As a film’s reception evolves after its release, it often goes down in history as a hallmark of the genre or something to be avoided. However, there is a rare third outcome which blurs the line between quality and disappointment: a film so bad it’s entertaining.
Bad movies are an art form to me.
A film goes through so many different forms of quality assurance and test screenings to make sure the final product is worth watching, yet somehow, bad decisions make their way into the final product regardless.
For instance, one of the biggest flops of 2022 was “Moonfall,” a disaster movie about the moon falling out of orbit and into Earth’s atmosphere. The trailers for the film teased a massive, big-budget thrill ride with emotional stakes. What audiences saw in theaters was the biggest laughingstock of the year.
“Moonfall” is filled with so many plot holes, I could call it Swiss cheese and put it in a sandwich. The reason for the moon falling out of orbit and the various solutions to surviving the situation is nothing short of “Looney Tunes” logic that needs to be seen to be believed.
All of the efforts of many writers, special effects artists and production staff resulted in a film taking itself too seriously making “Moonfall” a car crash impossible to look away from.
While “Moonfall” was supposed to be taken seriously, some producers make their living by making bad movies on purpose.
The producers at Syfy are savants when it comes to films falling into the “so bad, it’s good” category. They purposefully include poor special effects and little to no story to capitalize on this phenomenon.
“Sharknado” is the first example that comes to mind when I think of Syfy quality because it’s an idea so ridiculous, it makes one’s curiosity pique in anticipation. “Shaknado” is not good by definition, but it makes a riveting conversation topic.
“The guy chainsaws a shark from the inside,” many Americans said chatting around the water cooler when “Sharknado” premiered.
Even more well-known films can fall under this niche category of quality. “Twilight” and its various sequels are quite the topic among film aficionados because they can’t decide if they like it because it’s good or if they like it since it’s so bad.
Edward staring into Bella’s eyes takes up what feels like half of the film, and in “The Twilight Saga: New Moon,” Edward dumps Bella because she bleeds like a normal human being. What proceeds is a journey to replace a bland-looking vampire with a bland-looking werewolf. I know a good amount of people take it seriously, but I was crying with how much I was laughing.
But, of course, the king of entertaining bad movies will always be “The Room” by Tommy Wiseau. A film with such passionate intentions with incredibly cursed production time created the most intriguing, horrible movie I’ve ever seen.
Wiseau as both an actor and director is incredibly strange, and it can’t be stated enough just how much laughter resulted from this film. Every single part of “The Room” is remarkably bad from its story, acting and writing. The script of this film is so wacky, it should have its own exhibit at a museum for the strange and curious.
Just a simple scene of Wiseau’s character going to the store to buy some roses makes it feel like the film was written by an extra-terrestrial. The characters in the scene constantly talk over each other and change the subject without warning. It feels like one of those dreams one has where things happen for no rhyme or reason.
Sometimes the most entertaining films are the ones where anyone can forget the world they live in to just point and laugh at something unfortunate. It’s not good to point and laugh at actual people, but it’s honestly quite liberating when it comes to fictitious works of film.
The next time friends come over for movie night, play a film like “The Room” without telling anyone. Everyone will be confused at first, but it will turn into one of the most hilarious nights one could experience. Don’t hesitate to watch such a movie when the occasion arrives.