10 Crappiest Movies of Cate Blanchett's Career
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10 Crappiest Movies of Cate Blanchett's Career

By Agent Bedhead | Seriously Random Lists | December 12, 2012 | Comments ()


I don't expect this to be a very popular list at all because -- let's face it -- Cate Blanchett can do very little wrong. She's a classy, talented, and hard-working actress who gets the job done without resorting to a privileged or diva-like attitude. With that said, she's made some inferior movies in comparison to most of her work, but all things are relative, so Cate's crappier movies aren't nearly as easy to bag on as, say, those of Steve Martin's career. So (I guess), let's do this:

Robin Hood: Yet another pointless remake has cluttered up theaters in favor of new, original material. C'mon, auteurs -- rise up again and show a little bit of creativity.


Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull: Such a terrible plot and such a nonexistent script. This movie literally shamed the rest of the franchise.


Paradise Road: The true atrocities of this film's subject matter were so watered down here that the movie was almost like a soap opera. Shame on you, Hollywood.


Elizabeth: The Golden Age: Not only was this a typically inferior sequel to the original, but they couldn't even bother to CGI in the Spanish Armada. (Miss you, Ranylt Richildis!)


The Curious Case of Benjamin Button: Sorry guys, I'm with Dustin on this one. F. Scott Fitzgerald never dreamt of this degree of pointless pandering.


The Good German: This movie wasn't bad, but it was certainly evidence of Soderbergh's frenetic directing pace that has absorbed him of late. Also, some of the dialects were ... lacking.


The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou: I'll get crucified for this one, and it truly pains me to put a Bill Murray movie on this list, but this film was just so twee and precious that I want to vomit.


Charlotte Gray: There was far too much historical inaccuracy within this movie, not the least of which was the scene involving an underground French Resistance fighter screaming at German troops in the street.


The Gift: Speaking as a horror nut, Sam Raimi has done far better than this movie.


Pushing Tin: Yes, I liked this movie, but it was so damn cheesy! A guilty pleasure but a crappy one, indeed.


Agent Bedhead lives in Tulsa, Oklahoma. She and her little black heart can be found at Celebitchy.

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Comments Are Welcome, Bigots and Trolls Are Not

  • James

    I'm with you. I did NOT like "The life aquatic" at all.

    And for the rest of you to start hating me completely, I also hated "the Royal

  • "The Gift" was good only because Cate Blanchett was in it. And it's worth watching simply for her performance. Plus it has a pre-Cruise Katie Holmes acting up a storm. Greg Kinnear (what ever happened to him?) is convincing too. The real mess here are the performances by Hilary Swank and Keannu Reaves but thankfully they don't get a lot of screen time. Aside from that, I agree with your list!

  • Guest

    Miss you too, AB! (and miss reviewing).

  • olive garden


  • BWeaves

    I like to play the Elf Side-eye drinking game. Every time Lavalier* gives someone the side-eye, you drink a thimble of Amaretto.

    *See "Bored of the Rings"

  • e jerry powell

    Hell, who needs a movie for amaretto shots?

    Lazzaroni, bitches. Takes me back to my bar whore days.

  • John G.

    I loved The Good German. What could you possibly find bad about it?

  • I watched that Indiana Jones monstrosity for an hour before I realized that that was supposed to be Cate Blanchet. She probably agreed to wear the Worst Wig in the Universe just so she wouldn't be easily recognized in that piece of shit.

  • Mrs. Julien

    Worse than Nicole Kidman in that Batman movie where they spent eleventybillion dollars on effects and had only $12 left for the wig budget? Or proportionally as bad as the prosthetic nose Nicole Kidman wore in The Hours? On Wednesdays, I measure all things in nicolekidmans, e.g., my forehead moved 3.4 nicolekidmans when I cut myself with the paring knife. I made myself feel better by eating 1.9 nicolekidmans of chocolate.

  • Mrs. Julien

    Is the downvote for straying off topic, or because I didn't show my work?

  • Kati

    *hands back paper*
    You only got one out of five, Ms. Julien, because you did not show your work. You also lost credit because you neither boxed in your answer nor accounted for significant figures. I hope that you can show some improvement before midterms, young lady. *narrows eyes*

  • Mrs. Julien

    [giggling] You called me "young". [blushes and hides under desk]

  • Mitchell Hundred

    Eh, it's all relative, I guess.

    (slicks back hair, throws ladykiller wink at sophomore, rides motorcycle off into the sunset)

  • DarthCorleone

    I'm guessing Dustin's selection of header pic was intended as a subtle anti-Lord of the Rings message.

  • Aratweth

    What was subtle about it?

  • RocksEaglesHats

    The word "twee" is used exclusively by people who dislike Wes Anderson
    to describe his movies and anything reminiscent or derivative of his
    movies. I seriously don't think I've ever heard it used in any other
    context. It is an adjective INVENTED for the sole purpose of criticizing
    ONE thing.

    So to say "Oh, I didn't like The Life Aquatic
    because it was too 'twee'" is essentially saying "I didn't like The Life
    Aquatic because it was The Life Aquatic", or "I didn't like The Life
    Aquatic because it was directed by Wes Anderson". It's a redundant
    statement not worth wasting breath on.

    I'll also never
    understand the type of person who raves about Rushmore but loathes The
    Life Aquatic. They're constructed from the same raw materials. All of
    Anderson's movies are. If an auteur's M.O. doesn't move you, fine. But
    to exalt one while trashing the other, presumably because conventional
    wisdom dictates that you can or should, seems to ignore the massive
    common thread throughout the body of work.

  • Jezzer

    The term "twee" has been around forever. Its aptitude for describing Wes Anderson's precious bullshit is a happy coincidence.

  • Bert_McGurt

    I'm with you man. I am post-hipster. I refuse to let them appropriate and ruin the things I like. I'm a big fan of Wes Anderson's films because they're so frequently absurd, nostalgic, colourful, and yet very organized and defined while retaining a sense of childlike enthusiasm. And all with a weird melancholy optimism. He does a fantastic job of looking at non-traditional relationship dynamics and the obsessions, ambition, and frustrations of his characters, ill-fated or not. And he's consistent. He has his style, his actors, and his stories, and even when the film itself is weaker than the rest (Darjeeling, for example), it's still genuine. Not to mention it's sometimes nice to see a movie where the conflict ISN'T a result of sex or death.

    Ironic nostalgia and absurdity might be "twee" and "hipster", I'll grant them that. But Anderson's not ironic. He's not putting on airs. He's making the films he genuinely wants to make, not for the sake of current trends but because that's his style. I'd go so far as to say the twee hipsters are INSPIRED by Wes Anderson, but we've forgiven lesser artists for greater sins.

  • zeke_the_pig

    'Post-hipster' is a phrase I've been needing and not finding for a long time. Cheers.

  • Idle Primate

    This is an amazing and gracefully articulated assessment

  • RocksEaglesHats

    Well said on all fronts.

    And you hit upon a critical point: Anderson is decidedly NOT ironic, irony being the core pillar of "hipsterism" by all accounts.

    Anderson's work is, rather, embarrassingly earnest. Cloyingly so, at times. But the "melancholy optimism" (perfectly said) of his characters is not only both consistent and earned, it is decidedly unique. Often imitated, but usually poorly.

    What are the other hallmarks of the hipster aesthetic? Lazy appropriation of the past resulting in a hollow, vague nostalgia for nowhere and no time in particular. The entire product line of Anthropologie is curated to give the impression of a lifetime spent antiquing in rural France- yours for a modest price. The ethos behind Instagram- providing the gratification of decay and nostalgia without the inconvenience of the aging process- or Pinterist- creating a butterfly collection of eclecticism from the comfort of your desk- is about shortcuts. To paraphrase an article I recently read, even the makers and drivers of this culture seem steeped in unearned melencholy. The band name “Mumford and Sons" suggests history, tradition, the passing down of something real—above all, the transmission of blood. But Marcus Mumford is not in a band with his sons; in fact, he has no sons at all.

    I may be betraying myself as a premature curmudgeon, as I accuse another of being above. But my point is this: Wes Anderson may be nostalgic, but he is not lazy about it. He creates incredibly detailed worlds and relentlessly pursues the same themes and conflicts that seem to haunt him. That may not be up everyone's alley, but he has no truck with the shortcut takers and they of the mayfly attention spans. They only dissemble to value- Anderson creates it.

  • Idle Primate

    And ditto for this too.

  • Melissa D

    Hmmm. I've been using the word 'twee' long before I'd even heard of Wes Anderson, so not sure how that fits in your theory. There is the possibility, of course, that like Merlin, I was born backwards in time and so knew the invented-for-WA-movies-word already.

    That would actually be pretty cool. Who wants to know how Star Wars 7-9 turn out?

  • John G.

    They're bandwagon morons who can't think for themselves, that's the sort of person who calls Wes Anderson twee and hates Life Aquatic.

  • Jezzer

    Yes, because the people who go into multiple orgasms every time Wes Anderson shits out another pile of fairy dust and twee are rugged individualists, and certainly not part of a smelly hipster bandwagon.

    Oh, wait. What I MEANT to say was that I am consistently vocal in my hatred of Wes Anderson films, but I don't go out of my way to call the people who like them morons, because everyone is entitled to an opinion. In conclusion, fuck you. Thinking for myself is what led me to hate Wes Anderson in the first place.

  • Frankly

    She and Him - twee. Adults watching "Yo Gabba Gabba" with no kids around - twee. 90 percent of everything on etsy - twee.

  • You leave M. Ward out of this!

  • RocksEaglesHats

    The way you're using the word is the same way people use the word "hipster"- which is to say limitlessly flexible in application. Ask yourself what commonality the phenomenon of adults watching Yo Gabba Gabba has to, say, The Royal Tenenbaums. Nothing. Except that you find both cloying and obnoxious, albeit in totally disparate ways.

    She and Him is precious and a little contrived- but it's actually decent music. Find me somebody who has seen M Ward live and thinks he's not fantastic.

    Anti-Etsyism is premature curmudgionliness. What, you have a problem with unique, homemade shit? Unique homemade shit has always been around. Aestheticism has always been around. Etsy is the internet's way of creating a marketplace for it. Does that ruin or spoil the artisinal, localized nature of homemade goods? How very hipster and twee of you.

  • Jezzer

    Having a problem with Etsy does not equal having a problem with homemade artsy shit. Etsy is in itself problematic, and earns its criticism.

  • Sara_Tonin00

    "twee" means "overly cute" "overly precious" - it's that simple.

    and I'd say no, "Rushmore" and "The Life Aquatic" are not built from the same materials - they are different stories, and telling the stories of a lost adult's quest the same way you tell the story of a misfit teenager's sullen thrashing isn't guaranteed to work.

  • e jerry powell

    Benjamin Button makes me sad that Tilda Swinton and Cate Blanchett finally made a movie together and it was such utter shite, Hopefully the two of them get another shot at it. They richly deserve to share world domination between them.

  • Mitchell Hundred

    When we were watching Geoffrey Rush's death scene in 'Elizabeth: The Golden Age', my mom asked her wife what his dying words were (because she didn't hear them). My stepmom's response was that he was telling Cate Blanchett not to make a sequel.

    And now that I think of it, if they had gone with the meta-humour it might have made the whole ordeal worthwhile.

  • Jerce

    This is a travesty.

    How could you leave Bandits?

    It is one of the worst movies of all TIME, let alone of Blanchett's career.

    (Love her.)

  • Samantha Klein

    While I don't think Bandits is the worst movie of all time (see: Battlefield Earth or Plan 9 From Outer Space), it should certainly have been traded out for pretty much anything else on this list. I actually take offense at the inclusion of The Gift, which may not be great in terms of horror (about which I know nothing), but is really a fascinating little ensemble piece in its own, creepy way.

  • Idle Primate

    The thing is it isn't a horror movie. It's a gothic noir. And a pretty fine movie

  • Jezzer

    I loved "The Gift," particularly for having Keanu, Katie, and Kinnear all acting against type.

  • Samantha Klein

    See? That's how little I know about horror. But I really liked The Gift and thought everyone gave excellent performances. And we're talking Keanu and Joey, here. :)

  • Idle Primate

    It was the author of the article that labelled it a horror movie

  • Puddin

    Oh hellll no..... **pulls out earrings, pulls off press on nails**

    Say it again, Jerce. Say Bandits sucked AGAIN.

  • Jerce

    Not to be all belligerent, but I'm afraid I HAVE to say it again: Bandits was deeply, deeply awful from beginning to end. And I sat down to watch really wanting to like it, because I like the cast. But no.

    ...Oh, and I forgot, even though she was only in it for ten minutes or so, and she gave a good performance, The Shipping News was also a majorly terrible movie, just awful, so maybe it should go on this list too.

  • John G.

    "Beavers and ducks"

  • APOCooter

    Certainly one of these movies is better than the LotR movie she was in (or all of them).

  • Zirza

    "The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou: I’ll get crucified for this one, and it truly pains me to put a Bill Murray movie on this list, but this film was just so twee and precious that I want to vomit."

    Don't worry. This is my response to every Wes Anderson movie.

  • Jezzer

    "Life Aquatic" was so shitty and twee that I don't even remember Cate Blanchett being in it. Was she the crappy CGI shark at the end?

  • colleen

    thank. god. every time someone tells me i don't like a wes anderson movie because i don't get it, i want to punch them in the face; i totally "get" it, i just can't stand it.

  • Anne At Large

    Elizabeth 2: Electric Boogaloo made me sad. E1 was politics and intrigue and history and so of course that worked so well that for E2 they ditched all that and spent the whole time on luuuuuurve instead. At least that's how I remember it (crankily).

  • e jerry powell

    Plus which Helen Mirren played a far superior Elizabeth I that same year.

  • BWeaves

    I did not like Cate's Elizabeth. I adored Helen's.

  • e jerry powell

    High five, dude.

  • John W

    I liked Katie Holmes' boobs...I mean The Gift.

  • Legally Insignificant

    I want to upvote this twice, once for each boob.

  • Tom

    if this was a "Katie Holmes' Crappiest Movies" list, then "The Gift" couldn't be on there no matter how bad it is. her boobs redeemed it for her

  • selucius

    I was going to suggest that Katie's boobs should prevent The Gift from appearing on anyone's "crappiest movie" list.

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