! I still can’t find a venue showing “Moon,” which has bugged me since its review.

  5. @ boborci

    Bob, we love you. Sorry for any bad info and we’ll be sure to sort it out, PROMPTLY.

  6. Hey Mr. Orci don’t be a stranger post more often!

  7. The Old Man “Moon” is a dvd purchase.
    Its one of the best sci-fi films of the last 10 years. (ImO)

  8. @bob

    Well consider my face the color of egg! If anyone was to know the right information I suppose it would be you. I sure am I glad I didn’t fill my retort with vulgar language and references to your mother. Technically I did but that comment never made it past the first draft :)

    So for everyone at home counting, this is the 2nd time in my life that I’ve managed to unwittingly make an ass of myself in front of someone involved with the Star Trek universe. The 1st involves William Shatner, an airport in Atlanta and very poorly done impression with equally poor timing.

  9. Yeah yor right 790. To see it now It’s to the DVD store for me…

  10. @wickamo

    Well, let’s just say it’s a bad summer compared to the others? Because if you thought those movies are great movies, then you must have flown out of your seat in excitement over last summer’s movies. So let’s just say the writers of this site are saying “How come this summer’s movies didn’t make you fly out of your seat?”

    I think out of all of the movies this year, Star Trek is my favorite, with Up being number 2. I haven’t seen Moon, waiting for the rental, but I’ve seen Hurt Locker, District 9, haven’t seen GI Joe, saw Wolverine, Terminator 4… Yah, Star Trek is definitely the best movie so far for me…

  11. Yeah, this summer was kind of a let down for me too. Star Trek and Up were the best things out of it. I really, really hope next year is better, but somehow I can’t find myself interested in many films. Actually I think I just want to see Iron Man 2 (of course), Toy Story 3, Inception and MAYBE Robin Hood, but I need a trailer for that one to judge. Oh, yes and then The Expendables too since it’s now a summer release.

  12. This summer failed to generate the excitemnt many summers in the past has…After May it was all downhill (because of the let down of Wolverine, Angels & Demons and Terminator)except for D9..never had the opportunity to see The Hurt Locker or Moon as they never played in my area.. I liked TF2 for what it was…a Michael Bay action movie..yes it’s not Kubrick doing 2001 or Scott’s Alien but I had a good time watching it..Were there things I could have gone without ..sure but I knew going in that there was going to be that sort of foolishness so I prepared myself for it..It had great action sequences and I got to see Optimus kick some @$$ in that forest scene and at the end..I was really waiting for that…To me that was worth the price of admission..

    Haven’t scene Star Trek(GASP!!!)..we have three little boys and are new to this area so we don’t trust anyone enough to leave our children with so going to a movie is a luxury…

  13. I feel like next year might be a boring year for me. Of course Iron Man 2 is at the top of my list, but that’s about it. Toy Story 3 and Iron Man 2… What else is there? Robin Hood? LOL, what a lame story and an overly idealistic premise for a “hero.” When is Tron coming out? Next year right? Oh yah, so it’s Iron Man 2, Toy Story 3, Tron, The Expendables, and is Clash of the Titans a 2010 release?

  14. Some films scheduled for release next year:

    Legion
    Toy Story 2 re-release
    Alice In Wonderland
    Clash of the Titans (26-Mar-2010)
    How To Train Your Dragon
    Iron Man 2
    A-Team
    Toy Story 3
    The Last Airbender
    Inception
    Jonah Hex
    Robin Hood
    Twilight : Eclipse
    Prince of Persia
    Shrek Forever AFter
    Kick Ass
    The Expendables
    Narnia : THe Dawn Treader
    Potter : Deathly Hallows Part 1
    Shutter Island
    A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010)
    Sex and the City 2
    Karate Kid
    Robert Rodriguez’s Predators
    Meet the Fockers Sequel (Little Fockers)
    Dinner for Schmucks
    Tron: Legacy (December)
    Gulliver’s Travels

    Now I am not sure about everybody else but that is a WEAK list…

    Anybody know of anything else that might be interesting?

  15. Yes Ken evrybody has to be an antihero nowadays..

  16. If you include pictures of “Up” and “Star Trek” in your bad movie collage, you’re a tool, plain and simple.

  17. Not really, but I don’t see how Robin Hood, someone who robs and kills people just because they have money, can be a “hero.” So what happens when he gives too much money to the poor and the poor becomes rich? He’ll then have to rob or kill them too?? Come on. It’s improbable for someone to successfully rob a large number of people based on bluff alone, he’ll HAVE to kill to maintain his reputation or else nobody will yield to his demands, which is why Robin Hood can only exist in the story books. And only someone young and/or naive would actually consider what he does noble.

    Oh wait, I take that back, there are entire populations of idio… er… people who believe in that ridiculous concept…

  18. GK333, congrats on the family,,,

    Hang tight all the films you haven’t seen will be on dvd in a few weeks.
    :-)
    Your gonna dig “Hurt Locker” and if I know you right “Moon” is going to be one of your fav films,,, ;-)

  19. @Matt, try reading the article, it helps sometimes… ;-)

  20. I stayed as far away from the theater that I have in a long time. I saw Wolverine and Fast & Furious suck donkey c**k, I knew the summer was in trouble.

    I stayed away from obvious dreck like GI Joe, Transformers 2 and all that.

    I saw all of the “diamonds in the rough.” Most of them were actually good.

  21. There are only at least FOUR movies that I had really enjoyed this summer:

    *PUBLC ENEMIES
    *TERMINATOR SALVATION
    *INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS
    *X-MEN ORIGINS: WOLVERING

    The rest I had merely enjoyed, tolerated or disliked.

    All in all, the summer of 2009 was not a great season for films.

  22. AVATAR people. It will make up for this years crap so far, excluding Star Trek

  23. @ 790

    I look forward to those and will pic them up for sure!!

  24. I respect the freedom of those watching (and critiquing/criticizing) the films to choose whether or not they like the films…as many have already stated, people have opinions and hold to them AND (quite often) share them.

    To that end, I disagree that this was a bad summer for movies (profits aside). “Star Trek”, “District 9″, and “Up” were excellent films. “Harry Potter”, while full of changes from the source text, was still exciting and entertaining and had me anticipating me the coming 7A and 7B films…and I DID read and LOVE the whole series, as well as ancillary/extra materials (__Beadle__, etc.). “Transformers” was a fun vegetable film (I, being a visual person, enjoyed the Robots, themselves). “G.I. Joe” and “Terminator” were the “bad” movies good enough to see and like. Are they Oscar-worthy? OF COURSE NOT…Did I feel happy (and for certain, specific moments thoughtful…?) when I walked out of the theater after each of these two? YES.

    On the other hand, I couldn’t figure out WHY people would want to see “Year One” and The Hangover” or the two “mall cop” movies (though, I think one of them was technically before the summer), but then, hey, that’s the essence of differing views.

    As for “Inglourious Basterds” and “Moon”, I haven’t seen them yet, but I hope to go–or see them at home–at some point.

    I fully expect opposing ideas and opinions to fly at me now…GOOD. Bring ‘em on…Just keep it civil :)

  25. Tarantino’s the man. Take that stupid Rachel and your stupid bad acting in your stupid and terrible movie.

  26. I am very new at this so here goes. Last years movies where a mix bag. Hope thes yera 2010 will be better. I write about bad movies on my site/blog. Love the bad movies from fourties and fifties. I also talk about the more recent movies as well. These movies might do well. Clash of the Titans. The first one was very bad. Sex and the City, it still seems to be very poplar. A – Team the jury is still out on that one. Will see. Shutter Island was had to follow. Did do well at the box office. Will see what the rest of the year brings. Thank for reading. Let me know about any and all bad movies. Lee

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