Movie Jail: This week’s defendant is…Ben Barnes!

Movie Jail Banner

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

Seventh Son Ben Barnes

The Case

The Prosecution: Seventh Son, By the Gun, Jackie & Ryan, The Big Wedding, The Words, Locked In, Dorian Gray

Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, Ben Barnes got his big break in The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian, and although he was decent in the C.S. Lewis adaptation (and the follow-up The Dawn Treader) the prosecution has been unimpressed with most of his other work.

Even The Dude couldn't overcome Seventh Son's weak script, so the prosecution is willing to give Mr. Barnes a pass on the YA film. But he was straight-up atrocious as the title character in Dorian Gray and in the 2010 thriller Locked In. On top of his questionable skills as an actor, Mr. Barnes has also done a poor job picking movie projects. Both The Words and The Big Wedding are below 25% at Rotten Tomatoes, and By the Gun was criticized for being an incredibly generic crime flick.

Mr. Barnes has the looks of a leading man, however the prosecution isn't sold on his acting abilities. The actor has given a couple of ok-to-good performances, but we doubt those turns will be enough to keep him out of Movie Jail, where he belongs.

The Big Wedding Ben Barnes

The Defense: Bigga than Ben, Killing Bono, The Chronicles of Narnia series, Easy Virtue

Ladies and gentlemen, although my client was lambasted for his lackluster performance in Dorian Gray, the defense believes Mr. Barnes is still a talented actor, and he certainly hasn't been so bad that we need to lock him up.

Mr. Barnes was fantastic in Bigga than Ben (which is also a very fun film), and the defense thought he was equally as good in Easy Virtue and Killing Bono. As for his negatively reviewed movies, The Big Wedding was clearly just a paycheck film for Mr. Barnes, and none of the actors fared well in The Words.

My client isn't just another bland, pretty boy actor. Mr. Barnes has some real talent behind those good looks, but unfortunately he hasn't had that many opportunities to show off his acting skills. Mr. Barnes is also still fairly young (he's only 33) with a relatively small amount of big screen credits to his name. If we are going to put my client behind bars it should be after we see a little bit more from the actor, and right now the defense doesn't believe Mr. Barnes deserves to go to prison.

Killing Bono Ben Barnes


Has Mr. Barnes done enough bad to warrant a prison sentence, or do you think he's a solid actor who has appeared in a few subpar movies that shouldn't count against him? What should we do with The Chronicles of Narnia star? I ask you, the jury, Is Ben Barnes GUILTY or NOT GUILTY?

*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. Anyway, 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.


By the Gun Ben Barnes


Sienna Miller

Sienna Miller was found NOT GUILTY of all charges in last week's trial, and many jury members weren't happy (for one reason or another) she was being considered for Movie Jail. Some argued that Miss Miller is a supporting actress at best and she isn't a big enough star to be up for prison time, while others said they have enjoyed most of her work. Miss Miller's recent Oscar-nominated films also kept her out of lockup, as well as (as one jury member put it) "that face."


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, Renny Harlin, Diane Keaton, McG, Demi Moore, King Joffrey (Game of Thrones Special), David Spade, Spike Lee, Kevin James, Joel Schumacher, Ehren Kruger, Chris Rock, Mark Steven Johnson, Mickey Rourke, Ashley Judd, Uma Thurman, Josh Duhamel, Saw Franchise (Halloween Edition), Zach Braff, Sam Worthington, Melissa McCarthy, The Wachowski Siblings, Kate Bosworth, Garry Marshall

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 Edition), Johnny Knoxville, Orlando Bloom, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Dan Aykroyd, Sylvester Stallone, Gavin Hood, Jason Lee, Jennifer Garner, Carrie-Anne Moss, Kate Beckinsale, John Cusack, Chris Columbus, Clive Owen, Terrence Howard, Andrew Niccol, Drew Barrymore, Steve Martin, Joel Silver, Michelle Rodriguez, Kiefer Sutherland, Dario Argento, Susan Sarandon, Dennis Quaid, Rob Reiner, Gwyneth Paltrow, Mel Gibson, Pierce Brosnan, Roberto Orci & Alex Kurtzman, Ivan Reitman, Stephen Sommers, Shawn Levy, Jai Courtney, Ridley Scott, Peter Jackson, Jamie Foxx, Luc Besson, Jason Reitman, Mila Kunis, Jennifer Connelly, Sienna Miller

UPDATES: Robert De Niro, Nicolas Cage and Roland Emmerich, Jim Carrey, Robert Rodriguez and Gerard Butler, Jessica Alba, Julia Roberts and The Farrelly Brothers, Ben Stiller, Tim Burton and Shia LaBeouf, Johnny Depp, Kevin Smith & Chris Rock


About the Author