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Best Worst Movies of All Time

Bad movies are the best.

By Stephen HamiltonPublished 8 years ago 7 min read

Like a lot of people, I love bad movies. Well, let me clarify. Not all bad movies. Some are insipid, or just boring. The acting is wooden or the plot is cliché, but sometimes it all adds up to be more than just the whole. Everything adds up and transcends how terrible they are to become kind of a glorious ode to hubris and failure. They are more than a bad movie, they become an object lesson. There’s a certain amount of pleasure you derive from watching someone present their creative masterpiece to the world only to realize they were doodling in crayon on construction paper. You can’t help but look away. Below is a list of some of the worst movies you can find, so absolutely awful that they are entertaining in ways the creators probably never intended, but that we love anyway.

Look, shark movies can be pretty decent, like the first Jaws movie, or they can be absolutely terrible, like Sharknado. Then there’s Snow Shark. At least Sharknado was intentionally bad and combined the toothy horror of a great white with the frenetic action of a twister. Snow Shark is about a shark. In the snow. That’s it. They didn’t even go through the trouble for real creature design to make this thing look like it might be able to move on land, because as anyone who has actually seen snow, a lot of snow sure isn’t the same thing as a body of water. There’s not even enough snow on the ground to properly support this kind of giant shark monster. Maybe if they’d put some feet on it, I’d have more respect for this movie.

Stephen King just churns out content, and there’s a lot of room for variation when it comes to the quality of the content. The man who gave us Shawshank Redemption and Salem’s Lot also gave us Cell and a little known short story called Trucks, where cars take over the world. It’s cute in a campy way, but not something you’d turn into a movie. Except that King turned it into a movie with a soundtrack consisting entirely of AC/DC songs and a cameo by his wife, Tabitha King. Even though King directed the entire movie himself, even he couldn’t bring himself to defend it, calling it a “moron movie.” It was so bad that he swore off directing for the rest of his life, and as far as I know, he stuck to that promise.

This is possibly one of the best worst movies in existence. Written, directed, starring, and produced by Tommy Wiseau, this is the ultimate proof that passion for something does not necessarily translate into talent. The Room should be shown in every introductory film class as a prime example of everything you shouldn’t do when you make a movie. If you can think of it, you can pretty much assume it’s in this movie…terrible, wooden acting; incoherent plot; unnecessary, overlong sex sequences with a terrible soundtrack; awful, hackney writing. The only thing this movie is missing is godawful special effects, but it feels like Wiseau is so obsessed with being taken seriously that he would never have thought of dipping into genre fiction. The movie is so bad that it’s developed a cult following of people who do nothing but mock it.

So, many things wrong with The Room are also wrong with Birdemic, so I don’t really need to cover them here. The one thing Birdemic has that The Room doesn’t is just terrible, awful, horrible special effects. I cannot imagine anyone ever watching a finished cut of this movie and assuming that the audience would do anything but laugh at them. It looks like someone who has no idea how birds work just copy pasted terrible CGI birds everywhere. They hover in the air and rotate 360 degrees for no apparent reason. Birds are not hovercraft. I can’t believe I even had to write that. Of course, that would make a lot more sense since they also spit acid and explode when they hit the ground. I have to wonder if James Nguyen, the director, producer, and writer (I hope you’re starting to see a pattern here) of this movie had ever actually seen a bird before in real life.

Let me just open this by saying if you haven’t seen Troll 2, watch Troll 2. Then go watch Best Worst Movie, the documentary about Troll 2. This movie was so bad it got its own documentary, and the movie makes so much more sense after you’ve seen the documentary. The leading woman is actually crazy. So was one of the extras, who was a patient in the mental hospital and high on marijuana the entire time. The leading man is a dentist with no acting experience. The director, Claudio Fragasso, could barely speak English, and neither could the crew. His wife, who created the story, hated vegetarians and was annoyed that her friends had become vegetarians and so made a script about evil vegetarian goblins. Everything just compounds until you’re left with a low budget train wreck that is impossible not to gawk at.

This movie was made by Uwe Boll. That’s really all you need to say about it; the man is a notorious hack with a history of butchering video games as he tries to translate them onto the big screen. House of the Dead is one of the earliest examples of this, featuring clips from the actual video game spliced into scene cuts for no reason. As if that wasn’t obnoxious enough, Boll also included them in one of the big action sequences of the movie, jumbling terrible video game graphics into a fight scene. Of course, even if they hadn’t included that, the fight scene was terrible and pretty much unnecessary. It just feels like Boll realized that he needed a gun battle and Asian woman named Liberty wearing an American flag patterned jumpsuit kung fu fighting a bunch of zombies.

I hesitate to really include this because as a rule, I kinda hate mockbusters. If you’re going to make a terrible movie, make a terrible movie. Make it because you think it’s funny or because you’re honestly trying to make a good movie and you fail miserably. Don’t just try to convince some poor old grandmother that this is totally the movie her grandchildren has been going on about. And that’s pretty much what The Amazing Bulk is, an attempt to cash in on The Incredible Hulk. And it shows. This movie has terrible acting, special effects that look like a bunch of hideous clipart animations and cobbled it together into a movie. The only thing they’re banking on is confusion between their movie and something that actually counts as cinema.

To really understand this movie, you have to understand Neil Breen. Breen isn’t so much a writer or an actor or producer as he is an architect with a self-insertion fetish and delusions of grandeur. Breen has never been to film school or acting classes, and he finances all of his movies himself. He also writes, directs, and stars in them too. In I Am Here Now, Breen plays cyborg alien Jesus–and no I am not exaggerating that statement. The movie opens with Breen wandering around in the middle of the desert in a white robe and a circuit board glued to his chest. It gets worse from there when you slowly realize that this guy has pretty much made this movie to stroke his ego as hard as he could because the entire movie features Breen preaching his own brand of self-insertion moral superiority.

What is it with movies and having a white guy cast as a part that should probably go to an Asian guy? With a title like Samurai Cop, you’d expect maybe an asian man in the San Francisco Police Department who was trained to be a martial arts master and also a master detective. Instead we get some white guy with a katana who was trained in Japan. With all it’s straight to video appeal, I still couldn’t get through this without wondering how they couldn’t find someone that speaks Japanese in LA, and why they needed a sword master to fight a gang. I’m pretty sure you don’t need an Italian fencer to fight the mafia. But then, how else would they lead up to the climatic fight between mob boss and cop both armed not with guns but katana?

Imagine taking everything a teenager thought was awesome in the eighties and condensing it down into one godawful movie and mixing it together with the heavy anti-drug message of the era. That is the essence of Miami Connection. The villains in this movie are a gang of motorcycle riding ninja drug dealers. No, seriously. They don’t just know martial arts. They literally dress like stereotypical ninja. I don’t know if it’s possible to get a more quintessentially 80s villain. But then, who are our heroes? University students who know tae-kwon-do and are all part of a synth rock group called Dragon Sound. If it were possible to overdose on 80s culture, I’m pretty sure I’d be seizing on the floor right now while my friend wearing a blazer with the sleeves rolled up called 911.

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About the Creator

Stephen Hamilton

Definitive movie buff. Quickly realized that it was more financially prudent to write about film than trying to beg for millions of dollars to make his own.

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    Stephen HamiltonWritten by Stephen Hamilton

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