It’s important to remember Mark Wahlberg wasn’t always a big-time movie star.
He first crashed pop culture as a pants-drooping rapper with hits like “Good Vibrations” and “Wildside.”
Marky Mark has come a long way, baby. Other two-hit wonders might have gone on the nostalgia circuit or simply disappeared. Wahlberg reinvented himself as an actor, and it worked. He even snared a Best Supporting Actor nomination for 2006’s “The Departed.”
His latest project, “Mile 22,” re-teams him with “Lone Survivor” director Peter Berg. Their fourth pairing is a dud, a confusing mess teeming with over-the-top violence and annoying characters. Wahlberg’s Jimmy Silva is the prime culprit, alas.
Wahlberg’s new film reminds us how spotty his film resume is. For every gold-plated feature like “Boogie Nights,” “Three Kings” and even “Ted,” there are others you wouldn’t wish on your worst enemy.
Here are four of Wahlberg’s worst movie roles.
M. Night Shyamalan is the current Comeback Kid, with audiences salivating over his upcoming film “Glass.” Back in 2008 he was in full creative meltdown with this absurd thriller. The director’s eco-hysteria involved our heroes running from… the wind. Really. Wahlberg played a science teacher caught up in the ecological mayhem. Laurence Olivier couldn’t have survived “The Happening” with his dignity intact, so it’s hard to pin the entire blame on Wahlberg.
Wahlberg’s brand of acting is hard to describe. He’s often soft-spoken, emitting a vulnerability that makes movies like “The Fighter” and “Boogie Nights” spring to life. Here, he essentially disappears into the background playing an ex-con trying to reclaim his life and dignity. It’s a snooze, partially thanks to the actor’s uninvolved performance.
Transformers: The Last Knight
It’s the worst movie of 2017, the very worst of Wahlberg’s career and perhaps the worst movie of the 21st century. He returns to this misbegotten franchise as its human lead, but there’s nothing he can do about the idiotic storytelling and nonsensical action. Don’t feel too bad for Wahlberg here. Co-star Anthony Hopkins manages to look even worse in his embarrassing supporting turn.
The Truth About Charlie
Wahlberg’s strengths as an actor are clear, but he’s still not the leading man type in the traditional, Cary Grant mold. So why on earth would anyone remake a classic Grant movie “Charade,” with him as the lead? That’s the first of many mistakes plaguing this box office dud, a film that critics soured on, too, despite the late, great Jonathan Demme behind the camera.