The Top 20 Movies You Hate To Admit You Love
Lets face it; movies, music, TV, wresting, videogames- they're all extremely subjective hobbies. Within them can come mountains of gold or mountains of crap- sometimes in equal measure. But, with any form of entertainment can come the so-called "guilty pleasures"- you know what they are. They're the movies, games, music, etc, with that "so bad its good" quality that helps override any natural distaste you would otherwise have towards them. These are the forms of entertainment you hide from people, the movies you keep on the lowest shelf, the kinds of things you don't like to talk about at parties, the pieces of shit that have wormed their way into your heart and cuddled up next to your unconscious mind- somehow convincing you that they're good.
You can lie to yourself. You can beg to your friends to just "give it a second chance" but make no mistake, these are your guilty pleasures. And now I'm going to spelunk the minds of middle-America to attempt to dig out the top-twenty guiltiest of guilty pleasures. Wish me luck- for when I return from this expedition into the pits of insanity I could be a shattered man.
20. Mighty Morphing Power Rangers: The Movie
What Is It? The natural culmination of America's fascination with second-run Japanese children shows. We all know what the Power Rangers are. But this; this is the Power Rangers on a medium sized (more expensive than a Happy Meal) budget. And its pretty obvious the people making it didn't know what to waste it on first; a completely extraneous "sky-boarding" (their word not mine) sequence, a fight scence against a bunch of purple creatures (made out of what appears to be that goopy stuff you get from a gumball machine) that splatter on impact, and a cutting edge CGI Powerzord that looks like the most cutting edge Nintendo 64 cutscene graphics ever top off the most ludicrous bits. The acting and story are about as good as you'd expect them to be; which is, if you've ever seen the show, not good.
I don't want to go into too many details, mostly because living through this monstrosity of a movie once is enough. But lets just say, a new bad guy named Ivan Ooze (yeah, that's actually his name) a big purple dude with a bad attitude is discovered in an egg buried underneath Angel Grove. He takes over from Rita Repulsa and Lord Zedd- the two idiots who were in charge before, breaks into the Power Ranger's command center, wrecks up the place and critically injures Zordon- the Ranger's leader. The Ranger's begin to lose their powers and need to get in touch with the "true source of thier power"- the animal's inside of them to regain them. Somehow this involves going back in time, meeting up with the mandatory "wake Dad up a bit" hot chick, fighting dinosaur skeletons, human-like bird creatures, and big dudes made of rock. All this leads to them becoming ninjas, or something. If that made any logical sense to you let me know. If anything the sub-plot about the Rangers going back in time is an excuse to do two things; extend the plot further than it logically should, thereby extending the running time and to show off the film's overinflated budget by having not one, but three big action scenes. The worst part of all this is hearing the mandatory hot chicks spew her pseudo-animism bullshit for several scenes as she's helping the Rangers get in touch with their animal selves. Its like every bad "Indian Spiritualism" talk in a Steven Seagal movie, but somehow made ten times stupider by the fact the woman speaking it looks like your average FHM model.
But that's not the worst part. Not by a long shot. On Earth Ooze has been brainwashing the adults of Angel Grove into digging up his own version of the Ranger's robots- by handing out enchanted bottles of purple ooze disguised as a wizard at the local carnival. Of course the Ranger's return just in time to stop Ooze and his ugly CG robot by throwing it into the path of an incoming Haley's Comet. Yeah, they spent all that time becoming "ninjas" and spewing faux-animism talk only to throw Ooze into Haley's Comet. They didn't even use the powers they wasted forty-five fuckin' minutes obtaining. That's like Voltron taking five minutes to form the Flaming Sword only to beat up their opponent with a baseball bat. That's like the Scooby-Doo gang setting up a complex trap to catch the old dude in a mask only for Fred to punch him out and take his mask off, instead.
What's the damn point?
Make no mistake about it, this movie is a complete cash-in. The Power Rangers were the hottest thing going at the time, and box-office receipts were almost guaranteed despite quality or review scores. I can almost see why someone might like it. The action is decent, and with the right twinge of nostalgia brewing in the back of your mind it might almost be worth it. But make no mistake about it, this movie is a piece of shit.
I Should Feel Guilty, Why? Because, despite a palatable couple of action scenes The Mighty Morphing Power Rangers Movie is about the most juvenile garbage you can watch. The plot makes no logical sense, the acting is atrocious, and Ivan Ooze, who's a pretty cool character actually, is woefully underutilized after the first act. Nostalgia for the old series should be your only reason for wasting your time on this windowed abortion of a motion picture.
What Is It? Only the manliest damn movie to ever be manly. Jean Claude Van Damme flexes his acting skills- such as they are, by playing a world-class martial artist who enters the "Kumite"- an illegal underground fighting league, where serious injury or death aren't uncommon, but expected. This is a movie for guys who like movies. There's not a broad to be found except good looking ones. There's not much talking, not a lot of plot, and enough ass-kicking to fill up several lesser movies. The acting- such as it is- is pretty atrocious. The plot; virtually non-existent. Every "actor", with the exception of the incredibly out-of-place Forest Whitaker seems to be hired for their ability to play fight and do kung-fu. And, really the "characters" they're playing are really no better. There's a bunch of unamed fighters, the quintessential Yokozuna type Sumo, the squirrly little black guy who fights like a monkey, and the Tank Abbott style slugger with a Harley Davidson shirt, leather jacket, mullet, and beer gut. All the bases are covered. Van-Damme is easily the least interesting of the bunch; he's stoic, cold, calculating, and chock full of goofy one-liners. The "Tank Abbot" dude is Van-Damme's buddy. And he does what Van-Damme's buddies always do; get beat up and give Van-Damme an excuse to be really vicious in the final big fight.
And that's really all there is to it. Van-Damme, as Frank Dux fights people. Various other people fight other people. In the end Van-Damme comes up against the odds on favorite, a big ripped Chinese guy whose head is seemingly hard enough to break a man's hand, as evidenced in a scene where Van-Damme's buddy, a "Hacksaw" Jim Duggan lookalike suffers a severe head injury after trying to headbutt him.
As you could probably guess by the fact this movie's star is Jean Claude Van-Damme and not some no-name Chinese guy, Dux wins. He avenges his friend's injury and then shares a heart-warming scene in the hospital where he gives him a manly hug and a very manly kiss on the cheek (???)
To make things even better, this movie is supposedly based on a true story. Yeah, I'm sure. IMDB's trivia section for this movie states that the real Frank Dux did do some fight choreography for the film. But that only proves he's real- not all the shit that happened.
I Should Feel Guilty, Why? Because- and guys I think we can all admit this, Bloodsport is the epitomy of a guy movie. We can live vicariously through Van-Damme, living out our fantasies of kicking ass and taking names in equal measure. There's nothing wrong with that. But this movie's still a pretty big pile.
I mean, you want proof?
There's not a drop of estrogen to be found here....
This man eats fear for breakfast and danger for dessert.....
18. The Devil's Rejects
What Is It? Shock-rocker legend Rob Zombie's follow-up to his abysmal House Of 1,000 Corpses. Rejects ups the ante by being more violent, more disgusting, more crass, and a hell of a lot more fun -- in that, "I should take a shower" kind of way- than House could ever hope to be.
Starring Rob's hot wife Sheri Moon Zombie, as Baby, legendary cult-hero Sid Haig as Captain Spaulding, and Tobe Hooper alum Bill Mosely as Otis B. Driftwood "The Devil's Rejects" is a chase movie from its opening moments as the police bust into the "Firefly House" gunning down everyone they can get to. In the end only Baby and Otis escape. Their "mother" is taken away to prison. Their "brother" is gunned down. And their other "brother" is simply nowhere to be found.
From there Rejects goes overboard with the insanity from the fifth minute of the film to the climactic end. As the "Devil's Rejects" run they meet up with a traveling band who they take hostage in a hotel room. The scene that follows, which includes forced oral sex by Otis, and the placement of a gun barrel in a very "uncomfortable" place exemplifies the term "guilty pleasure". This is easily the longest "non-chase" sequence in the film and it takes things in some uncomfortable directions. Of note is the fact that Priscilla Barnes spends the entire twenty-minutes of screen-time completely naked.
The story follows a simple path from there; the Rejects run as Sheriff Wydell (played by William Forsythe) follows them. Along the way a lot of people die- including Wydell and The Rejects themselves. Wydell's death is perhaps the most shocking; his neck is simply snapped by the Reject's brother Tiny (Matthew McGrory) in a completely matter-of-fact way. He doesn't even get the chance to put up a fight. The Reject trio get the most "heroic" death in the picture, as they're gunned down to Lynrd Skynrd's "Freebird" when they make their last big suicide run at a police blockade.
In a way, The Devil's Rejects is the best guilty pleasure movie in a long time. It takes the vibe of 70's horror and exploits it to its fullest extent. There's 70's horror cameos galore including Ken Foree (Of Dawn Of The Dead fame), Micheal Berryman (Jupiter in Wes Craven's The Hill's Have Eyes), PJ Soles (producer, writer and Michael Myer's hands in Halloween) and Brian Posehn among many others. There's the rocking 70's tunes that you'd never admit to liking amongst your friends. Every little thing, from the dialogue, to the sets, to the acting make the whole thing feel as if it was plucked from some dingy shit hole movie theater in the middle of the 70's.
Along with a lot of superficial stuff, Rejects stays true to its campy 70's roots and ups the ante with the violence. Some of it's so over the top you can't help but laugh, but at times it can almost get uncomfortable to watch. The aformentioned rape scene bothered Bill Mosely so much he almost refused to participate. There's a scene where Wydell brutally stabs Mother Firefly to death as she's handcuffed, and its framed almost as if he's stabbing into her baby maker. When Wydell finally catches the three Rejects he tortures them to the point of almost making them seem sympathetic. Rejects is the kind of movie that doesn't shy away from the violence. Its presented full on, without a hint of remorse or guilt, and it loves it.
Make no mistake about it, The Devil's Rejects is a mean-spirited movie. Its main characters are three psychopaths with a criminal history longer than the U.S. Constitution. Our "hero", Wydell, is a deranged lunatic who's almost as bad as the crazies he's after. There isn't a single truly sympathetic character in the whole picture. The end, which results in every main character dieing is simply there to remind you of the blanket of nihlism this movie sleeps under. There's no-one worth rooting for, virtuous enough to envy or to keep alive. Frankly, we're better without these people.
I Should Feel Guilty, Why? Because this is easily the most offensive, mean-spirited, and degrading movie in the last several years. Its violent as sin and loves it. And it takes that corny 70's horror vibe and revels in it. There are few movies out there offensive enough to almost drive viewers away, but that are in turn sickly fascinating enough to keep them watching. The Devil's Rejects is just that kind of movie. Its got a car-crash quality, maybe its entertaining to some- but its damn sure not "good" by any traditional means. It makes me want to take a shower after its all over. This is not a movie that wants to like you. You shouldn't like it.
What It Is. Just another in a long line of bad Alien rip-offs and retreads. Hybrid stars a no-name cast of assorted nobodies in a story so simple and manufactured I'm surprised it wasn't written by a damn computer.
A group of assorted military soldiers hook up with a drifter named McQueen on a post-apocalyptic Earth. They head inside an abandoned research facility, seeking refuge from an approaching ion storm. I don't know what an ion storm is, but they seem to get a lot of them in the future. Those poor suckers in Soldier could time there watches by them for Christ sake.
Once "safely" inside the group sets up shop for the night, hoping to wait out the storm and repair their damaged vehicle. From here the movie moves into familiar territory- as the research base isn't quite abandoned. There's one big, ugly guy in a rubber suit left and he pursues our heroes in the most perfunctory fashion possible. He takes out the gruff mechanical engineer first, and then follows that up with an entree of generic red shirt, the so-called bad ass, and etc. until the pre-requisite final couple manage to destroy the creature with a well placed bomb. Its pure Ridley Scott wannabe stuff, nothing too terrible, just unremarkable.
The monster itself is a sight to see; he (it?) looks like a Godzilla costume if someone accidentally covered it in that green goop you can get from a gumball machine for a quarter. To be fair, you only get a couple quick full looks at the monster, but its enough to make you realize that anything aside from a couple quick looks would've been too much.
And to be completely honest the movie moves at a quick clip. It doesn't overstay its already tenuous welcome, and there's much worse out there.
And the lesbian shower scene helps move things along nicely.....
What, did I forget to mention Hybrid's one true stand-out scene? The scene that justifies its entire existence. Well, for those of you not aware Hybrid contains a fairly lengthy and fully nude (duh, right?) shower scene between its two female leads. About five minutes into the film everyone splits up and the two hot commando chickies wind up finding someone's private quarters, and then, in a scene straight out've a softcore Cinemax porno wash each other's "private quarters" for about five minutes. Its hot. Its why I developed carpal tunnel at the age of twelve and why my right hand currently looks like an arthritic monkey's paw. Its why my right arm can lift a car.
I can make snarky jokes about the acting, the bad special effects, or the predictable ending, but whats the point? After the first five minutes there's no reason to watch it anymore, anyway.
I Should Feel Guilty, Why? Oh, I think you know. The movie itself is a complete "whatever". You know the real reason you're renting/buying/downloading it. You want some monkey spanking action on some boring, lonely night. That's okay. I won't tell
16. Jason X
What Is It? The precise nadir of the vaunted Friday The 13th franchise. Jason X sees Jason Voorhees follow the example of such horror "luminaries" as Pinhead and that little Leprechaun bastard -- taking his brand of slice 'n' dice murder into the confines of a space-station. Yes, its Jason in space. Its better than "Jason on ice", but just barely.
The story, as you'd imagine, with setting up such an asinine premise, is incredibly stupid. Its the near future, and Jason is being held at the "Camp Crystal Lake Research Facility" (*cough* a Science facility in Jersey? *cough*). Of course, the hot chick scientist, Rowan (not Atkinson -- though that would be awesome), wants to keep him there. Apparently, he's capable of rapidly regenerating skin cells or somesuch, which is a very scientific reason for explaining why he's lived through nine movies of him getting his ass kicked by some big-breasted chick. Of course, some evil government spook wants him (for reasons never really made clear). Predicatably, during the transport process Jason gets loose and kills about nine people in twelve seconds before chasing after Rowan. Its like every Friday The 13th movie in history, only on fast-forward.
Eventually Rowan manages to cryogenically freeze both herself and old hockeypuss. Yes, its like Futurama. No, it won't be as funny.
Flash forward a couple thousand years later and the Earth is a mess (damn ion storms, Earth must feel like the cast of Hybrid.) As it turns out a group of students are on an archeological dig in the bowels of the old "Camp Crystal Lake Research Facility" -- its a small world, ain't it? There they find the frozen carcasses of both Jason and Rowan. They decide to take both bodies aboard their ugly CGI space-base, apparently not caring (or noticing) that Rowan has a massive wound in her abdomen and Jason is frozen in place with a giant honkin' machete in his hand!!!
I thought people in the future were supposed to be smarter......
Anyway, I'm spending way too much time on a plot that the writers probably spent a joint on. So, eventually Jason defrosts, not unlike a TV dinner, and goes crazy with the killing.
(Oh, and before I go on I should probably mention that I have no recollection of any character names. The acting, typical of this type of movie, is so bad very few characters are worth remembering by name. Anywho, back to your regularly scheduled program..... )
And here's the best part; its on a space-station, so he's got all kinds of new tools to play with. His first "real kill" comes when he freezes some chick's head with liquid nitrogen and smashes her face apart on a table. The rest of the kills are more of his normal modus operandi (to quote the late Gorilla Monsoon) -- stabbing, neck snapping, throat slicing, etc.
Eventually, after killing a bunch of nobody teens, a group of "crack commandos" are sent to deal with him. They have about as much luck as any average stoned, drunk, or stupid teenager -- which is to say not much.
One scene in particular emphasizes why this movie is a walking, talking joke; a marine tries to go hand to hand with Jason and gets knocked over a railing and impaled on a giant drill. When someone asks how that guy's doing another marine "comically" replies, "he's screwed".......
Eventually after what seems like hours of pointlessly boring stalking and killing, the surviving few teens realize they've got a cyborg with them.
That's something I neglected to mention earlier. In the future blow-up dolls are apparently obsolete, as evidenced by the fact one of the teens has a hot cyborg girlfriend. He's tapping some metal ass. She even has detachable nipples. Lets move on....
So she, along with her guns and her firearms fucks up Jason's world. After blowing his legs off, and blowing his head off with a missile the survivors think they can celebrate. And fans of bad movies do too......
If you know what's coming up don't worry, you've seen it. But for those of you not initiated with this I present to you "Uber Jason".
Not content to simply rip off Alien, director Sean S. Cunningham goes as far as to ape The Terminator as well. And he looks cheap. His right arm appears to be wrapped in tin-foil, and his mask appears to be silver-painted styrafome.
The way the contrive to bring him back is actually worse, though. Apparently Jason's spirit caused an electrical surge which in turn activated a life-support and repair system. Don't ask me why it made him a tin-foil robot though.....
The movie hits its set trajectory from here. The few surviving teens run and "Uber Jason" gives chase.
The one decent scene in the entire movie happens within the last fifteen minutes. As "Uber Jason" continues his unrelenting(ly boring) pursuit somebody decides to punch up a hologram to distract him.
Not to spoil it, but this scene reduces the entire Friday The 13th franchise to a simple, four second, throw-away gag, soundbyte.
Jason sees through the hologram, by literally seeing through it. Eventually the teens escape as Jason and the marine seargant tumble towards what I can only assume is our "new Earth", having a fist-fight in space.
Really, I've got nothing more to add here.....
"We love pre-marital sex..."
I Should Feel Guilty, Why? I might have railed on this movie a bit -- okay, a lot. But its still fun inspite of itself. Its loud, quick-paced, and bloody. There's titties and gore. Its everything you could look for in a Friday The 13th movie. Its good dumb fun. You can like it -- just don't be proud to admit it.