Posts Tagged ‘bad movies


lessons learned

Today I decided to go on an epically bad movie watching binge. Usually when I do this, it’s a theme … like zombies, or vampires, or British … you get the idea.

Today’s theme was “Mega.” This came about after hearing some friends talk about how glorious SyFy’s “Mega Python” movie was (which I didn’t get to see, but it’s on my list). So, on the docket: “Mega Shark vs. Giant Octopus”, “Mega Piranha”, “Mega Shark vs. Crocosaurus”, and lastly, “Sharktopus.”

And here’s some valuable lessons that I learned:

  1. Jump Jump: Prehistoric sharks have tremendous jumping ability. I mean, they are like the Evel Kenievel of the animal world. They jump navy ships with ease, and even jump up to eat commercial jets. Simply amazing for such an obviously heavy animal.
  2. Location, Location, Location: Giant monster animals travel via wormholes to anywhere on the planet. You can tell this because they can go from New Foundland to Tokyo in a matter of seconds. Actually, no one follows the laws of physics and locations … a ship goes down off Africa, guy washes up on shore in a Latin American country. Giant Croc attacks Miami, and then hits Orlando in a matter of minutes. Who knows how this all works?
  3. Beaches = Danger: If you are anywhere near the shoreline, anything could happen. Mega Piranha could fly out and eat you whole … tentacles from Sharktopus could drag you in to the water, a prehistoric croc could come out of nowhere and eat you. But luckily they tend to go after dudebros, bikini bimbos and dumb reporters, so the vast majority of us are safe. I’m sure the Jersey Shore is their prime hunting ground.
  4. Mad Ninja Skills: Monster creatures often sneak up on people. We’re talking you turn around, and BAM, 19,000 ton prehistoric croc is RIGHT. THERE. They can disappear from sonar and radar and satellite at will.
  5. Tactics: When going after killer fish, the best way to go about it is via helicopter.  And from there, machine guns and missiles. If for some reason that doesn’t work, use nukes. If the nukes don’t work, then obviously you have to send in the SEAL teams with the orders to “shoot for the eyes.”
  6. Take your best shot: Navy gunners have no idea of how to shoot at giant monsters. They often man WWII era anti-aircraft guns instead of going for newer, non-manually cranked, surface-targeting weapons.
  7. Science!: Biologists are often the same as chemists are the same as climatologists. And you know you are found success when the mixture starts to glow.
  8. Decisions: When it comes down to it, I think you have to take Debbie Gibson over Tiffany for your monster movie actress. But of course I think I’m basing my decision on the fact that Tiffany looks an awful lot like my dad’s third (now ex) wife. Plus Debbie puts out, Tiffany doesn’t.
  9. Wait, what?: Sometimes bullets don’t work at keeping a monster at bay, but poking it with a large, wet stick will.
  10. Money shot: Syfy will give you plenty of opportunities for senseless, gratuitous nudity, and yet won’t give you any. And that’s just a damned shame.

Altering lives via bad movies

It’s been a rough month. Just too much going on, too many changes, and not nearly enough time to sit back and think about what’s happening. Even my mini-vacation up at Lake Pymatuning felt rushed. But with Cali away for a conference and nothing else planned, I decided I was going to be couch potato and camp out in front of the TV.

Well, it wasn’t a conscious decision, mind you. It was just something that happened. The couch called. I answered.

And it was while flipping through the channels and finding nothing on that I remembered 2 movies on Comcast’s “On Demand” free movies that I wanted to check out. “Vampire on Bikini Beach” and “Vampire Circus”. And in those 3 hours of bewilderment, I have to admit, everything slowed down.

Now, I consider myself to be a big fan of bad movies, and there’s very few that I can’t watch. But these were so bad that they were in a very unique class of “Why was this even made?” and “How far will this ridiculousness go?”

On the label!

On the label!

“Vampires on Bikini Beach” is vintage ’80s California cheese. I mean, ’80s hair, ’80s bikinis, bad ’80s music, lots of neon, 5.25″ floppies and  such a bad plot and dialogue that it transcends all generations. I mean, naturally, if you are abducted by a cult of vampires in LA, and you manage to escape, what’s the first thing you would do? Round up your band buddies and play a gig while the girls try on bikinis! Perfectly rational! In fact, the band plays so often that I pretty much figured that they created such a hackneyed plot JUST to give the band some exposure. And I know this is a bold statement, but this movie could be the worst that I’ve ever seen.

Just ugh. Really.

Just ugh. Really.

I mean, just look at the bad guy here. Or rather, one of the bad guys. Now, when I first saw him, I was all “Is this SUPPOSED to be a guy in a mask, or are they trying to make it like he’s a real creature?”  And the awkward pose? Yeah, get used to it. He does it a lot. Always talking with his head at an angle, which I assume is because of mask difficulties.

And if the devil is the details, the makers of this film really needed to practice their Satanic worship. Like for example, a guy orders a pizza with everything. 5 minutes later, a pizza guy shows up and says, “I got your double meat and cheese.” “Ah-ha!” I thought. “Here’s where we find out he’s one of the bad guys!” But no. The pizza guy leaves and without incident, and the flub was just bad writing.

This movie is, was, and forever will be, pure pain. Though I may have to make Cali watch it just so she can have flashbacks to being in LA.

And then the circus rolled into town. “Vampire Circus” is from 1972, and set in like middle 1800s Serbia. And “simply awful” doesn’t even come close to describing this flick.

Oh you!

Oh you! Stop it!

This one centers around a vampire who was a count who is preying on small children and wives of a small town (which is kind of silly, since this is the most “in the closet” vampire I’ve ever seen). They go after him and “kill” him, but as he dies he curses them. The town will die, their children will die, their flowers will die. We know, we know.

Mysteriously, 15 years later the town isn’t doing well. The neighboring towns have set up roadblocks on the roads to keep them isolated. And guess what rolls into town? A circus! Yay! Carnies always know how to have a good time!

Woo baby.

Woo baby.

The shows are little bit on the odd side, but no one seems to notice. For example, the painted woman and the guy with the whip … it’s more like the town is being subjected to a live sex show than anything I’ve ever seen at the circus. (And trust me, she’s nekkid as nekkid can be.) The crowd isn’t even the least bit suspicious when the performers transform into animals right in front of them. “Oh, he just turned into a bird! Great trick!” Wait? Really?

Oh, you are the man, Emil.

Oh, you are the man, Emil.

I think one of my favorite characters is Emil. He’s the leader of the circus who often tranforms into a panther and is, apparently, a sexual tyrannosaurus. If you’ve ever watched “The Young Ones,” he looks like Rick if you put a different wig on him, and make him a little dirty. And for 3/4 of his appearance, he doesn’t actually talk. He just stands and looks directly into the camera with a shit-eating grin on his face. That’s why I burst out laughing when the young girl he seduces yells at her mother “But Emil is so worldly! He’s not like the stupid boys in this village!” How would she know? He hadn’t even said anything yet!

The other part of this is when the vampires go for the neck. It’s not just a revealing of teeth and a seductive move toward the neck. Oh no, these guys actually bring their heads back, like they’re winding up, and then almost pounce on the neck. Twilight’s characters could learn a thing or two from these guys on how to be “swave” and “sophistimocated.”

Well, after this dip into the horrid end of the cinematic pool, I was pretty much good to go. Laughing that hard was really cathartic. When I rolled into work the next day, I told PPJ about them, since she’s a fan of bad horror, too. She was working an earlier shift, so when she got home, she decided to sit down with a bottle of wine and watch both of them.

Throughout the night on my Facebook and in various texts, PPJ was crying from laughter. At one point she said something to the effect of “I can die happy now.”  So, we’ll see how it’s changed her life when I roll in tonight.

Bad cinema. There’s an art to it, but when done right — it has the power to change lives.


It's as bad as I remember

I had a big night planned — basically, after I got done cooking up a vat of homemade chicken soup and doing other sundry chores, I was going to geek out on my giant LoveSac, pop open a Dogfish Head Punkin, have the fireplace roaring and go on a Venture Brother watching spree. Bliss. Mindlessness. Heaven.

Except it didn’t go as planned. Things took longer than expected. The chicken took forever to cook. I didn’t feel like rounding up other ingredients and making the dumplings. I was tired from 5 hours sleep. And for once in my life, I didn’t feel like watching the Venture Brothers.

Mark that on your calendars.

Cause, you know, be scared nat.

Cause, you know, be scared n'at.

So I started flipping through the On Demand movie list, because I was still in the mood for a rather thoughtless yet entertaining movie, and there’s a plethora in Comcast’s free movies list. And then, near the bottom of the pile was my choice — “The Warriors,” circa 1979.

I really haven’t seen this movie for years. I haven’t even thought of it since, well, quite a while. I think the last time it came up in conversation was when a bunch of us started talking about it at work, and really, the only thing any of us could remember were the “Baseball Furies.”

You bad movie buffs almost certainly know this flick. There’s a big gang conference in New York City. The big gang leader has a plan to unite all the gangs under one rule and take over the entire city. Except a bad guy kills him, and blames it on The Warriors. The Warriors, on the other hand, are trying to make it back from the Bronx to Brooklyn where their home turf is, while the police and every other gang is after them. Rather simplistic plot.

Dude, you may have a bat, but youre still wearing bad make up.

Dude, you may have a bat, but you're still wearing bad make up.

But what really sets this movie apart from just your average bad movie is the costumes. Since this is 1979, these guys are more than just badly dressed — it’s so awful it’s hilarious. For example, the Warriors themselves are fashioned after American Indians. The Rogues (the bad guys) have some gay leather motif going on. There’s guys dressed up like mimes, guys wearing overalls and roller skates — really, if I would have been an adult in 1979 and been confronted by any of these gangs, I would have been less than intimidated. In fact, I would have been laughing at them.

I mean, seriously, watch the movie and tell me what you would do if a bunch of the Orphans came up and started hassling you. Or even the fearsome Baseball Furies. And really, would you stop to make out with the Lizzies? (Speaking of the Lizzies, they were the least motivated gang I’ve ever seen. They’re shooting at the Warriors in a 20×20 room, the Warriors bust out of a back door, and the Lizzies are all like, “Man, we lost ’em” WITHOUT LEAVING THE ROOM. No chase, no nothing! Christ on a pony, ladies, go to the steps and throw stuff at them as the run away!) Watching all of these gangs in action made me laugh hysterically — the kimonos, the bad kung fu, the dialogue (“We’re gonna get Japped!”) — you couldn’t even come close to making a movie this bad if you tried.

Warriors...come out and play...

"Warriors...come out and play..."

But if there was one consolation, I did recognize one actor: The leader of the Rogues.  And it was because of his voice. He’s Doyle, the leader of one of the gangs in the Bruce Willis epic “Last Man Standing,” and also a gang member in “The Crow” (T-Bird, the guy who gets duct-taped in his car and blown up). His real name is David Patrick Kelly. Of course, while pulling up this info, I had to look at his age — he’s like 857 now (minus the 800). Cripes! And he’s got about a billion other roles. Wow, Dave, you’ve come a long way since this illustrious start!

So, if you have the time and the inclination, this flick is a much watch. So painfully awful that you can’t help but stay tuned for more. I may have to watch it again, just to give me hysterical dreams tonight. Wow. Who knew pain could be this much fun?

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