Four Movies So Bad, They’re Good

There was a time when I found no joy in terrible movies. I was raised to appreciate good films, and to see through the crap that the monkeys we call movie producers often fling at the screen in hopes that it will stick. As I grew older, though, I also grew wiser. I began to see the subtle joy I could feel from watching terrible movies. Instead of running from them, I embraced them.

The awkward dialogue, the terrible special effects, the forced romances and emotionally stunted characters. All of it became like a fine wine, and a wine that, for a long while, I chose to bathe in. Whereas some people only sip, and know when to say no, I made myself drunk on bad films, until it finally reached an apex with a film called Birdemic, but more on that later.

The Room

Does bad get any better than this? No. No it doesn’t. But trust me, it takes time to appreciate just how terrible this movie is, and I can forgive anyone who can’t.

This movie is SO bad, that you will watch it the first time, in awe. Everyone does. You will be in awe that anyone thought this was acceptable. You will be in awe that the performances in this film were ever actually allowed to be seen by anyone. You will be awed by some of the most uncomfortable love scenes you have ever seen. You will be in awe of the lack of continuity and the plot lines that are mentioned and allowed to fall away like sink holes. And then, as you sit there in awe, something snaps.

And it all becomes pure comedy gold.

To give you an idea just how unfathomably terrible this film is, let me show you just one scene. I need to warn you, lay some plastic bags around your laptop right now, because this clip is so bad, it oozes shit.


Every single, conceivable thing that could be done wrong in a film is done wrong here.

That single clip is only nineteen seconds long, and you can list an indefinite number of things that is wrong with it:

The syncing of the  audio in the scene is off.

The forced, odd dialogue exchange between the two characters.

The rushed pacing of the scene for no reason.

Her initial reaction to Johnny (doesn’t know him and then, by the end, he is her favorite customer apparently).

His interactions with the dog. ” Oh, Hai Doggiee!” I spelled it weird because everything he says sounds weird.

Even if half of us tried, we could not make a scene that terrible. And like I said, that is nineteen seconds of a full length film. But somehow, after multiple viewings, it transcends crap and becomes absolutely hilarious. I would have to say Denny is my favorite character. He is a creepy mix between a child and a man (he looks like he could be anywhere between 16-37 years old) and his undefined relationship with Johnny and Lisa makes no sense in a world littered with things that make even LESS sense.

You want to see just how awkward Denny is? Here you go:


Arghhh, kill it with fire!

And don’t even get me started on Lisa. I truly believe there has never been a less appealing character ever put to film. Not to sound shallow, but she is so ugly that she is hard to watch. Come to think of it, that seems to be a running theme for the film, ugly people. Seriously, though, Lisa looks like a gamorrean guard from Star Wars. Except, we have to watch her have sex multiple times.

This is from a headshot from her actual IMDB page.

From the forced football games (of catch, in tuxedos?), to the films final, staggering moments, this film is so abysmal, that it becomes like magic. This is one film that has a cult following that is completely justified. I honestly could talk about this movie for days, so I better just stop now. Oh wait, one more clip. Keep in mind, this scene is supposed to be serious.


A Streetcar named disgusting.

On a final note, if you can ever find a midnight showing of this, go to it. The fans are almost as die hard as Rocky Horror, and it ends up being an amazing time. David Cross and Patton Oswalt have even held personal viewing parties, just to give you a full idea of the madness surrounding this film.

And don’t get fooled if you see ads billing this as a black comedy. The movie was made with a dead serious tone in mind, and insane filmmaker Tommy Wiseau has taken to calling it a black comedy since he learned people are laughing so manically at it.

Troll 2

I would think even the least internet savvy of you would know to expect this movie on the list. This is one of those movies that has attained a cult following over time for just how completely terrible it is, through and through. Often considered the best worst film ever made, there is even a documentary for it called, well, The Best Worst Movie Ever Made.

For me, the craziest part in all of this is the realization that this movie came out in 1990. Yes, the same year as Goodfellas and Dances With Wolves.

This is not a poor cosplay re-enactment. This is the ACTUAL FILM. Note the consistency between the appearances of the trolls.

This is another movie that is just so overwhelmingly bad, you can’t even fathom how it was made while you are watching it. Every effect is laughable. Every line of dialogue sounds like it was written by 6 year olds. And once you see the documentary about it, and you realize how much of a misfire it truly was on all cylinders, only then can you appreciate it for what it is. Bad art.


Everyone talks about this scene, but no one talks about the fly that lands on his face at the fourteen second mark and stays there. That has always stood out to me.

While I do not have the type of affection for Troll 2 that I do for The Room, I still think it is so terrible it borders on fantastic.

Oh, and this happens:

In attempting to refrain from making a Gumby money shot joke here, I ultimately made a Gumby money shot joke here.

Death Bed: The Bed That Eats

Me having seen this movie was a direct result of how bad the last two films were. and I am infinitely grateful for it. You see, once friends caught wind of the fact that I adored bad films (adored being past tense, which will I will explain later) they began to send me films and bust out weird and rare films when I would hang out with them, just to see what I thought of it. This is one of those films. I truly believed that this was a modern day grindhouse satire when I first saw it a few years ago, it was that awful.

If you think about it, the entire concept is right there in the title. It is a f***ing bed that eats people. And it doesn’t even eat them in a cool way, with giant teeth and a mouth or anything. It just turns them to an odd yellow foam. So really, the bed is more acid filled than an actual bed that eats people, but those are small details.

And while some say the humor is intended in certain scenes (like the hands scene I am about to show you), in other moments in the film, they are obviously going for tension and scares, and the end result still comes across funny as hell.

So you want to understand why I love a film that is so terrible? Please watch this entire scene, and try not to have your mind blown in the process.


This, my good friends, is filmmaking at its finest.

It is a strange journey, unlike any other you have ever experienced. I think the scene when the bed drinks Pepto Bismol is the scene where I realized I had veered of the road of normalcy at frightening speeds, and much to my joy. The only creepy thing about this movie is the fact that someone had the balls to make it. I am weird, though, so I love it.

” I swore I had flesh wrapped around these things a minute ago.”

And if any of you guys do recall the grindhouse sub-genre of films, than you know that at the time, directors were making movies  based around the idea of every possible thing killing people. There were killer cars, killer hands, killer rabbits (shout out to Night of the Lupine), killer fish, killer clowns. Basically, directors were just throwing the word “killer” in front of normal things. And this film, if I can actually call it that, existed because of those types of films.

Thank you, grindhouse. Just thank you.

Similar Posts


  1. “Roadhouse” is one of my wife’s favorite films. Myself, I just can’t get past the entire concept of philosophers getting a gig a bouncers in some jerkwater dive. Unless you want to get into that whole Grasshopper trope, which I don’t see happening her. Truly an awful movie, imho

  2. Before I got into bad/good movies, I tried to take action movies seriously. I was a big action movie fan my entire life, but I actually didn’t like Arnold’s prime film “Commando” because I couldn’t believe how absurd most of it was. Then my friends introduced me to a little movie called “Riki-Oh: The Story of Riki” (can’t recommend this movie enough, GO SEE IT), and a new perspective on film swept over me.

    For anyone that’s into the blaxpoitation films of the 70’s, “Black Dynamite” with Michael Jai White and Tommy Davidson is a hilarious parody/tribute to that sub-genre of film.

    Oh and I would’ve put Toxic Avenger on this list. Also, “Death Race 2000” with Stallone (right before he did Rocky) is another hilarious heap of trash.

  3. The only problem with the Five Movies So Bad, They’re Good list is that I for the life of me can only count four listed before the Honorable Mentions…so I guess the fifth movie is so bad and good at the same time that it is a secret ?

  4. Wow, there is only four movies on this list, huh? I never go back and edit lists after they are published. BUT, had to here. Have no idea how I did that, but thanks for the heads up, guys. Wow, I am doofus.

  5. SHARK ATTACK 3!!!!!!! There’s a come on so WTF awesome that it has become known simply as “The Line”. It used to be a grave breach of internet etiquette to spoil that particular moment by repeating it. Also, it has the most insane laugh until it hurts climax I’ve ever seen. This is a single minute of it.

  6. You’re baiting me to sound like an asshole, but props for the De Laurentiis shout-out. Barbarella is one of the greatest movies of all time. A machine made of vibrators that you play like an organ! Pun intended.

  7. I think for the sake of argument (or discussion) you need a working definition of “a movie that’s so bad it’s good.” To me that means, bad: as in low budget, sub-par acting, silly story line, poor direction, or any combination of those, and good: as in still ends up being entertaining despite those obstacles. And I would differentiate those films from ones that were intentionally made to be bad or campy. So, I would agree with Plan 9, Birdemic, The Room, Showgirls and even Roadhouse, but not with Killer Klowns or any of the Syfy movies. I mean, you can say My Name is Bruce is bad (I don’t think it is but I could see why someone would say that) but he wasn’t trying to make Citizen Kane either. On the other hand, Ed Wood was, and I’m sure Patrick Swazye took Roadhouse pretty seriously at the time. Does that make sense?

  8. @Sara C, ah, so few appreciate the man for the impact he truly had. Haha.
    @ John V, That is a solid point. I guess I made the term a bit more general for the piece, but I can definitely see the dividing line between those movies. Well thought out.

  9. They do a midnight showing of The Room one the first Friday of every month at one of the local theatres where I live. I have honestly never had a better movie experience in my life. My voice was ruined afterwards from laughing so hard, and yelling at the screen along with everyone else in the theatre. Just don’t forget to bring some plastic spoons.

    Birdemic is the quintessential bad movie for me. We started a bad movie appreciation club and this has never been topped. We even did shark night and watched both Shark attack 3 and Sharks in Venice.

    Some other classics which are fairly unknown are Earth Girls are Easy (Geena Davis, Jeff Goldblum and Jim Carrey), and Cool as Ice (Vanilla Ice’s movie).

    Gotta love Wicker Man though. One of my personal favourites. Seeing Nick Cage punch out a bunch of women in a bear suit is gold.

  10. This might be the best list you’ve ever done. I fully expected to have to recommend Birdemic or Troll 2. Very happy to see them included. You should check out the Toxic Avenger as well.

  11. aw man, I can’t believe you didn’t put Thankskilling anywhere on this list! THAT is the worst movie I’ve ever seen, I was barely able to finish it. It’s about an evil killer turkey…who also talks. It’s comedy gold if you watch it with a friend! I haven’t checked recently but it was streaming on Netflix for a while.

  12. i actually OWN killer klowns from outer space……i think basket case and jack frost(not mike keaton but the serial killer snowman)should get honorable mentions.

  13. ohhhhhhhhh!!!!! thankskilling!!!!! yes. another classic i watched that and “teeth” in the same night. teeth is about a vagina. with teeth. that bites people.

  14. Finding a gem of a bad movie among the zero budget, nameless acted films are easy. Don’t get me wrong, I have watched all of these dozens and dozens of times, but they aren’t really “bad” movies given their budgets or their talent pool. These films are pretty much destine to suck.

    No…you want bad…here are my top two. “Wicker Man: The scene chewing”. Simply watch this film, while paying attention to the dialogue is enough to cause an aneurism from laughter. Nicholas Cage spends an entire film checking to see if his cell phone still doesn’t work on a tiny remote island, all the while harassing the local cult and listening to his love interest(?) who perhaps is a moderate functioning coma patient or at least the character was played as such. Its the remake no one asked for, but can’t be denied.

    The other film answers the question “What would Ed Wood do with a $200 million budget and a cult backing it”. I speak of course of “Battlefield Earth” which is by far the most batshit retarded, big money film every created. I can’t even think of my favorite scene…is it Johnny Goodboy walking into a glass window which is so filthy the audience can’t see through it but we are supposed to believe that the character, who has never seen glass, would instinctively ignore reality…or is it the triumph at the end where cavemen learn how to fly 200 year old Harrier Jets to defeat the alien force that originally enslaved the world in two and a half minutes. My brain leaks out of my right ear just thinking of that. What is insane, besides the amount of money spent, is that the cast is pretty damn good. The movie is just a massive train wreck; from story and dialogue, to the nauseating cinematography that should get credit for discovering the shaky cam unintentionally.

    Birdemic, for all its craziness, at least has an excuse…zero money and an insane director/writer/backer.

  15. @Blair, The Room midnight shows are some of the best things ever, hands down. Good call on Earth Girls Are Easy. Furry aliens for the win. Wicker is terribly amazing. I agree, but am saving my sentiments on that film for my future Nic Cage: Best to Worst list.
    @uncoolaidman, thank you very much. Honestly, I had to MAKE myself stop talking about The Room. I forgot how magically bad that film was until I started watching scenes again to do this list.
    @phil, have not seen Thankskilling but definitely will now. Talked to Eli Roth once in depth about him doing his Thanksgiving grindhouse film so I already know I will love that movie.
    @amberrose, how could you leave Kanye for Wiz Kalifa? Wiz is legit, but Kanye is wonderfully manic.
    @kong, Wishmaster 1 was enough for me, but you guys rarely steer me wrong, so I will check it out.
    @Diablo, agreed and agreed, actually. Will have more to say about Wicker Man soon, but you guys seemed to not notice Wicker Man is on here. I specifically mention the shark scene…
    @Charlie, more cred points for truly knowing your stuff, your running tally is 10,000.

  16. Taking into account the acting, the “plot”, the special effects, the editing, the dialogue – all of it – for me the worst part of Birdemic was how damn preachy it was.

  17. Glad you mentioned Manos. I was thinking that throughout the article that it should be in there, somewhere. But I definitely think the movies you picked were worse. I wouldn’t know if I could get through those! (although, without MST3K’s help, I probably wouldn’t have gotten through Manos either.)

    A couple of comments:
    Yes, I wouldn’t scream either if the flesh was being dissolved off my hands in a vat of acid

    And regarding Birdemic: Was that movie seriously not shot in someone’s backyard with their camcorder? Cuz it sure as hell looks like it. o_O
    “Just photoshop the birds in. TRUST ME.”

  18. Dude, you missed out on Transmorphers. Bad BAD acting, horrible sets, terrible FX, and the nail in the coffin? Audio was a full half second slower than the video. The. WHOLE. MOVIE.

    Watch any other movie bad or good, then watch this one. It’s the worst. It’s so bad, it has no chance at being liked.

    I use the disc as a coaster now. I couldn’t return, sell it or give it to anybody else for fear that I’d just get it back somehow. I also wouldn’t subject anybody to that crime of a movie.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.