Rupert Pupkin Speaks: "Bad" Movies We Love Guest Post: Mitch Lovell ""

Saturday, August 18, 2012

"Bad" Movies We Love Guest Post: Mitch Lovell

Mitch can be found and read at The Video Vacuum:
also on twitter @TheVideoVacuum.


As long as there have been movies, there have been bad movies.  I think that’s important to remember.  Hollywood has been grinding out stinkers since celluloid was invented.  And they will continue to do so until the end of time.  No matter how many good movies are made, the bad movies will always outnumber the good.  In honor of Hollywood’s history of bad movies, I’ve selected one film from each decade that speaks to the bad movie lover in me, and I hope; all of you.  I unabashedly love all of these films (some for all the wrong reasons) and have watched them several times over the years.  In fact, I have watched each of them more than any of the Oscar winners for Best Picture from the past ten years.  


The “Scare Films” of the 30’s are a healthy source of bad movie bliss.  This is the most famous and for my money, funniest one.  The shots of wild-eyed Dave O’Brien furiously puffing away at the cursed devil marijuana weed are unforgettable.  And remember, if you smoke pot, it will give you the uncanny ability to play piano like Chico Marx.  TELL YOUR CHILDREN—This movie is hilarious.

THE 40’S:  THE DEVIL BAT  (1940)

Dave O’Brien also appears in this film, but this is Bela Lugosi’s show all the way.  He plays a disgraced scientist who wants to kill all the people who laughed at him.  So he gets back at them in the nuttiest way you’ve ever seen.  First, he gives them some scented aftershave to dab on their neck.  Then he trains his giant ass bat to hate the smell of the aftershave.  Then he unleashes the bat on them and it tears their throat out!  Unbelievable.  And the way Bela says, “Goodbye” to his victims is priceless.  This is just as much fun as Plan 9 if you ask me.


I’m not sure why, but when I close my eyes and think about “bad movies”, the first image that pops in my head is a 50 foot tall Allison Hayes walking through a small town screaming, “HARRY!!!”  Attack of the 50 Foot Woman has everything you could possibly want from a 50’s sci-fi movie:  Aliens, giants, awful effects, and the word “Attack” in the title.  Not only that, but it’s also the first feminist movie of the Atomic Age!  You grow, girl!


The mind boggles at The Horror of Party Beach.  Not only does it contain some of the daffiest monsters ever seen on this or any screen (they look like they have a dozen hot dogs sticking out of their mouth), it also has one of the stupidest heroes ever (he can’t even be bothered to look in the phone book to find a lab that has the substance needed to kill the monsters), one of the least convincing biker gangs in history (they look like French tourists), and some of the whitest white people doing the whitest white people dancing you’ve ever seen.  It DOES have a terrific soundtrack, including the immortal “Zombie Stomp”.  Frankie Avalon never made a Beach Party movie like this. 

THE 70’S:  LET ME DIE A WOMAN  (1977)

There was a temptation to put Glen or Glenda on this list, but Let Me Die a Woman is like a hundred times more off the chain (and graphic) than that flick.  Besides, this movie shows what Glen or Glenda could only hint at:  An actual transgender operation!  But that’s not even the most memorable scene.  That award goes to the scene involving a hammer, a chisel… and a penis.  Do yourself a favor and see it… uncut.

THE 80’S:  ELVES  (1989)

Elves is one of the most insane movies ever made.  It’s all about Neo Nazis creating elves to mate with inbred virgins on Christmas Eve to spawn the Master Race.  (Oh, and there’s only one elf, but… never mind.)  Naturally, the only man who can stop them is Grizzly Adams.  The scene where he busts in on a professor’s Christmas dinner and demands to know the skinny on the Nazi elves is a classic.  This is the only movie I know of that rips off both Chinatown AND Dawn of the Dead.  I love this flick so much that ever since 1994 I’ve made it a tradition to watch it at Christmas time with my family and friends.  It sure beats It’s a Wonderful Life.

 THE 90’S:  JACK FROST  (1997)

Of course the perfect companion piece to Elves is Jack Frost.  I was going to put another movie in this slot, but I just couldn’t write a piece about bad movies from the 90’s without mentioning this film.  If anything else, it features the most impressive acting debut of any actress ever.  Of course I’m talking about Shannon Elizabeth.  Not just anyone could make their screen debut by playing a character that gets raped by a wisecracking killer snowman.  For most actresses, that would’ve been a career ender.  It takes talent to get work after that. 

THE 00’S:  CORKY ROMANO  (2001)

Corky Romano is one of the strangest, yet oddly compelling comedies I’ve ever seen.  Every cell in my brain tells me, “This isn’t funny”, yet somehow this movie never fails to crack me up.  The scene where the sensitive veterinarian-turned-federal agent Corky (played with tireless energy by Chris Kattan) is asked to give a lecture to a bunch of grade school kids after inadvertently snorting a mess of cocaine is a laugh riot.  This movie was universally hated upon release and has long been a go-to shorthand term in Hollywood for describing a bad movie starring an SNL alum.  But, if you’re a lover of bad comedies, this is your Citizen Kane.

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