The 10 worst movies of 2018

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Most years, I come to the end of our 12 months to­gether in film­dom and end up pick­ing a small­ish, nearly flaw­less pic­ture for my No.1 slot. Then there’s a larger, more ex­pan­sive, more ob­vi­ously im­per­fect No. 2. This year, “The Rider,” #1; “Roma,” #2.” See?

“Worst” lists are dif­fer­ent. I don’t seem to veer in a par­tic­u­lar di­rec­tion for those, though noth­ing stings like a ter­ri­ble com­edy. Then again, at this point in the Mar­vel and DC su­per­hero cy­cles (three clicks past the rinse cy­cle, and one click the right of “enough al­ready”), there’s some­thing es­pe­cially grind­ing about a fran­chise prod­uct roll­out that holds next to noth­ing for you, per­son­ally. It’s all per­sonal, of course. Crit­i­cism is sub­jec­tiv­ity, not ob­jec­tiv­ity.

With this ex­cep­tion: These 10 films re­ally were the stinkin’ worst.

A lugubri­ous se­mes­ter spent in what Jen­nifer Lawrence’s Mata Hari knock­off de­scribes as “whore school.”

10. “Red Spar­row.”

Sleazi­est re­boot of the year. Vig­i­lante slaugh­ter as self-ac­tu­al­iza­tion ther­apy. Di­rec­tor Eli Roth is a moral id­iot.

9. “Death Wish.”

Joel Coen de­scribes a di­rec­tor’s job as “tone man­age­ment.” For the year’s worst ex­am­ple of tone mis­man­age­ment, try the Dwayne John­son/killer

8. “Ram­page.”

go­rilla movie, cute one minute, pun­ish­ing the next.

7. “The 15:17 to Paris.”

Clint East­wood couldn’t fig­ure out how to tell this true-life, good-news, an­titer­ror­ism story, but he went ahead and started film­ing any­way.

Even with a tal­ented, ver­sa­tile di­rec­tor (James Wan) at the helm, this one feels like be­ing trapped in a Wis­con­sin Dells wa­ter park for, like, a week.

6. “Aqua­man.” 5. “Avengers: In­fin­ity War.”

Two bil­lion dol­lars in the cof­fers can’t pos­si­bly in­di­cate a gran­ite slab of medi­ocrity, can it? Can it?

4. “Wel­come to Mar­wen.”

See the doc­u­men­tary on Mark Ho­gan­camp’s life and work some­time; the Hol­ly­wood ver­sion, di­rected by Robert Ze­meckis and star­ring Steve Carell, turns ev­ery­thing to creepy sen­ti­men­tal­ity.

3. “Death of a Na­tion.”

Di­nesh D’Souza’s Trump in­fomer­cial equates the pres­i­dent’s ac­com­plish­ments with those of Abra­ham Lin­coln’s. No more need be said at this time.

From the cre­ator of “This is Us” comes the most re­sen-

2. “Life It­self.”

ta­ble ro­man­tic weepie of the year.

1. “The Hap­py­time Mur­ders.”

Bru­tally un­funny re­venge on the Mup­pets, star­ring Melissa McCarthy, who also led one of the year’s best films, “Can You Ever For­give Me?” Which proves the ax­iom: Ev­ery­thing truly wrong with a movie goes wrong long be­fore the ac­tors are called to the set.

“Aqua­man.” fea­tures Ja­son Mo­moa and Am­ber Heard.

Siob­han Wil­liams and Steve Carell star in “Wel­come to Mar­wen.”

Leslie David Baker, from left, Dorien Davies and Joel McHale star in “The Hap­py­time Mur­ders.”

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