List of films considered the worst


List of films considered the worst

The films listed here have achieved notably negative reception as being called the worst films ever made. The films have been cited by a combination of reputable sources as the worst movies of all time. Examples of such sources include Metacritic, Roger Ebert's list of most hated films, Leonard Maltin's Movie Guide, Rotten Tomatoes, being featured on Mystery Science Theater 3000, and the Golden Raspberry Award ("Razzies").

Contents

1950s

Glen or Glenda (1953)

Released in 1953, Glen or Glenda began a string of bad B-movies created by Ed Wood.

A semi-autobiographical quasi-documentary about transvestism, starring and directed by Ed Wood. After a nightmarish dream sequence, Glen undergoes psychotherapy to help cure his affliction. Béla Lugosi appears in this film, as he did in several other Wood films toward the end of his career. Many of Wood's fans and critic Leonard Maltin insist that this was far worse than Plan 9 from Outer Space; Maltin considers it "possibly the worst movie ever made".[1] In his book Cult Movies 3, Danny Peary suggests that this is actually a radical, if ineptly made film that presents a far more personal story than is contained in films by more well-respected auteurs.[2]

Robot Monster (1953)

A science fiction film, originally shot and exhibited in 3D, featuring an actor dressed in a gorilla suit and what looks almost like a diving helmet. The film, produced and directed by Phil Tucker, is listed in Michael Sauter's book The Worst Movies of All Time among "The Baddest of the B's." It is also featured in The Book of Lists 10 worst movie list, in The Fifty Worst Films of All Time. The Golden Turkey Awards confers its main character the title of "Most Ridiculous Monster in Screen History" and, listing its director Phil Tucker among the runners-up to "Worst Director of All Time" (the winner being Ed Wood), states that "What made Robot Monster ineffably worse than any other low-budget sci-fi epic was its bizarre artistic pretension". Noted film composer Elmer Bernstein wrote the score for this film. It was featured on Mystery Science Theater 3000,[3] and was fondly remembered by author Stephen King who quotes, and agrees with, a review in Castle of Frankenstein magazine ("certainly among the finest terrible movies ever made", "one of the most laughable poverty row quickies").[4]

The Conqueror (1956)

A Howard Hughes-funded box-office bomb featuring white actor John Wayne as Mongolian chieftain Genghis Khan and the redheaded Susan Hayward as a Tartar princess. The movie was filmed near St. George, Utah, downwind from a nuclear testing range in Nevada, and is often blamed for the cancer deaths of many of the cast and crew, including Hayward, Wayne, Agnes Moorehead, Pedro Armendáriz, and director Dick Powell.[5] The film made the 10-worst list in The Book of Lists, appears in Michael Sauter's book The Worst Movies of All Time, and was one of the films listed in Michael Medved's book The Fifty Worst Films of All Time. Hughes refused to distribute the film until 1974, when Paramount reached a deal with him. This was the last film that Hughes produced.

Plan 9 from Outer Space (1959)

Plan 9 has been panned for the misrepresentation of Béla Lugosi

Ed Wood's Plan 9 was labeled the "Worst Film Ever" by The Golden Turkey Awards. This movie marked the final appearance of Béla Lugosi. Wood shot only a small amount of test footage featuring his idol Lugosi before the actor's death. This footage, repeated several times, was included in the final movie. Following Lugosi's death, the character was played by Tom Mason, the chiropractor of Wood's wife at the time, who played his scenes holding the character's cape in front of his face. Wood was apparently undeterred by the numerous physical differences – such as height, build and that Mason was nearly bald while Lugosi retained a full head of hair until his death – that distinguished Mason from Lugosi. Years later, video distributors such as Avenue One DVD began to make light of this, adding such blurbs as "Almost Starring Bela Lugosi" to the cover art. Shot in 1956, the film was not released until 1959 due to difficulty in finding a distributor. It has played at the New Orleans Worst Film Festival. In 1994, Tim Burton directed Ed Wood, which includes some material about the trials and tribulations of making Plan 9. On the popular film review site Rotten Tomatoes Phil Hall calls it "Far too entertaining to be considered as the very worst film ever made".[6] Likewise John Wirt goes as far as to call it "The ultimate cult flick",[6] and Videohound's Complete Guide to Cult Flicks and Trash Pics states that, "In fact, the film has become so famous for its own badness that it's now beyond criticism."[7]

1960s

The Beast of Yucca Flats (1961)

A film by Coleman Francis shot silently with added narration. The plot concerns a scientist (played by Tor Johnson) who is exposed to radiation from an atomic blast, which turns him into a monster. The film opens with a scene of implied necrophilia that has nothing to do with the remainder of the movie and does not fit anywhere into the film's chronology. Leonard Maltin's TV and Movie Guide calls it "one of the worst films ever made".[8] Bill Warren said "It may very well be the worst non-porno science fiction movie ever made."[9] It was featured on Mystery Science Theater 3000, where members of the cast state it is by far one of the worst films they have seen up to that point.[10]

Eegah (1962)

A low-budget shocker, featuring Richard Kiel as a prehistoric caveman emerging in early 1960s California and finding love with another teenager. Arch Hall, Jr. performs musical numbers, with lyrics widely considered to be terrible. The film's notoriety was enhanced as a result of being featured on episodes of Canned Film Festival and Mystery Science Theater 3000,[11] where the cast of the show stated in The Mystery Science Theater 3000 Amazing Colossal Episode Guide (ISBN 0-553-37783-3), that they consider the shaving scene (where Eegah lolls his tongue around and laps up shaving cream) to be one of the most disgusting things they have seen. It was also one of the films listed in Michael Medved's book The Fifty Worst Films of All Time.

The Creeping Terror (1964)

Directed by Arthur J. Nelson (who also stars in the film under the pseudonym Vic Savage), the film is memorable for its use of some bargain-basement effects: stock footage of a rocket launch played in reverse to depict the landing of an alien spacecraft, and the "monster" appears to be composed of a length of shag carpet draped over several actors, whose sneakers are occasionally visible. Due to having had most of its dialogue lost, the movie also employs a technique that has come to be synonymous with Z-movie horror: voiceover narration.[citation needed]

Santa Claus Conquers the Martians (1964)

This holiday staple was the creation of Nicholas Webster. When Martian children get to see Santa Claus only on TV, their parents decide to abduct Santa to make them happy. Like many others in this category, it has been featured in Mystery Science Theater 3000.[12] The film is cited on a 10-worst list in The Book of Lists, in The Fifty Worst Films of All Time. It is also known for starring a very young Pia Zadora. Cinematic Titanic released a production of the movie in November 2008.

Monster A Go-Go (1965)

Monster A Go-Go began as Terror at Halfday by Bill Rebane. The production ran out of money and the film was abandoned. Herschell Gordon Lewis, who reportedly needed a second feature to compose a double bill, purchased and completed the film for a minimal amount of money. Several of the film's actors were unable to return, so Lewis simply replaced their parts with new characters who mysteriously appear and fill the roles of the missing characters. One of the actors Lewis managed to rehire had gained weight, gone bald, and grown a goatee, so Lewis recast him as the brother of the original character.[13] The picture consists mostly of lengthy dialogue sequences concerning the apparent mutation of an astronaut into a monster. Much of the film's dialogue is unintelligible due to poor audio quality, and due to overexposure of the film, several characters' faces appear to be bright white, glowing circles. At one point, when a phone supposedly rings, a person can easily be heard making the noise with his mouth.[14] During the climax of the movie, as soldiers prepare to confront the mutated astronaut, he abruptly vanishes and the narrator informs the audience that "there was no monster," and that the astronaut has, in fact, been in the Atlantic Ocean the entire time. All Movie Guide calls the film a "surreal anti-masterpiece".[15] It was also featured on Mystery Science Theater 3000, where writer Paul Chaplin called the dialogue "beyond recognition", and also added "I recall this episode as being the first time we decided explicitly to write sketches having nothing to do with the movie. Really, we had no choice. We ran through a long string of topics trying to find one that had something to do with the movie, but since the movie is about nothing, any topic that is about something (that is, any topic that exhibits "topicness") cannot, by definition, have anything to do with this movie. Understand? Interesting philosophical dilemma. I think we solved it nicely.",[16] The entire cast of the show later stated it was officially the worst movie they have ever seen.[17]

Manos: The Hands of Fate (1966)

Manos: The Hands of Fate has an opening nine-minute sequence in which nothing much happens but endless driving through the countryside, due to the opening credits being left out.

A low-budget horror film made by El Paso insurance salesman Hal P. Warren, about a vacationing family that is kidnapped by a polygamous cult of Pagans. Among its most notorious flaws, besides poor production qualities, is the opening sequence, a several minute long series of long tracking shots of the countryside with almost no dialogue; it was intended to be the opening credits sequence, but no credits were ever developed to be superimposed over the footage. The film also dedicates significant time to a teenage couple who are spotted at various locations making out in their car, and who have no bearing on the plot other than to point the police in the direction of the cult compound during the film's climax. The film's main monster, Torgo (John Reynolds), was intended to be a satyr, but this is never stated onscreen and only conveyed with the use of bizarre prosthetic devices which the actor wore backwards under his trousers, making his knees bulge and forcing him to walk awkwardly. In another infamous scene that grew out of cast and crew availability restraints which caused Warren to shoot night-for-night scenes, two police officers hear gunshots and pull up near the cult's dwelling. But owing to insufficient lighting to do a pan shot, the officers walk only a few feet from their car before appearing to "give up" their investigation.[18] The film gained notoriety and cult popularity by being featured on Mystery Science Theater 3000.[19] As of March 2011, it has a 0% rating at Rotten Tomatoes, based on 11 reviews.[20]

1970s

Myra Breckinridge (1970)

This 1970 film based on the book of the same name by Gore Vidal, directed by Michael Sarne and starring Raquel Welch, Mae West, John Huston and Farrah Fawcett provoked controversy due to a scene in which Welch forcibly pegs a bound man while clips from various classic films play onscreen. The film was initially rated X before edits and an appeal to the MPAA brought it down to an R. The film also used the technique of inserting clips from Golden Age movies in such a way that the dialogue took on sexual undertones. Several stars whose films were featured objected to the gimmick, and some (such as Loretta Young) sued to remove the footage. The film was a critical failure, with Time magazine saying "Myra Breckinridge is about as funny as a child molester."[21] The film is also cited in the book The Fifty Worst Films of All Time. Gore Vidal has disowned the film, calling it "an awful joke",[22] and blamed the movie for a decade-long drought in the sale of the original book.[23]

At Long Last Love (1975)

At Long Last Love was renowned director Peter Bogdanovich's musical homage to great 1930s Hollywood musicals. It features 16 songs by Cole Porter and stars Cybill Shepherd and Burt Reynolds. Upon release, it received a slew of very negative reviews. Esquire film critic John Simon said, "it may be the worst movie musical of this--or any-- decade."[24] The Buffalo News film critic Jeff Simon wrote, "About 45 minutes in, it became apparent to one and all that this was one of the worst and most embarrassing major-talent turkeys of all time." [25] It was included in the books The Fifty Worst Films of All Time and Michael Sauter's book The Worst Films of All Time.[26] The Encyclopedia of American Cinema for Smartphones and Mobile Devices noted it was "panned by critics as one of the worst films ever made." [27] It is also included in The golden turkey awards:nominees and winners, the worst achievements in Hollywood history.[28] Film critic Jay Cocks said it's "regarded as the great white elephant catastrophe of its time."[29] Bogdanovich, who was also the screenwriter, sent press releases to newspapers across the country apologizing for this film.[29]

1980s

Heaven's Gate (1980)

This Western epic, based on the Johnson County War in 1890s Wyoming, was plagued by massive cost and time overruns, largely due to director Michael Cimino's extreme attention to detail. He demanded 50 takes of at least one scene, and refused to start shooting for another until a cloud he liked rolled across the sky. It cost over $44 million, but only brought in $3.5 million at the box office.[30] The original version ran at nearly four hours, but was yanked from release after only one week due to scathing reviews. It later resurfaced in a 149-minute version, but by then the damage was done. Vincent Canby famously called it "an unqualified disaster," among other things. Roger Ebert called it "the most scandalous cinematic waste I've ever seen."[31] Cimino won the 1980 Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Director, and the film was nominated for four more Razzies, including Worst Picture.[32] In February 2010, the readers of Empire voted it the 6th worst film of all time.[33] That same year, Joe Queenan of The Guardian also called it the worst film ever made, saying that much of it was "beyond belief."[34] Cimino was initially thought to be a director on the rise after directing The Deer Hunter (which won five Oscars, including Best Picture and Best Director), but his reputation never recovered after Heaven's Gate. The film also effectively ended the existence of United Artists, as an independent Hollywood studio; its parent firm sold the company to MGM, where it still operates.

Mommie Dearest (1981)

Mommie Dearest was based on the memoir of the same name by Christina Crawford about her upbringing by Joan Crawford. It was the first film to sweep the Golden Raspberry Awards. It won five Razzies including "Worst Picture" and Worst Actress (Faye Dunaway, shared with Bo Derek).[35] The same organization also named it "Worst Picture of the Decade."[36] The film is part of the "100 most awful" in the book The Official Razzie Movie Guide: Enjoying the Best of Hollywood's Worst.[37][38] Entertainment writer Michael Sauter included the film in his book The Worst Movies of All Time.[39] The film earned, as film critic and television host Richard Crouse put it, "some of the nastiest reviews ever."[40] Writing for the Chicago Sun Times, film critic Roger Ebert wrote of this film, "I can't imagine who would want to subject themselves to this movie. "Mommie Dearest" is a painful experience that drones on endlessly, as Joan Crawford's relationship with her daughter, Christina, disintegrates from cruelty through jealousy into pathos."[41] Of the performance of Faye Dunaway, Variety said "Dunaway does not chew scenery. Dunaway starts neatly at each corner of the set in every scene and swallows it whole, costars and all."[42]

Inchon (1982)

This war movie, directed by Terence Young and starring Laurence Olivier as General Douglas MacArthur, was meant to be a depiction of the Battle of Inchon during the Korean War. Producer Mitsuharu Ishii was a senior member of the Japanese branch of the Unification Church, whose leader, Sun Myung Moon, claimed he had the film made to show MacArthur's spirituality and connection to God and the Japanese people.[43] The film's eventual production cost of $46 million resulted in a $5 million box office gross, and the New York Times review written by Vincent Canby calls the movie "the most expensive B-movie ever."[44] Every conceivable kind of problem plagued production, including labor issues, the U.S. military withdrawing support due to the film's Unification Church connection, weather and natural disasters, customs difficulties, expensive directorial blunders, and the original director (Andrew McLaglen) quitting before the start of production. Olivier's performance was roundly panned and he was awarded the 1982 Golden Raspberry award for Worst Actor.[45] The film itself took the 1982 Razzies for Worst Picture and Worst Screenplay, and Young's direction earned him a tie for Worst Director of 1982. Inchon was later profiled in multiple books on worst in film, including The Hollywood Hall of Shame by Harry and Michael Medved,[46] and The Worst Movies of All Time by Michael Sauter.[47] To date, Inchon has never been released on home video in the United States.

Howard the Duck (1986)

This film is loosely based on the Marvel Comics character, which was created by Steve Gerber and artist Val Mayerik, and stars Lea Thompson, Tim Robbins, and Jeffrey Jones. The film retains only two central characters: the eponymous duck and Beverly Switzler, and makes no effort to have them look or behave similarly to their counterparts from the comics. In his Movie Guide, Leonard Maltin calls the film a "hopeless mess of a movie".[48] The film was also among Siskel and Ebert's picks for the "Worst Films of 1986".[49] The film was adapted by Willard Huyck and his wife Gloria Katz and directed by Huyck, with no input from Gerber, who "was hoping against hope that the [movie's] script and the movie itself weren't as bad as [he] thought they were or, at least, that they wouldn't be received as badly as [he] thought they would [be]," citing that many films he hated were at least successful.[50] Huyck and Katz were once considered "luminaries".[51] The film was considered so bad, that it was soon dubbed "Howard the Turkey.[52] The film won four Razzies: Worst Picture, New Star, Visual Effects, and Screenplay.[53] Over the years, however, the film has gained its own dedicated cult following. Ed Gale, who was credited as playing Howard in the duck suit, said in the DVD extras documentary Releasing the Duck that he receives more fan mail as Howard the Duck than he does as Chucky, the main antagonist in the commercially successful Child's Play horror film series.[54]

The Garbage Pail Kids Movie (1987)

The film is a live-action adaptation of the then-popular, yet controversial trading card series of the same name, itself a gross-out parody of the Cabbage Patch Kids dolls. The title characters are depicted by dwarf actors in low budget costumes, with poorly functioning mouths and expressionless faces. The film is often criticized for its gross-out humor, nonsensical plot, poor explanations, bad acting, and the creepy appearance of the Garbage Pail Kids. It has a 0% rating on Rotten Tomatoes[55] and Caryn James of the New York Times said the movie is "too repulsive for children or adults of any age" and is "enough to make you believe in strict and faraway boarding schools."[56] Carlos Coto of the Sun-Sentinel said that "The Garbage Pail Kids Movie is one of the worst ever made".[57] Much of its content is said to be inappropriate for children, its intended audience. Throughout the movie, the Garbage Pail Kids steal, get in fights, bite toes off people, fart in people's faces, threaten others with switch blades, and run over cars. Some have pointed out that the movie contradicts its own message, that people should be judged by their behavior, not their appearance.[58] In addition to scatological behavior, the movie has several scenes that feature sexual images, violence, and drinking. Offended parents launched a nation-wide protest of the movie that successfully resulted in the movie being withdrawn from circulation.[59] The shortened release contributed to the movie's poor gross of only $1,576,615.[60] It was nominated for three Golden Raspberry Awards at the 8th Golden Raspberry Awards: Worst Visual Effects, Worst New Star for the Garbage Pail Kids collectively, and Worst Song.

Hobgoblins (1988)

This film by Rick Sloane, widely considered to be a blatant rip-off capitalizing on the popularity of the 1984 film Gremlins. MST3K writer Paul Chaplin later commented on Hobgoblins, saying, “It shoots right to the top of the list of the worst movies we’ve ever done." Greg Muskewitz at Efilmcritic.com called it "Jim Henson's worst nightmare."[61] Hobgoblins is also one of the few films considered the worst of all time to have spawned a sequel—Hobgoblins 2, made twenty years after the original.

Mac and Me (1988)

The film is about a young boy in a wheelchair who meets and befriends an alien who has crash landed on earth. The decision to make the film was based on the success of E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (the title itself, Mac and Me, comes from the working title for E.T.E.T. and Me.[62]), as well as to serve as a marketing vehicle for Coca-Cola and McDonald's.[1] One scene in the film is a large, impromptu dance-off with the main character MAC the alien (dressed in a teddy bear costume), a football team, Ronald McDonald, and various other people inside and outside of a McDonald's restaurant. The film's cast list states "and Ronald McDonald as Himself." Mac and Me has a rating of 0% on Rotten Tomatoes,[62] and Leonard Maltin referred to it as "more like a TV commercial than a movie".[1] Scott Weinberg of eFilmcritic.com called it "Quite possibly one of the worst movies of the past 435 years"[62] and Marjorie Baumgarten of the Austin Chronicle called it a "shameless E.T. knockoff".[62] The film was nominated for four Razzie Awards including Worst Picture and Worst Screenplay and won two trophies, Worst Director for Stewart Raffill (tied with Blake Edwards for Sunset) and Worst New Star for Ronald McDonald in a small cameo.

1990s

Troll 2 (1990)

Notable in part for not featuring any trolls (the antagonists are goblins from the town of Nilbog – which is goblin spelled backwards), and for not having anything to do with Troll, which was also critically panned.[63] (It was released overseas as Goblins, but in the US as Troll 2 in an attempt to capitalize on Troll's "popularity".)[neutrality is disputed] Not only one of the "least scary horror movies ever", according to Yahoo! Movies, but "by pretty much any measure... one of the worst films ever made".[64] Director Claudio Fragasso (who used the pseudonym Drake Floyd for his work on the film) has maintained for twenty years that the film is a "masterpiece." Despite the script being written in awkward language (Fragasso and his wife Rosella Drudi, native Italians, spoke virtually no English when they wrote the script), Fragasso insisted the American actors deliver the lines as written. The goblins in the movie are dwarfs wearing burlap sacks and latex masks. Campy acting, confusing plot twists, and unintentional homosexual innuendos have contributed to give the movie a cult status comparable to The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Nearly twenty years after its release, the movie's child star, Michael Stephenson, made a documentary about the film titled Best Worst Movie, released to critical success in 2009.

Highlander II: The Quickening (1991)

A sequel to the cult film Highlander, which transitions the fantasy franchise into sci-fi and retcons the mystical warriors of the first film into space aliens. It was met with harsh criticism by both critics and audiences. Based on 23 reviews collected by Rotten Tomatoes, the film currently holds a 0%, "Rotten" rating; all 23 reviews being negative. Common criticisms included the lack of motivation for the characters, the new and seemingly incongruent origin for the Immortals, the resurrection of Ramirez, and apparent contradictions in the film's internal logic.[65] Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times gave the film a score of 0.5 star (out of four), saying: "Highlander II: The Quickening is the most hilariously incomprehensible movie I've seen in many a long day—a movie almost awesome in its badness. Wherever science fiction fans gather, in decades and generations to come, this film will be remembered in hushed tones as one of the immortal low points of the genre." He continued saying "If there is a planet somewhere whose civilization is based on the worst movies of all time, "Highlander 2: The Quickening" deserves a sacred place among their most treasured artifacts."[66] Giving the film a score of 2 out of 10, IGN's review of the film said: "How bad is this movie? Well, imagine if Ed Wood were alive today, and someone gave him a multi-million dollar budget. See his imagination running rampant, bringing in aliens from outer space with immensely powerful firearms, immortals who bring each other back to life by calling out their names, epic duels on flying skateboards, and a blatant disregard for anything logical or previously established—now you are starting to get closer to the vision of Highlander II.[67] Awarding the film one star out of five, Christopher Null of FilmCritic.com said, "Highlander has become a bit of a joke, and here's where the joke started. ... Incomprehensible doesn't even begin to explain it. This movie is the equivalent of the 'Hey, look over there!' gag. You look, and the guy you wanted to beat up has run away and hid."[68]

In 1995, the film's director Russell Mulcahy made a director's cut version known as Highlander II: The Renegade Version and then later released another version simply known as Highlander II: The Special Edition for its 2004 DVD release. The film was reconstructed on both occasions largely from existing material, with certain scenes removed and others added back in, and the entire sequence of events changed.

North (1994)

This Rob Reiner film is a film adaption of the novel North: The Tale of a 9-Year-Old Boy Who Becomes a Free Agent and Travels the World in Search of the Perfect Parents by Alan Zweibel, who also wrote the screenplay and has a minor role in the film. North, which is also Scarlett Johansson's debut film, was a critical and commercial failure, earning only $7,138,449 worldwide. The film was widely criticized for its plot, its all-star cast of insensitive characters, lack of humor, and portrayal of numerous ethnic stereotypes. Based on 19 reviews, the film has an 11% approval rating at Rotten Tomatoes as of March 2011.[69] Roger Ebert gave the film zero stars and, in his review, famously wrote "I hated this movie. Hated hated hated hated hated this movie. Hated it. Hated every simpering stupid vacant audience-insulting moment of it. Hated the sensibility that thought anyone would like it. Hated the implied insult to the audience by its belief that anyone would be entertained by it." He continued saying "North is a bad film – one of the worst movies ever made,"[70] and is also on his list of most hated films.[71] Both Roger Ebert and Gene Siskel named North as the worst film of 1994.[72] Mick LaSalle of the San Francisco Chronicle said in his review that "North is director Rob Reiner's first flat-out failure, a sincerely wrought, energetically made picture that all the same crashes on takeoff. It's strange and oddly distasteful, at its best managing to be bad in some original and unexpected ways."[73] Richard Roeper named North as one of the 40 worst movies he has ever seen, saying that, "Of all the films on this list, North may be the most difficult to watch from start to finish."[74] The film was nominated for the for the following awards at the 15th Golden Raspberry Awards: Worst Picture, Worst Actor (Bruce Willis, also for Color of Night), Worst Supporting Actress (Kathy Bates), Worst Supporting Actor (Dan Aykroyd, also for Exit to Eden), Worst Director, and Worst Screenplay (Andrew Scheinman and Alan Zweibel).

Showgirls (1995)

A large amount of hype was put behind promoting the sex and nudity in this NC-17 film with a $45 million budget, but the final result was critically derided.[75] Most of the hype revolved around the film's star, Elizabeth Berkley, who only two years before had been one of the stars of the teenage sitcom Saved by the Bell (in which she played a young straw feminist). The film won seven of the thirteen Razzie Awards for which it was nominated. The film also appeared on Metacritic's list of the all-time lowest-scoring films.[76] The film, however, has garnered a cult following over the years, as evidenced by it grossing over $100 million in the video market.[77] The edited R-rated version, which director Paul Verhoeven developed for video outlets that wouldn't carry NC-17 films, deletes about three minutes of the more graphic sex scenes. TBS has broadcasted the film on television in its prime time schedule, but this version adds digitally animated solid black underwear to hide breasts and genitalia. This version has also been broadcast by VH1 as part of its Movies That Rock series.

An Alan Smithee Film: Burn Hollywood Burn (1998)

Sort of a self-parody, this movie portrays the making of a movie considered extremely horrendous by its director (Eric Idle). Since his name is Alan Smithee, taking his name off the credits is a logical impossibility, and he destroys all copies of the movie. Also starring Jackie Chan, Oscar winner Whoopi Goldberg, and Oscar-nominated actors Ryan O'Neal and Sylvester Stallone, this film was widely panned by critics upon its release. It won five Razzies, including Worst Picture. With an estimated budget of $10 million, Burn Hollywood Burn only grossed approximately $52,850,[78] making it a tremendous box office flop. Roger Ebert gave the film a zero out of four stars, calling it a "spectacularly bad film—incompetent, unfunny, ill-conceived, badly executed, lamely written, and acted by people who look trapped in the headlights."[79] It is also on his "most hated" list.[71] In the documentary Directed by Alan Smithee, director Arthur Hiller stated he had his credit replaced with the pseudonym Alan Smithee because he was so appalled with the botched final cut by the film's producers.[80] It was written by Joe Eszterhas and at one point in the movie a character comments that the film-within-the-film was "worse than Showgirls", which was also written by Eszterhas.

2000s

Battlefield Earth (2000)

John Travolta signing copies of the book Battlefield Earth during a promotional tour in 2000

Based on the first half of L. Ron Hubbard's novel of the same name and starring John Travolta, Forest Whitaker, and Barry Pepper. It was criticized for its poor script, hammy acting by Travolta, overuse of Dutch angles, laughable dialogue, and several plot inconsistencies. The movie's distributor, Franchise Pictures, was later forced out of business after it emerged that it had overstated the film's budget by $31 million. The film has a 2% rating at Rotten Tomatoes,[81] and was included in their Top 100 worst reviewed movies of the last 10 years.[82] Roger Ebert predicted that the film "for decades to come will be the punch line of jokes about bad movies."[83] It is also on his "most hated" list.[71] It won seven Golden Raspberry Awards, including Worst Picture and Worst Screen Couple (John Travolta and "anyone on the screen with him").[84] In 2005, an eighth Razzie (for Worst "Drama" of Our First 25 Years) was awarded to the film,[85] and in 2010 the film won a ninth Razzie at the 30th Golden Raspberry Awards for "Worst Picture of the Decade",[86] the most of any film in the history of the awards.[87] The movie appeared on Metacritic's list of the all-time lowest-scoring films,[76] is on the MRQE's 50 Worst Movies list.[88]

Freddy Got Fingered (2001)

Freddy Got Fingered writer, director and star Tom Green (pictured) accepted his Razzie Awards in person, which included Worst Picture, Actor, Director and Screenplay.

A comedy film starring Tom Green, who also wrote and directed it, featuring largely gross-out and shock humor (including multiple instances of bestiality) similar to that featured in The Tom Green Show. In the film, Green stars as a 28-year-old slacker and cartoonist who falsely accuses his father of child molestation when he questions his son's life goals. Freddy Got Fingered received overwhelmingly negative reviews, with CNN critic Paul Clinton declaring it "quite simply the worst movie ever released by a major studio in Hollywood history".[89] A review in The Washington Post said: "If ever a movie testified to the utter creative bankruptcy of the Hollywood film industry, it is the abomination known as Freddy Got Fingered."[90] Film reviewer Roger Ebert included the film on his "most hated" list,[71] gave it zero out of four stars, and wrote: "This movie doesn't scrape the bottom of the barrel. This movie isn't the bottom of the barrel. ... This movie doesn't deserve to be mentioned in the same sentence with barrels."[91] Freddy Got Fingered was nominated for eight awards at the 2001 Razzies, and won for Worst Picture, Worst Actor, Worst Director, Worst Screenplay, and Worst On-Screen Couple.[92][93] Razzies founder John J. B. Wilson called the film "offensive, stupid and obnoxious" and said it had "no redeeming value".[92] Tom Green accepted his awards in person, traveling to the ceremony in a white Cadillac, wearing a tuxedo and rolling out his own red carpet to the presentation. In 2010, the film was nominated at the 30th Golden Raspberry Awards for "Worst Picture of the Decade",[86] although it lost to Battlefield Earth.[94] Freddy Got Fingered also appeared on Metacritic's list of the all-time lowest-scoring films.[76]

The Room (2003)

This independently produced film about an amiable banker whose friends betray him one by one has been called "the Citizen Kane of bad movies" by some critics.[95][96][97] Although the film's star, writer, producer and director Tommy Wiseau has claimed it to be a black comedy (and that, as a result, the film's numerous flaws are intentional), other actors involved in the production have denied this, stating that Wiseau intended it to be a melodramatic romance.[98] Its bizarre lines, protracted sex scenes, nonsensical exterior shots (one scene features three establishing shots during its duration), and infamous use of green-screen for "outdoor" rooftop scenes, were considered so laughable that it has gained a cult status, and regularly sells out midnight viewings at theaters in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and Australia. It made its broadcast premiere as an April Fools' Day special in 2009 on Cartoon Network's Adult Swim block, edited down from its original R rating to a TV-14/DSLV rating. The day after its appearance, its DVD became the top-selling independent film on Amazon.com. It has garnered a cult following similar to The Rocky Horror Picture Show,[99] and in June 2010, The Room started playing at the American Film Institute.[100] Mystery Science Theater 3000 alumni Michael J. Nelson, Kevin Murphy, and Bill Corbett produced an audio commentary track to accompany the movie through their site RiffTrax.com.

From Justin to Kelly (2003)

A Robert Iscove musical starring Kelly Clarkson and Justin Guarini, respectively the winner and runner-up of the first season of American Idol. Clarkson and Guarini star as a Texan waitress and a Pennsylvania college student who meet and fall in love during spring break in Miami, while their friends experience their own romantic mishaps and successes. The movie currently has an 8% rating out of 59 reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, and is considered a box-office bomb, grossing only $5 million with a budget of $12 million. The low quality of the movie's choreography prompted the creation of a Golden Raspberry "Governor's Award," though it was also nominated for seven other Razzies, including Worst Picture, Worst Actor (Guarini), Worst Actress (Clarkson) and Worst Screenplay (Kim Fuller). Among the extremely critical comments from reviewers, Owen Gleiberman of Entertainment Weekly wrote, "How bad is From Justin to Kelly? Set in Miami during spring break, it's like Grease: The Next Generation acted out by the food-court staff at SeaWorld." Clarkson herself has disavowed the film, saying "Two words: Contractually obligated!" in response to questions about why she agreed to participate.

Gigli (2003)

A Martin Brest movie featuring Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck, with appearances by Al Pacino and Christopher Walken. Gigli was originally a black comedy with no romantic subplot. The producers demanded script rewrites throughout filming, hoping to cash in on the Lopez-Affleck romance that was big news in celebrity-watching publications of the time such as Us and People. This film cost $54 million to make but grossed only $6 million, making it one of the biggest box office bombs of all time. It was also the winner of seven Razzies (including 2005's Worst "Comedy" of Our First 25 Years),[101] and in 2010 the film was nominated at the 30th Golden Raspberry Awards for "Worst Picture of the Decade".[86] The film is in Rotten Tomatoes' Top 100 worst reviewed movies of the last 10 years,[82] where it has a 6% rating.[102]

Catwoman (2004)

Nominally based on the DC Comics character and starring Halle Berry, the titular Catwoman bears little resemblance to the Batman antagonist: The cinematic Catwoman has superpowers, unlike in the comics, and leaps from rooftop to rooftop in stiletto heels. The character's signature lycra catsuit was replaced with slashed leather trousers and matching bra, and a mask that also acts as a hat. As the movie character differs so widely from her comic book source, the character, as portrayed in this film, has been cited as "Catwoman In Name Only".[103] The film was the result of various rewrites by a total of 28 different screenwriters, though only four were credited after arbitration with the WGA. It has a 10% rating at Rotten Tomatoes,[104] and was declared "arguably the worst superhero film ever made" by the Orlando Sentinel. Jean Lowerison of the San Diego Metropolitan said in her review that Catwoman "Goes on my 'worst' list for the year, and quite possibly for all time."[105] The Village Voice summed up reviews of the film under the title "Me-Ouch."[106] The movie was the winner of four Razzies for Worst Picture, Worst Actress, Worst Director (Pitof), and Worst Screenplay.[101] Berry arrived at the ceremony to accept her Razzie in person (with her Best Actress Oscar for Monster's Ball in hand), saying: "First of all, I want to thank Warner Brothers. Thank you for putting me in a piece of shit, god-awful movie . . . It was just what my career needed." It is on Roger Ebert's "most hated" list.[71]

Alone in the Dark (2005)

Loosely based on a series of video games by Infogrames and directed by Uwe Boll, this film was panned by critics from Entertainment Weekly, Variety, The Village Voice and various Internet movie sites for a multitude of reasons, including poor script and production values, overuse of slow-motion and quick cuts to optimize the gory content, almost no connection to the game, and bad acting. One review said the movie was "so poorly built, so horribly acted and so sloppily stitched together that it's not even at the straight-to-DVD level."[107] The movie has received a 1% rating at Rotten Tomatoes,[108] and was included in their Top 100 worst reviewed movies of the last 10 years.[82] Critic Rob Vaux states that this movie is so bad that "the other practitioners of cinematic drivel can rest a little easier now; they can walk in the daylight with their heads held high, a smile on their lips and a song in their hearts. It's okay, they'll tell themselves. I didn't make Alone in the Dark."[109] Screenwriter Blair Erickson wrote about his experience dealing with Boll and his original script, which was closer to the actual game itself, and Boll's script change demands on the comedy website Something Awful.[110] It appeared on Metacritic's list of the all-time lowest-scoring films,[76] and is on the MRQE's 50 Worst Movies list.[88] It also received two 2005 Golden Raspberry Awards nominations for Worst Director (Uwe Boll) and Worst Actress (Tara Reid), and won three 2005 Stinkers Awards, for Worst Picture, Worst Director, and Worst Special Effects.[111] In 2009, Peter Hartlaub, the San Francisco Chronicle's pop culture critic, named it the worst film of the decade.[112]


Birdemic: Shock and Terror (2008)

An independently produced film that is an apparent homage to Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds, Birdemic tells the story of a romance between the two leading characters, played by Alan Bagh and Whitney Moore, as their small town is attacked by birds. Written, directed, and produced by James Nguyen, the film was intended to be a "romantic thriller"[113] but gained a cult following due to its poor quality, with reviewers calling out its wooden acting, bad dialogue, amateurish sound and editing, nonsensical plot and, in particular, its special effects, consisting primarily of poorly rendered CGI eagles and vultures that perform physically awkward aerial maneuvers and explode upon impact with the ground. The film, which cost $10,000 to make,[114] was called by the Huffington Post "truly, one of the worst films ever made"[115] and by The Village Voice as "one more in the pantheon of beloved trash-terpieces".[116] Slate deemed it among the worst movies ever made,[117] while Salon referred to it as "a cult hit among bad-movie fans"[118] and Variety stated that the film displayed "all the revered hallmarks of hilariously bad filmmaking."[119] Following the home media release of Birdemic, Michael J. Nelson, Kevin Murphy, and Bill Corbett of Mystery Science Theater 3000 fame produced an audio commentary track to accompany the movie through Rifftrax.


See also

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