I saw a bunch of bad movies in 2016, because of course I did, because bad movies are a thing that happen every year. Still, there’s no need to be negative about such things, so I am going to try my very hardest to find something positive to say about the stupidest movies of 2016. Over the coming weeks, fittingly leading into Hollywood’s award show season, I’ll venture to find the best in the worst.
GODS OF EGYPT
Gods of Egypt begins with a text scroll explaining that the Egyptian Gods were all giants who chose to live among humans (rather than in some distant Olympus or Valhalla-like sky realm), and who literally had gold for blood. While the audience is still muttering “Ha ha, what?” we immediately cut to ancient Egypt, where, sure enough, a bunch of 12-foot-tall humanoids are strutting around amongst us tiny humans, and occasionally bleeding gold all over the place. Damn, movie; you warned us and we still weren’t ready!
That’s the thing about Gods of Egypt; nothing can prepare you for it. We saw the idiotic trailer, we heard from flabbergasted critics, and we read the title, but it just doesn’t seem real until we’re in our theatre seats and a gaggle of mostly white actors are lounging around while itty-bitty humans (about waist height, although this varies) pour them wine and fan them with palm fronds. And this is before the story even begins; we’re still just establishing the setting!
Many viewers have complained that the cast of Gods of Egypt is too white. That’s a bit like complaining that the woolly mammoth that just crashed through your office wall has messy hair. Accurate, yes, but kind of overlooking the basic insanity of the situation.
THE BEST BIT:
Halfway through the film, Academy Award-winner Geoffrey Rush turns up, bald as a baby, playing the Sun God, Ra. He is driving the magical chariot that pulls the Sun across the sky every day.
That. Is. Gloriously. Stupid.
Jaw-droppingly, majestically idiotic. For me, it flipped a mental switch that turned the experience from cringe-worthy to sublime. “They’re…they’re really doing this aren’t they?” I gasped. “The weirdest parts of Egyptian mythology, the bits that NOBODY believes in any more; that’s the world we’re seeing right now.” The entire film suddenly improved in retrospect. All that nonsense at the beginning, with the gold blood, and with Horus getting his eyes stolen like they were a video game power-up? It all makes perfect sense in this nutty narrative. Geoffrey Rush is clutching a pair of leather straps, mushing his giant CGI contraption like a husky-drawn sled, because if he doesn’t, then there won’t be any daylight for anybody down on Earth.
Why be critical after that? 2016 may have had it’s fair share of stupid movies, but this movie is just slamming shots of Jaegerstupid in a clown bar, and telling the bartender to “keep ‘em coming, or the pants come off!”