Slackers, Stoners and Scanners: Richard Linklater's Films, Ranked

In honor of his epic 'Boyhood' hitting theaters, we rank all of this pioneering indie filmmaker's work from worst to best

15

'Bad News Bears' (2005)

Paramount/Courtesy Everett Collection

It seemed like a good idea at the time. Linklater, who had recently done wonders with inappropriate adults and misfit kids (see The School of Rock), matched to a post-Bad Santa Billy Bob Thornton in lovable sociopath mode — and they're both remaking the 1976 Walter Matthau little-league baseball classic. This Bears 2.0 has its moments, and Thornton delivers a few great lines ("You can love [baseball] , but it don't always love you back...it's kind of like dating a German chick."), but it's still little more than a semi-forgettable footnote to the director and star's stronger, more defining work. Linklater doesn't treat the original's root-for-the-underdog storyline with stifling reverence, thankfully, yet he never quite figures out the right tone for his version. You're left wondering if the film needs to be darker and edgier, or more kid-friendly. Bad news, indeed.

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