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part of a small rebellion | by maryann johanson

question of the day: What movie has made you say, ‘Hell, no, I won’t go’?

Today’s QOTD comes from reader John, who asks:

Has there ever been a movie (not including pornographic movies!) that you either saw a trailer for or read a summary of and just said, “Oh, HELL no. There is no way I’m watching this, not even for free. Not even if I’m paid to watch it. No, just NO.” If so, what was the movie?

Pretty straightforward: What movie has made you say, ‘Hell, no, I won’t go’?

I pretty much said that about The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard, but then I promised one of my newspaper editors I’d see it for him. But then again, I don’t expect this will be the worst movie I’ve ever seen.

(If you have a suggestion for a QOTD, feel free to email me. Responses to this QOTD sent by email will be ignored; please post your responses here.)

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  • Juliet1555

    Twilight/New Moon. Not for free, not if you paid me, not if you got wild horses to drag me there. Vampires don’t sparkle and I can get misogyny and morals forced down my throat from society at large anyway so why should I go and see that in a movie?

  • Tim1974

    “Bruno” What a piece of garbage ! I have absolutely no interest in seeing the an idiot ridicule people and groups of people while duping so many into thinking he is making some kind of important statement. I also have no interest in seeing a film that continues to exploit male genitals only which borders on pornographic.

  • Guy Ritchie’s Sherlock Holmes.

    I mean, what could be worse? Stephen Sommers’ Doctor Who, perhaps?

  • Paul

    I don’t go to movies that remind me too much of the reality that I am going to movies to forget about, or if the writer’s idea of witty banter foreplay is just trading insults with a smug smile.

  • allochthon

    Most comedy, TV and film, falls into this category for me. Most of it seems to be humor by humiliation, bathroom humor and misogyny. Maybe time to go watch L.A. Story again…

  • MaSch

    The trailer for “Hangover” did that to me.

    Tim: Why am I not surprised?

  • Brian

    Oh, I’d probably be willing to endure a lot if someone paid me to watch a movie. Today’s movie news, though, has provided a perfect answer: Bryan Singer may be on board for a big-screen Battlestar Galactica that probably won’t have anything to do with Ron Moore’s Peabody-award winning series that just wrapped up on Sci . . . erm, *snigger*, “SyFy.”

    Sorry, I’ll be staying home, Bryan. Even if you bring back the floaty CG head of Lorne Greene like you did for Brando in Superman Returns.

  • Deanne

    The Passion of the Christ. Have not seen it. Will not see it. Ever.

  • Just saw a preview for this yesterday before I watched (the amazing) Funny People. It’s called All About Steve and it looks fucking terrible. MaryAnn (and any other thinking human), you are going to pop a gasket when you see this trailer.


  • Tim1974 (Thu Aug 13 09, 9:22AM):

    I also have no interest in seeing a film that continues to exploit male genitals only which borders on pornographic.

    Please clarify: are you okay with female genital exploitation bordering on the pornographic?

  • Althea

    Anything with Albert Brooks, anything with Mike Myers, almost anything with Ben Stiller, and many things with Adam Sandler.

    Ditto “Passion of the Christ.” The worst piece of propaganda ever put on film.

  • Bluejay

    Have you ever been surprised by a movie to which you’d said, “Hell, no”–but somehow wound up watching it, and found your preconceptions completely wrong?

    Of course our time is limited, and we do need to pick and choose based on trailers and reviews and such; but maybe once in a while a film you were sure you’d hate turned out to be a pleasant surprise?

  • bracyman

    While it may be sideline to the intention here, I’m getting a little tired of watching barbie movies. I try to say hell no, but I somehow get talked into watching yet another movie about fairies swimming with mermaids (?) every time. Five-year-olds should not be this cunning and manipulating.

    But in other movies, mostly anything along the lines of “The Wedding ______” gets a pan from me.

  • JoshB

    Any movie that features a rape scene automatically has two strikes against it. Any obvious rapesploitation film like “Last House on Left” is a definite no.

    Hostelesque torture porn.

    Spoof movies ala “Date Movie” and “Meet the Spartans.”

  • bracyman

    Oh yeah, and any of the “spoof” movies. Though Cracked already nailed that one for me.


  • Hanna Montana the movie, First off I can only take so much Billy Ray Cyrus in my life and I hit the limit in 1994. Second that irritating song “The Clinb” and the utter hypcracy of a girl singing a song about struggle, trials and tribulations when she has had everything handed to her on a silver platter. That and I hate Hanna Montana in genral too.

    OK enough venom spewing LOL.

  • Pollas

    Several. Speed Racer, Twilight/New Moon to name a few recent ones.

  • Jennie

    Hostel or movie with Grindhouse in the title or subtitle.

  • Cate

    Almost every Ben Stiller movie EVER. Tropic Thunder being a grand exception.

  • LaSargenta

    After foolishly going to see Watchmen in a fit of wanting escapism and just getting annoyed, I’d say anything by Zack Snyder.

    I recall my mother and I seeing the trailer for Romantic Comedy and turning to each other in the theater with disgust on both of our faces and she saying “THAT looks eminently missable!”

    I heard her voice out of the past when I saw the trailer for Autumn in New York — Gere as a letch and Winona Ryder as the terminally ill object of his desire.

  • MBI

    I love movies, even the ones I hate, and I’m usually up for seeing anything. The only ones that I have no interest in seeing are the ones that can only sell me stuff I’ve already seen, like your average romcom or kid’s movie. If it’s a bad movie, I’ll hate it but I’ll still watch it; I’m only averse to BORING movies.

  • Ryan

    Any flick featuring animated animals trying to act overly hip, e.g. Beverly Hills Chihuahua or G-Force. The previews for these are always face-in-palm bad and make me groan every time I see them.

    Pixar and Dreamworks flicks are the exceptions to this rule.

  • markyd

    Honestly, MOST movies make me think this this. Especially terrible looking kids movies like that g-force , or the upcoming one with the rainbow rock thing. The previews are SO bad, I don’t get how anyone would want to go.
    Eddie Murphy, Martin, Will Ferrel, Adam Sandler, anything with dancing, spoof movies, overblown action movies, rom coms, teen dramedies, etc etc etc.
    Yeah, pretty much everything.
    D-9 looks awesome, though!

  • Jan Willem

    Due to my family background I have an incurable aversion to movies that present unrepentant alcoholics as somehow sympathetic. No “Leaving Las Vegas” for me. (Also helps to avoid Nicholas Cage.) Ditto for soppy WWII movies like “La vita è bella” and “The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas”. I proudly cling to my prejudice.

  • Anne-Kari

    Every torture-porn movie such as: Hostel, Saw.

    Every so-called Romantic Comedy such as: The Ugly Truth, Bride Wars, Knocked Up.

    Every trailer I saw for these movies makes me cringe.

  • Brian

    @Anne-Kari: Would you go see a movie in which the vapid protagonists of crappy rom-coms are subjected to Saw-like torture?

  • Jester

    In any given six movie trailers attached to the front of a film, at least one prompts this reaction from me. The most recent was the trailer for the upcoming “new” Final Destination movie.

  • Victor Plenty

    As for Watchmen, I was fortunate enough to have read MaryAnn’s review, so I knew that particular movie wasn’t going to offer much escapism. Instead I was able to appreciate its thought-provoking nature.

    There are some movies that look too unpleasant to endure, no matter how thought-provoking they might be. For me, these have included:

    Natural Born Killers
    Pulp Fiction
    Fight Club
    The Passion of the Christ
    anything in the Saw or Hostel franchises

  • LaSargenta

    @ Victor Plenty: No, no it wasn’t that it was thought-provoking (and, frankly, I thought it was much less so than the written stories) instead of bubble gum that annoyed me. For me, escapism means getting transported out of my world and my problems and if I am watching something that isn’t engaging then it doesn’t transport me. The movie was good enough, though not great, for that. The problem was in the editing and with the camera direction or whatever it is properly called. I wanted to slap the DP and the editor. The number and speed of cuts made me itch and I found it incredibly distracting. I don’t need to have a 25 minute plano sequencia, but I do like something over 1.2 seconds at a time.

  • bracyman

    Does this include movies that are good for non-watching purposes? Final Destination for example, made an excellent MST3K night, and its sequel was a fine drinking game (though only the Irish should play with anything more than beer). And my gun nut of a friend said the copies of Batman and Robin are cheaper than target papers, and immensely satisfying when you shoot out the Bat-Nipples.

  • mortadella

    Two words: “Zombie Strippers.”

  • Anne-Kari

    @brian: oooooh, now you’re talking! Though maybe it could be vapid writers of the RomComs being tortured by Saw-like torture?

  • D

    Anything that involves torture porn.

    Tim1974: Sight… You know,sometimes a penis is just a penis…

  • Fett101

    LaSargenta (Thu Aug 13 09, 12:53PM)

    After foolishly going to see Watchmen in a fit of wanting escapism and just getting annoyed, I’d say anything by Zack Snyder.

    Dunno why that’s Zack Snyders fault. He was very faithful to the source. Why not ban all Alan Moore based movies instead?

    Romantic comedies. Never seen one. Never going to.

  • Dart

    I have a big problem with the current state of horror movies. I’ll never see the following:
    – Final Destination 4 (how many clever ways can they kill off people?)
    – Saw…err…25? (how many clever ways can they get people to mutilate others and themselves? It’s beginning to seem like a reality show to me)
    – Friday the 13th [remake] (and I watched every one of these stupid fucking useless films in a marathon)
    – Halloween [remake] (the first was good enough)
    – The Texas Chainsaw Massacre [remake] (louder chainsaws! more gore! brrrroooom!)
    – The Hills Have Eyes [remake] (although I love LOST’s Emilie De Ravin)
    – and any of the damn ghost stories where the children look all spacey and weird and say shit like “they’re coming for you, mommy.” Cause there’s nothing scarier in life than that right?

    I’ll move to Hollywood and make my own horror movie, Sam Raimi-style.

  • Mimi

    Any sort of torture porn flick. If I see a hideous visual image, I cannot stop replaying it in my mind, imagining it happening to a loved one or to me, imagining the repercussions, etc. I go to great lengths to avoid adding new images to the collection already under suppression in the dark corners of my brain. The real world has enough horrors to offer — I have a hard time even coming up with the amount of money you would have to pay me to sit through one of those films and endure the wretched aftermath for literally years. (Saw “Se7en” in 1996 and STILL it pops up in my brain, unbidden, especially the horrific parts–though I would not classify “Se7en” as torture porn, quite.)

    And anything with Mel Gibson. I just think he’s rotten and hate pretty much everything he stands for. I want to slap his smarmy face whenever I see it. Hell on, I won’t go.

  • lunarangel01

    What movies will I NOT see… There are too many answers to this question.

    Any Eurotrip/Road Trip/college guys just out to get sex/drunk frat boy type movie. I was once forced to watch Eurotrip. I was drunk at the time, but being drunk didn’t make it any funnier.

    You know that movie in Funny People that they talked about- the one about the 40 year old head on the baby’s body? Yeah, anything like that (and we ALL know that there are comedies like that out there). I’m looking at you Eddie Murphy, Will Ferrell, and Adam Sandler.

    I’ll agree with pretty much everyone here on torture porn. For some reason I liked the first Saw, but after that have refused to watch anything out of the genre. When I was a teenager I used to watch horror movies to laugh at them. They were so campy and/or unrealistic that they were entertaining to watch. That’s why I don’t mind movies like Grindhouse so much. It’s fairly unrealistic even with buckets of blood. Hostel, the vast majority of the Saw movies, and others of their kind really just make me cringe to watch them.

  • MaSch

    Hmm, Rom-Com-writers get torture-porned? Sounds like a cool idea.

    So, here we go: During the promotion to his new great rom-come “I love you, bitch!” writers John Bloke Miss O. Gynist get kidnapped by a bunch of feminist film critics. They are tied to a chair and is read the complete S.C.U.M. manifesto as well as the collected works by Andrea Dworkin. Bloke dies from the treatment. Gynist finds in herself the strength to escape and the strength to stop making such movies.

    Just to be clear: Yeah, I would root for the feminists here.

  • Sandy

    All the comments seem directed towards aversions to what people regard as bad films. I have an aversion towards a certain scenario which will keep me from watching even a good movie: the death of a child.

    Before I had a kid that subject matter wouldn’t have even make me blink. But now I have a small child and my imagination projects too much and I simply can’t handle watching a child die, even if it’s offscreen. Heck, I can’t handle seeing a child in danger. I have 0 desire to see “The Road”, and I will never ever watch “The Mist”. I was enjoying the cheese of “Planet Terror” but my enjoyment went to Hell during a certain scene (played for a laugh!)

    Maybe I’ll be able to deal with it when my Precious Snowflake is 17 and the police have given him a ride home and he’s stinking drunk, but we’ll see.

  • Victor Plenty

    Sandy, most of the movies listed in my comment I would accept as well made in every technical sense, and not “bad” movies at all. Certainly Fight Club and Pulp Fiction, probably the first Saw, and even The Passion of the Christ was made to a certain standard of excellence.

    But I learned from Se7en, an extremely well made movie that I still wish I could unsee. Sometimes the highest technical excellence in every aspect of the filmmaking arts, from the first stroke of the screenwriter’s pen to the last nuance of the actors’ performances, is not enough to make a movie worth enduring.

    Also, I always hate any scene in movies or television that places any child in serious danger. Perhaps not quite as much as you do, but it still bothers me a lot. Even though I have no kids of my own, and no particular reason to believe I ever will.

  • Kate

    A Buffy movie without Joss Whedon involved, as has been rumored.

    And any Eddie Murphy movie that attempts to be funny about how horrifying it is to have a woman who is a)heavy-set, b) over 35, or c) both, express her sexuality.

    So: any Eddie Murphy movie.

  • AJ

    Any movie with Nicholas Cage. He is just too smarmy. Refused to go to Knowing. I won’t waste 5 to 8 bucks to see him on the big screen.

  • Bill

    I agree with Kate. No Eddie Murphy. And no Martin Lawrence.

  • Maura

    Any children’s movie that makes it clear that everybody involved with the conception, writing, production, and promotion has absolutely no respect for children at all. Most recently, “G-Force.” (As a polar opposite to this point of view, “Ponyo.” I don’t care for Miyazaki on the whole, but when he makes a movie aimed at children, he starts with the assumption that kids are smart enough to get what he’s saying.)

    And as others have said, any and all torture-porn. If the trailer is mostly gray and full of jump cuts and sepulchral voice-overs and that annoying TV-static effect, forget it.

  • Paul

    It was asked if there were movies one almost didn’t see because the trailer misrepresented it. My stock answer to that is “Fight Club.” The trailer made it look as if it was only about fighting.

  • KLW

    To Victor Pleny: I couldn’t agree more with every word you wrote about Se7en.

    There are so many movies that fall into this category I hardly know where to begin. I find myself with that reaction to almost every ‘black comedy’ [Nutty Professor and that ilk that present black people in the most disgraceful manner and yet the black community raises any objections until a white guy uses the work nigger]. Almost every comedy that might be categorized as ‘college-aged kids drinking a lot and scheming to lose their virginity/have sex/make a pile of money.’ You know what I’m talking about though specific titles I blessedly cannot bring to mind at the moment.

  • KLW

    Correcting my previous post: …and yet the black community never raises any objections until a white guy uses the work nigger].

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