The year's best and worst films are relatively easy to assess. The most mediocre titles of the year... that's another story all together.
Every December and January, we are inundated with them. Critics compile their annual bests and worsts and then the arguments begin. Favorites fail to find their way into mainstream awards season contention while outsider choices are chiding for being too fringe or foreign. Before long, a consensus builds, creating bookends to a film year where, for the most part, most movies were just mediocre. As a professional, I always tell people that my job is not some sort of gift from the Fates. Instead, it’s about 20 fantastic films, an equal number of nauseating pieces of junk, and about 200-plus examples of motion picture patchiness. Imagine if your career had such clear cut highs, deep level lows, and examples of unending everyday drudgery. Suddenly, we’re no longer looking at a dream, but a nightmare, a never-ending cycle of subpar or should-have-been titles that, for some reason, couldn’t drag themselves out of their own aesthetic ennui long enough to be anything other than average.