Can we be frank? Can we get down to what’s really real here? There are a lot of good movies out there. There are lots of great blogs about liking those movies. And there are plenty of blogs about people who go to see a bad movie and tell you all about why it was bad. But then there’s the little dark secret we never talk about. There are those bad movies that, for one reason or another, find their way into our at-home film collections. Whether it was just an impulse grab out of a bargain bin, a convenient thrift store find, or even just a film you have to own because that one part of that one scene perfectly sums up that one summer for you. So here I go, baring my soul for you all to see, and yes, these are all movies that I actually own.
The Three Musketeers (1993)
Charlie Sheen, Kiefer Sutherland, and Oliver Platt play Aramis, Athos, and Porthos in this Disneyfied version of the Alexandre Dumas classic. Chris O’Donnell plays D’Artagnan, Tim Curry as the villainous Cardinal Richelieu, and Rebecca De Mornay when she still had a career and was a sex symbol.
Why I own this one: I love a good swashbuckling tale, and when you throw in some romance I am a happy ninja.
Bonus: The song at the end has another great 3-way team up of Bryan Adams, Sting, and Rod Stewart singing All for Love!
Best part: Tim Curry. TIM FRACKING CURRY. ‘Nuff said.
Worst part: Watching Rebecca de Mornay try to act against Tim Curry.
Suburban Commando (1991)
Hulk Hogan is an alien warrior who crash lands on Earth and has to make repairs to his ship before he can get back to busting baddies. Christopher Lloyd and Shelly Duvall play the boring couple that take him in as a boarder and have their safe life turned upside down. Hilarity ensues.
Why I own this movie: I am a huge sucker for campy humor, and this is chock full of it.
Best part: Lloyd and Duvall are great in this film, and the Undertaker plays one of the alien thug guys going after Hogan.
Worst part: The kids.
National Lampoon’s Loaded Weapon 1 (1993)
A spoof of Lethal Weapon with what could be the greatest cast ever assembled for a crappy movie. Emilio Estevez and Samuel L Jackson play the cop duo, Kathy Ireland as the love interest, William Shatner, Tim Curry and Denis Leary as bad guys, and cameos with Jon Lovitz, Whoopi Goldberg, Bruce Willis, Christopher Lambert, Erik Estrada, Phil Hartman, Corey Feldman, Denise Richards and Charlie Sheen.
Reason I own this one: Gags and cheese.
Best part: All the recognizable stars. You never know who you’ll see next…including TIM FRACKING CURRY.
Worst part: the writing is not great and the plot is virtually nonexistent. It just doesn’t have the punch we rightfully expect from the Lampoon.
Fair Game (1995)
The reason I own it: Did I mention I was 15 when this film was released?
Best part: Cindy Crawford is hot and briefly topless.
Worst part: Cindy Crawford is not a great actress.
Do you really need a plot synopsis here? Huge radioactive lizard smashes New York City. Matthew Broderick, Jean Reno, Hank Azaria, and Harry Shearer do a serviceable job, and Maria Pitillo serves as a bit of eye candy.
Why I own it: This one really boils down to some nostalgia. There was a Godzilla pinball machine at my Alma Mater, Texas Lutheran University, and when the Star Wars pinball machine was broken I would sometimes play it.
Best part: Hank Azaria.
Worst part: Godzilla.
The reason I own this one: More nostalgia. I was into techno music for about a year. The year this came out.
Best part: John Digweed’s jam Heaven Scent is about as good as techno got.
Worst part: Instead of a singular plot, it’s a bunch of subplots loosely tied to the event of a rave. It’s just not worth watching for plot. Or really at all. But there it is in my collection.
Hudson Hawk (1991)
Now I happen to know FOR A FACT that I am not the only one who adores this cheesefest featuring Bruce Willis, Danny Aiello, Andie McDowell and James Coburn. Hudson Hawk is the world’s greatest cat burglar and he is forced back into action after just getting out of jail to steal artifacts related to Leonardo Da Vinci in an effort to achieve one of mankind’s oldest goals: turning lead into gold.
Why I own this one: This is a darn funny and irreverent flick.
Best part: A butler character with awesome knife-up-the-sleeve weapons.
Worst part: When it tries to be serious.
Hot Shots (1991)
Another campy comedy, but this time we’ll use Emilio’s brother Charlie Sheen as the lead in this ripoff of Top Gun. From the opening credits to the closing credits (which include a not-too-bad recipe for brownies) this movie just keeps the gags a’coming. Years before they teamed up on Two and a Half Men, Sheen and Jon Cryer were main characters in this flick, with Carey Elwes, Valeria Golino, Lloyd Bridges, and Kristy Swanson rounding out the cast.
Why I own this one: My love of camp humor has now been well established. Why ask at this point?
Best part: The gags are rapid fire.
Worst part: Not all the gags are all that funny.
The Last Dragon (1985)
This one combines my love of camp, nostalgia, and kung-fu in one glorious package. This is another one I don’t expect to get TOO much guff for, as it has achieved status as one of those gloriously bad cult movies. Taimak and Vanity are the lead characters. Yep. Both leads are “one-namers” that nobody remembers. Julius Carry plays the villain “Sho’nuff” with the kind of over the top awesomeness that hearkens back to every kung-fu movie you’ve never seen. Adorable kids Ernie Reyes Jr. and Keisha Knight Pullman have cameos, and there is dancing…GREAT dancing.
Why I own this one: Come on now…I’m a ninja. Of COURSE some kind of kung-fu movie would find its way on here.
Best part: Watching the bumbling antagonists in this film is painful…but it hurts so good.
Worst part: It hurts.
Green Lantern/Green Hornet (2011)
2011 was a great year for horrible comic book movies based on the color of envy. I paid less than ten dollars to get both of them, but yes…I paid actual money for them. These were both some of those bargain bin specials.
Why I own them: I am a huge fan of comic book films, and I had heard that these were not great films, but I figured they were worth seeing for myself. The people who told me they were not good movies were right.
Best part: Kato.
Worst part: Trying to follow the plot of either of these films.
Ernest Goes to Camp (1987)
Ok, I saved the worst for last. Jim Varney as his most well known role as Ernest P. Worrell plays a hapless camp counselor who is given charge of a cabin full of juvenile delinquents, and the camp they love is threatened by a strip miner who wants to tear it all down to look for a valuable mineral.
Why I own this one: I am really at a loss for words on this one. I do love the song “Me and You” which is featured, and the turtle scene is still funny, but I can’t even justify this DVD existing in my collection. I’m going to go put on the Cone of Shame now.
Well, there it is. My soul has been bared for all. Let the mockery commence. Remember before you start pointing your finger and laughing that you too have a few DVD skeletons in your collection. I can take the abuse, but why not just share in the fun and post some of yours!