Top Five… Peter Bradshaw one-star reviews

Fresh from OUR INTERVIEW with film critic Peter Bradshaw, we list The Guardian writer’s best ever reviews of the worst ever movies he’s seen. Fans of Pierce Brosnan, look away now…

Reading reviews about great films can be pretty dull. Mainly because the reviewer simply goes on about how great the film is. Reading reviews about films that are total codswallop is another matter. When a reviewer sinks his teeth into a crummy movie, it often becomes personal. And that is when it becomes good.

For our money, the king of the negative written review is currently The Guardian’s Peter Bradshaw. There are very few who can touch him when he rips into a bad movie. And if it also happens to star Sandra Bullock or Matthew McConaughey then you might want to take a step back from your computer screen/newspaper. But Bradshaw doesn’t just point out that a film’s bad – anyone can do that. What he does is make the review entertaining to read. If that means singing the movie’s title track, shouting a superhero’s lame catchphrase or adding a vowel to the end of every second word in his reviews, then so be it. His one-star verdicts have become so notorious, fans have even set up a Facebook group devoted to them. Here, in my humble opinion, are his best five.

5. Fool’s Gold

'Weren't you in Dazed And Confused? What happened to you?'

Tracy and Hepburn. Bogart and Bacall. Taylor and Burton. What movie duo did the last decade throw up? McConaughey and Hudson. And the words ‘throw up’ were not used by accident. Because that is precisely what you will want to do if you ever have the misfortune of enduring even two minutes of Fool’s Gold, a documentary in which two very well-paid actors compare their abdominals. It was too much for Mr Bradshaw, who, in a short but punchy review, compared one of them to a fish and said the other’s career was proof God does not exist. Ouch.

To read the Fool’s Gold review, click HERE

4. My Sister’s Keeper

'I need your clothes, boots and your bandana...'

Bradshaw’s review of cloying dripfest My Sister’s Keeper begins in fairly entertaining fashion. He gets a few laughs out of Cameron Diaz’s hair-growing power and throws in a nice nod to Ryanair. It’s a pretty solidly written review but there is nothing in it that is out of the ordinary… until… he compares Little Miss Sunshine herself, Abigail Breslin, to a Terminator robot. Scratch that – he doesn’t compare her to a cyborg sent back from the future to kill people – he reveals that she is a hunk of metal with murderous intent. Serves her right for appearing in Raising Helen with Kate Hudson.

To read the review for My Sister’s Keeper, click HERE

3. RocknRolla

Gerard gets the call from his agent to do PS I Love You 2

Poor Guy Ritchie always takes a hammering from the critics, but no one hammered him like Bradshaw. Plainly tired of listening to Ritchie’s caricatures talking in lame mockneyspeak for an hour and a half, Bradshaw pointed out how annoying it is by using it himself. It’s hard to tell if the sub-editors at The Guardian added in a few extra ‘a’s to beef it up, but the point is well made. Worth inclusion in this rundown just for including the phrase: ‘many a bourgwa meeja wanka who thinks he’s a West Ham supporta after a night on the powda’. Nice reference to ‘Madonner’, too.

To read the RocknRolla review, click HERE

2. Mamma Mia

Meryl was ecstatic when Pierce suggested recording a duets album

This is where Bradshaw really earns his spurs. When was the last time a writer burst into song in a movie review? (Uh, HERE, perhaps?) Okay, when was the last time a movie reviewer burst into song and it was actually entertaining? Don’t remember Roger Ebert doing that. Thankfully, the review doesn’t wane once the singing stops, as Bradshaw points out the flaws in the film’s time narrative and comes up with a hilarious idea to incorporate the Abba song Fernando into the sequel.

Read the Mamma Mia review HERE

1. The Incredible Hulk

'HULK! C***! Uh, sorry.. I mean: HULK! SMASH!'

Singing in a review is one thing. Pretending you’re a superhero for one is quite another. If only all film critics had the balls to do this. This is quite a divisive review – many people think it’s just silly and juvenile – but every time I read it I find something different and funny in it. The fact that I quite liked The Incredible Hulk (before it turned to mush in the last hour, of course) just makes me enjoy this review all the more. Not only is it laugh-out-loud entertaining, but it asks some of the most important questions of the 21st century. Does Hulk look like Gordon Brown? Do you have to be American to be in the US army? And if he’s so angry, why doesn’t Hulk ever swear?

Read the review for The Incredible Hulk HERE


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7 Responses to “Top Five… Peter Bradshaw one-star reviews”

  1. Paul the Ball Says:

    I would be impressed if Bradshaw took all five of these movies and then made a song about them all
    until he does that, he doesnt impress me much
    as Shania Twain might say.

  2. Another one-star classic in today’s Guardian –

    I saw the trailer and wanted to bleach my brain.

  3. Love that Hulk review.

  4. Readong those reviews of Mamma Mia and My Sisters Keeper made me feel so muc more justified in my own rants. They really are terrible terrible travesties.

  5. […] reviews in any medium tend to be the negative ones: a Facebook group was set up to celebrate Peter Bradshaw’s 1-star film reviews in the Guardian. However, literature people seem capable of more withering disdain than most and, […]

  6. You forgot Peter’s review of Eat, Pray, Love. Hands-down best worst film review ever:

  7. Hahahaha, gold.
    Nobody slams em like Bradshaw

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