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Movie Jail: This week's defendant is...Renny Harlin!

1 year agoby:

Movie Jail

This is Movie Jail, a unique maximum security prison that houses some of the worst writers, directors, actors and producers from Hollywood and beyond. Their crimes? The offenses vary from convict to convict but most of these inmates have contributed negatively to the film world to some capacity and his or her misdeeds have covered a long enough period of time that the authorities had to intervene. In each column a defendant is put on trial, arguments are made, and then it is up to YOU, the jury, to decide if the person is guilty or not guilty of crimes against cinema. Their lives are in your hands, dude.

The Defendant

The Case

The Prosecution: The Legend of Hercules, 5 Days of War, 12 Rounds, Cleaner, The Covenant, Exorcist: The Beginning, Mindhunters, Driven, Cutthroat Island

Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, this should be an open-and-shut case. Director Renny Harlin has been polluting cinemas with his films (when they do actually make it into theaters) for decades now, and it's time to make him pay for his crimes. Mr. Harlin is responsible for one of the biggest box office flops of all time, has recently been working on shitty direct to DVD films, and his last movie is so terrible, it makes Uwe Boll's films look like masterpieces.

Mr. Harlin's career was doing just fine until Cutthroat Island was released. The film bankrupted an entire production company, and was an absolute disaster. If you've never seen the Geena Davis movie, you're a lucky bastard, because it is the definition of terrible. Although Cutthroat Island was a huge bomb and an awful movie, Mr. Harlin followed it up with two decent films with The Long Kiss Goodnight and Deep Blue Sea, so it's not like he was banished from Hollywood for his previous failure.

But maybe he should have been because since then, Mr. Harlin hasn't worked on anything remotely good. Driven was boring with awful race scenes, and Mindhunters is just an ugly mess. Mr. Harlin was also brought in to "fix" Paul Schrader's Exorcist movie, however Mr. Harlin's version is definitely the worse of the two. The Covenant might have its fans, but the prosecution has to wonder if those people were on hard drugs when they watched it if they truly believe that movie is any good.

How is it possible Mr. Harlin is still getting job offers? Granted your career as a director can't be going that well if one of your last jobs was for a movie that stars John Cena, but seriously, why is this man still working in film? Maybe The Legend of Hercules will be the final nail in the coffin for Mr. Harlin's career, but the prosecution isn't going to take any chances. Send his ass to Movie Jail folks, he deserves it.

The Defense: Devil's Pass, Deep Blue Sea, The Long Kiss Goodnight, Cliffhanger, Die Hard 2, A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master, The Adventures of Ford Fairlane, Prison

Ladies and gentlemen, there's no point in defending some of Mr. Harlin's movies. Everyone knows about Cutthroat Island, and yes, some of his other films have been less than stellar. But he's done some great work in the past, and the defense believes he's still capable of delivering a good movie.

Mr. Harlin may have helmed a huge critical and financial failure with Cutthroat Island, however most of his early movies were profitable, and fans loved them. Many (including Robert Englund) consider A Nightmare on Elm Steet 4: The Dream Master to be one of the best entries in the horror series, and although not as good as the first and third films, Die Hard 2 is still pretty awesome. Cliffhanger is an excellent 90s action thriller, and even though it didn't perform that well in theaters, The Long Kiss Goodnight is a very solid movie. Mr. Harlin's The Adventures of Ford Fairlane isn't the best comedy ever and most critics didn't care for it when it was released, however the defense still thinks it's a very funny and ridiculous movie.

But these movies are all at least fourteen years old, so the jury is probably thinking to themselves, "What has Mr. Harlin done for me lately?" To be honest, his recent films haven't been great, but Devil's Pass is a decent horror movie. It has flaws, but the defense still thinks it's one of the better found footage films. More than anything though, Devil's Pass is proof that Mr. Harlin can still direct a good movie. Maybe not great or amazing, but still enjoyable. Mr. Harlin has also done some fine work in television recently, directing episodes of Graceland, White Collar, and Burn Notice. Maybe he should stick to television since he hasn't done that well with movies as of late, but the defense definitely doesn't think he should be sent to Movie Jail.

IN CLOSING...

Should Mr. Harlin be tossed in a jail cell with the likes of Brett Ratner and Rob Cohen, or should he walk? Does the jury have any confidence in Mr. Harlin behind a camera, or is he finished as a director? Is Renny Harlin GUILTY or NOT GUILTY?

COMMENT BELOW WITH YOUR VERDICT!

*The cases for and against a defendant going to Movie Jail by the author are not necessarily his views and opinions but they are some of the beliefs that one would use to effectively make an argument for both sides. Not quite a devil's advocate but you get the point. Anyways, this is all in fun so don't take it too seriously. We have a separate jail for those people called "Troll Tower" and believe me you do NOT want to go there.

WHAT SAY YOU, GUILTY OR NOT?

LAST WEEK'S VERDICT

Are you guys getting soft or something? Jennifer Garner was found NOT GUILTY of all charges in last week's trial. The jury agreed with the prosecution that most of Jennifer Garner's films have been terrible, but said they still like the actress, and thought she was awesome on television's Alias. The jury also said they think the actress is quite likable and very cute, and those qualities definitely helped Miss Garner more than her filmography.

PREVIOUS VERDICTS

GUILTY Adam Sandler, Eddie Murphy, Vince Vaughn, Tim Burton, The Farrelly Brothers, Michael Bay, Jessica Alba, Ice Cube, Gerard Butler, Halle Berry, Marlon Wayans, Julia Roberts, M. Night Shyamalan , Katherine Heigl , Cuba Gooding, Jr. , Tyler Perry, Cameron Diaz, Kate Hudson, Ashton Kutcher, Happy Madison Productions, Jennifer Lopez, Bruce Willis, Paul W.S. Anderson, Matthew Broderick, Sarah Jessica Parker, Brett Ratner, Rob Cohen, Renee Zellweger, Shia LaBeouf

NOT GUILTY Robert De Niro, Val Kilmer, Nic Cage, John Travolta, Oliver Stone, Ben Stiller, Jim Carrey, Wes Craven, Matthew McConaughey, Robert Rodriguez, Kristen Stewart, Roland Emmerich, Kevin Costner, Sandra Bullock, Hilary Swank, Al Pacino, Keanu Reeves, Kevin Smith, Channing Tatum, Jennifer Aniston, Owen Wilson, Anna Faris, Robin Williams, Charlize Theron, Ray Liotta, Jason Statham, Paul Walker, Will Smith, Salma Hayek, Michael Cera, Johnny Depp, Ryan Reynolds, Milla Jovovich, John Singleton, Jon Voight, Jack Black, Brian De Palma, Jerry Bruckheimer, Nicole Kidman, Justin Timberlake, Freddy Krueger (Halloween Special), Johnny Knoxville, Orlando Bloom, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Dan Aykroyd, Sylvester Stallone, Gavin Hood, Jason Lee, Jennifer Garner

Extra Tidbit: Who should stand trial next week? Share your suggestions for actors, directors and writers below with your verdict!
Source: JoBlo.com

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1:04PM on 02/03/2014

Grudgingly guilty

I liked Cleaner and Cutthroat Island!!!!! But even I have to admit it's been more than a decade since his last film that wasn't shit.
I liked Cleaner and Cutthroat Island!!!!! But even I have to admit it's been more than a decade since his last film that wasn't shit.
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+0
4:46PM on 01/28/2014

Guilty

If Geena Davis had married a better director, she would still be a movie star.
If Geena Davis had married a better director, she would still be a movie star.
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10:42PM on 01/27/2014

Guilty

My love for Cliffhanger and Die Hard 2 cannot outweigh the fact he is guilty. The trailer for Hercules would look bad for a film from a first time director, but Harlin has been in the biz for a long time.
My love for Cliffhanger and Die Hard 2 cannot outweigh the fact he is guilty. The trailer for Hercules would look bad for a film from a first time director, but Harlin has been in the biz for a long time.
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+2
8:11PM on 01/27/2014

Not Guilty...ish?

I think that Die Hard 2 is the most underrated film in the franchise. It might be my favorite to watch during Christmas, yes, even above the original. NOES 4 is also a new look on Freddy Krueger and after seeing Never Sleep Again I see a lot of creativity in that movie, especially in the dream sequences. Cliffhanger and Long Kiss are also very entertaining films.

However, he does have a problem with translating his talents into "modern cinema". He did great with R-rated action films, with
I think that Die Hard 2 is the most underrated film in the franchise. It might be my favorite to watch during Christmas, yes, even above the original. NOES 4 is also a new look on Freddy Krueger and after seeing Never Sleep Again I see a lot of creativity in that movie, especially in the dream sequences. Cliffhanger and Long Kiss are also very entertaining films.

However, he does have a problem with translating his talents into "modern cinema". He did great with R-rated action films, with brutal action, gun fights, but sadly these are the movies of the past, and his recent films are just bland, unoriginal, and I wouldn't been able to tell that Renny Harlin has made them, by looking at them. I think he is guilty, but I'll give him a pass for all the movies he did well in the past
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6:50PM on 01/27/2014

Guilty

While some of his earlier works do stand the test of time, and some I just have fun with- 'A Long Kiss Goodnight' and 'Mindhunters' aren't perfect, but I think they both offer fun action beats and have a nice visual flair. While we are on it, 'Die Hard 2' is vastly superior to the third (I don't get the love for that movie. Not terrible, but seriously flawed).

Unfortunately, it seems the majority of his films, especially recently have shown that he's either gotten lazy or has run out of
While some of his earlier works do stand the test of time, and some I just have fun with- 'A Long Kiss Goodnight' and 'Mindhunters' aren't perfect, but I think they both offer fun action beats and have a nice visual flair. While we are on it, 'Die Hard 2' is vastly superior to the third (I don't get the love for that movie. Not terrible, but seriously flawed).

Unfortunately, it seems the majority of his films, especially recently have shown that he's either gotten lazy or has run out of steam. He might still be a decent stylist, visually speaking, but he has lost the touch of fun and spectacle that made his good/ great works that way.
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-1
5:22PM on 01/27/2014

Guilty

I liked Cliffhanger... But hot damn, Deep Blue Sea was one of the utterly worst movies ever made. I wouldn't say Harlin is AS guilty as Ratner, but he's still guilty.
I liked Cliffhanger... But hot damn, Deep Blue Sea was one of the utterly worst movies ever made. I wouldn't say Harlin is AS guilty as Ratner, but he's still guilty.
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4:04PM on 01/27/2014

Guilty

Not only has he not made a decent movie since Deep Blue Sea, but he hardly as any to begin with. DBS, Die Hard 2, Cliffhanger, and Long Kiss Goodnight. That's it.
Not only has he not made a decent movie since Deep Blue Sea, but he hardly as any to begin with. DBS, Die Hard 2, Cliffhanger, and Long Kiss Goodnight. That's it.
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2:32PM on 01/27/2014

Guilty

The Long Kiss Goodnight and Cliffhanger are fun action flicks but this guys been done creatively for years.
The Long Kiss Goodnight and Cliffhanger are fun action flicks but this guys been done creatively for years.
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1:56PM on 01/27/2014

Tough call, but not guilty

mainly because of Die Hard 2 and Cliffhanger! If they made action movies like cliffhanger today I'd be a happy man.

Vits you are nuts for thinking Die Hard 2 is 4th worst, I'd argue it's the best in the series!
mainly because of Die Hard 2 and Cliffhanger! If they made action movies like cliffhanger today I'd be a happy man.

Vits you are nuts for thinking Die Hard 2 is 4th worst, I'd argue it's the best in the series!
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2:08PM on 01/27/2014
"I'd argue it's the best in the series!" Better than the 1st one? Now you're nuts.
"I'd argue it's the best in the series!" Better than the 1st one? Now you're nuts.
-10
1:07PM on 01/27/2014

"DIE HARD 2" IN THE DEFENSE?!

It's the 2nd worst after the 5th one! Everyone complains about the 5th one ruining the franchise by changing too many things (some say that about the 4th one). But the truth is that none of the sequels have the elements that made DIE HARD a classic, mainly a minimalistic approach. And it all started with the 2nd one. Meanwhile, THE BEGINNING is the only EXORCIST sequel that isn't in my All-Time Worst list (but it's still pretty bad).

I'm going off-track. He's Guilty. I barely remember
It's the 2nd worst after the 5th one! Everyone complains about the 5th one ruining the franchise by changing too many things (some say that about the 4th one). But the truth is that none of the sequels have the elements that made DIE HARD a classic, mainly a minimalistic approach. And it all started with the 2nd one. Meanwhile, THE BEGINNING is the only EXORCIST sequel that isn't in my All-Time Worst list (but it's still pretty bad).

I'm going off-track. He's Guilty. I barely remember MINDHUNTERS and ELM STREET 4. I was about to watch FORD FAIRLANE as a Razzie winners marathon, but the trailer told me everything I needed to know. In the end, he doesn't have much going as a filmmaker. Not every director needs a very perticular visual style or trademarks, but this one doesn't stand out at all. Everytime he's made a good movie (according to critics, even his best are just decent) it was most likely luck.

Next week: Kate Beckinsale, Diane Keaton, Robert Luketic, Andrew Niccol, Ridley Scott, David Spade, Sigourney Weaver, or, current Razzie nominee Dennis Dugan.
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12:03PM on 01/27/2014

Not Guilty

Cliffhanger and Die Hard 2. Enough said. And more recently 12 Rounds wasn't a bad film at all.
Cliffhanger and Die Hard 2. Enough said. And more recently 12 Rounds wasn't a bad film at all.
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11:34AM on 01/27/2014

Guilty

I'd argue the man is already in some sort of movie hell if he can't even get attached to something promising (I'm sure he thought 5 Days of War was going to help demonstrate depth that maybe just wasn't there). The Long Kiss Goodnight feels like what he and Geena Davis were trying to do with Cutthroat Island, but it also had a script by Shane Black, and Samuel L. Jackson talking about fucked up repugnant shit. He's proven to be a competent action director, but I'm not sure if he's much more
I'd argue the man is already in some sort of movie hell if he can't even get attached to something promising (I'm sure he thought 5 Days of War was going to help demonstrate depth that maybe just wasn't there). The Long Kiss Goodnight feels like what he and Geena Davis were trying to do with Cutthroat Island, but it also had a script by Shane Black, and Samuel L. Jackson talking about fucked up repugnant shit. He's proven to be a competent action director, but I'm not sure if he's much more than that. And Deep Blue Sea works more as a guilty pleasure than as an actually good movie.
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10:37AM on 01/27/2014
GUILTY.

This guy went to shit after The Covenant.
GUILTY.

This guy went to shit after The Covenant.
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10:18AM on 01/27/2014

GUILTY

Hasn't done anything good since Cliffhanger, the 90's were the only time he had any chance of a career.
Hasn't done anything good since Cliffhanger, the 90's were the only time he had any chance of a career.
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10:09AM on 01/27/2014
Guilty. I'd say his only decent movies were Die Hard 2, Cliffhanger, and The Long Kiss Goodnight. But he has failed to mature as a filmmaker beyond the 90's.
Guilty. I'd say his only decent movies were Die Hard 2, Cliffhanger, and The Long Kiss Goodnight. But he has failed to mature as a filmmaker beyond the 90's.
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9:51AM on 01/27/2014

Not guilty during the 80's and 90's but guilty today...

This is a tough call for me as the man has done some spectacular action films back in his better days but man the last 10+ years have been brutal. Also I LOVE Cutthroat Island! :)
This is a tough call for me as the man has done some spectacular action films back in his better days but man the last 10+ years have been brutal. Also I LOVE Cutthroat Island! :)
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10:58AM on 01/27/2014
You can't do that. He's either Guilty or Not Guilty.
You can't do that. He's either Guilty or Not Guilty.
2:51PM on 01/27/2014
Then I can't decide.
Then I can't decide.
9:43AM on 01/27/2014

Guilty

Why are people bringing up old movies as cases for him? This is about what he has done as of late, and Renny Harlin has made some awful movies. The Covenant? The Legend of Hercules? Exorcist: The Beginning? 12 Rounds? Cleaner? 5 Days of War? How do you excuse these movies because of a couple of good movies in the 90s? He even failed in the 90s, with the huge box office flop known as Cutthroat Island. This man has never been a great director, and his last decade has been unbearable.
Why are people bringing up old movies as cases for him? This is about what he has done as of late, and Renny Harlin has made some awful movies. The Covenant? The Legend of Hercules? Exorcist: The Beginning? 12 Rounds? Cleaner? 5 Days of War? How do you excuse these movies because of a couple of good movies in the 90s? He even failed in the 90s, with the huge box office flop known as Cutthroat Island. This man has never been a great director, and his last decade has been unbearable. Lock him up!
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10:34AM on 01/27/2014
Why are people bringing up his old movies? Because we're treating directors the same way we treat actors. Would you put Robert De Niro or Jon Voight in movie jail even though they consistently make crap nowadays? Even Nic Cage and John Travolta got a pass because they did Face Off. This guy is a great director who gets handed shitty scripts. We should be going after Ewe Boll instead.
Why are people bringing up his old movies? Because we're treating directors the same way we treat actors. Would you put Robert De Niro or Jon Voight in movie jail even though they consistently make crap nowadays? Even Nic Cage and John Travolta got a pass because they did Face Off. This guy is a great director who gets handed shitty scripts. We should be going after Ewe Boll instead.
10:57AM on 01/27/2014
BrokenDreamer: The writers of this articles have 2 choices. They can ask us to discuss someone's entire career, or, only what they've done since 2000. It depends on the Defendant. In this case, Harlin hasn't made enough movies in this century.

Martinphipps: Cage was Not Guilty because the Jury said that his over-the-top performances are what makes his bast movies guilty pleasures.
BrokenDreamer: The writers of this articles have 2 choices. They can ask us to discuss someone's entire career, or, only what they've done since 2000. It depends on the Defendant. In this case, Harlin hasn't made enough movies in this century.

Martinphipps: Cage was Not Guilty because the Jury said that his over-the-top performances are what makes his bast movies guilty pleasures.
9:15AM on 01/27/2014
Guilty. He made some decent flicks in his time (Die Hard 2 and Cliffhanger are what 90s action is made of) and a whole bucketload of fun guilty pleasure romps but man, I think the bad far outweighs the good and his filmography really went to hell after Cutthroat Island bombed.
Guilty. He made some decent flicks in his time (Die Hard 2 and Cliffhanger are what 90s action is made of) and a whole bucketload of fun guilty pleasure romps but man, I think the bad far outweighs the good and his filmography really went to hell after Cutthroat Island bombed.
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8:47AM on 01/27/2014

Not Guilty

The guy has made some real dumpers, but then there's some good movies in his catalog too. He passes, but only slightly.
The guy has made some real dumpers, but then there's some good movies in his catalog too. He passes, but only slightly.
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8:19AM on 01/27/2014

No

Cliffhanger, Die Hard 2, and Deep Blue Sea. Also, The Long Kiss Goodnight and he seems like a nice person on commentaries.
Cliffhanger, Die Hard 2, and Deep Blue Sea. Also, The Long Kiss Goodnight and he seems like a nice person on commentaries.
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7:56AM on 01/27/2014
Not guilty. Mindhunters is awesome and it's a guilty pleasure for me. Same goes for Driven.
Not guilty. Mindhunters is awesome and it's a guilty pleasure for me. Same goes for Driven.
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7:28AM on 01/27/2014

Not guilty

Purely for the somewhat unexpected demise of Samuel L Jackosn in Deep Blue Sea!!!
Purely for the somewhat unexpected demise of Samuel L Jackosn in Deep Blue Sea!!!
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10:51AM on 01/27/2014
Hey! Spoiler alert!
Hey! Spoiler alert!
+3
7:20AM on 01/27/2014

Not guilty

Cliffhanger is a masterpiece.
Cliffhanger is a masterpiece.
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