Why People Were Excited: It was meant to be a sweeping, historical epic on the grandest scale, but with a heavyweight cast in place to ensure spectacle didn't completely trump substance. Orlando Bloom might be a bit flaky, but Brad Pitt, Eric Bana, Sean Bean, Brian Cox, Peter O'Toole and Brendan Gleeson were all names to be reckoned with.
Why They Ended Up Disappointed: It was crushingly, bum-numbingly dull from start to finish, with a leaden script that gave none of its assembled stars the opportunity to really shine. The battle scenes were as impressive to look at as advertised, but spread across nearly three hours worth of running time, not nearly impressive enough.
Batman & Robin (1997)
Why People Were Excited: While Batman Forever had been a little too campy for some tastes, it was still a hit at the box office, with Jim Carrey's turn as the Riddler generally heralded as a major success. Fans were hoping that some of that film's problems would be ironed out in Joel Schumacher's second run at the franchise…
Why They Ended Up Disappointed: By comparison to Batman & Robin , Batman Forever looks like Citizen Kane ! Instead of toning things down, Schumacher cranked the camp into overdrive, with Arnold Schwarzenegger and Uma Thurman furiously competing over who could utter the most toe-curling pun and George Clooney slipping into a Batsuit with nipples. Truly awful.
Alien 3 (1992)
Why People Were Excited: The first two films had been rapturously received, and with Sigourney Weaver returning for a third outing, fans had little reason to expect the shambles that followed.
Why They Ended Up Disappointed: David Fincher was only brought on board late in the day, and was given very little time to prepare himself. Studio execs went to war with him over every little decision, and by all accounts, working on the project was a total nightmare. As for the end product? Well, killing off three of the second film's survivors in the first five minutes didn't do much to get the fans on side…
Planet Of The Apes (2001)
Why People Were Excited: The Planet Of The Apes franchise still had enough lustre to excite cinemagoers, while Tim Burton promised to put a brand new spin on proceedings. Add in some flashy new prosthetics, and people were sold on those damned dirty apes.
Why They Ended Up Disappointed: The prosthetics were indeed impressive, but the story was anything but, with its skimpy characterisation and ill thought out twist. Poor old Mark Wahlberg has never looked so bemused.
The Golden Compass (2007)
Why People Were Excited: Phillip Pullman's His Dark Materials trilogy were all bestsellers, with an army of loyal fans eagerly awaiting the big-screen translation. A starry cast including Nicole Kidman, Daniel Craig and Ian McKellen only added to the anticipation.
Why They Ended Up Disappointed: Despite a $180 million budget, this one singularly failed to live up to the source material, with Chris Weitz rushing the narrative along clumsily to an anticlimactic cliffhanger finale that looks as though it will never be followed up upon. A terrible waste of an excellent property.
Fantastic Four (2005)
Why People Were Excited: Superhero movies were fully in vogue back in 2005, and with the success of the Spider-Man and X-Men movies, people were hopeful that Marvel's success story would continue with Fantastic Four .
Why They Ended Up Disappointed: The film was family friendly to the point of totally alienating its existing fanbase, what with its cringeworthy script and gratingly cheery outlook. Bear in mind Batman Begins was in cinemas around the same time...
Quantum Of Solace (2009)
Why People Were Excited: Casino Royale had reinvigorated the Bond series with such energy that the character felt vital for the first time since GoldenEye . Daniel Craig brought a brooding intensity to the role that was straight out of Ian Fleming's prose, while in Le Chiffre, Mads Mikkelsen had created the best Bond villain in many a long year.
Why They Ended Up Disappointed: While Casino Royale crammed in the perfect blend of girls, guns and tortured heroism, Quantum felt like a series of set-pieces joined together by the most cursory of plots. Mathieu Amalric's eco-warrior villain was a particularly weak addition, posing even less menace than Jonathan Pryce's media mogul in Tomorrow Never Dies .
Green Lantern (2011)
Why People Were Excited : Green Lantern is one of DC's best-loved superheroes, while Ryan Reynolds (fresh off the back of a critically acclaimed turn in Buried ) is a leading man with charisma to spare. Given DC's need to keep pace with Marvel, a superlative adaptation looked to be on the cards.
Why They Ended Up Disappointed: Heavy on origin-centric exposition and light on excitement and action, Green Lantern wasn't so much bad as it was plain dull. Throw in an uninspiring villain and some piss-poor CGI, and Warner were stuck with a flop of epic proportions.
Terminator Salvation (2009)
Why People Were Excited: Terminator 3 was a big old let-down, but this new take on the franchise looked set to return things to an even keel. Even though McG was at the helm, the director was saying saying all the right things about retaining James Cameron's mythology, while in Christian Bale, the film had a heavyweight lead in place. The stage was set for something special.
Why They Ended Up Disappointed: "I feel like we did a lot right with Terminator and I feel like we did a lot wrong," said McG with the benefit of hindsight. In fairness to him, plenty of the action hits the spot, but it never really feels like a Terminator movie, not least because the characters are given very little room to breathe between the sound and fury of man vs. machine combat.
Eyes Wide Shut (1999)
Why People Were Excited: This was Stanley Kubrick's first film since Full Metal Jacket in 1987, and people were understandably excited by the great auteur's return. In addition to that, the film was based around the sex life of a pair of characters played by Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman, a couple in real life, and two of the hottest stars in Hollywood. Put simply, interest in this one was rabid.
Why They Ended Up Disappointed: Sadly, the film was anything but erotic, and at 160 minutes, rather taxing on the old attention span. Essentially a meditative indie writ large, it doesn't have nearly enough to say and far too long to say it. And Alan Cumming's hammed-up appearance is just bizarre.