11 Movies That Prove A Cast Can Be Too Star-Studded

Grand Budapest Hotel screen shotGrand Budapest Hotel comes out today, but I have to be honest with you guys — I’m not gonna see it.

For one thing, I’m not a big Wes Anderson fan (only because I haven’t seen enough of his movies to really ‘get’ him), but the main reason is that over time, his trailers have started to feel more and more like parodies to me. The bright colors, the unrealistic sets, the bizarre plots…and most of all, the star-studded casts.

Sometime it’s fun when there are a butt load of famous people all in one movie, but more often it’s a sign that the film doesn’t have much else going on. It turns it into a distracting parade of celebrities jaunting around and eating up money instead of focusing on other things like, oh I don’t know, a plot or emotional heightening or a riveting script. Silly old things like that.

But like I said, I haven’t actually seen this new film that I’m already ragging on, so why don’t I give you a few more examples just to prove I know what I’m talking about. Here are eleven movies that prove a cast can be too star-studded.

1. Grand Budapest Hotel

Starring: Ralph Fiennes, Adrien Brody, Willem Dafoe, Jeff Goldblum, Jude Law, Bill Murray, Edward Norton, Saoirse Ronan, Jason Schwartzman, Tilda Swinton, Tom Wilkinson, Owen Wilson

All that star power, and we’re still drawing the mustache onto the upper lip of a main character with eyeliner? I want my dollars back.

2. Monuments Men

Starring: George Clooney, Matt Damon, Bill Murray (hello again), Cate Blanchett, John Goodman, Jean Dujardin, Hugh Bonneville

I think in this case, producers were so blinded by their A-List cast that they forgot to make sure the movie was actually worthwhile in itself. Which is how you get a film pushed from prime Oscar real estate in December…to February of the next year. Ouchies.

3. Love Actually

Starring: Colin Firth, Liam Neeson, Emma Thompson, Martin Freeman, Keira Knightley, Hugh Grant, Laura Linney, Alan Rickman, Billy Bob Thornton, Chiwetel Ejiofor, January Jones, Elisha Cuthbert, Denise Richards, Bill Nighy, Claudia Schiffer

I know this one’s a huge classic, but HEAR ME OUT. As Jezebel pointed out last year, this movie had some prettttty upsetting plot lines, if you really think about it. I think we’ve just been lulled into loving this movie by the fact that we recognize every human being in it.

4. Movie 43

Starring: Dennis Quaid, Greg Kinnear, Seth MacFarlane, Hugh Jackman, Kate Winslet, Liev Schreiber, Naomi Watts, Anna Faris, Chris Pratt, Emma Stone, Kieran Culkin, Richard Gere, Kate Bosworth, Justin Long, Jason Sudeikis, Uma Thurman, Kristen Bell, Leslie Bibb, Chloe Grace Moretz, Sean William Scott, Halle Berry, Gerard Butler, Terrence Howard, Elizabeth Banks, Josh Duhamel

How this many A-Listers signed onto a movie with a 4.4 rating on IMDb is, frankly, beyond me.

5. Oceans 12

Starring: Brad Pitt, Catherine Zeta-Jones, George Clooney, Julia Roberts, Matt Damon, Andy Garcia, Casey Affleck, Don Cheadle

I feel like after their first film, the marketing concept for every one that came after was just “add another celebrity and do it again!”

6. Valentine’s Day

Starring: Jessica Alba, Kathy Bates, Bradley Cooper, Julia Roberts, Jessica Biel, Patrick Dempsey, Jamie Foxx, Jennifer Garner, Anne Hathaway, Ashton Kutcher, Queen Latifah, Taylor Lautner, Julia Roberts, Taylor Swift

No offense to anyone who wants to continue doing this for a living, but most of the famous people in the list above are barely even actors. I’m looking at you, Jessicas.

7. New Years Eve

Starring: Michelle Pfeiffer, Zac Efron, Robert DeNiro, Halle Berry, Alyssa Milano, Jessica Biel, Seth Meyers, Katherine Heigl, Sofia Vergara, Ashton Kutcher, Lea Michele, Sarah Jessica Parker, Abigail Breslin, Josh Duhamel, Hilary Swank, Ludacris, Ryan Seacrest

Annnd this is blatantly just a remake of Valentine’s Day, set on another holiday of the year. Eagerly anticipating the critical flop Arbor Day that I feel sure is in the works.

8. American Hustle

Starring: Christian Bale, Bradley Cooper, Amy Adams, Jennifer Lawrence, Jeremy Renner

I know this movie and most of the people in it were nominated for Oscars, but I think it was a classic case of star-blindness. I don’t think anyone would’ve been nearly as obsessed if it was the exact same performances from no-name actors.

9. Batman & Robin

Starring: Arnold Schwarzenegger, George Clooney, Chris O’Donnell, Uma Thurman, Alicia Silverstone, Vivica A. Fox, Elle Macpherson

Garbage garbage! Garbage garbage garbage movie! (But so many famous people!)

10. Anchorman 2

Starring: Will Ferrell, Christina Applegate, Paul Rudd, Steve Carell, James Marsden, Greg Kinnear, Kristen Wiig, Harrison Ford, Sacha Baron Cohen, Marion Cotillard, Kirsten Dunst,  Will Smith, Amy Poehler, Tina Fey, Drake, Kanye West

Ugh, the one with all the cameos. I agree the first movie was funny, but I feel like this one was slathered in big names so nobody would notice there was nothing underneath.

11. Crash

Starring: Don Cheadle, Matt Dillon, Sandra Bullock, Thandie Newton, Ludacris, Ryan Phillippe, Brendan Fraser, Terrence Howard,

And sometimes you put so many stars in the same movie that it wrongfully wins the Oscar for Best Picture over Brokeback MountainThis is why we can’t have nice things!!!!!

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    • Jill O’Rourke

      The Ocean’s movies all feel so cliquey to me, like everybody’s at a lunch table I’m not allowed to sit at.

      • Alexis Rhiannon

        On Wednesdays we wear tuxes.

    • elle

      Haha I totally agree with most of these though TBH I found some of the shorts in Movie 43 hilarious, probably because I am a terrible person. The Naomi Watts/Liev Schreiber still cracks me up. But I have never gotten the Love Actually that people have either. And I LOVE Wes Anderson (Royal Tenanbaums is one of my favorite movies) but IDK he just kind of likes working with the same people. Owen Wilson, Bill Murray, and Jason Schwartzman have been in several of his movies, I guess they just like his style? I definitely get the complaint it just doesn’t bother me, because I am a huge fan of his twee style. But fun fact: Owen and Wes were college roommates.

      • Alexis Rhiannon

        Oh I didn’t know that! That’s so interesting!

    • Rachel

      I will agree with all of these except for Batman & Robin. It’s the only Batman move I care about. (But I should mention that it’s because it’s terribly delicious.) Also, New Years Eve was so bad, it made Valentine’s Day look like an award-worthy film and that’s saying something.

      • Alexis Rhiannon

        Oh yeah, I’m all about loving movies for being terrible.

    • Christina Kwan

      I completely agree on the American Hustle inclusion. So many people think movie was so amazing but all of the stars have had much more moving performances in other roles. It was entertaining and I loved all the 70s plunging necklines and huge sunglasses, but it’s just not as great as everyone thinks it is.

      • Alexis Rhiannon

        Very overrated.

    • Kathy

      I always get the impression that these “big cast” movies get made because it’s so much fun for the actors who are in them. Nobody has to work very hard because it’s mostly an ensemble cast, so they all go out and party every night with their buds. I know I’m older than most of you, but I remember the original “big cast” movie from the 1960′s – It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World. That was the benchmark comedy for years and people still talk about it now and then. Everybody in that movie was a big comedy star, plus some dramatic actors like Spencer Tracy etc. Very funny movie that was original for the time, but now it’s been done too often.

      • Alexis Rhiannon

        Ohhhh interesting! I never thought about it like that, that they all just want to hang out.

    • aCongaLine

      There are some actors that I respect deeply as artists, and I will see anything they make (pending babysitters, or Netflix). Edward Norton is one of those actors. He doesn’t half ass things, and he doesn’t do shitty movies. I’ll see Grand Budapest Hotel definitely (at some point, because I’ll surely miss it’s window of time in the theater, because small children) because I love Edward Norton and his movies.

      Other than Edward Norton, and my love of him, I would agree with your general statement. There’s awesome star studded casts, like in Mars Attacks! and there are shitty star studded casts, like in Love Actually, etc.

      • WLabody1991

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    • alliecatbug

      I really liked monuments men! xD

    • Becka

      I’m sorry but Crash was a good movie. Brokeback Mountain was a borefest. I’m all for contemplative movies but that one was just not doing. Happy Together by Wong Kar Wai is muuuuuch better!
      I’m glad that movies like Crash and Do The Right Thing get made. Discrimination and racism suck! (and so does homophobia, but that’s not the point). And people must be reminded that they are still rampant, and therefore stop complaining about minorities “bringing up the race card”, and just learn to be better human beings!
      Also, did you read books as a kid? Think of Wes Anderson’s flicks as children’s books and you’ll enjoy them much more. His attention to detail is unparalleled! To me, watching one of his movies is the equivalent of reading a book.

      • Alexis Rhiannon

        Oh I really loved Brokeback Mountain!

    • Hassan Ilahi

      I agree with you about “American Hustle”, but an even bigger and arguably duller disappointment in 2013 was Ridley Scott’s “The Counselor”. This film had every possible award-winning actor from Brad Pitt to Javier Bardem to even Michael Fassbender, however, even they couldn’t save the movie’s awful script and messy direction. My pick for the worst film of the year, in fact, simply because it had so many talented actors yet totally fell apart.