The 52 Worst Films of the 2000s

Movies You Aught Not Watch: The Condemned

Movies You Aught Not Watch is Nick Rogers’ weekly, alphabetical look back at the 52 worst films of 2000-2009.

“The Condemned”
Rated R

If WWE overlord Vince McMahon could extract anything good from 2007’s “The Condemned,” it was that the XFL no longer was his greatest creative failure. Taking a page from the film’s oppressive mean streak, consider a comparative suggestion that 113 minutes would be better spent gouging out your own eyeballs.

What passes for ingenuity here is that the first burly, bald guy seen in shadow is not “Stone Cold” Steve Austin. He’s one of 10 Death Row convicts dumped on an island to kill or be killed, with freedom for the last one left, while a megalomaniac producer films it for a lucrative Internet broadcast.

Austin looked like Larry the Cable Guy on steroids and — whether expressing anger, love or shock — projected the same expression of a man making the hard decision between fries or onion rings. He’s the movie’s hero, left behind by his country and forced to fight British baddie Ewan McStarley (Vinnie Jones).

A murderer with a taste for rape, Ewan also was the vessel through which “The Condemned” put the audience’s face through a mirror of morality. Like the MPAA, the technical crew behind this broadcast bristled only when violence turned sexual (no less repulsive because it was offscreen).

No film bearing a WWE Films stamp should be allowed, by law, to run longer than 85 minutes, attempt any sort of pot-kettle-black social scolding or be seen by anyone other than the Bushwhackers. That stinky tag-team no longer wrestles for McMahon, but this movie emits its own special odor.

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5 Responses to “Movies You Aught Not Watch: The Condemned”

  1. Ashley Zakutansky says:

    I liked this movie except for the fact that that was the time that all of the WWE wrestlers decided they wanted to do films. I didn’t like the main character all that much but it was a decent movie.

  2. Casey Strawsma says:

    I enjoyed this movie!

  3. jermey says:

    very alsome but it had too much down time in this movie stone cold play’s a good role in this movie but i think they should have done better on this movie noing he a almost big star in the world??

  4. […] “Race” is the irrationally entertaining trash “The Condemned” failed to be. If this list were ranked, this is No. 365 — aka the miles per hour at which it […]

  5. Joe Shearer says:

    When I reviewed this film, I looked at it as Vince McMahon being the director character. He makes a monologue toward the end about how he’s just giving the viewers what they want (depraved violence and wanton slaughter for others’ amusement), and I said it was Vince speaking directly through that character. This movie was a definite case of trying to make a statement about violence in society and how it affects us, but in doing so it delivers an ultra-violent movie and presenting the violence as the entertainment.

    If you look at a good anti-violence satire like "Starship Troopers," you’re supposed to be disgusted by the violence (things like kids gleefully stamping bugs to death while their mom cheers them, and giant bugs dismembering soldiers, who have become cannon fodder for grandstanding politicians).