Take The Ridiculous Film Challenge!

People are always talking about what the worst movies ever are, or what are the most ridiculous, and I usually find such lists unfair because they’re always polluted by B-movies and cheap indie flicks, but you can’t expect such films to be always good when they’re working on shoe-string budgets.  For instance, people are always calling Plan 9 from Outer Space the worst film ever, but at least that movies watchable (I should know since I’ve seen it three times).  What I thought I’d do is make a list of ridiculous and borderline unwatchable films off the top of my head.  I frequently rewatch movies, but I can’t bring myself to rewatch any of these.  If any of you can watch these films, or rewatch them, or remember them well, I’d like it if you write your thoughts in the comments box at the bottom of the post.  I’d like to go ahead and make this an open forum, so I’ll only block your comment if there’s swearing (trying to keep Coreysbook PG–I know I’m lame).

So in no particular order…

Waterworld:  This might just be the hardest film to sit through.  I’ve considered rewatching it because I love Dennis Hopper, especially when his performances are over the top, but I just can’t force myself to hit play.  This is so bad it’s good, but only for a little while.  The film goes on forever and a day.  Also, do you remember when the guy eats dung at the start of Rob Roy?  Here, Kevin Costner starts the film by drinking pee.  The idea is that he has a little machine that purifies the machine, but he’s in the middle of an ocean, couldn’t he just purify salt-water?  Maybe drinking pee is something us land-lubbers don’t understand.

Powder:  I love Powder just because it provides me with a lot of jokes.  For instance, if I see a person who’s extremely pale, I’ll joke to friends “See Powder over there…” and everytime I go into the attic I think to myself “What is this, Powder?”  If I remember correctly Powder lives in the attic.  Or was it the basement?  I can’t watch this again to find out.

Michael:  Why in the world did a scientologist insist on making a film where he plays the archangel Michael?  Why did anyone make this film?  This was part of that 90s craze where it was popular to make films about people with super powers who did nothing with them, like Powder as well as the next film on the list…

Phenomena:  Travolta released this gem… no, cubic zirconium…  no, lump of coal right around the time he made Michael.  This is the one where he has superpowers that turn out to be (SPOILER) side-effects of a brain tumor.  How many guys with brain tumors watch this and think, “Why can’t I move things with just my mind?”  I feel like we should re-edit How Stella Got Her Groove Back and give Whoopi Goldberg laser-vision or give Tom Hanks in Philadelphia ice-breath.  That’s the world as Phenomena depicts it.

Total Recall:  I know what you might be thinking…  “Hey Total Recall was pretty good, it has Arnold Schwarzenegger pulling a football sized tracking device out of his nose…”  But if you think it’s good, you obviously don’t have total recall.  Sure, there are a few uber-ridiculous scenes, but the film just goes on and on and by the time it’s over, it is the post-apocalyptic future.  Also, it’s based on a Philip K. Dick story that’s actually really good, and I hate to see it slaughtered by Arnold here, even if it’s with a machine gun.

Sex and the City 2:  There was more product placement in this movie than most Sears catalogues.  Whenever the ad executives sat down and wrote the script, they weren’t thinking here’s a place for a good joke, they were thinking here’s a place to insert a Prada bag.  This is such a wretched film.  It’s one we should use to scare murderers in prison like Alex in A Clockwork Orange.  The thing is, the show itself was pretty funny, but the film is joke-free.

The Taking of Pelham 123:  You know once I start thinking about John Travolta, I realize just how much ridiculous garbage the guy has put out.  This is one where Travolta insists on playing a psychotic, manipulative villain and Vinnie Bobarino at the same time.  Worse, this movie makes you think it’ll be like Speed.  It involves the heist of a subway train, so you’d think it’d be a high-octane thriller–False. The subway isn’t even moving for the entire heist.  Travolta also has one of the dumbest lines in film history “Kiss my bunghole Mother——.”  This movie just came out not that long ago.  I haven’t heard bunghole uttered by anyone but Beavis.

Battlefield Earth:  The sad thing is, I have seen this twice.  The second time was like “Did I really see that?” or “Could a movie really be that lousy?”  I really don’t mean to pick on Travolta, it’s just once I wrote down his name, all these bad things came back like a septic tank on the fritz.  I enjoyed his work on Welcome Back Kotter at least, and Look Who’s Talking Now is a guilty pleasure.  Battlefield Earth is beyond bad, and I’m not even criticizing it for the idealogy it espouses.  It’s just bad as a film.  The main character’s name is, for crying out loud, Johnny Goodboy.  Most of the movie just involves Johnny Goodboy being taunted in a prison cell by aliens that are basically dumbed down versions of the Koopa Troopas from the Super Mario Brothers movie (another ridiculous film, but I wouldn’t mind rewatching it).  The thing is, if given the opportunity I’d switch places with Johnny Goodboy just so I wouldn’t have to watch Johnny Goodboy on screen.

Deep Blue Sea:  In the spirit of full disclosure, I am going to rewatch this movie.  Some of my friends haven’t seen it and don’t believe me when I talk about how ridiculous it is.  For some reason, it’s like the producers got together and asked, what’s scarier than sharks?  Sharks given performance enhancing drugs!  So the villains of this film are the Barry Bonds and Jose Cansecos of the undersea kingdom, and they’re out to get people who for some idiotic reason decide to live alongside them.  One positive thing about this movie: it gave the world LL Cool J’s Deepest Bluest, one of the most ridiculous things ever that I just had to create a youtube parody of.

Okay those are all the ridiculous films I feel like writing about now.  I might list off some more in the future.  If you have any thoughts on these ridiculous films, go ahead and write them down in the comments box.  Jokes are great too if you have them.  Remember, even though these films were ridiculous, they still cost more than any one of us are likely to see in our lifetimes, so I can see no reason why parodying them is off-limits.

If you found this at all funny, you might want to also read my write up of ID4: Independence Day.

Ad for the book of short stories by Corey Pung


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