Not So Special Effects

In a recent interview JJ Abrams has finally broken the silence on the newest Star Wars movie. While his interview was so horrendously cryptic, in that it basically said nothing, people are so excited to finally know something about the newest installment in this gargantuan trilogy. While nothing was really said about casting, or plot, or most things related to the actual film, Abrams did say “…we are working really hard to make a movie that feels as emotional and authentic and exciting as possible,” and “I want to have a more organic look so that we don’t get into ‘Roger Rabbit’ territory.” This got me thinking about some o the worst movie special effects… and I decided to share those with you. These are in no particular order as they are all pretty bad.


1) Jar Jar Binks. Need I say much more? The fact is Jar Jar was a quasi-acceptable character in the first film when he was an alien. But when he started wearing a robe and being a person, it just got far too out of hand. Someone in heaven is going to have some words for you George Lucas.

2) The “people” on the deck of the Titanic. It’s a great movie. However the digitally added passengers who are falling off the deck into the “frigid” ocean are comical. They look like a slightly more amped up version of the clay figures you made to stand at the bottom of your paper-mache diorama of a volcano.

3) Everything Hulk related… excepted the Avengers (but only if you squint your eyes, definitely not in 3D).


4) All things that have Shark in the name on the SyFy network. This list includes but is not limited to Sharktopus, Ghost Shark, and the recent release Sharknado. They also have a fascinating line of anaconda and dinosaur themed films with the same caliber of work.

5) The melting faces at the end of Raiders of the Lost Ark. I know that at the time it was really ground breaking effects, however watching it now it just looks like what happens when you microwave a Peep.

6) Most of the added effects in the Star Wars re-release. Why was there a need to add a very uncomfortably bean-bag-chair-like Jabba the Hut or CGI background singer aliens?

7) Beowulf. I just don’t understand it. Was it animated? Was it live action? They looked like they all had a thick layer of Vaseline on their skin. All I know was there were several moments where faux-Angelina Jolie was kind of naked and I didn’t know if it was completely inappropriate or not.

8) The intro to Die Another Day. James Bond parachutes… and THEN SURFS… into the mine fields on the beach of North Korea. You can’t take a concept like that and “fix it” with sub-par special effects.

9) All of Polar Express. See commentary on Beowulf above. However I don’t think Tom Hanks was naked in Polar Express. I’ve only seen it once and it was the second or third movie on a long flight. I don’t remember much of it, but a nude Tom Hanks doesn’t seem very Christmas-y.


10) The Mummy Returns. There is a particularly special moment where The Rock returns from the dead as a half human/ half scorpion. I know… you’ve waited most of your life to see this. It is awful. He looks like something from Shrek. Ultimately didn’t add a lot to the horror of the movie.