Spared or Spoiled Reviews: Jem and the Holograms

The rules are simple. The good get spared. The bad get spoiled.

Jem and the Holograms (Universal Pictures)

Jem and the Holograms poster

Directed by Jon M. Chu

Written by Ryan Landels  Based on Jem by Christy Marx

Starring Aubrey PeeplesStefanie ScottHayley KiyokoAurora PerrineauJuliette LewisRyan Guzman & Molly Ringwald

I don’t know for sure but this movie must have been written by a 12 year-old girl or something. It is unbelievably sloppy. This is the kind of story a kid makes up on the spot when asked. This is the scenario dreamed up while playing with toys on the kitchen floor. There is no intelligence or logic and no one associated with this movie knows anything about making them. Jem & the Holograms needs to be forgiven for being one of the worst movies of all-time because if there were adults involved in this they must all have brain tumors, large growths disturbing all cognitive function. I sometimes point out when a movie does everything wrong. Jem & the Holograms does nothing right. Nothing,

Verdict: SPOILED

Jem and the Holograms


Jem & the Holograms is the tale of a girl who becomes an overnight sensation. Except that she doesn’t. In the movie she puts one video up on YouTube and a record producer sends her on tour. Not a recording contract. That’s far-fetched enough but after hearing ONE song she is booked at large venues. Jem insists that her sisters be allowed to serve as her band and this too is agreed to because… I don’t know. This movie is crap. She had not heard any of them play a single note. She had only heard one song. And it was a video on YouTube. This is how the worst movie of all time begins.


There is a YouTube tie-in that forces the filmmakers (if I can call them that) to use a found footage format for most of the film. The narration is a video from the site and we are shown home movies and recordings of current and past events. Also interspersed throughout are real YouTube-ers playing music that becomes the movie’s soundtrack. But for some reason, beyond these things, the director chooses to shoot the rest of the film handheld. The camera shakes in establishing shots and close-ups and for the rest of the film. It’s a found footage style without the found footage. It’s awful.

jem-and-the-holograms is truly truly outrageous

The film should be a musical but it’s like the screenwriter forgets to include songs. And it’s supposed to be an adventure but it’s like the screenwriter forgets to add any. So they drop in some crappy scavenger hunt with only two locations. It’s supposed to be a wacky and fun comedy but the screenwriter forgets this as well, and tries to make everything dire and serious. And when it’s supposed to be dire and serious, it’s like the screenwriter forgets this too and every conflict is solved in the loopiest and flimsiest of manners. Jem and the Holograms is one of the worst written movies of all-fucking-time.

The Holograms

The actors can’t play music. I know that usually doesn’t matter but they also can’t act like they know how to play music. So what’s the point? They aren’t able to act like they’re playing the instruments. So there goes that. They can’t even keep a beat. She’s strumming at the oddest times and changing her fingering when there is no change. They can’t even fake it. Jem & the Holograms is outrageously bad. Truly, truly.


And the main plot is stupid. The writer knows nothing about music or the music business. The subplot is hokey. Any conflicts are solved in moments. There’s a part where she goes solo and abandons all of her “sisters” and then she feels bad about it so goes back to her childhood home that she hasn’t visited in years and then all her sisters show up there because they know somehow where she is at all times and they all forgive her because they saw how she was sitting on the steps in slow motion and shit, and you got to forgive somebody after seeing that. It’s slow motion for Christ’s sake. And then the love interest shows up because he must know where she grew up from all the stalking he does or something and then they decide to break into the music company office building to rescue Jem’s earrings from the CEO’s safe because she needs them to activate the last clue on a robot her father built before he died. (I’m not kidding) Because when she was taking promo pictures in that office she had to remove her cheap fucking earrings, so the CEO offered to put them in her office safe for safe keeping instead of just letting the girl put them in her pocket or her bag or anywhere. On a table. It makes no sense. So instead of waiting for the building to open since none of this is time sensitive, they decide to break in. Well not break in more like… you know what. The movie is bad.

The worst movie of all-time Jem and the Holograms

Badly written, horribly acted, stupidly photographed and edited with YouTube videos added for filler and pop music that sounds like it came from a kit… a pop music kit that you assemble with plastic rainbow-colored pieces. With nothing done right and everything all wrong, Jem & the Holograms is the worst movie of all-time. It’s official.

Jem is bad

All hail the Queen.

– Mel


6 thoughts on “Spared or Spoiled Reviews: Jem and the Holograms

  1. I had heard they had made a live action version. I was excited. I loved the cartoon as a kid. Then I saw the first trailer and all my hopes were shredded. I still considered watching it if I happened to stumble upon it playing on television, but now I am pretty happy missing out entirely.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s not just a bad movie (or a movie that’s bad) This thing is bad at being a movie. You can’t even watch it ironically as a bad movie. Because it’s not a movie. It’s a collection of fake and real YouTube videos edited together and separated by horribly filmed and acted scripted segments. It’s a bad mixed-media middle school art project. A movie with no inherent movie-ness. (There’s no there there) Thanks for the comment.


  2. I loved the cartoon as a kid (and had the doll, music tapes, etc.), but I was really disappointed when I saw the trailer. I’m glad I didn’t waste money on it, but still really disappointed that they didn’t do better with the concept.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve never seen the cartoon but it’s hard for me to believe that they took anything but the names of the characters from it. I don’t even think they used the songs from the show.

      Liked by 1 person

    • If I had bought a ticket for this movie, I would have been trying to get my money back. Theaters had to pull this movie because they were taking a loss from it. It was a waste of a screen.

      Liked by 1 person

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