The Best of the Bad: Bad movies and why we like them

Robert Taylor

When you go to a motion picture, you expect to be entertained. And most movies, to one extent or another, fulfill that task by being well-produced and executed. But every now and then a movie comes along so inept, so completely and utterly bad that you cannot help but take more enjoyment out of it than most good movies. It’s films like these that you put on during a rainy day when you are in a glum mood, or when you want to get drunk with your friends and have something to laugh at or just when you want to mock something. Here are four all-time classic “bad” movies that every person should see before he or she dies.

Bring It On Again

Universal Pictures, 2004

What It’s About: Yes, it’s a sequel to the Kristen Dunst cheerleading comedy. This time around college freshmen can’t get onto the school’s cheerleading squad, so they create their own out of theater geeks and trash bags.

Why It’s So Bad: Imagine Bring It On with bad actors, bad cheerleading and really bad dialogue. The main character jumps back and forth between being a tramp and a good girl between scenes, and all the evil cheerleaders wear pearl necklaces at all times, even when cheerleading, which I’m fairly certain is not something you are supposed to do. Almost every line of dialogue is mockable, and product placement for Diet Coke happens so often that it might as well be another character in the film.

Best Worst Moment: The Bring It On moment, where the main character faces off with the evil demented cheerleader and tells her “Not to get all up in (her) Kool Aid.”


Dimension, 2005

What It’s About: Kevin Williamson and Wes Craven (the Scream guys) reteamed for this modern-day take on the werewolf legend. They set it in Hollywood and tried to make it hip and modern day. It didn’t work.

Why It’s So Bad: The original version was apparently even worse, and major reshoots were needed, and several original actors left (including Mandy Moore and Scott Foley, and if they drop out, you know it’s a stinker). The resulting film has scares that cause laughter instead of shocks, actors trying to sell really disgusting things as normal (Christina Ricci wanders through three hallways sniffing like a dog), and some of the worst mainstream CGI ever. One has to wonder whether Kevin Williamson was more worried about perfecting his “Dawson’s Creek” series finale script and Wes Craven was on some sort of strong medication during shooting.

Best Worst Moment: After being told it has fat thighs, a werewolf flips Christina Ricci off.

Plan 9 From Outer Space

DCA, 1959

What It’s About: Space aliens in pajamas decide to take over the earth by resurrecting zombies in a cardboard graveyard and having them kill a bunch of people.

Why It’s So Bad: The flying saucers are paper plates, the graveyard is full of cardboard gravestones that fall over when the actors run past, and did I mention that the aliens wear pajamas? The film’s major star, Bela Lugosi, died after three days of work, and was replaced with the director’s wife’s chiropractor, who looked nothing like Lugosi and was more than a foot taller (he walks around holding a cape over his face hoping no one will notice).

Best Worst Moment: Paper plate UFOs attack Hollywood and face off with the U.S. military, which is armed with toy tanks that fire sparklers.

Stay Alive

Buena Vista, 2006

What It’s About: A computer game resurrects an evil witch, who kills anyone who plays the game.

Why It’s So Bad: This is Frankie Muniz’s attempt to have a career after “Malcolm in the Middle,” where he plays a computer geek with a visor and gives quite possibly one of the worst performances in a mainstream motion picture ever. The special effects in the video game look more realistic than the actual CGI, and the scares and kills are so obvious you can’t help but laugh. It’s still in theaters, so take a friend and laugh with him or her.

Best Worst Moment: Sophia Bush is chained upside down and tells the CGI witch to “Go %$*@ yourself.”

Contact ALL reporter Robert Taylor at [email protected].