Paramount Pictures/courtesy Everett Collection

(Photo by Paramount Pictures/courtesy Everett Collection)

All Nickelodeon Movies Ranked

As the first parlors to exhibit films in public settings for mass consumption, it is impossible to understate the nickelodeon’s impact on cinema. These early 20th century… Oh. Wait. Wrong Nickelodeon.

As the studio to give our world SpongeBob Squarepants and Nacho Libre, it is impossible to understate Nickelodeon Movies’ impact on cinema. In these weary times of snark and cynicism (this sentence being puddin’ proof), count on the Nick to mount cheery, earnest films. Not only are they well-versed in the aforementioned cartoon spongiology, but Rugrats, the Ninja Turtles, Tintin, and the one-and-only Avatar have all called the studio home. And now we’re ranking every Nickelodeon Movie by Tomatometer!

#34
#34
Adjusted Score: 12192%
Critics Consensus: The Last Airbender squanders its popular source material with incomprehensible plotting, horrible acting, and detached joyless direction.
Synopsis: The four nations of Air, Water, Earth and Fire lived in harmony until the Fire Nation declared war. A century... [More]
Directed By: M. Night Shyamalan

#33
#33
Adjusted Score: 8782%
Critics Consensus: The initial set-up is unbelievable, the plotting is predictable and stale, and the comedy depends on repetitive pratfalls that soon get old.
Synopsis: When Coast Guard Adm. Frank Beardsley (Dennis Quaid) decides to move his family of eight children back to his old... [More]
Directed By: Raja Gosnell

#32
Adjusted Score: 26659%
Critics Consensus: Neither entertaining enough to recommend nor remarkably awful, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles may bear the distinction of being the dullest movie ever made about talking bipedal reptiles.
Synopsis: Spawned from a lab experiment gone awry, teenage terrapins Leonardo, Michelangelo, Donatello and Raphael live in the sewers beneath New... [More]
Directed By: Jonathan Liebesman

#31
Adjusted Score: 24621%
Critics Consensus: Unimaginative and unfunny, this tale of barnyard mischief borders on 'udder' creepiness and adds little to this summer's repertoire of animated films.
Synopsis: Like the other animals in the barn, Otis the bull (Kevin James) likes to sing and play while the farmer... [More]
Directed By: Steve Oedekerk

#30
#30
Adjusted Score: 27924%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: When straight-laced fire superintendent Jake Carson and his elite team of firefighters come to the rescue of three siblings, they... [More]
Directed By: Andy Fickman

#29

Fun Size (2012)
25%

#29
Adjusted Score: 26435%
Critics Consensus: It occasionally shows surprising flashes of wit, but Fun Size is too safe and formulaic -- not to mention unfunny -- to survive comparisons to the '80s teen movies it eagerly imitates.
Synopsis: Wren (Victoria Justice) is a high-school senior who can't wait to get away from her dysfunctional family. On Halloween, Wren's... [More]
Directed By: Josh Schwartz

#28

Snow Day (2000)
29%

#28
Adjusted Score: 29924%
Critics Consensus: Weak assembly of characters and story lines made this movie forgettable and silly.
Synopsis: Anything can happen on a snow day --- and for Hal and Natalie Brandston, it does. When the sun sets... [More]
Directed By: Chris Koch

#27
#27
Adjusted Score: 30957%
Critics Consensus: Bland, unoriginal, and lacking the wit of the TV series, Hey Arnold is a 30 min cartoon stretched beyond its running time.
Synopsis: Arnold (Spencer Klein) and his pal, Gerald (Jamil Walker Smith), learn their beloved neighborhood is about to be torn down... [More]
Directed By: Tuck Tucker

#26

Clockstoppers (2002)
29%

#26
Adjusted Score: 31261%
Critics Consensus: A pleasant diversion for the young teens, but a waste of time for anyone older.
Synopsis: Until now, Zak Gibbs' (Jesse Bradford) greatest challenge has been to find a way to buy a car. But when... [More]
Directed By: Jonathan Frakes

#25

Monster Trucks (2016)
32%

#25
Adjusted Score: 37694%
Critics Consensus: Despite flashes of inspiration, the singularly high-concept Monster Trucks shows that it takes more than monsters and trucks to create a compelling feature film.
Synopsis: Looking for any way to get away from the life and town he was born into, Tripp (Lucas Till), a... [More]
Directed By: Chris Wedge

#24

Good Burger (1997)
34%

#24
Adjusted Score: 36066%
Critics Consensus: Good Burger might please hardcore fans of the 1990s Nickelodeon TV series that launched leads Kenan and Kel to stardom, but for all others, it will likely prove a comedy that is neither satisfyingly rare nor well done.
Synopsis: Teen misfits (Kel Mitchell, Kenan Thompson) at a modest burger joint face competition from a hamburger emporium across the street.... [More]
Directed By: Brian Robbins

#23

Wonder Park (2019)
34%

#23
Adjusted Score: 40091%
Critics Consensus: Colorful and energetic but lacking a compelling story, Wonder Park is little more than a competently made diversion for very young viewers.
Synopsis: Buckle up for an epic adventure where anything is possible. A young girl named June with a big imagination makes... [More]
Directed By: Dylan Brown

#22
Adjusted Score: 47439%
Critics Consensus: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows is a slight improvement over its predecessor, but still lacks the wit or anarchic energy of the comics that birthed the franchise.
Synopsis: The turtles face a new challenge when Shredder escapes from custody and joins forces with Baxter Stockman, a mad scientist... [More]
Directed By: Dave Green

#21

Rugrats Go Wild (2003)
39%

#21
Adjusted Score: 41495%
Critics Consensus: The Rugrats franchise has gone from fresh to formulaic.
Synopsis: Chuckie (Nancy Cartwright) and Tommy (Elizabeth Daily) find themselves stranded with their parents on a remote island. By coincidence, the... [More]
Directed By: Norton Virgien, John Eng

#20

Nacho Libre (2006)
40%

#20
Adjusted Score: 45907%
Critics Consensus: At times hilarious, but other times offensive, Director Jared Hess is unable to recapture the collective charisma of his Napoleon characters, instead relying on a one-joke concept that runs out of steam. Sure to entertain the adolescents, however.
Synopsis: Ignacio (Jack Black), or Nacho to his friends, works as a cook in the Mexican monastery where he grew up.... [More]
Directed By: Jared Hess

#19

Imagine That (2009)
41%

#19
Adjusted Score: 44461%
Critics Consensus: Despite a promising turn by newcomer Yara Shahidi, Imagine That is another pedestrian family comedy that squanders Eddie Murphy's comedic talents.
Synopsis: Like many busy professionals, Evan Danielson (Eddie Murphy) is so focused on his career that quality time with his young... [More]
Directed By: Karey Kirkpatrick

#18

Hotel for Dogs (2009)
46%

#18
Adjusted Score: 49598%
Critics Consensus: Hotel for Dogs may appeal to children and dog lovers, but it's ultimately contrived, predictable, and simplistic.
Synopsis: After moving into a foster home that forbids pets, siblings Andi (Emma Roberts) and Bruce (Jake T. Austin) must quickly... [More]
Directed By: Thor Freudenthal

#17

Harriet the Spy (1996)
48%

#17
Adjusted Score: 49220%
Critics Consensus: Harriet the Spy is a rapid-fire mystery movie that doesn't have much to offer beyond the two decent lead performances.
Synopsis: Harriet (Michelle Trachtenberg) may only be in the sixth grade, but she's already found her calling: to be a spy.... [More]
Directed By: Bronwen Hughes

#16
#16
Adjusted Score: 60298%
Critics Consensus: Charming characters; loads of fun for kids and adults.
Synopsis: This animated comedy finds Tommy Pickles (E.G. Daily) trying to return his baby brother to the hospital after being warned... [More]

#15
Adjusted Score: 69256%
Critics Consensus: Although its story may leave fans on the surface, The Spongebob Movie: Sponge on the Run is a wondrously wacky visit to Bikini Bottom that retains the charm of the original series.
Synopsis: In the first-ever all CGI SpongeBob motion picture event, THE SPONGEBOB MOVIE: SPONGE ON THE RUN, SpongeBob SquarePants, his best... [More]
Directed By: Tim Hill

#14
Adjusted Score: 72333%
Critics Consensus: Surreally goofy and entertaining for both children and their parents.
Synopsis: In this lively animated adventure, undersea oddball SpongeBob SquarePants and his starfish friend, Patrick, embark on a quest to clear... [More]

#13
Adjusted Score: 76697%
Critics Consensus: Although it softens the nasty edges of its source material, Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events is a gothic visual treat, and it features a hilariously manic turn from Jim Carrey as the evil Count Olaf.
Synopsis: After the three young Baudelaire siblings are left orphaned by a fire in their mansion, they are carted off to... [More]
Directed By: Brad Silberling

#12
Adjusted Score: 73104%
Critics Consensus: Based on two of British writer Louise Rennison's popular books, Angus, Thongs and Perfect Snogging is a pleasant and funny tween comedy, comfortable for UK audiences as well as stateside crowds.
Synopsis: Based on the books by Louise Rennison, this tale follows 14-year-old Georgia Nicholson as she attempts to woo Robbie, one... [More]
Directed By: Gurinder Chadha

#11
#11
Adjusted Score: 75409%
Critics Consensus: What Jimmy Neutron lacks in computer animation, it makes up for in charm and cleverness.
Synopsis: "Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius" tells the simple story of a 10-year-old boy and his robot dog - battling evil, rescuing... [More]
Directed By: John A. Davis

#10
#10
Adjusted Score: 82081%
Critics Consensus: Drawing deep from the classic Raiders of the Lost Ark playbook, Steven Spielberg has crafted another spirited, thrilling adventure in the form of Tintin.
Synopsis: While shopping at an outdoor market, young reporter Tintin (Jamie Bell), accompanied by his faithful dog, Snowy, buys a model... [More]
Directed By: Steven Spielberg

#9
Adjusted Score: 78323%
Critics Consensus: When the Rugrats go to Paris, the result is Nickelodeon-style fun. The plot is effectively character-driven, and features catchy songs and great celebrity voice-acting.
Synopsis: In the long-running animated series' second feature film, the focus is on the show's perennial second banana, Chuckie (Christine Cavanaugh).... [More]

#8

Charlotte's Web (2006)
78%

#8
Adjusted Score: 84050%
Critics Consensus: Kids will be entertained by the straightforward plot and cute animals, and adults will be charmed by how quiet and humble the production is, a fine translation of E.B. White's genteel prose.
Synopsis: After learning that a young pig's days are numbered, a literate spider (Julia Roberts) weaves an elaborate plan to save... [More]
Directed By: Gary Winick

#7
#7
Adjusted Score: 79768%
Critics Consensus: No job's too big and no pup's too small for PAW Patrol: The Movie, which should give its youthful target demographic exactly what they're looking for.
Synopsis: The PAW Patrol is on a roll! When their biggest rival, Humdinger, becomes Mayor of nearby Adventure City and starts... [More]
Directed By: Cal Brunker

#6
Adjusted Score: 81375%
Critics Consensus: The Wild Thornberrys Movie brings its beloved clan to the big screen for an animated adventure that should prove entertaining for all ages.
Synopsis: "The Wild Thornberrys" feature film finds one of America's favorite animated families going on wild adventures around the world. Now,... [More]

#5
Adjusted Score: 83707%
Critics Consensus: The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water won't win over many viewers who aren't fans of the show, but for the converted, it's another colorful burst of manic fun.
Synopsis: Life is dandy in Bikini Bottom for SpongeBob Squarepants (Tom Kenny) and his friends Patrick (Bill Fagerbakke), Squidward (Rodger Bumpass),... [More]

#4
Adjusted Score: 85664%
Critics Consensus: The Spiderwick Chronicles is an entertaining children's adventure, with heart and imagination to spare.
Synopsis: Of the three Grace children, Jared (Freddie Highmore) has always been thought of as the troublemaker. So when strange things... [More]
Directed By: Mark Waters

#3

Mad Hot Ballroom (2005)
84%

#3
Adjusted Score: 88452%
Critics Consensus: This heartwarming documentary will win audiences over, as the sheer charm of precocious, enthusiastic children learning to dance resonates from the screen.
Synopsis: Documentary filmmaker Marilyn Agrelo chronicles the lives of several New York City schoolchildren as they get ready for a dancing... [More]
Directed By: Marilyn Agrelo

#2
Adjusted Score: 93173%
Critics Consensus: Led by a winning performance from Isabela Moner, Dora and the Lost City of Gold is a family-friendly adventure that retains its source material's youthful spirit.
Synopsis: Having spent most of her life exploring the jungle, nothing could prepare Dora for her most dangerous adventure yet --... [More]
Directed By: James Bobin

#1

Rango (2011)
88%

#1
Adjusted Score: 95564%
Critics Consensus: Rango is a smart, giddily creative burst of beautifully animated entertainment, and Johnny Depp gives a colorful vocal performance as a household pet in an unfamiliar world.
Synopsis: A chameleon (Johnny Depp) who has lived as a sheltered family pet finds himself in the grip of an identity... [More]
Directed By: Gore Verbinski

(Photo by 20th Century Fox. Thumbnail: Netflix/courtesy Everett Collection.)

The Worst Superhero Movies of All Time

Great leaping tomatoes! It’s the worst superhero movies ever, an infamous league of Rotten films that scored less than 30% on the Tomatometer!

First off, to keep this list spandex-tight, not only did we include superhero movies below 30%, but each had to have at least 20 reviews, guaranteeing enough critics witnessed of these erratic efforts, franchise non-starters, and would-be blockbusters.

After looking through the list, if you’re wondering why you didn’t see the 1990 Captain America movie, a bunch of those sequels to The Crow, or Dolph Lundgren’s The Punisher, they were cut out by not accumulating at least 20 critics reviews. But, don’t worry, still plenty of room for Frank in this castle of decrepitude, as the other two Punisher movies, the Thomas Jane one and War Zone, are represented. In fact, they both even currently have the same score at 29%, just squeezing into the list. And while most Audience Scores are in the same realm as its movie’s Tomatometer, there’s a divergence on Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Dark Phoenix: Both Rotten movies according to the critics, but which settled above 60% on the Audience Score.

Nic Cage appears twice on this list because they made two Ghost Rider movies. Ryan Reynolds also shows up twice but in two separate franchises, mucking it up in both houses of Marvel and DC via Blade: Trinity and Green Lantern. And because who doesn’t like a comic book showdown, in the battle of Marvel vs DC over who’s made the most worst superhero movies, Marvel is “triumphant” with 10 listings, and DC at 9. We didn’t count The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, the movie so bad it made Sean Connery quit acting, because though it was at the time produced at an imprint of an imprint of DC Comics (it’s imprint-ception, people), the comic was always wholly owned by its creator Alan Moore.

Of course, let’s not count out other labels making special appearances, like 2000 A.D. (Judge Dredd) or Image (Spawn). Then there’s the magic that happens when when Hollywood executives come together to create something that didn’t come from a comic book, with sparkling results like Tim Allen’s Zoom, an adaptation of TV cartoon Underdog, and the toy-based Max Steel.

One last thing: For movies with the same Tomatometer scores, whichever had more reviews was placed higher. Now, come take a flying leap as we rank the worst superhero movies of all time!

(And see a movie here you love and think ‘Rotten Tomatoes Is Wrong’? Send us a note and we might cover your movie in our new podcast. Hit us up at rtiswrong@rottentomatoes.com.)

#30
Adjusted Score: 56047%
Critics Consensus: Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice smothers a potentially powerful story -- and some of America's most iconic superheroes -- in a grim whirlwind of effects-driven action.
Synopsis: It's been nearly two years since Superman's (Henry Cavill) colossal battle with Zod (Michael Shannon) devastated the city of Metropolis.... [More]
Directed By: Zack Snyder

#29

Ghost Rider (2007)
26%

#29
Adjusted Score: 31767%
Critics Consensus: Ghost Rider is a sour mix of morose, glum histrionics amidst jokey puns and hammy dialogue.
Synopsis: Years ago, motorcycle stuntman Johnny Blaze (Nicolas Cage) sold his soul to save the life of a loved one. Now,... [More]
Directed By: Mark Steven Johnson

#28

Green Lantern (2011)
26%

#28
Adjusted Score: 34641%
Critics Consensus: Noisy, overproduced, and thinly written, Green Lantern squanders an impressive budget and decades of comics mythology.
Synopsis: Sworn to preserve intergalactic order, the Green Lantern Corps has existed for centuries. Its newest recruit, Hal Jordan (Ryan Reynolds),... [More]
Directed By: Martin Campbell

#27

Suicide Squad (2016)
26%

#27
Adjusted Score: 50737%
Critics Consensus: Suicide Squad boasts a talented cast and a little more humor than previous DCEU efforts, but they aren't enough to save the disappointing end result from a muddled plot, thinly written characters, and choppy directing.
Synopsis: Figuring they're all expendable, a U.S. intelligence officer decides to assemble a team of dangerous, incarcerated supervillains for a top-secret... [More]
Directed By: David Ayer

#26

Blade: Trinity (2004)
25%

#26
Adjusted Score: 30945%
Critics Consensus: Louder, campier, and more incoherent than its predecessors, Blade: Trinity seems content to emphasize style over substance and rehash familiar themes.
Synopsis: The war between humans and vampires continues, but the humans' best hope, human-vampire hybrid warrior Blade (Wesley Snipes), has been... [More]
Directed By: David S. Goyer

#25

Bulletproof Monk (2003)
23%

#25
Adjusted Score: 27186%
Critics Consensus: Venerable action star Chow Yun-Fat is the only saving grace in this silly action flick that more often than not resembles a commercial in style.
Synopsis: For 60 years, a mysterious monk with no name (Chow Yun-Fat) has zigzagged the globe to protect an ancient scroll... [More]
Directed By: Paul Hunter

#24
Adjusted Score: 23101%
Critics Consensus: It's a case of one sequel too many for the heroes in a half shell, with a tired time-travel plot gimmick failing to save the franchise from rapidly diminishing returns.
Synopsis: Reporter April O'Neil (Paige Turco) purchases an ancient Japanese scepter that can cause those simultaneously holding it in different centuries... [More]
Directed By: Stuart Gillard

#23

Dark Phoenix (2019)
22%

#23
Adjusted Score: 45015%
Critics Consensus: Dark Phoenix ends an era of the X-Men franchise by taking a second stab at adapting a classic comics arc -- with deeply disappointing results.
Synopsis: The X-Men face their most formidable and powerful foe when one of their own, Jean Grey, starts to spiral out... [More]
Directed By: Simon Kinberg

#22

Judge Dredd (1995)
22%

#22
Adjusted Score: 24271%
Critics Consensus: Judge Dredd wants to be both a legitimate violent action flick and a parody of one, but director Danny Cannon fails to find the necessary balance to make it work.
Synopsis: In the crime-plagued future, the only thing standing between order and chaos is Judge Joseph Dredd (Sylvester Stallone). His duty:... [More]
Directed By: Danny Cannon

#21

Thunder Force (2021)
21%

#21
Adjusted Score: 28059%
Critics Consensus: It's got a few chuckles, but Thunder Force is largely a superhero comedy that's neither exciting nor funny -- and an egregious waste of its co-stars' talents.
Synopsis: Two childhood best friends reunite as an unlikely crime-fighting superhero duo when one invents a formula that gives ordinary people... [More]
Directed By: Ben Falcone

#20
Adjusted Score: 26659%
Critics Consensus: Neither entertaining enough to recommend nor remarkably awful, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles may bear the distinction of being the dullest movie ever made about talking bipedal reptiles.
Synopsis: Spawned from a lab experiment gone awry, teenage terrapins Leonardo, Michelangelo, Donatello and Raphael live in the sewers beneath New... [More]
Directed By: Jonathan Liebesman

#19
Adjusted Score: 21368%
Critics Consensus: With a weak script, uneven CG work, and a Nic Cage performance so predictably loony it's no longer amusing, Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance aims to be trashy fun but ends up as plain trash.
Synopsis: Now hiding out in Eastern Europe, Johnny Blaze (Nicolas Cage) is still struggling with the curse of the Ghost Rider... [More]

#18

Spawn (1997)
17%

#18
Adjusted Score: 19426%
Critics Consensus: Spawn is an overbearing, over-violent film that adds little to the comic book adaptation genre.
Synopsis: Covert government assassin Al Simmons (Michael Jai White) is killed after being double-crossed by his boss, Jason Wynn (Martin Sheen).... [More]
Directed By: Mark A.Z. Dippé

#17
Adjusted Score: 23265%
Critics Consensus: Just ordinary. LXG is a great premise ruined by poor execution.
Synopsis: A team of extraordinary figures culled from great adventure literature (including Alan Quatermain, vampiress Mina Harker from Dracula, the Invisible... [More]
Directed By: Stephen Norrington

#16

Underdog (2007)
16%

#16
Adjusted Score: 17351%
Critics Consensus: Underdog is a mostly forgettable adaptation that relies far too heavily on recycled material and sloppy production.
Synopsis: After a lab accident gives him extraordinary powers, including the ability to speak, a canine (Jason Lee) declares himself the... [More]
Directed By: Frederik Du Chau

#15
Adjusted Score: 15490%
Critics Consensus: No no, Power Rangers.
Synopsis: The young superheroes square off against an evil villainess who plots to free a fiery monster from its volcano cage.... [More]
Directed By: Shuki Levy, David Winning

#14

The Spirit (2008)
14%

#14
Adjusted Score: 17143%
Critics Consensus: Though its visuals are unique, The Spirit's plot is almost incomprehensible, the dialogue is ludicrously mannered, and the characters are unmemorable.
Synopsis: Apparently murdered cop Denny Colt (Gabriel Macht) returns as the Spirit, dedicated to protecting Central City from crime. His archenemy,... [More]
Directed By: Frank Miller

#13

Howard the Duck (1986)
14%

#13
Adjusted Score: 15687%
Critics Consensus: While it has its moments, Howard the Duck suffers from an uneven tone and mediocre performances.
Synopsis: In this film based on the comic book character, Howard the Duck is suddenly beamed from Duckworld, a planet of... [More]
Directed By: Willard Huyck

#12

Steel (1997)
12%

#12
Adjusted Score: 11936%
Critics Consensus: Steel is a badly-acted movie that indulges not only in superhero cliches, but also the sappy TV-movie-of-the-week ones.
Synopsis: Former Army scientists (Shaquille O'Neal, Annabeth Gish), one in a steel suit, team up in Los Angeles against another (Judd... [More]
Directed By: Kenneth Johnson

#11

Batman & Robin (1997)
12%

#11
Adjusted Score: 17001%
Critics Consensus: Joel Schumacher's tongue-in-cheek attitude hits an unbearable limit in Batman & Robin resulting in a frantic and mindless movie that's too jokey to care much for.
Synopsis: This superhero adventure finds Batman (George Clooney) and his partner, Robin (Chris O'Donnell), attempting to the foil the sinister schemes... [More]
Directed By: Joel Schumacher

#10

Jonah Hex (2010)
12%

#10
Adjusted Score: 16503%
Critics Consensus: Josh Brolin gives it his best shot, but he can't keep the short, unfocused Jonah Hex from collapsing on the screen.
Synopsis: Having cheated death, gunslinger and bounty hunter Jonah Hex (Josh Brolin) has one foot in the natural world and one... [More]
Directed By: Jimmy Hayward

#9
Adjusted Score: 13609%
Critics Consensus: The Superman series bottoms out here: the action is boring, the special effects look cheaper, and none of the actors appear interested in where the plot's going.
Synopsis: Seeing the United States and the Soviet Union engaged in a nuclear arms race that could lead to Earth's destruction,... [More]
Directed By: Sidney J. Furie

#8
#8
Adjusted Score: 12505%
Critics Consensus: The Crow: City of Angels is a sloppy pretender that captures neither the mood nor energy of the original.
Synopsis: After mechanic Ashe (Vincent Perez) and his son (Eric Acosta) witness a murder, they are captured and killed by drug... [More]
Directed By: Tim Pope

#7

Elektra (2005)
11%

#7
Adjusted Score: 16419%
Critics Consensus: Jennifer Garner inhabits her role with earnest gusto, but Elektra's tone deaf script is too self-serious and bereft of intelligent dialogue to provide engaging thrills.
Synopsis: Assassin-for-hire Elektra (Jennifer Garner) works for a mysterious international organization known as the Hand, for which she kills her targets... [More]
Directed By: Rob Bowman

#6

Supergirl (1984)
9%

#6
Adjusted Score: 10233%
Critics Consensus: The effects are cheesy and Supergirl's wide-eyed, cheery heroine simply isn't interesting to watch for an hour and a half.
Synopsis: Kara (Helen Slater) of Argo City poses as Clark Kent's cousin, Linda Lee, to recover the Omegahedron from a witch... [More]
Directed By: Jeannot Szwarc

#5

Catwoman (2004)
9%

#5
Adjusted Score: 15185%
Critics Consensus: Halle Berry is the lone bright spot, but even she can't save this laughable action thriller.
Synopsis: "Catwoman" is the story of shy, sensitive artist Patience Philips (Halle Berry), a woman who can't seem to stop apologizing... [More]
Directed By: Pitof

#4

Fantastic Four (2015)
9%

#4
Adjusted Score: 18685%
Critics Consensus: Dull and downbeat, this Fantastic Four proves a woefully misguided attempt to translate a classic comic series without the humor, joy, or colorful thrills that made it great.
Synopsis: Transported to an alternate universe, four young outsiders gain superhuman powers as they alter their physical form in shocking ways.... [More]
Directed By: Josh Trank

#3

Son of the Mask (2005)
6%

#3
Adjusted Score: 8693%
Critics Consensus: Overly frantic, painfully unfunny, and sorely missing the presence of Jim Carrey.
Synopsis: A cartoonist and family man, Tim Avery (Jamie Kennedy) lives a peaceful existence with his wife, Tonya (Traylor Howard), as... [More]
Directed By: Lawrence Guterman

#2

Zoom (2006)
4%

#2
Adjusted Score: 6239%
Critics Consensus: Lacking the punch and good cheer of The Incredibles and Sky High, Zoom is a dull and laugh-free affair.
Synopsis: Capt. Zoom, or Jack (Tim Allen), as he is now known, has long since given up his career of fighting... [More]
Directed By: Peter Hewitt

#1

Max Steel (2016)
0%

#1
Adjusted Score: 396%
Critics Consensus: Bereft of characterization or even satisfying rock 'em sock 'em, Max Steel feels like futzing with an action figure without any childhood imagination.
Synopsis: Teenager Max McGrath (Ben Winchell) discovers that his body can generate the most powerful energy in the universe. Steel (Josh... [More]
Directed By: Stewart Hendler

Walt Disney Studios courtesy Everett Collection

(Photo by New Line Cinema courtesy Everett Collection)

All Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Movies Ranked

Cowabunga! We’re ranking the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movies, starting with the original! The story of Leonardo, Donatello, Raphael, Michelangelo, and their sensei Splinter was a hit back in 1990, as audiences were drawn to the movie’s relatively gritty and realistic ninjitsu-practicing half-shelled heroes, in line with the Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird comic book. One year after, at the height of Turtle mania, came sequel Secret of the Ooze, which replaced April O’Neil with a new actress, brought back Shredder, and went to great lengths to tone down the weapon-based violence. One more sequel in 1993 sent the Turtles back in time, a box office under-performer that closed the book on the original movie trilogy.

But the franchise stuck around, through video games, comics, action figures, and numerous television series. Seems like there’s always a market for brash, active reptiles for young people to latch onto. This has led to film revivals throughout the years, including an animated film in 2007, and a Michael Bay-produced reboot in 2014. As the franchise celebrates over 35 years of unlikely and phenomenal success, we’re ranking all the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movies by Tomatometer!

#7
Adjusted Score: 26659%
Critics Consensus: Neither entertaining enough to recommend nor remarkably awful, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles may bear the distinction of being the dullest movie ever made about talking bipedal reptiles.
Synopsis: Spawned from a lab experiment gone awry, teenage terrapins Leonardo, Michelangelo, Donatello and Raphael live in the sewers beneath New... [More]
Directed By: Jonathan Liebesman

#6
Adjusted Score: 23101%
Critics Consensus: It's a case of one sequel too many for the heroes in a half shell, with a tired time-travel plot gimmick failing to save the franchise from rapidly diminishing returns.
Synopsis: Reporter April O'Neil (Paige Turco) purchases an ancient Japanese scepter that can cause those simultaneously holding it in different centuries... [More]
Directed By: Stuart Gillard

#5
Adjusted Score: 36851%
Critics Consensus: Not only is the movie's juvenile dialogue unbearable for adults, but the turtles' dopey and casual attitude towards physical violence makes them poor kids' role models.
Synopsis: The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (Mark Caso, Michelan Sisti, Leif Tilden, Kenn Troum) again battle their archenemy, the rogue ninja... [More]
Directed By: Michael Pressman

#4

TMNT (2007)
34%

#4
Adjusted Score: 38697%
Critics Consensus: TMNT's art direction is splendid, but the plot is non-existent and the dialogue lacks the irony and goofy wit of the earlier Ninja Turtles movies.
Synopsis: Splinter, the rat sensei, senses something amiss in New York City. His disciples, Leonardo, Donatello, Raphael and Michelangelo have grown... [More]
Directed By: Kevin Munroe

#3
Adjusted Score: 47439%
Critics Consensus: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows is a slight improvement over its predecessor, but still lacks the wit or anarchic energy of the comics that birthed the franchise.
Synopsis: The turtles face a new challenge when Shredder escapes from custody and joins forces with Baxter Stockman, a mad scientist... [More]
Directed By: Dave Green

#2
Adjusted Score: 43699%
Critics Consensus: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is exactly as advertised: one-liners, brawls, and general silliness. Good for the young at heart, irritating for everyone else.
Synopsis: In New York, mysterious radioactive ooze has mutated four sewer turtles into talking, upright-walking, crime-fighting ninjas. The intrepid heroes --... [More]
Directed By: Steve Barron

#1
Adjusted Score: 85349%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Batman and his allies team up with the turtles to battle Shredder, Ra's Al Ghul, and The League of Assassins.... [More]
Directed By: Jake Castorena

(Photo by © Warner Bros.)

Neil Blomkamp is reassembling RoboCopJoaquin Phoenix is getting his own Joker movie, and Robin is about to lead the Titans on streaming. That’s the great thing about our favorite characters: they’re never really gone – someone new can always bring them back. But how many of these adaptations really capture what we love about our favorite characters? And which adaptations do it best?

To find out, we took a deep look at 15 characters who have had at least five different versions of them made, and which have current or upcoming adaptations on the way. For some who’ve had dozens (thanks to public domain), we stuck to the 10 most famous versions. If a role was just recast during the same series – as opposed to a wholly new take – we counted them together. For each character, we also found their highest Tomatometer-rated portrayal – the ultimate arbiter of which version is the best (and likely the ultimate argument-starter among those who disagree!).


RoboCop

(Photo by © Orion/courtesy Everett Collection)

Number of RoboCops: 6

All the RoboCops: Original Trilogy (Peter Weller/Robert Burke), 1988 animated series (voice of Dan Hennessey), 1994 RoboCop TV Series (Richard Eden), RoboCop: Prime Directives TV series (Page Fletcher), 2014 RoboCop (Joel Kinnaman), Neil Blomkamp RoboCop (TBD)

The Best RoboCop: RoboCop (1987) 90%

No surprise, the original 1987 RoboCop is still rated highest. But we would never bet against Neil Blomkamp giving that version a run for its money.

Poll: Vote for Your Favorite RoboCop


The Joker

(Photo by ©Warner Home Video)

Number of Jokers: 17 and counting

10 Most Famous Jokers: ‘60s TV Series (Cesar Romero), 1989 Batman (Jack Nicholson), Batman: The Animated Series including Mask of the Phantasm and crossover films and series (voice of Mark Hamill), The Batman (voice of Kevin Michael Richardson), The Dark Knight (Heath Ledger), Batman: The Brave and the Bold (voice of Jeff Bennett), Suicide Squad (Jared Leto), The LEGO Batman Movie (Zach Galifianakis), Joker Origin Movie (Joaquin Phoenix), Martin Scorsese-Produced Joker Movie (Leonardo DiCaprio)

The Best Joker: Batman: The Animated Series

At 97%, Batman: The Animated Series edges out even The Dark Knight’s 94% if we judge versions purely by Tomatometer. Morgan Jeffery of Digital spy praised the show’s voice cast, saying, “On top of its beautiful visuals and vocals, Batman also boasted a tone far more adult than one might expect from a comic book cartoon.” Hamill’s Joker is so acclaimed that he continued voicing him in many animated incarnations. However, as live-action Jokers go, Heath Ledger’s Oscar-winning portrayal is hard to top. Will Phoenix or DiCaprio do it?

Poll: Vote for Your Favorite Joker


Batman

(Photo by © Warner Bros.)

Number of Batmans: 17 (including a radio show) and counting

10 Most Famous Batmans: ’60s Batman TV series (Adam West), The Batman/Superman Hour/Super Friends (voice of Olan Soule), Burton/Schumacher film series (Michael Keaton/Val Kilmer/George Clooney), Batman: The Animated Series through Justice League Unlimited (voice of Kevin Conroy), Batman Beyond (voice of Will Friedle), The Dark Knight trilogy (Christian Bale), Batman: The Brave and the Bold (Diedrich Bader), Gotham (David Mazouz), DCEU (Ben Affleck), LEGO Movies (voice of Will Arnett), The Batman (TBA)

The Best Batman: Batman Beyond 100%

Batman earned his highest Tomatometer score in the futuristic Batman Beyond with 100%. EW’s Ken Tucker said, “The new, black-winged, red-blooded Batman on display Saturday mornings will have you pouring a steaming mug of coffee and shouldering aside any nearby children to catch all the fresh fun and action.” In the live-action realm, Christian Bale’s Dark Knight trilogy is the most consistently Fresh Batman series with a high of 94% for The Dark Knight.

Poll: Vote for Your Favorite Batman


Robin Hood

(Photo by © Lionsgate)

Number of Robin Hoods: Dozens

The 10 Most Famous Robin Hoods: 1922 Robin Hood (Douglas Fairbanks), The Adventures of Robin Hood (Errol Flynn), Disney’s Robin Hood (voice of Brian Bedford), Robin and Marian (Sean Connery), Time Bandits (John Cleese), Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (Kevin Costner), Robin Hood (Patrick Bergin), Robin Hood: Men in Tights (Cary Elwes), 2010 Robin Hood (Russell Crowe), 2018 Robin Hood (Taron Egerton)

The Best Robin Hood: The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938) 100%

With 100%, Errol Flynn is hands-down the most acclaimed Robin Hood. Not bad considering Rotten Tomatoes didn’t exist yet in 1938! But our critics still respect the classic, with Village Voice’s Elliott Stein commenting, “Movie pageantry at its best, done in the grand manner of silent spectacles, brimming over with the sort of primitive energy that drew people to the movies in the first place.”

Poll: Vote for Your Favorite Robin Hood

Mulan

(Photo by ©Walt Disney Pictures)

Number of Mulans: 15

The 10 Most Famous Mulans: Hua Mulan Joins The Army (Hu Shan), Lady General Hua Mu Lan (Ivy Ling Po), The Saga of Mulan (Bai Shuxian), Disney Mulan franchise (voice of Ming-Na), The Secret of Mulan (uncredited voice), A Tough Side of a Lady (Mariane Chan), Mulan: Rise of a Warrior (Zhao Wei), Once Upon a Time (Jamie Chung), Live-Action Disney Mulan (Liu Yifei), Alex Graves-directed Mulan (TBD)

The Best Mulan: Mulan (1998) 86%

Since most of the Chinese film and television productions of the Mulan story weren’t available to international critics, the Disney Mulan currently wins on the Tomatometer by default. Film Journal International’s Wendy Weinstein wrote, “it is in the subtlety of its characters’ ‘acting’ that Mulan excels” and it does have an 86% Fresh rating. We have every hope for the upcoming live-action renditions, too.

Poll: Vote for Your Favorite Mulan


Tinker Bell

(Photo by ©Walt Disney)

Number of Tinker Bells: Dozens

10 Most Famous Tinker Bells: 1924 Peter Pan (Virginia Browne Faire), Disney’s Peter Pan/Return to Neverland (Silent), 1960 Peter Pan (stage light), Hook (Julia Roberts), Peter Pan (Ludivine Sagnier), Neverland (Keira Knightley), Tinker Bell film series (voice of Mae Whitman), Peter Pan Live (CGI), Once Upon a Time (Rose McIver), Live-Action Tinker Bell (Reese Witherspoon)

The Best Tinker Bell: Tinker Bell (2008) 90%

Tinker Bell’s solo movie is even fresher than the original Disney Peter Pan, and subsequent sequels are Fresh too. The L.A. Times’ Michael Ordona wrote, “To its target audience, it will be another self-empowerment fable with loads of imagination and colorful, painterly images (and a keen marketing blast for Disney fairies).” The 1924 film is praised unanimously by a handful of critics, so it’s worth seeking out.

Poll: Vote for Your Favorite Tinker Bell


Superman

(Photo by © The CW)

Number of Portrayals: 16 (including radio)

10 Most Famous Superman: Live-action serials (Kirk Alyn), Superman and the Mole Men + The Adventures of Superman (George Reeves), Superman: The Movie through Superman Returns (Christopher Reeve, Brandon Routh), Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman (Dean Cain), Superman: The Animated Series (voice of Tim Daly), Smallville (Tom Welling), Warner Animation Superman films (voices of Adam Baldwin, Kyle MacLachlan, Tim Daly, Mark Harmon, James Denton, Kevin Conroy, George Newbern, Matt Bomer, Sam Daly, Alan Tudyk, Jerry O’Connell, Benjamin Bratt), DCEU (Henry Cavill), Supergirl (Tyler Hoechlin), Teen Titans Go! To the Movies (voice of Nicolas Cage)

The Best Superman: Superman: The Movie (1978) 94%

You never forget your first Superman, so the franchise that began with Christopher Reeve’s 94% Fresh Superman: The Movie remains the most acclaimed. As recently as this May, The Times UK’s Ed Potton called Reeve “manlier and steelier than recent portrayals by Brandon Routh and Henry Cavill.” John J. Puccio of Movie Metroplis (appropriate name) said of Reeve “the casting department found someone with just the right charisma to pull it off.” Recently, Tyler Hoechlin’s portrayal of Kal El on a few episodes of Supergirl earned new raves. Digital Spy’s Morgan Jeffery says, “Tyler Hoechlin is the best live-action Man of Steel since the sorely underrated Dean Cain hung up his tights.” TV Fanatic’s Stacy Glanzman agrees that Hoechlin “nailed it.” Give him a few more seasons and see if he can catch up to Reeve!

Poll: Vote for Your Favorite Superman


James Bond

Sean Connery as James Bond

Number of Different James Bonds: 006

All the James Bonds: “Casino Royale” episode of Climax (Barry Nelson), EON Film Series (Sean Connery, George Lazenby, Roger Moore, Timothy Dalton, Pierce Brosnan, Daniel Craig), Casino Royale comedy (Peter Sellers, David Niven, Woody Allen), “The British Hero” episode of Omnibus (Christopher Cazenove in re-enactments), Never Say Never Again (Sean Connery), James Bond Jr. (voice of Corey Burton)

The Best Portrayal: Goldfinger (1964) 99%

It’s the long-running EON films version of the character, obviously. At its height, these films scored a 97%. Roger Ebert remarked of Goldfinger and the franchise, “it is a great entertainment, and contains all the elements of the Bond formula that would work again and again.” Now, whether you pick Daniel Craig or Sean Connery as your favorite from this version…we’ll let that debate continue among Bond fans.

Poll: Vote for Your Favorite James Bond


Hulk

(Photo by ©Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)

Number of Portrayals: 13 including Marvel animated guest appearances

10 Most Famous Hulks: The Marvel Super-Heroes (voice of Max Ferguson), The Incredible Hulk TV series (Lou Ferrigno), The Incredible Hulk animated series (voice of Bob Holt), The Marvel Action Hour (voice of Ron Perlman), The Incredible Hulk (voice of Neal McDonough), episodes of Iron Man: Armored Adventures (voice of Mark Gibbon), Superhero Squad Show (voice of Travis Willingham), Hulk (Eric Bana), MCU (Edward Norton and Mark Ruffalo), The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes through Avengers Assemble and appearances on Guardians of the Galaxy and Spider-Man (voice of Fred Tatasciore)

The Best Portrayal: Marvel's the Avengers (2012) 91%

With a 92%, The Avengers‘ incarnation of Hulk smashes the rest – and the MCU version as a whole, including Ed Norton and Mark Ruffolo’s tale,s has a Fresh average of 81.8% . The animated Earth’s Mightiest Heroes scores higher even than The Avengers, but with only five reviews, we’re still giving the title to the MCU’s Hulk Matt Brunson of Creative Loafing said when reviewing The Avengers, “The scene-stealer is Ruffalo, who provides Bruce Banner with a soulfulness missing in the portrayals by Bana and Norton.” Even CNN’s Tom Charity singled out the Hulk among other Avengers, saying, “Never underestimate the entertainment value of the Hulk Smash.”

Poll: Vote for Your Favorite Hulk


Spider-Man

(Photo by © Columbia)

Number of Spider-Man: 16

The 10 Most Famous Spider-Men: The Amazing Spider-Man (Nicholas Hammond), Spider-Man (voice of Christopher Daniel Barnes), Spider-Man: The New Animated Series (voice of Neil Patrick Harris), Ultimate Spider-Man and LEGO Marvel (voice of Drake Bell), Sam Raimi Trilogy (Tobey Maguire), Amazing Spider-Man 1 and 2 (Andrew Garfield), Turn Off The Dark (Reeve Carney and Justin Matthew Sargeant), LEGO Spider-Man (voice of Jackson Buffington), (MCU/Homecoming (Tom Holland), Into the Spider-verse (Jake Johnson and Shameik Moore)

Best Spider-Man: Spider-Man 2 (2004) 93%

With a peak at Spider-Man 2’s 93%, the Sam Raimi trilogy remains the most critically acclaimed Spider-Man films (Holland’s appearances in Captain America: Civil War and Homecoming comess close though.) AP’s Christy Lemire praised the series when reviewing the second film: “The web-slinging sequences are bigger-better-brighter-faster than the already spectacular ones in 2002’s Spider-Man, and at the same time, the film’s smaller emotional moments are denser, richer and more resonant than those in the first.”

Poll: Vote for Your Favorite Spider-Man


Jughead Jones

(Photo by © The CW)

Number of Jugheads: 7

All the Jugheads: Radio show (voices of Hal Stone, Cameron Andrews and Arnold Stang), The Archie Show and spinoffs (voice of Howard Morris), The New Archies (voice of Michael Fantini), Archie’s Weird Mysteries (voice of Chris Lundquist), 1976 Archie pilot and ’78 special Archie Situation Comedy Musical Variety Show (Derrel Maury), Archie: To Riverdale and Back Again (Sam Whipple), Riverdale (Cole Sprouse)

Best Jughead: Riverdale 84%

Riverdale has a series Tomatometer score of 88%, crowning Cole Sprouse as the best Jughead. It’s also the only take who’s been reviewed enough to have a Tomatometer score, but we have a feeling this CW fan favorite would likely win against his animated competition even if the data was there.

Poll: Vote for Your Favorite Jughead 


He-Man

Number of He-Men: 5

All the He-Men: He-Man and the Masters of the Universe (voice of John Erwin), Masters of the Universe (Dolph Lundgren), The New Adventures of He-Man (voice of Garry Chalke and Doug Parker), 2002 series (Cam Clarke), New Live-Action Film In Development

Best He-Man: He-Man and the Masters of the Universe 100%

Boy, did all the Tomatometer critics grow up on the weekday afternoon cartoon in the ’80s, or what? Well, this one may still be up for grabs if they make a really cool live-action movie, but for now the original cartoon is the master. Nerdist’s Rosie Knight puts it in perspective saying, “Beloved for many reasons. There’s the notoriously rushed production… giving it a unique and charming look. It’s also revered for its vision of a kid friendly techno-barbarian landscape.”

Poll: Vote for Your Favorite He-Man


The Punisher

(Photo by © Netflix)

Number of Punishers: 6

All The Punishers: 1989 The Punisher (Dolph Lundgren), Spider-Man: The Animated Series (voice of John Beck), 2004 The Punisher (Thomas Jane), Punisher: War Zone and Super Hero Squad Show (Ray Stevenson), Netflix series (Jon Bernthal), Avengers Assemble episode “Planet Doom” (uncredited)

Best Punisher: Marvel's Daredevil: Season 2 (2016) 81%

Bernthal remains the only certified Fresh Punisher, and his stint on Daredevil season 2 bested even his own series (though Marvel’s The Punisher is still Fresh). New York Observer’s Vinnie Mancuso singles out Bernthal’s haunted portrayal, “Jon Bernthal is the perfect Punisher because there is zero fun in his performance.”In reviewing Daredevil‘s second season, Aggressive Comix’s Steph Cozza adds, “The Punisher is the true MVP here.”

Poll: Vote for Your favorite Punisher


Godzilla

(Photo by © Toho Films)

Number of Godzillas: 9

All the Godzillas: 31 Toho Films, Hanna-Barbera Godzilla, Godzillaland, Godzilla Island, 1998 Godzilla, Godzilla: The Series, Nike commercial with Charles Barkle, Legendary Films’ Godzilla, Netflix Godzilla

The Best Godzilla: Godzilla (1954) 93%

With a 93% for the classic Gojira and seven more Fresh movies in the franchise, nobody’s done Godzilla better than Toho. The Washington Post’s Stephen Hunter put it best in 2004 when he said, “Its images of the destruction of the cities is far more powerful than in American films, where the cities are trashed for the pure pleasure of destruction, without any real sense of human loss.”

Poll: Vote for Your Favorite Godzilla


King Kong

King Kong, 1933

Number of Kongs: 9

All the Kongs: 1933 King Kong and Son of Kong (stop motion animation), 1966 King Kong animated series, King Kong vs. Godzilla and King Kong Escapes, 1976 King Kong (voice of Peter Cullen) and King Kong Lives (Peter Elliott), Kong: The Animated Series and Return to the Jungle, 2005 King Kong (Andy Serkis), Kong: King of Atlantis,  Kong: King of the Apes (voice of Lee Tockar), Legendary King Kong (Toby Kebbell)

The Best Kong: King Kong (1933) 98%

Certified Fresh at 98%, the original 1933 Kong is still King (its sequel, rushed into release later in 1933, not so much). Robert Ebert explained why it still works nearly a century later, writing that “there is something ageless and primeval about King Kong that still somehow works.”

Poll: Vote for Your Favorite King Kong


There are many more characters who’ve been portrayed over and over again. Who are your favorites? Tell us in the comments.

This week in streaming video, we’ve got two hit comedies available for purchase, as well as a brand new Netflix original series. There’s also some acclaimed indie films, noteworthy television, award-winners, and certified classics available on subscription services. Read on for the full list.


Available for purchase:

 

Spy (2015) 95%

When an arms dealer identifies several of the CIA’s top field agents, desk-bound analyst Susan Cooper (Melissa McCarthy) gets her chance to go undercover in Paris. But during the course of her mission, Cooper must endure a string of indignities, from an unflattering cover story to a borderline-psychotic fellow agent (Jason Statham) who questions her competence at every turn.

Available now on: Amazon, iTunes, Vudu


Pitch Perfect 2 (2015) 65%

This time out, the Barden Bellas a cappella group is in hot water after an embarrassing performance in front of a distinguished audience. In search of redemption, our heroines journey to Denmark to compete in an international vocal tournament, and wackiness follows them wherever they go.

Available now on: Amazon, iTunes, Vudu, Google Play


New on Netflix:

 

Revenge: Season 4 (2014) 88%

ABC’s drama centers on a woman (Emily VanCamp) who moves to the Hamptons but harbors a secret vendetta: she’s out for revenge on the people who framed her father for treason when she was young.

Available now on: Netflix


White God (2014) 88%

This Certified Fresh Hungarian drama centers on a dog named Hagen, who is abandoned by his master’s father and subsequently begins a trek home, inciting a seemingly organized mongrel revolt in the process.

Available now on: Netflix


Narcos: Season 1 (2015) 78%

This Netflix original series chronicles the rise of notorious Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar and the Medellín Cartel. As with other Netflix shows, all 10 episodes of the first season are available to stream.

Available now on: Netflix


Once Upon a Time: Season 4 (2015) 62%

ABC’s Disney-themed drama centers on a fictional town called Storybrooke, whose residents are all classic fairy tale characters. Season four incorporates the latest Disney sensation, Frozen, by working Elsa and Anna into its plot while continuing its ongoing narrative.

Available now on: Netflix


Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2014) 21%

The evil Foot Clan has taken control of New York City’s politicians and police force, so it’s up to our sewer-dwelling heroes — along with intrepid TV journalist April O’Neil (Megan Fox) — to save the day.

Available now on: Netflix


New on Amazon Prime:

 

Hannah and Her Sisters (1986) 91%

Woody Allen’s directs and stars in this classic comedy-drama that chronicles the separate but connected lives of a woman named Hannah (Mia Farrow) and her two sisters (Barbara Hershey and Dianne Wiest) over the course of two years.

Available now on: Amazon Prime


Dear White People (2014) 91%

This Certified Fresh a comedy is the story of an African American college student whose no-holds-barred radio show shakes up the predominantly white campus.

Available now on: Amazon Prime


The Blair Witch Project (1999) 86%

Full of creepy campfire scares, mock-doc The Blair Witch Project keeps audiences in the dark about its titular villain — thus proving that imagination can be as scary as anything onscreen.

Available now on: Amazon Prime


Desperately Seeking Susan (1985) 84%

Madonna and Rosanna Arquette star in this comedy about a bored New Jersey housewife who becomes obsessed with a mysterious New York woman whose life she’s been following via ongoing correspondence in the personals section of a tabloid.

Available now on: Amazon Prime


Killer Klowns From Outer Space (1988) 76%

In this shlocky 1980s cult favorite, evil aliens who look like disfigured clowns arrive in a small American town and terrorize its citizens with deadly shadow puppetry, killer popcorn, and cotton candy cocoons.

Available now on: Amazon Prime


New on HBO Now:

 

Manhattan (1979) 94%

One of Woody Allen’s most acclaimed films, this Certified Fresh romantic comedy stars Allen, Mariel Hemingway (in an Oscar-nominated role), Diane Keaton, and more in a story about a neurotic writer who has difficulty choosing between the 17-year-old ingénue he’s dating and the mistress of his married best friend.

Available now on: HBO Now


In the Heat of the Night (1967) 95%

Sidney Poitier and Rod Steiger star in Norman Jewison’s Best Picture-winning thriller about an African American detective who pairs with a racist sheriff to solve a murder in the Deep South.

Available now on: HBO Now


Her (2013) 94%

Joaquin Phoenix stars as Theodore Twombly, a lovelorn writer who falls in love with OS1, his computer’s highly intelligent operating system (voiced by Scarlett Johansson).

Available now on: HBO Now


The Departed (2006) 90%

Martin Scorsese’s Best Picture winner tells the story of two moles, one of whom (DiCaprio) is a cop undercover within a Boston crime family led by Jack Nicholson, and the other (Damon) a hood who has infiltrated the police department.

Available now on: HBO Now


Blade Runner (1982) 89%

Starring Harrison Ford, Rutger Hauer, Sean Young, Edward James Olmos, and Daryl Hannah, Ridley Scott’s stylishly noir sci-fi tale of replicants and blade runners remains a favorite for its art-deco look and its haunting, mysterious ambience.

Available now on: HBO Now


Titanic (1997) 89%

In James Cameron’s multiple Oscar-winning romance, Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet play star-crossed lovers who meet aboard the ill-fated ocean liner. He teachers her how to spit.

Available now on: HBO Now


Thelma & Louise (1991) 85%

Ridley Scott directed this 1991 hit about a pair of women (played by Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis) who leave behind their regular lives for a road trip that quickly goes awry.

Available now on: HBO Now


Beetlejuice (1988) 85%

Tim Burton’s offbeat comedy stars Michael Keaton as the titular ghoul, a chaotic wildcard whose services are called upon by a newly deceased couple (Alec Baldwin and Geena Davis) to help rid their home of its new occupants.

Available now on: HBO Now


The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975) 78%

This low-budget 1975 cult classic stars Barry Bostwick and Susan Sarandon as the unlucky couple who stumble into a secluded mansion on a rainy night and bear witness to a freakish party to end all parties, hosted by a transvestite named Dr. Frank N. Furter (Tim Curry).

Available now on: HBO Now


V for Vendetta (2006) 73%

V for Vendetta tells the story of a near-future dystopia, where a lone freedom fighter named V (Hugo Weaving) plots a series of revolutionary bombings to bring down a shady, secretly policed government. Along the way, V recruits young, frightened Evey (Natalie Portman ), shaves her head, and turns her into a proper young revolutionary.

Available now on: HBO Now


Blades of Glory (2007) 70%

Will Ferrell and Jon Heder star as rival figure skaters who, after an embarrassing throwdown at the World Championships, team up for a shot at redemption.

Available now on: HBO Now


New on Fandor

 

Breaker Morant (1980) 100%

Bruce Beresford’s 1980 Australian drama retells the 1902 court martial of the titular soldier, who was accused along with his fellow officers of murdering several prisoners of war while stationed in South Africa during the Second Boer War.

Available now on: Fandor


Stagecoach (1939) 100%

This John Ford western, which  follows a handful of strangers as they embark on a perilous stagecoach journey from Arizona to New Mexico through Apache territory, is the film that catapulted John Wayne to stardom.

Available now on: Fandor


Insomnia (1997) 95%

Erik Skjoldbjærg’s Norwegian thriller — which was remade in 2002 by Christopher Nolan — stars Stellan Skarsgård as a police officer who accidentally shoots his partner while in pursuit of a killer. He decides to keep mum about it, but the killer knows the truth, and psychological games ensue.

Available now on: Fandor


Night of the Living Dead (1968) 96%

George A. Romero’s iconic debut set the template for the modern zombie film, and features tight editing, realistic gore, and a sly political undercurrent.

Available now on: Fandor


Something, Anything (2014) 92%

This quiet drama centers on a newlywed woman who becomes a spiritual seeker and slowly alienates her family and friends in the process.

Available now on: Fandor


Creature From the Black Lagoon (1954) 79%

One of Universal’s many iconic monsters, Gill-man (the creature’s infrequently used actual name) made his first appearence in this 1954 classic as a misguided amphibious humanoid, the last of his kind and prone to violence.

Available now on: Fandor


Love Hunter (2013) 86%

Milan Mumin stars in this musical drama about a Serbian rock star-turned-NYC cabbie trying to record one more album and dealing with relationship strife.

Available now on: Fandor

The Golden Raspberry Award Foundation announced the “winners” for the 35th Annual Razzie Awards on Saturday, February 21st, recognizing the worst achievements in film for 2014. The big “winner,” taking four out of the six statuettes for which it was nominated, was Kirk Cameron’s Saving Christmas. Read on for the full list.

    The Razzie Redeemer Award

  • Ben Affleck for (From RAZZIE “Winner” for GIGLI to Oscar Darling for ARGO and GONE GIRL)
  • Jennifer Aniston for (From 4-Time RAZZIE Nominee to SAG Award Nominee for CAKE)
  • Mike Myers for (From RAZZIE “Winner” for LOVE GURU to Docu Director of SUPERMENSCH)
  • Keanu Reeves for (From 6-Time RAZZIE Nominee to JOHN WICK)
  • Kristen Stewart for (From RAZZIE “Winner” for TWILIGHT to the Art House Hit CAMP X-RAY)

In Theaters This Week:



The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

59%

Rating: PG-13, for extended sequences of intense fantasy action violence, and frightening images.

It’s the last film in Peter Jackson’s Hobbit trilogy and it has the words “battle” and “armies” in the title, so naturally it has a ton of graphic violence and a high body count. But even before all the fighting begins between various orcs and dwarves and elves, the fearsome dragon Smaug (menacingly voiced once again by Benedict Cumberbatch) wreaks fiery havoc on the innocent citizens of Laketown. If your kids are old enough to have seen any of the previous J.R.R. Tolkien adaptations and have been OK with them — and they’re curious to know how this series ends and then leads up to The Lord of the Rings — they’ll probably be fine. But for younger and less mature viewers, this is pretty intense, and the mythology might be confusing, and it is extremely long at nearly two and a half hours.



Annie

28%

Rating: PG-13, for some mild language and rude humor.

This modern-day version of the enduring stage musical has been moved from the Great Depression to the present day, with the plucky orphan Annie (Quvenzhane Wallis) moving in with a billionaire cell-phone mogul (Jamie Foxx) and melting his heart… in song! The notion that material wealth equals happiness is definitely magnified in this adaptation, with Annie enjoying a helicopter ride around New York City and distributing free phones to her foster-kid friends. So that’s kind of a bummer. Cameron Diaz is rather shrill and inept as Miss Hannigan but she’s not as intimidating as she’s been in previous versions; she’s more pathetic than anything else. And Annie is briefly in peril when she goes off with a couple who pretend to be her parents, but she’s not hurt in any way. All in all, this movie is harmless. But it’s also terrible.



Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb

47%

Rating: PG-13, for mild action, some rude humor and brief language.

The third and (theoretically) final film in the Night at the Museum trilogy finds security guard Larry (Ben Stiller) and the rest of the historical gang traipsing off to London to solve the mystery of their mobility. Everything here is pretty tame (and often lame). The giant, marauding dinosaur skeletons might seem briefly scary for very young kids. The tiny Owen Wilson and Steve Coogan characters are in danger when they get stuck in an air-conditioning vent, but it’s played more for slapstick humor than anything else. And there is the vague threat that these museum pieces might transform into their formerly stiff selves — including the impish Capuchin monkey — in a way that’s slightly sad, but resolves itself quickly. Decent for all ages.

New On DVD:



Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

21%

Rating: PG-13, for sci-fi action violence.

This live-action reboot of the franchise featuring modified, crime-fighting, pizza-eating turtles is a Michael Bay production. So it’s essentially a Transformers movie, complete with shiny action sequences and destructive battles that place innocent bystanders in harm’s way. The turtles themselves may be cute and cool and wacky in other incarnations but here, the special effects make them odd-looking in an off-putting way. Still, they emerge from the sewers to defend New York City, as they must, with the help of Megan Fox as a fearless TV reporter. The enemy is a giant robot samurai named Shredder. He’s working with a wealthy, evil scientist (William Fichtner) who wants to rule the city by releasing a deadly toxin. Explosions, gunfire and general mayhem abound as a roaming group of marauders called the Foot Clan terrorize the city and take hostages. My son wasn’t quite 5 years old when I took him to see this, and he was a bit frightened of Shredder, but only briefly. “I really liked it,” he said. So there you go.



The Maze Runner

65%

Rating: PG, for thematic elements and intense sequences of sci-fi violence and action, including some disturbing images.

Because there aren’t enough sci-fi thrillers based on young adult novels set in rigidly structured, dystopian futures, here is yet another. The tween and teen readers who are the targets for the James Dashner book will know what they’re getting into here. Still, this is a pretty violent and often harrowing PG-13 film. Dylan O’Brien stars as Thomas, a young man who finds himself in a pastoral square called the Glade. He has no idea who he is or how he got there, similar to the dozens of other teenage boys who arrived before him and have forged their own society. But Thomas soon grows curious about the dangerous maze that lies outside the giant concrete walls surrounding the Glade. Ravenous, speedy creatures await in those dark corridors, and we see them tear some of the characters apart. The big reveal which explains how all these kids ended up here and what they’re intended for is filled with gunfire and it grows deadly pretty quickly. This is not for the young or the squeamish.

This week on home video, we’ve got a 1980s franchise reboot, a dystopian YA novel adaptation, Woody Allen’s latest film, and a couple of dramedies about dysfunctional families. Then we’ve got some notable TV releases — including the complete series of a popular anime — and some smaller films. Read on for details:



Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

21%

After some controversy surrounding whether or not the turtles in the Michael Bay-produced reboot would, in fact, be mutants, Bay himself came forward and told fans not to worry. As it turns out, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles had enough other problems for critics to point out. The story remains essentially the same: four turtles and a lab rat are transformed by science into walking, talking, butt-kicking humanoids, and an evil neo-samurai known as the Shredder threatens their fair city with a nefarious plot. The turtles still love pizza, and plucky reporter April O’Neil becomes an unexpected ally in their righteous battle. Directed by Jonathan Liebesman (Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning, Battle: Los Angeles), the film featured plenty of callbacks to the beloved 1980s franchise (“Cowabunga!”) but little in the way of wit, compelling storytelling, or entertainment value in general, resulting in a skimpy 22 percent Tomatometer. The film comes in a regular Blu-ray/DVD package as well as a 3D release and features a handful of extras like a look at the character design and a look at the real-life evolution of turtles.



The Maze Runner

65%

The latest release in the increasingly popular genre of dystopian young adult novel adaptations is also one of the better-reviewed of the bunch. Starring a cast of relatively unknown young actors, the film centers on a young man named Thomas, who wakes up with no memory in a giant maze alongside others like him. He quickly discovers he and his fellow runners are trapped, forced to cobble together some semblance of a society as they attempt to figure out why they were brought to the labyrinth and how to escape it. Thanks to its unique premise, its embrace of bleak themes, and strong performances from its stars, The Maze Runner garnered a 63 percent Tomatometer score, though some critics wished for a more satisfactory third act. Special features include a long, multi-part behind-the-scenes doc, deleted scenes, gag reel, and more.



This Is Where I Leave You

44%

A dysfunctional family comedy wherein the dysfunctional family in question consists of veterans like Tina Fey, Jason Bateman, and Jane Fonda, as well as rising stars like Adam Driver and Corey Stoll, sounds like a pretty good idea on paper. And for what it’s worth, critics say This Is Where I Leave You has its moments, even if it ultimately underwhelms. Based on the book of the same name by Jonathan Tropper, the film centers around the Altman family, who come together for a week when their father passes away. They bicker, air dirty laundry, rehash past grievances, and attempt to make sense of their own lives, with mixed results. Critics acknowledged the amount of talent on display, which both helped to elevate the somewhat banal material and raised expectations for the end product — it unfortunately fell a bit short on the latter, resulting in a 42 percent Tomatometer score. The Blu-ray comes with a few extras on the making of the film and a deleted scene.



Magic in the Moonlight

51%

Uber-prolific director Woody Allen has had a rollercoaster career over the past several years, consisting of critical hits (Match Point, Midnight in Paris) and misses (Scoop, To Rome with Love). So it might have been wishful thinking to hope that his follow-up to last year’s widely acclaimed Blue Jasmine would also be a winner. Magic in the Moonlight follows a popular stage magician (Colin Firth) who travels to the French Riviera in order to debunk a young spiritualist (Emma Stone) claiming to be clairvoyant and who may or may not be taking advantage of a grieving widow. Critics were split at 51 percent on the Tomatometer; while some lauded the cinematography and period detail for creating a specific mood, others felt the laughs were few and the introspective themes treated with too light a touch.



The Skeleton Twins

86%

It’s not uncommon for comedic actors to diversify and pursue weightier roles as their careers progress — think Robin Williams, Bill Murray, and Ben Stiller, for example — and the end result is often unpredictable. With The Skeleton Twins, however, SNL alums Bill Hader and Kristen Wiig have landed on impressively solid ground. The pair star as estranged twins Milo and Maggie, who reunite under tragic circumstances, prompting Milo to move back home to New York and live with Maggie and her husband (Luke Wilson) for a while. Slowly, the siblings begin to repair their relationship and, with each other’s help, attempt to rebuild their own lives. Critics agreed that Hader and Wiig were in top form, and their strong performances and onscreen chemistry helped lend authenticity to the film’s more affecting moments, leading to a Certified Fresh 86 percent. Bonus features include a commentary track with director Craig Johnson, Wiig, and Hader, as well as outtakes, deleted scenes, and a 15-minute making-of doc.

Also available this week:

  • Grumpy Cat’s Worst Christmas Ever (30 percent), starring the internet’s favorite cat in a holiday tale about a kitty who gets adopted by a young girl and helps avert a couple of crises.
  • At the Devil’s Door (24 percent), a horror thriller about a real estate agent who puts her sister in danger when she attempts to sell a house with a dark history.
  • One choice from the Criterion Collection: Sydney Pollack’s acclaimed Certified Fresh comedy Tootsie (88 percent), starring Dustin Hoffman as a notoriously difficult actor who resorts to dressing as a woman in order to find work.
  • Season two of Certified Fresh period drama The Americans (97 percent), starring Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys as a pair of Russian spies living undercover in 1980s America.
  • The Certified Fresh first season of Extant (83 percent), starring Halle Berry in a sci-fi drama about an astronaut who returns home with a secret after a year in space.
  • Season one of BBC America’s sci-fi series Intruders (39 percent), about a supernatural secret society whose members inhabit the bodies of others to achieve immortality.
  • And lastly, the complete series of the groundbreaking anime (it was the first to be broadcast on Adult Swim in the US, ushering in a wave of Japanese animation) Cowboy Bebop is available on DVD and Blu-ray.

This week on streaming video, we’ve got just a handful of choices, the biggest of which is Michael Bay’s reboot of a popular franchise. Then we’ve got the follow up to a surprise 2011 hit family movie about a dolphin and a rom-com starring Daniel Radcliffe and Zoe Kazan, as well as a couple of choices on Netflix. Read on for details:


Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
21%

The evil Foot Clan has taken control of New York City’s politicians and police force, so it’s up to our sewer-dwelling heroes — along with intrepid TV journalist April O’Neil (Megan Fox) — to save the day.

Available now on: Amazon, iTunes, Vudu, Google Play


Dolphin Tale 2
66%

Since being rescued and rehabilitated in the first film, Winter is doing just fine, but her companion has recently died. Thus, our heroes — a team comprised of marine biologists and animal rescue staffers — need to find Winter a new companion or she will be removed from the aquarium as required by law.

Available now on: Amazon, iTunes, Vudu


What If
74%

Daniel Radcliffe and Zoe Kazan star in this dramedy about two friends tiptoeing around a romantic affair.

Available now on: Amazon, iTunes, Vudu


Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Season One

Critics say Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is sure to please comic book fans, but the strong ensemble and brisk pacing help to make this better-than-average superhero show accessible to non-fanboys as well.

Available now on: Netflix


Ida
96%

This stunning black and white drama is the story a young woman on the verge of joining a convent who discovers a dark family secret.

Available now on: Netflix

Averaging less than $1M per person listed above the title on the poster, The Expendables 3 crashed and burned settling for a fourth place finish while overperformers Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Guardians of the Galaxy continued their strong run atop the box office. Overall, the August box office came back down to normal numbers after two extremely strong weekends to open the month.

The top two from last week stayed in the same position this week as two different sets of heroes remained in charge of the box office. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles fell a reasonable 58% from its huge opening last weekend and brought in an estimated $28.4M for a total cume to date of $117.6M. Look for a finale in the $175M range with a sequel on its way in 2016, because what would life be without sequels? Guardians of the Galaxy fell 41% from last weekend to an estimated $24.7M, bringing its total haul to $222.3M to date. It’s running about 10% ahead of Captain America: The Winter Soldier from earlier this year, albeit with a slightly bigger third weekend drop. Guardians is still likely to become the highest grossing film of the year and stay that way, at least until The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 1 comes out in November. The Guardians sequel is due in 2017.

Led by the stars of The New Girl and The Vampire Diaries, Let’s Be Cops landed in third place this weekend with an estimated $17.7M with a total cume from its opening on Wednesday of $26.1M. Heavy promotion and lack of a similar film in the marketplace – the last broad comedy came out over a month ago (anyone remember Sex Tape?) – helped the film break through. Audience breakdowns were 56% Male / 44% Female with 54% under the age of 25.

Fourth place belonged to the film with the most star power in the history of the medium, The Expendables 3. Seriously, is there another film that could boast this kind of lineup? The only one I can think of that might come close is X-Men: Days of Future Past. Led by megastars Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Harrison Ford and others, The Expendables 3 opened to an estimated $16.2M. There are 17 actors listed above the title on the promotional poster which means the movie made less than $1M per person. This isn’t a scientific observation, just a very humorous one. While the series was never meant to get into megablockbuster range, this opening has to be seen as very disappointing. The first two films in the series opened to $34.8M and $28.6M. Cinemascore was an A- which is decent and means that people who wanted to see the film enjoyed it, it’s just that not many people wanted to see it.

The beloved book-to-film genre added another entry this weekend as The Giver opened in fifth place to an estimated $12.7M. Hoping to tap into the audience of other popular page-to-screen translations like The Hunger Games or Divergent, instead the movie played out more like a Beautiful Creatures or Mortal Instruments. Perhaps there was too long a wait between the novel (which was released in 1993) and the film adaptation.

The disaster film Into the Storm dropped 55% from its opening last weekend and ended up in sixth place this weekend, bringing in $7.7M, according to estimates. Its total now stands at $31M leading to a likely $45M finish. The Hundred-Foot Journey took seventh place this weekend falling a slim 35% to an estimated $7.1M, bringing its total to $23.6M. A finale in the $45M range also seems likely.

Scarlett Johansson crossed the $100M bar this week with Lucy, which took in an estimated $5.3M this weekend for a total of $107.5M to date. The latest in the dance film series Step Up All In came down hard this weekend, falling 58% in its second go around to an estimated $2.7M, bringing its total to $11.8M. Now we play the waiting game to see if the film can reach the heights of Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo which made $15.1M all the way back in 1984/85. Indie darling Boyhood bounced back into the top ten at number ten, adding 265 screens and jumping 9% from last weekend to an estimated $2.1M, bringing its cume to $13.1M.

The top ten films grossed $124.8M this weekend, up 10% from 2013 when Lee Daniels’ The Butler opened at number one with $24.6M; and up 2% from 2012 when The Expendables 2 opened on top with $28.6M.

Compared to projections, The Expendables came in under Gitesh’s $24M prediction, while both Let’s Be Cops and The Giver were right on target with his $17M and $12M projections, respectively.

This Week’s Ketchup covers seven days of movie development news that was punctuated right in the middle by the loss of two of Hollywood’s greatest stars. Movies that still made the news this week included Aquaman, Bad Boys 3, Ben-Hur, Betty Boop, Inhumans, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2.


This Week’s Top Story

R.I.P. ROBIN WILLIAMS AND LAUREN BACALL

This week, the whole world experienced a celebrity death that quickly inspired a social media sensation: Robin Williams died at his home in Marin County of what was later reported to be self-inflicted asphyxiation. Sadly coincidentally, the death of Robin Williams was one of the saddest celebrity deaths since Heath Ledger died in 2008 before the release of The Dark Knight, playing The Joker, a role which director Christopher Nolan had previously considered giving to his Insomnia star… Robin Williams. Robin Williams’ career started with the hit ABC comedy Mork and Mindy, which was followed by a movie career that included both comedies (Aladdin, Mrs. Doubtfire, The Birdcage), dramas (Dead Poets Society, Awakenings, Good Will Hunting), and films which were sort of inbetween (The World According to Garp, Good Morning, Vietnam, The Fisher King). Robin Williams left us with four films that are still on their way: Merry Friggin’ Christmas (11/7/14), Night at the Museum 3: Secret of the Tomb (12/19/14), the drama Boulevard, and Absolutely Anything, in which Williams provides the voice of Simon Pegg’s character’s dog. In what was probably the week’s most obvious movie news, Variety quickly announced that plans for Mrs. Doubtfire 2 are, pun possibly not intended, “in doubt.” The social networking juggernaut that resulted from the passing of Robin Williams was given even deeper resonance by the passing, soon after, of Lauren Bacall, who died on Tuesday at the age of 89, to decidedly fewer online memorials. Married first to Humphrey Bogart (until his death in 1957), and then to Jason Robards, Lauren Bacall’s career spanned some dozens of movies (like To Have and Have Not, The Big Sleep, Key Largo, and The Shootist), a Golden Globe, an Academy Award nomination, and an honorary Academy Award.

Fresh Developments This Week

#1 TOM HIDDLESTON: FROM MARVEL’S LOKI TO… BEN-HUR?

Every once in a while with movies with premises that seem fairly obviously “rotten,” this writer has to change everything when a move is made that runs counter to that. For example, MGM and Paramount have been developing, for a while now, a reboot of the classic Biblical epic Ben-Hur, from Russian director Timur Bekmambetov (Wanted, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter). There have been multiple adaptations of Ben-Hur for both film and TV, all based upon the 1880 novel Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ, by Lew Wallace. The 1959 version featured Charlton Heston in the lead role, and won a then-record number (11!) of Academy Awards (which was later tied by Titanic and The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King). The surprising news this week that is changing opinions about this reboot is that it is British actor Tom Hiddleston who is now in talks to take the starring role. With his appearances as Loki in not only Marvel’s movies, but also at San Diego Comic Con, in costume, as Loki, Tom Hiddleston has arguably become one of Marvel’s most reliable stars. MGM and Paramount have scheduled this latest version of Ben-Hur for February 26, 2016, making it currently the only movie scheduled for the last half of that month. Tom Hiddleston’s next films include Guillermo del Toro’s ghost movie Crimson Peak, and the 1970s-set period film High Rise.

#2 WILL MARVEL’S INHUMANS LEAVE VIN DIESEL SPEECHLESS?

Starting in 2017, it appears that Marvel Studios will be releasing three movies a year. We know that Guardians of the Galaxy 2 is scheduled for July 28, 2017, but we don’t know what films will be released on May 5, 2017 or November 3, 2017. Vin Diesel is helping get a pretty good idea what one of those films will be. It all started when Vin Diesel posted on his Facebook page, “I get the strange feeling that Marvel thinks I’m Inhuman… Haha.” The key letter there is the capital “I,” because one of Marvel’s family of superheroes (literally) are the Inhumans, who were first introduced in the 1960s. This was followed a few days later by a report that one of the other scripts to come out of the same Marvel writers program that started Guardians of the Galaxy was… Inhumans (by newcomer Joe Robert Cole). There are several threads that seem to suggest Inhumans is indeed on Marvel’s short list. First off, it helps to know that the “Inhumans” are a secret race of powered individuals who are descended from genetic experiments done on relatives of humans thousands of years ago by Kree scientists. Yes, that’s right, the Kree, as in the alien race seen in Guardians of the Galaxy. In fact, in the comics, the leader of the Inhumans, called Black Bolt, becomes the ruler of the Kree Empire, and his sister Crystal marries Ronan the Accuser (who is her second husband after Quicksilver, who will be in next year’s Avengers: Age of Ultron). Director James Gunn also came out this week and said that Peter Quill’s father won’t be the same person that it was in the comics, which has led people to start guessing, and one possibility is Black Bolt. Black Bolt is the king of the Inhumans, but his super power is that his voice is so powerful that he must live his life being almost entirely mute, and that… brings us back to Vin Diesel. Although Vin Diesel costarred in Guardians of the Galaxy as the voice of Groot, he hasn’t yet actually “appeared” in a Marvel movie, but if he played Black Bolt, he could do that, but without having to talk much (and when Black Bolt does open his mouth, there’s usually explosions and continents cracking). Because the Inhumans have connections to both the Kree Empire and the planet Earth, it’s possible they could be teased or introduced in Avengers: Age of Ultron or Guardians of the Galaxy 2 before eventually appearing in their own movie in 2017.

#3 SANSA FROM GAME OF THRONES AS THE TITLE CHARACTER IN MARY SHELLEY’S MONSTER

Two weeks ago, Maisie Williams, who plays Arya Stark in Game of Thrones, appeared in the Weekly Ketchup because of reports that she might star in the movie version of The Last of Us. This week, the Stark daughter actress who made the news was Sophie Turner, the redhead English actress who plays the perpetually put-upon Sansa Stark on the show. Sophie Turner has been cast in the lead role in Mary Shelley’s Monster, playing the early 19th century Romantic author and wife to Percy Bysshe Shelley, who will be played by Jeremy Irvine (War Horse, The Railway Man). This film about the author of Frankenstein comes from writer Deborah Baxtrom, who wrote/directed/produced/edited the British comedy TV series Living with Frankenstein, about the Shelleys, Lord Byron, and Frankenstein’s Monster living together in modern Los Angeles, 180 years later. In Mary Shelley’s Monster, Sophie Turner will play the writer as someone who is ” drawn into a Faustian bargain with her own ?monster? of an alter ego, who offers literary fame at a desperate personal cost.” Meanwhile, there’s also 20th Century Fox’s Frankenstein, featuring James McAvoy and Frankenstein, and Daniel Radcliffe as his assistant Igor, which is scheduled for release on October 2, 2015.

#4 THIS WEEK IN RELEASE DATES: GODZILLA 2, THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E., POWER RANGERS, OTHERS

There’s new release dates announced every week of the year, but the last few weeks have seen dates for more high profile films than is usual. The “biggest” movie in this latest batch is Godzilla 2 (or whatever it’s eventually called), which Warner Bros has now set for release on June 8, 2018. Some of this release date news is due to changes in the calendar, such as move of titles away from October of 2014, like Kingsman: The Secret Service (now on 2/13/15) and the North Korea-set comedy The Interview (now on 12/25/14). One of the movies that is now scheduled for October instead is the Brad Pitt-starring World War II tank action movie Fury, which was moved up a month from 11/14/14 to October 17, 2014. Another war movie to get a 2014 release date this week was Clint Eastwood’s American Sniper, based on the true story of Navy SEAL Chris Kyle, which is now scheduled for December 25, 2014. Another recent event that seems to be impacting release decisions is the success of Guardians of the Galaxy and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles with dates in August (or in late summer, in general). The most obvious example of this is Warner Bros’ adaptation of the TV series The Man from U.N.C.L.E., which was bumped back several months from this coming January until August 14, 2015. Additions to late July (in two different years) came in the form of Sony’s video game comedy Pixels moving from May 15, 2015 to July 24, 2015, and Lionsgate scheduling the TV show adaptation Power Rangers for July 22, 2016.

Rotten Ideas of the Week

#5 SIMON COWELL PRODUCING BETTY BOOP MOVIE

Now that The X Factor has been cancelled by FOX, TV producer Simon Cowell appears to have more time on his hands, as possibly evidenced by this week’s news. Simon Cowell’s Syco Entertainment is uniting with animation studio Animal Logic Entertainment (Happy Feet, The LEGO Movie) for an adaptation of the classic cartoon character Betty Boop. First introduced by cartoonist Max Fleischer in 1930, it was in 1932 that Betty Boop first started starring in her own animated shorts, which continued throughout the 1930s. In addition to various attempts at repopularizing the character in other media, Betty Boop has also appeared in advertisements, including the United Football League, and Hypnose Star Mascara from the Lancome makeup company. This new Betty Boop movie produced by Simon Cowell is being described as a “a hybrid animated comedy feature that’s driven by music.” In addition to the American Idol and America’s Got Talent TV shows, Simon Cowell also has the musical movie One Chance (itself inspired by a true story from Britain’s Got Talent) coming soon.

#4 AQUAMAN SOLO MOVIE IN THE WORKS (PROBABLY STARRING JASON MOMOA)

Another comic book royal that was in the news quite a bit this week is King Orin of Atlantis, AKA Aquaman. The week started on Friday (but the news broke after the Weekly Ketchup “went to press”, so to speak). While filming Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice in Detroit, director Zack Snyder heard some local radio personalities joking about Aquaman. By now, we’re sort of used to any sort of humor being associated with DC superhero movies, but the memo apparently hadn’t been sent to Detroit morning zoo crews. So, to defend Aquaman, Zack Snyder called the radio station, and sort of went crazy with the comic book minutiae dropping. This included the revelation that Aquaman could “cut the flesh of Superman if they came in contact,” which we can probably interpret as meaning that there will totally be a scene where Aquaman cuts Superman in the movie. Hopefully, Superman won’t break Aquaman’s neck in response. One clue that he won’t be doing that is that Warner Bros this week hired two different screenwriters to work on Aquaman solo movies. It’s not particularly common, but “dual track” screenplays allow for studios to potentially develop a script faster. It’s also a practice that some professional writers find questionable. Anyway, the two writers who are competing with each other, all reality TV-style, are Will Beall (Gangster Squad) and Kurt Johnstad (Act of Valor), who was also one of Zach Snyder’s cowriters on 300 and the sequel 300: Rise of an Empire. Of those four movies, only 300 scored higher than 42% on the RT Tomatometer.

#3 JOURNEY FRANCHISE GETTING TWO SEQUELS FROM WRITERS OF HOUSE OF WAX AND WHITEOUT

New Line Cinema confirmed this week plans to continue making sequels to the franchise that started with Journey to the Center of the Earth and 2012’s Journey 2: The Mysterious Island. Although the second movie seemed to end with fairly concrete evidence that a third movie would be based upon From Earth to the Moon, it is now being said that the third and fourth movies might go to completely different settings. Journey to the Center of the Earth, The Mysterious Island, and From Earth to the Moon were all books by 19th century French science fiction author Jules Verne. New Line Cinema has hired screenwriting team of brothers Chad and Corey Hayes, whose filmography includes such “Rotten” titles as House of Wax (25%), The Reaping (8%), and Whiteout (7%), although their 2013 movie The Conjuring did get good reviews (86% “Fresh”). Instead of just a third movie, New Line Cinema appears to be considering greenlighting a fourth film as well, with #3 and #4 possibly being filmed back-to-back. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is signed to reprise his role from Journey 2: The Mysterious Island in both films.

#2 MARTIN LAWRENCE DISPLAYS HORRIBLE SENSE OF TIMING WITH BAD BOYS 3 ANNOUNCEMENT

While the rest of the country is in shock and dismay over the events in Ferguson, MO, Martin Lawrence decided it would be a great time to go on national television and talk about doing another Bad Boys movie. (20th Century Fox also released Let’s Be Cops on Wednesday, but they really couldn’t have pulled the movie from theaters two days before release.) Actually, that’s just a quibble about the timing of Martin Lawrence’s appearance on Conan (which was seen by people hoping to see Conan’s tribute to Robin Williams). This story would be “rotten” regardless, following the 23% “Rotten” scores that Bad Boys II earned back in 2003. The idea of a third Bad Boys movie has been floating around since 2003, but the last we heard much about it was in 2010. Martin Lawrence’s update went like this, “I just talked to Jerry Bruckheimer… yesterday and he said its real. They?re working on the script, they?re getting close and it all looks good.” It was Conan O’Brien who technically asked about Bad Boys III, but the questions on late night talk shows are usually discussed ahead of time.

#1 TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES GETS 2016 SEQUEL… WHICH MIGHT FEATURE KRANG

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles opened this past weekend to over $65 million (the 10th largest of 2014 so far). Not surprisingly, Paramount Pictures had already by Sunday afternoon announced plans to release a sequel to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles on June 3, 2016. Michael Bay will also produce the sequel, but it’s not yet known if director Jonathan Liebesman, who also directed such “Rotten” films as Battle: Los Angeles, Darkness Falls, and Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning will be returning to help ensure Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2 also gets horrible reviews. Having said that, it certainly sounds like Liebesman thinks he’s returning for the sequel, because he’s already talking about plans that might include expanding the movies to “Dimension X” for the first time, which is where cartoon villain Krang comes from. Speaking of big brained mutates who get around in metal forms, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2 may end up playing catch up in 2016. The reason for this is that screenwriter Christopher Markus, who is currently working on Captain America 3, revealed this week that it’s his hope that they will be able to include M.O.D.O.K. in the sequel, and that movie, as is much publicisized already, will be released on May 6, 2016, less than a month before Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2. And as big as Krang’s head is, he’s no M.O.D.O.K. Krang was first introduced in 1987, and M.O.D.O.K. was first introduced in 1967, twenty years earlier. When he’s inside his robot body, Krang also resembles the comic book version of Arnim Zola, who also appeared in the first two Captain America movies. The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles themselves also first started as spoofs of Marvel’s Daredevil (Stick and the Hand became Splinter and the Foot, and they all share radioactive goo-nealogy).

For more Weekly Ketchup columns by Greg Dean Schmitz, check out the WK archive, and you can contact GDS via Facebook.



The reborn heroes of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles conquered the North American box office as the franchise flick beat industry expectations to open at number one with an estimated $65M. It was the fourth biggest opening weekend ever in the month of August and soared about $20M above what the film biz was expecting. Summer has been light on kidpics and audiences came out in droves for Turtles which began as a movie franchise in 1990 with a record debut for its time.

Turtles averaged a sensational $16,905 from 3,845 theaters and got help from 3D and premium large format pricing. Reviews were bad but audiences responded to the brand and the action, especially dads familiar with the property from its glory days in the 1980s and early 90s. Studio research showed that 61% of the audience was male and 55% was over 25. The CinemaScore was a decent B for the $125M-budgeted actioner. Megan Fox and Will Arnett were among the cast members and did the rounds on talk shows to promote.

After last weekend’s record opening for Guardians of the Galaxy, the sophomore frame saw a 56% drop to an estimated $41.5M putting the new cume at $175.9M. Considering how front-loaded comic book movies are, and the competition Turtles gave, it was a very respectable hold. The Marvel hit could go on to reach the $290M vicinity for Disney. Overseas brought in an estimated $40.1M from 50 territories bumping the international cume up to $137.3M and the worldwide tally to $313.2M. Many of the world’s top ten markets have not opened yet.

The tornado thriller Into The Storm opened in third place with an estimated $18M from 3,434 locations for a moderate $5,246 average. The PG-13 storm chaser flick actually opened with less than half of the $41.1M gross of 1996’s smash summer hit Twister back when ticket prices were almost half as much. Critics panned Storm which targeted thrill-seekers for Warner Bros.

Disney and DreamWorks debuted the culinary film The Hundred-Foot Journey in fourth place with an estimated $11.1M from 2,023 theaters for a respectable $5,498 average. Starring Helen Mirren, the PG-rated film based on a popular novel was backed by producers Oprah Winfrey and Steven Spielberg who actively used their tastemaker skills to help build an audience. The first weekend results were slightly better than expected and the road ahead looks promising. Reviews were mixed but paying audiences liked what they got as the Cinemascore was a solid A.

Scarlett Johansson’s hit action flick Lucy dropped 49% in its third round to an estimated $9.3M for Universal for $97.4M to date. Step Up All In, the fifth installment in the hit dance competition franchise, suffered the worst opening of the series with an estimated $6.6M bow. Averaging a weak $3,173 from 2,072 locations, the PG-13 pic from Lionsgate fell below the $11.7M of 2012’s Step Up Revolution and was a far cry from the $20.7M debut of the first Step Up from eight years ago this very weekend. Every film in the series has opened worse than its predecessor in North America, but brisk overseas sales have kept the franchise going.

Paramount’s action epic Hercules took a drop of 48% to an estimated $5.7M for a new sum of $63.5M. Universal’s James Brown pic Get On Up declined a hefty 63% in its sophomore effort to an estimated $5M for a sum of $22.9M.

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes followed in ninth with an estimated $4.4M, off 49%, for a $197.8M cume for Fox. The toon sequel Planes: Fire and Rescue saw much of its kid audience erode falling 60% to an estimated $2.4M. Cume to date is $53M for Disney.

The top ten films grossed an estimated $169.1M which was up 23% from last year when Elysium opened at number one with $29.8M; and up 31% from 2012 when The Bourne Legacy debuted on top with $38.1M.

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In Theaters This Week:



Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

21%

Rating: PG-13, for sci-fi action violence.

This live-action reboot of the franchise featuring modified, crime-fighting, pizza-eating turtles is a Michael Bay production. That means it’s essentially a Transformers movie, complete with shiny action sequences and destructive battles that place innocent bystanders in peril. The turtles themselves may be cute and cool and wacky in other incarnations but here, the special effects make them odd-looking in an off-putting way. Still, they emerge from the sewers to defend New York City, as is their duty, with the help of Megan Fox as an intrepid TV reporter. The enemy is a giant robot samurai named Shredder who resembles a Japanese Megatron. He’s working with a wealthy, villainous scientist (William Fichtner) who wants to rule the city by releasing a deadly toxin. There are explosions, lots of gunfire and general mayhem as a roaming group of marauders known as the Foot Clan terrorize the city and take hostages. I saw this movie with my son (who’s almost 5) and he was a bit frightened of Shredder, but only briefly.



The Hundred-Foot Journey

68%

Rating: PG, for thematic elements, some violence, language and brief sensuality.

Helen Mirren stars as the uptight owner of an elegant restaurant in the south of France. Om Puri plays the boisterous patriarch who moves his family into her quaint village and opens a new Indian restaurant directly across the street — 100 feet away, to be exact. Their competition, and the way they sabotage each other, is petty and cruel but amusing. And eventually — spoiler alert! — their rivalry leads to multicultural understanding. There are a couple of brief instances of violence — one in the beginning, one in the middle — in which vandals attack the Indian family’s restaurants, setting fire to them and even causing a death. But in both cases in director Lasse Hallstrom’s film, these are opportunities for rebuilding and redemption. Fine for kids around 10 and older.



Step Up: All In

42%

Rating: PG-13, for some language and suggestive material.

I’m guessing that the solitary, casually tossed F-bomb is the main reason that this fifth Step Up movie received a PG-13 rating. Otherwise, it’s pretty harmless as it offers one dance battle after another after another. This time, the action takes place at a competition in Las Vegas, with various characters from the previous films assembling and reassembling in different crews. The ultimate prize is a three-year deal performing at Caesars Palace. Maybe some of the dance moves are slightly and briefly risque — the thrusting, the suggestion of some sexual acts — but it all flies by at a dizzying pace. Even the dancers’ night out on the town is chaste. No smoking for these agile, muscular guys and gals, and even the drinking they do consists of a few glasses of celebratory champagne. Totally fine for kids around 8 or 9 and up.

New On DVD:



Divergent

41%

Rating: PG-13, for intense violence and action, thematic elements and some sensuality.

This is yet another movie based on a young adult novel set in a dystopian future where teenagers must fight each other for survival. Tweens who have read the book — and anyone familiar with this genre, really — will know what to expect in terms of violent situations and disturbing imagery. Still, because it’s rated PG-13, there’s very little blood to accompany the considerable body counts that accumulates. Shailene Woodley stars as Beatrice — or Tris, as she renames herself — a modest girl who faces the momentous task of deciding which of society’s five factions is the best fit for her. She chooses to join the Dauntless, which means a quick and demanding training regimen of shooting, fighting, throwing knives, climbing great heights and jumping from moving trains. But she also must defend herself against the competing initiates who are trying to take her down. It’s intense, dark stuff with a lengthy running time at two-plus hours.



Need For Speed

22%

Rating: PG-13, for sequences of reckless street racing, disturbing crash scenes, nudity and crude language.

Aaron Paul’s first major role post-Breaking Bad finds him starring in this zippy, flashy action thriller in which a lot of cars get seriously mangled. Paul plays a small-town drag racer and mechanic who must compete in that tried-and-true one last race to redeem himself and save his family’s shop. It’s a high-stakes road challenge full of exotic sports cars, which inevitably causes some serious crashes. These adrenaline junkies knowingly put themselves in this dangerous situation — and some of them won’t survive — but they also subject untold innocent pedestrians and fellow drivers to their general disregard for human safety. Probably fine for viewers age 10 and up — but kids, don’t try this at home.

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