Ten worst child actor performances ever
So, if you've been looking for a good teeth-gnashing for some time, sit back and prepare yourself for an avalanche of the worst child actor performances of all time. Think of it as guaranteed birth control.
For a show with a long, storied history of bad child acting, little Mickey has done quite an impressive job to come in as the worst. His blank-eyed, upward-inflected brand of acting belongs in a 1980s school video about puberty in which he gets to ask lots of questions about why he keeps having funny dreams and waking up with wet sheets.
9. Robin Weisman in Three Men & A Little Lady
Little Robin didn't go on to do much in Hollywood after this 1990 franchise effort. Can you tell why?
8. Macaulay Culkin in Home Alone
Possibly an unpopular choice given Home Alone's status as "birthday party movie" of choice for Australians of a certain age, but watch it again: Culkin is as wooden as one of the planks he KOs Pesci and Stern with.
7. Michael Stephenson in Troll 2
Here's young Michael attempting not to fall asleep while his cinematic father gives him a good talking to in Troll 2. Although, we can't let Michael take all the blame - the movie is one of the worst ever made, after all.
6. every single child in Mac And Me
Not only is Mac & Me's cavalcade of product placement one of the most odious crimes ever committed in the name of children's movies, it also boasts a stellar line-up of some of the crappest child actors (none of whose names even bear Googling) ever captured on film.
5. Heather O'Rourke Poltergeist I, II & III
A curious case of a child actor whose talent diminished with age. O'Rourke (who incidentally fell afoul of the rumoured "Poltergeist curse" when she died in 1988 aged 13) was super creepy when in the first film she announces "They're here...", less so in this hilariously naff scene from the third offering. "Robbie, Robbie, the tree's eating Robbie!!"
4. Daniel Radcliffe in Harry Potter & The Philosopher's Stone
It's a source of ongoing amazement to me that the child actor they chose to portray the titular character in the Harry Potter movies would be the least engaging member of the entire cast. He's at his worst when he smiles.
3. Michael Oliver in Problem Child
The main "problem" with this kids' spin on the 'lovable rogue' genre is that you spend the entire film wanting to punch him in the face.
2. Harvey Stephens in The Omen (1976)
For a child meant to be the son of Satan, you'd think Damien Thorn might actually be able to muster up more than the dead-eyed (and not in a scary way) stares that young Stephens seemed to think would do the trick. Where's a stage mother when you need one?
1. Jake Lloyd in Star Wars I: The Phantom Menace
It wasn't enough that George Lucas decided to molest our childhood memories by rebooting the Star Wars franchise in such godawful fashion; no, he had to employ the services of the least charismatic, most irritating child "actor" in history. About five minutes of Lloyd's squawking and you were praying for him to lose his extremities in an epic battle to the near-death. Which unfortunately ended up happening to Hayden Christensen, instead. Ripped. Off.