There are always those films we walk into the cinema to see and come walking out thinking "what on earth was that all about". Directors can sometimes think they'll draw people in with nothing more than a few explosions and the odd chase scene. However this is not the only trap film makers fall for; many plummet into the black hole of no return by simply having high expectations and by emptying their pockets. With a mixture of bad storylines, horrendous graphics and an overall spending so large that you might as well not show the film at all, these five biggest failures should never have made it to the screen in the first place. Wrath of the Titans and Green Lantern were very lucky to cut it close but not actually fall into this list of devastation and all-round disappointment.
In fifth place on the road to loserville is the Sci-Fi film The Adventures of Pluto Nash, starring the talented Eddie Murphy. “Sci-Fi? Eddie Murphy? A guy called Pluto? Surely it must have done pretty well?” Think again. Earning a Gross of only $7.1 million with a $100 million budget, The Adventures of Pluto Nash made a total loss of $96 million dollars. It was nominated for five Golden Raspberry Awards in 2003, including Worst Screen Couple, Worst Actor (Eddie Murphy), Worst Screenplay, Worst Director and Worst picture. Oddly, the film isn't too bad, and Eddie Murphy has certainly been in far worse films since, though I guess money can't lie.
In at number four is Stealth. A 2005 American Sci-Fi (AGAIN?) film, it follows three fighter pilots, the best in the business, who attempt to create an automated A.I stealth aircraft with the rest of their team. Predictably, the A.I turns against it's creators and tries to, y'know, end the world. It cost $135 million to make and bombed out in the box office, losing a total of nearly $100 million dollars. It wasn’t nominated for any rewards, reducing the minuscule buzz it already had, and was claimed as one of the biggest losers of all time. It was slated by critics and Rotten Tomato rated it at only 13%! There’s not much more to say other than I hope this film has enough Stealth to run into the shadows before it’s humiliated even further.
Its Town and Country that takes the third spot, a romantic comedy following an architect (played by Warren Beatty) and his friends. With a budget of $90 million and a loss of nearly $100 million dollars (slightly more than Stealth), it is considered one of America’s biggest movie flops of all time. At the Golden Raspberry awards it was nominated for Worst Director and Worst Supporting Actress, and won Worst Supporting Actor for Charlton Heston. The dismal reception to this film meant that many of the cast were not seen in movies for a while after its release, seemingly damaging some of their careers; Warren Beatty has not been seen in a film since. The film industry certainly can make or break you.
Narrowly missing out on the Dunce Cap of Shame is Mars Needs Moms, which had a budget of $150 million and lost a shocking $130 million. An animated Sci-Fi (surprise surprise) comedy film, Mars Needs Moms was released in 2011 and follows Milo, a nine year old boy who had to save his mother from Martians. The story, writing, 3D and drama was highly criticised, and the movie overall received mixed reviews. The film holds the mantle for worst box office reception for a Disney film ever, and is definitely one that they will want to brush under the rug, never to see the light of day again.
And the award for worst ever film failure goes to… *drum roll* John Carter! John Carter is one of those films you watch and think "I don’t understand how it’s that bad". But you see, it’s not the content of the film that was its downfall, no, it was the fact that it had a whopping budget of $250 million dollars and the box office went nowhere near to making that sort of money up. In the end John Carter lost $173 million (and yes, you guessed right, it’s another Sci-fi film). The film follows John Carter, a Civil War veteran who finds himself on another planet and get caught up in a war of survival. The failing of this film is that the budget mean the film had to make ticket sales of over $600 million just to break even, a feat only achieved by 63 films in movie making history. It just goes to show that film making is not about the film itself, but the money managing, and it seems someone isn’t very good with their numbers.