Intersection of Life and Faith

P.U.! The 10 Worst Movies of 2017 According to Critics

  • Editorial Staff & Film Critics
P.U.! The 10 Worst Movies of 2017 According to Critics

For well over a decade, we at and have been bringing you our Movies of the Year list with pride.

But what about those films that didn't quite make the cut?

In early 2016, we completely revamped our movie review template to include - among other features - a 0-5 star rating to give readers a quick indication of what our reviewer (each of whom is both an evangelical Christian and a film aficionado) truly thought. For the most part, we've been stingy with the 5-star designation but it's also rare we dislike something so much that it fails to reach a modest 2-star plateau.

Well, in our opinion Hollywood produced 10 such stinkers in 2017, causing our reviewers to score them somewhere between a half-star to one-and-a-half. I say "Hollywood" because even though Christian production houses weren't exempt from shoddy filmmaking or storytelling this year (we notoriously don't give a pass on that!), most of the time just sharing the gospel or keeping it clean can give a faith-based film some value.

With this list, there just wasn't much that we found to justify the price of admission or even a rental. So what's the value in revisiting such inconsequential art a second time? Fun, for one. But also, maybe we can find some commonality in the bad that reminds us what makes for a good story, helps us consider what elements spur us on to inspiration and improvement and good things.

But please, go ahead, disagree! If you actually saw one of these movies and managed to see the best in it, do let us know. What were YOUR least favorite films in 2017?

Image Courtesy: ©Thinkstock/Kurhan

  • #10 Atomic Blonde

    #10 Atomic Blonde

    Slide 1 of 10

    Critics: 76%
    Audience: 65%
    (per RottenTomatoes as of November 29, 2017)

    Charlize Theron-led Cold War spy adaptation Atomic Blonde is the only film on our list where the majority opinions over at RottenTomatoes didn't jive with the Crosswalk review. Among the major faults cited were a sheer lack of positivity, an awkward flashback structure and a feeling that the filmmakers were trying in vain to be stylish and innovative (I hate when they do that).

    Christian Hamaker said: "The co-director of one of the most stylishly violent action movies of recent years (David LeitchJohn Wick) and the star of another contender for that honor (Charlize TheronMad Max: Fury Road) combine for a graphic-novel adaptation that sputters badly in the story department. Relying on lots of lurid violence and sex to compensate for a choppy narrative, Atomic Blonde is driven by sound and fury, signifying not much. 1 out of 5." (July 27, 2017)

    Read Crosswalk's Review of Atomic Blonde Here

  • #10 Atomic Blonde

    #9 The Snowman

    Slide 2 of 10

    Critics: 8%
    Audience: 21%
    (per RottenTomatoes as of November 29, 2017)

    Michael Fassbender stars as a heavy-drinking detective in snowy Norway. But all you really need to know about why this murder mystery's plot is so disjointed is that the director admitted he and his team somehow failed to film 10-to-15 percent of the shooting script! How does that even happen?

    Christian Hamaker said: "Somewhere in The Snowman is a stylish crime thriller trying to emerge, but whether through a poor job of forging a screenplay from Jo Nesbo's book or poor execution of the script by director Tomas Alfredson, the film plays like a highly anticipated weather forecast that never materializes. 1.5 out of 5." (October 19, 2017)

    Read Crosswalk's Review of The Snowman Here

  • #10 Atomic Blonde

    #8 Unlocked

    Slide 3 of 10

    Critics: 25%
    Audience: 42%
    (per RottenTomatoes as of November 29, 2017)

    A second spy movie on the list already? The genre has apparently fallen on hard times that even Orlando Bloom and Noomi Rapace can't help.

    Christian Hamaker said: "Who thought this story was worth telling, much less filming? Director Michael Apted has made a long career out of crossing genres effectively, from religious dramas like the William Wilberforce story Amazing Grace and the adaptation of Chronicles of Narnia: Voyage of the Dawn Treader to his pioneering Up series of documentaries. Although he’s also made his share of misfires, it’s hard to think of any Apted effort worse than Unlocked—an uninspired spy 'thriller' that uses good actors in the service of a wholly unoriginal story. 1.5 out of 5." (August 31, 2017)

    Read Crosswalk's Review of Unlocked Here

  • #10 Atomic Blonde

    #7 The Great Wall

    Slide 4 of 10

    Critics: 35%
    Audience: 43%
    (per RottenTomatoes as of November 29, 2017)

    Well it made $320 million globally (much of that in China), but only a mere $35 million in North America. How weird was it to see Matt Damon fighting poorly-rendered CGI lizards in a February release?

    Christian Hamaker said: "Raises some interesting ideas about trust, sacrifice and purpose, but not even an international cast led by Matt Damon can compensate for an overall failure of imagination in this slack, detached story. 1.5 out of 5." (February 16, 2017)

    Read Crosswalk's Review of The Great Wall Here

  • #10 Atomic Blonde

    #6 Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul

    Slide 5 of 10

    Critics: 20%
    Audience: 34%
    (per RottenTomatoes as of November 29, 2017)

    Susan Ellingburg is known to be Crosswalk's kindest critic, giving the films she reviews an average rating of 3.2. If Susan can't sit still for a movie targeted at families, that film has problems. Apparently there's "not a responsible human of any age" in this "comedy that's just not funny."

    Susan Ellingburg said: "This over-the-top-stupid installment in the Wimpy Kid saga lacks any of the fleeting charm of earlier films. If watching a self-centered, clueless family act wildly irresponsible is your jam, by all means go. Just remember that's 90 minutes of your life you'll never get back. 1 out of 5." (May 18, 2017)

    Read Crosswalk's Review of Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul Here

  • #10 Atomic Blonde

    #5 Kidnap

    Slide 6 of 10

    Critics: 37%
    Audience: 51%
    (per RottenTomatoes as of November 29, 2017)

    Remember when we wondered if this might be the Opposite Day version of Liam Neeson's Taken (single mom saves son instead of single dad saves daughter)? Remember when Halle Berry used to be awesome? Maybe this one-dimensional movie should have been about whoever absconded with her career (I suspect Catwoman).

    Debbie Holloway said: "In this movie about a heroic mom who rescues her son from mysterious, violent kidnappers, we are given little more than anxiety-riddled car chase scenes. For failing to bring anything of cinematic merit to the proverbial table, Kidnap earns a bland 1 out of 5." (August 4, 2017)

    Read Crosswalk's Review of Kidnap Here

  • #10 Atomic Blonde

    #4 Fist Fight

    Slide 7 of 10

    Critics: 26%
    Audience: 41%
    (per RottenTomatoes as of November 29, 2017)

    Don't we have enough angst about sending our kids to public schools without worrying about their teachers getting into axe fights on the playground and their guidance counselors openly ogling students?

    Debbie Holloway said: "A movie that only got made because its stars obviously had a good time making it, Fist Fight is largely a cringeworthy waste of time and earns a disappointing 1 out of 5." (February 17, 2017)

    Read Crosswalk's Review of Fist Fight Here

  • #10 Atomic Blonde

    #3 The Dark Tower

    Slide 8 of 10

    Critics: 16%
    Audience: 48%
    (per RottenTomatoes as of November 29, 2017)

    Seriously? A series of eight books published between 1998 and 2004, and this 95-minute mess is what you come up with after having 13 years to figure it out? No wonder it's incoherent. Imagine if someone had tried to condense all of Harry Potter into an hour-and-a-half! If this is what gets greenlit, how bad must all those rejected screenplays be?

    Christian Hamaker said: "How do you make actors as charismatic as Matthew McConaughey and Idris Elba seem disposable and uninteresting? Director Nikolaj Arcel and a trio of screenwriters find a way to do just that in their adaptation of Stephen King's The Dark Tower, a remarkably pedestrian effort that leaves you wondering how a seemingly well-cast film could go so wrong. 1 out of 5." (August 3, 2017)

    Read Crosswalk's Review of The Dark Tower Here

  • #10 Atomic Blonde

    #2 Nut Job 2: Nutty by Nature

    Slide 9 of 10

    Critics: 9%
    Audience: 44%
    (per RottenTomatoes as of November 29, 2017)

    If you've not had the pleasure of meeting Crosswalk's Family Editor (and moonlighting film critic) Carrie Dedrick, you should know that she leaves a glitter trail wherever she goes. Carrie loves animation, and animals. Trolls is one of her favorite movies, as Poppy is essentially Carrie's avatar. If you can make Carrie loathe a 90-minute film about animated animals, you have accomplished a feat worthy of the (literally) #2 spot on this list.

    Carrie Dedrick said: "Painfully predictable and disappointingly violent, The Nut Job 2: Nutty by Nature has little to offer any audience. It's not just a skip; it's a definite skip. 0.5 out of 5." (August 10, 2017)

    Read Crosswalk's Review of The Nut Job 2: Nutty by Nature Here

  • #10 Atomic Blonde

    And the WORST MOVIE OF 2017 is... The House

    Slide 10 of 10

    Critics: 16%
    Audience: 37%
    (per RottenTomatoes as of November 29, 2017)

    The most telling stat for me here is that nearly two out of every three people who saw this movie admit it was a total dud. We're talking about major fans of Will Ferrell, Amy Poehler and Jason Mantzoukas. But the filmmakers hardly even wrote a script for these talented performers, asking them to ad-lib most of their lines, and it failed horribly, as did a chance to show the realities of trying to pay for college and choose the right school in this day and age.

    Shawn McEvoy said: "So THIS is the movie that makes me say it's finally time for the raunch-com to die. Even Warner Bros. knew they had an inconsequential stinker on their hands, opting not to screen it for media in advance. The House is empty of meaning, cozy with vulgarity, and with a distinct lack of storage space for humor. 0.5 out of 5." (June 29, 2017)

    Read Crosswalk's Review of The House Here