The Black List is an annual survey of the best screenplays that aren’t being made into movies. The List uses more than 600 people who should really know what a good script should look like, so it’s safe to say Zack Snyder is not invited in any capacity.
Sometimes, even when the script is very pretty and nice, the movie it eventually turns into is face-meltingly wretched and stupid. Other times, it rocks the Oscars and the box office. It’s almost like some of the people choosing scripts are fucking terrible at their jobs.
Anyway, here are my choices for the some of the most glorious and the most unfathomably terrible of the movies made from the illustrious Black List.
The Cream of the Crop
Lars and the Real Girl
What kind of crazy, magical writing nymph can take a story about a very lonely man and his relationship with a sex doll, and turn it into a heart-felt story about acceptance and how people cope? Nancy Oliver, apparently.
I feel like this site has sung the praises of this flick enough.
Colin Farrell is perfection as a guilt-ridden hitman hiding out with his partner (played by Brendan Gleeson). Add in a healthy helping of the word fuck, a racist little person, and some seriousness weaving throughout, and you’ve got Martin McDonagh’s In Bruges
All you need to know about the script from Rhett Reese & Paul Wernick is that it allowed this to happen in a movie:
I don’t care what you say. This movie was awesome. It reminded me of weekend afternoons spent with my dad, watching old Kung Fu movies with bad dubbing. Except this movie had an epic story and actual Asians. Thank you, Chris Morgan.
This is another movie that probably isn’t for everyone, but that I enjoyed immensely. Michael Perry crafted a strange, empathetic character in Jerry (Ryan Reynolds), a lonely man who accidentally kills the girl he has a crush on. To be fair, his cat strong-pawed him into doing it with his endless taunting. Jerry should have listened to the dog.
FUN FACT: Reynolds also does the voices for his film pets: Bosco and Mr. Whiskers.
Also known as The Movie That I Can Never Watch Again, Even Though It Was So, So Good. Ryan Reynolds plays the civilian contractor from Chris Sparling’s script about being buried alive. Just thinking about how well-paced, acted, and written this flick was is almost enough to make me take some anxiety meds and watch it again.
The Butt Residue Left Behind When You Use Cheap Toilet Paper
All About Steve
I would love to get my hands on the actual script for this cinematic cock weasel. I want to know how Kim Barker’s script was able to make the list, albeit with only two mentions, and then get made. The movie is infamous for its nonsensical plot and grotesque performances from otherwise enjoyable stars Sandra Bullock and Bradley ‘EILF’ Cooper.
Clash of the Titans
Was Travis Beacham’s script bloated and lacking any joy whatsoever? Or did The Guy That Is Sam Worthington Or Jai Courtney Or Maybe Like A Jaqen H’ghar Faceless Man ruin it with his cardboard face and stilted acting?
The Fourth Kind
I thought this would be a frightening movie, though I don’t know why. Instead Olatunde Osunsanmi’s script is turned into something boring, drawn-out, and underwhelming.
Formerly called “Neighborhood Watch”, Jared Stern’s original script surely didn’t have Vince Vaughn shtick smeared all over trademark Ben Stiller stock reactions. I believe it was the addition of Vaughn and Stiller that took an innovative script (guys who join a neighborhood watch to bro out end up facing an alien attack) and turned it into generic drivel.
This is the one starring Russell Brand. I think Jason Winer just wrote “WET FART” on every page of the script.
I just realized I could do this all goddamned day. You kids have any picks, good or bad?