Although the end of the year is still weeks away—and Gerard Butler's "I'm a soccer coach who's playing the field both on and off " rom-com hasn't been released yet—Forbes has already issued its list of the biggest flops of the year, secure in going ahead and naming them now that they've run out of ways to arrange celebrities in lists according to how much money they make. Naturally, as it goes with these, there are a couple of qualifiers: The flops are ranked according to which movie took in the smallest percentage of its budget back at the box office, rather than by total amount lost. And movies that are still in theaters do not qualify, making the disaster-piece Cloud Atlas ineligible for consideration—because there's still a chance that audiences have been waiting for the right weekend to flock to it, but have just been so busy lately.
And with that out of the way, here's the list:
1. The Oogieloves In The Big Balloon Adventure (Box office: $1 million / Budget: $20 million)
2. A Thousand Words (Box office: $20 million / Budget: $40 million)
3. Dredd (Box office: $28 million / Budget: $50 million)
4. Big Miracle (Box office: $25 million / Budget: $40 million)
5. Wanderlust (Box office: $21 million/ Budget: $30 million)
6. Rock Of Ages (Box office: $56 million / Budget: $74 million)
7. People Like Us (Box office: $12 million / Budget: $16 million)
8. That’s My Boy (Box office: $57 million / Budget: $70 million)
9. Premium Rush (Box office: $29 million / Budget: $35 million)
10. Red Tails (Box office: $50 million / Budget: $58 million)
As you can see, while Cloud Atlas has been saved (however temporarily or meaninglessly), there was no such respite for The Oogieloves, which followed an inevitable path from having the worst box-office debut of all time to being the year's biggest bomb, earning only 5 percent of its budget back in exchange for ruining the childhood of an entire generation. And there are other non-surprises too, like: Eddie Murphy and Adam Sandler are here, and surely they'll be right here again next year with the newest equivalents of A Thousand Words and That's My Boy. As evidenced by Big Miracle and Rock Of Ages, getting a whole bunch of familiar together can't save you when your premise involves saving the whales or singing hair-metal karaoke. People Like Us is still ironically named. Red Tails really was bad enough to make George Lucas quit, etc.
While not necessarily surprises, there are no doubt defenders of Dredd—and maybe even Wanderlust or Premium Rush?—who will be sort of sad to see them in such dishonored company, then blame Dredd's poor showing on us again. (Though if it's any consolation, as Forbes reminds us, while Wanderlust may not have produced at the box office, it did help Jennifer Aniston find love, thus enabling us all to sleep at night.) And there are likely some who will be surprised to see neither John Carter nor Battleship included here—two films touted as 2012's biggest failures, yet they actually managed to clean up enough overseas to avoid scraping bottom. This list could, in fact, be subtitled 10 Reasons For Taylor Kitsch To Buck Up Besides "Being Taylor Kitsch."
One thing that is genuinely surprising: That's My Boy somehow cost $70 million, suggesting all Adam Sandler films are some sort of ingenious front for a drug trafficking operation. And if that's the case, it's the best argument yet for decriminalization.