Movie Jail: This week’s defendant is…Martin Campbell!

Last Updated on August 5, 2021

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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

Martin Campbell

The Case

The Prosecution: Green Lantern, The Legend of Zorro, Beyond Borders, Vertical Limit, No Escape, Defenseless, Criminal Law

Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, while Martin Campbell has helmed critically and financially successful movies during his career such as Casino Royale and GoldenEye, he’s also responsible for a couple of big misfires, as well as a handful of other poorly received films. Green Lantern is definitely Mr. Campbell’s most notable failure, however most of his other big screen projects haven’t fared that well either.

The Mask of Zorro scored positive reviews and was a solid earner, grossing $250 million worldwide, but the director screwed the pooch with The Legend of Zorro, which didn’t reach the critical or commercial heights of its predecessor. The New Zealand filmmaker followed up his first Zorro flick with the over-the-top yet boring survival thriller Vertical Limit before going on to direct the widely panned romantic-drama Beyond Borders. Mr. Campbell also helmed several forgettable films (No Escape, Defenseless, Criminal Law) before he was tapped to direct the first Pierce Brosnan Bond movie, and although the defense may have enjoyed Edge of Darkness, the prosecution thought the original television version was much better, which is a little odd considering he was behind the camera for both projects.

Mr. Campbell doesn’t deserve to be locked up for life, but he does need to go to Movie Jail for at least a few months for his very spotty filmography.

Green Lantern Ryan Reynolds Martin Campbell

The Defense: Edge of Darkness, Casino Royale, The Mask of Zorro, GoldenEye

Ladies and gentlemen, although my client’s movies have had mixed results critically and at the box office, the defense doesn’t believe he belongs behind bars. The defense wouldn’t call Mr. Campbell a “hired-gun” filmmaker, however it’s not like he’s been creating his own projects or directing from his own script. He does share some of the blame for the failures of Green Lantern, The Legend of Zorro, etc., but it shouldn’t all fall on his shoulders.

While Mr. Campbell has directed a number of disappointing films, the defense feels the only truly awful movie on his resume is Beyond Borders. Vertical Limit is dumb but fun, and even the much-maligned Green Lantern has its moments. My client also helped launch the Pierce Brosnan and Daniel Craig-led Bond flicks, and it could be argued that he helmed the two best installments (GoldenEye and Casino Royale) featuring Craig and Brosnan in the role.

Mr. Campbell is a talented director who knows how to stage great action sequences, and his contributions to the 007 franchise alone should be more than enough to keep him out of the slammer.

Martin Campbell


Has Mr. Campbell earned some prison jail time with his weaker directorial efforts, or do you think it’s preposterous that he’s even being considered for Movie Jail? What should we do with the Green Lantern and Casino Royale filmmaker? Is director Martin Campbell 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.


Martin Campbell


Kevin Hart

Ride Along and Get Hard star Kevin Hart was found GUILTY of all charges in last week’s trial, with jury members saying that the pint-sized comedian’s stand-up can be good at times, but his movies have left a lot to be desired. The court is open to revisiting the case against Mr. Hart, however we have a feeling it’s going to be a while before he sees the outside of a prison cell.


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, David Goyer, Akiva Goldsman, Avi Arad, Damon Lindelof, Hayden Christensen, Dennis Dugan, Sharon Stone, Jessica Biel, Nick Swardson, Simon Kinberg, Alex & Stephen Kendrick, Eli Roth, Paranormal Activity Franchise (Halloween Edition), Kevin Hart

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, Ben Barnes, Simon West, Len Wiseman, Brendan Fraser, Megan Fox, Neal McDonough, Cameron Crowe, Katie Holmes, Elijah Wood, Tarsem Singh, Reese Witherspoon, Burt Reynolds, Ed Helms, Sean Astin, Michael Polish, Kelsey Grammer, Queen Latifah, Mark Wahlberg, Vin Diesel, Barry Levinson, Aaron Eckhart, Luke Wilson

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, Ice Cube, Owen Wilson & Vince Vaughn


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