It's hard to know what you're getting with a new Vin Diesel movie. He's sort of like Nic Cage in that regard. In "honor" of the fifth anniversary of "Riddick," here are the worst movies to come along in Diesel's roller coaster of a career.
10. 'Furious 7' (2015)
While "Furious 7" features some of the best moments in this inexplicably long-running series (not least of which being the tearful farewell to the late Paul Walker), it's also home to many of the worst. And a lot of that falls on Diesel's burly shoulders. Too often, this sequel plays like a vanity project for Diesel as he struts about the screen and goes up against action superstar Jason Statham.
9. 'xXx: Return of Xander Cage' (2017)(2017)
The original "xXx" carved out a little place for itself as a macho, Xtreme Sports version of James Bond. It helped that the Bond franchise was in a very sorry state at the time. But what worked in 2003 didn't exactly retain its appeal in 2017. Rather than coming across as a cool secret agent for a new century, Xander Cage just seemed played out and tired in this belated sequel.
8. 'Fast & Furious' (2009)
While a key step towards revitalizing this franchise, "Fast & Furious" remains one of the lesser entries in the series. It's overly grim and lacking in the fun, over-the-top tone of later sequels. Diesel's dour, gravelly voiced Dominic Toretto doesn't help matters.
7. 'A Man Apart' (2003)
Who doesn't love a good vigilante action movie? The operative word being "good." This 2003 thriller settled for regurgitating all the usual tropes, quickly becoming overshadowed by Dwayne Johnson's far more satisfying "Walking Tall."
6. 'The Fate of the Furious' (2017)
The eighth entry in the "Fast & Furious" franchise is also the weakest. The infamous behind-the-scenes tensions between Diesel and his co-stars may not have been the only culprit, but that drama resulted in a demonstrably lesser film. The ongoing saga takes some frustrating turns, including the head-scratching decision to suddenly shift Jason Statham's character from remorseless villain to sympathetic anti-hero and the least convincing heel turn in recent memory. It all suggests that maybe it's time to close the door on this blockbuster franchise.
5. 'The Last Witch Hunter' (2015)
We have to give it up for Diesel here, as he managed to build an entire fantasy movie around his old Dungeons & Dragons character. Unfortunately, that experience didn't prove meaningful or fulfilling for moviegoers. "The Last Witch Hunter" is a bland, overly dark fantasy epic that failed to kick-start a new franchise.
4. 'The Pacifier' (2005)
It's apparently a requirement that all major action stars go through a period where they take a break from blowing things up to make a few lousy, family-friendly comedies. With "The Pacifier," it was Diesel's time at bat. There's probably a universe where Diesel playing a Navy Seal-turned-babysitter and parodying his usual roles works well, but it sure isn't this one.
3. 'Riddick' (2013)
"Pitch Black" was one of Diesel's breakout roles, but that doesn't mean this sci-fi/horror mash-up really needed sequels. "Riddick" is at least better than "Chronicles of Riddick," if only because it stopped trying to pile more unwanted mythology on moviegoers. But at the end of the day, it's a sequel that settles for rehashing the original, and that never makes for a good experience.
2. 'The Chronicles of Riddick' (2004)
Look, we get that Diesel gets very attached to his characters, but no one benefited from the attempt to turn Richard B. Riddick into the next big sci-fi hero. "Chronicles of Riddick" abandoned the ruthless efficiency of "Pitch Black" for a bloated, unwieldy sci-fi epic full of pointless new mythology. If you really need more Riddick, play the video games.
1. 'Babylon A.D.' (2008)
Diesel's career hits its low point with the release of "Babylon A.D." This dull, formulaic sci-fi film completely squanders what might have been a compelling premise and setting. Some argue that there's a better cut of the film to be found, but we're not sure there's any saving this dreadful mess.