21. John Cusack
Beyond the indie obscurity of roles in “Martian Child” and “Grace is Gone” in 2007, Cusack gave us a forgettable thriller with “1408.” How’s he doing in 2008? We’ll leave “Igor” aside for a second, since it’s an animated film, and look at “War, Inc,” a spiritual sequel of sorts to “Grosse Pointe Blank” that was more miss than hit. We appreciate satire as much as anybody, and some of “War, Inc.” was spot-on, but the rest was as awkward and obvious as that “The Cutting Edge” segment from “Bob Roberts.” We understand he’s angry, we all are, but he needs to try tempering the emotion in his writing.
Anti-Freeze: “Say Anything 2: Mission to Moscow.”
22. Abigail Breslin
Hey, little girl, what did we ever do to deserve icky-awful movies like “Definitely, Maybe,” “Nim’s Island” and “Kit Kittredge: An American Girl”? C’mon, go away and leave us alone.
Anti-Freeze: Get a cat fight going between her and Dakota Fanning. There can be only one!
23. Brendan Fraser
Another “Mummy” movie? “Journey to the Center of the Earth?” We tremble in anticipation of the next “Looney Tunes” installment.
Anti-Freeze: Far be it from us to give advice to the esteemed star of “Dudley Do-Right” and “George of the Jungle.”
24. Meryl Streep
Whatever happened to “Magic Meryl,” whose presence on-screen immediately guaranteed a classy flick with immediate Oscar pedigree? She managed to duck for cover in the ensemble casts to avoid taking blame for the wreckage of “Lion for Lambs” and “Rendition,” but she was front and center in the tone-deaf “Mamma Mia!” The sight and sound of a 59-year-old woman bouncing on a bed, jumping off a pier and destroying ABBA’s tunes with passionless caterwauling makes you wonder if she grew bored of chasing Oscars and decided to chase Razzies instead.
Anti-Freeze: “Sophie’s Choice: The Musical.”
25. Woody Allen
From the forgotten-but-not-gone department: having worn out his welcome on New York’s Upper East Side, Woody now churns out his enervated, misogynistic wet farts from the comfort of a European exile. This year saw the double play of “Cassandra’s Dream” (dumped in the January toss-away bin of unwanted flicks) and “Vicky Cristina Barcelona” (which seemed more like an excuse to make a movie in Spain rather than to make a good movie).
Anti-Freeze: It doesn’t matter — maybe 10 New York critics get orgasms for any new Woody movie, but no one who actually pays to see films is even aware he’s still out there.
26. Movie Awards
And the winner is… who cares? The kudzu-worthy proliferation of critics and industry trade awards has become so obnoxious that the concept of awarding excellence has been reduced to being utterly meaningless (if he ever had much meaning to begin with). Really, do you care who wins the Best Documentary Award from the Oklahoma Film Critics Circle or Best Adapted Screenplay from the Utah Film Critics Association? By the time the laborious Oscars show up, it is easy to be in the throes of “And the winner is” delirium tremors.
Anti-Freeze: Nix the awards – because the only thing that really matters to anyone anymore is the box office.
27. Harrison Ford
His return to Indiana Jones left little hope for any continuation in that beloved character’s franchise, so now we’re stuck hoping that his next flick isn’t as bad as the six he made over the last 10 years (“Firewall,” “Hollywood Homicide,” “K-19: The Widowmaker,” “What Lies Beneath,” “Random Hearts” and “Six Days Seven Nights”).
Anti-Freeze: Retire from acting. Sean Connery did it, and he’s a knight!
28. Julia Roberts
Jodie Foster used motherhood as a justification for turning her back on her acting career. Julia Roberts used it as an excuse. No actor’s disappearance from the big screen was met with more of a resounding “Meh” than Roberts, who stole the Best Actress Oscar from Juliette Binoche, Laura Linney, and Ellen Burstyn because she spent 75% of “Eric Brockovich” in a Wonderbra.
Anti-Freeze: Have some more kids. We, and Hollywood, can wait for your “return.”
29. Christina Ricci
She used to be an indie darling, but it’s been a long time since “Monster” came out in 2003, and instead we’ve got “Cursed,” “Black Snake Moan” and “Speed Racer.” That’s five years without saying anything kind about her ability to act.
Anti-Freeze: We’re sure Tim Burton’s got a part for her somewhere, just call him.
30. Keanu Reeves
Was 2003 really the last time he was on the list? How did we allow dreck like “The Matrix Revolutions,” “Constantine,” and “Street Kings” go by without getting honored on the Frigid 50? We may be losing our edge, but someone should let Ke-Ah-Noo know that not many actors can continue making action flicks on the bad side of 40.
Anti-Freeze: Six words: “Bill and Ted’s Prostate Cancer Scare.”
The list continues in part five of FILM THREAT’S FRIGID 50: THE COLDEST PEOPLE IN HOLLYWOOD 2008>>>