A good bad movie must have good actors

Kevin Wilson

Kevin Wilson

By Kevin Wilson

Staff columnist

I thought I was prepared with an answer.
My coworker asked me on the way out of the office, “What are some of your favorite bad movies?”
Oh, that’s easy: “XXX: State of the Union.” That is, my friend, the ultimate in enjoyable bad movies.

You have great stars such as Ice Cube and Willem Dafoe overacting because they know it’s the only way to make the weak story entertaining.
You have stunts and chase scenes that seem completely plausible except for Earth’s pesky laws of physics — including one hilariously bad scene where a sports car, running on its rims, is able to drive on a railroad and catch up to a high-speed train that is built to travel on the railroad.
There’s Samuel L. Jackson’s “where’s my paycheck” cameo.

There’s the hero’s main car, with a color-changing paint that would be both mind-numbingly awesome and jaw-droppingly stupid on my four-door sedan.
Oh, and the president quotes Tupac Shakur.
Oh, wait, you asked in the plural form? I am usually good enough with that singular movie. I guess before I go further, I’ll establish ground rules
• The movie can’t be famous because it’s bad. This knocks out “Showgirls” or “Gigli,” and many other movies I don’t care to admit.
• It must have recognizable actors and actresses. Any movie can be bad with bad actors. It takes a special movie to be bad with good actors that are still worth watching.
• You have to actually own a copy of said movie. How can you say it’s a favorite movie when you don’t have a copy? If it’s awful, there’s no way it’s expensive. Spend the $3.99.

Now that we know some ground rules, let’s go ahead and list my other five favorite bad movies. They’re listed alphabetically because they’re stored this way, and I don’t know how to rank awesomely bad movies from best to worst.

“The Brothers Solomon:” Will Arnett and Will Forte are two hapless brothers trying to find a woman so they can give their loving father a grandchild before he dies. The fun part is seeing how hapless they are at it, from buying women their groceries as a way to score a number to proposing on the first date. Will Arnett is hysterical in anything he does, and you spend half your time wondering if Kristen Wiig improves or ruins the movie.

“Joe Dirt:” Starring David Spade, Dennis Miller and Kid Rock, it’s the Oscar winner for “Movie you always watch on basic cable,” and it proves that Christopher Walken will never say no to a role. I try to quote this movie sometimes, before realizing nobody remembers anything from the movie and they just think I said something dumb on my own.

“Kids in the Hall: Brain Candy:” I’m glad the show’s cast made a movie, and there are some hilarious parts I remember out of nowhere. But it’s so haphazardly made. The crew forgot why a character had an eye patch in late scenes, and apparently didn’t think to write the reason down anywhere, so the solution was to create a scene where he was attacked by a bird.

“Mom and Dad Save the World:” How this movie ever got made is beyond me, with Jon Lovitz playing an evil galactic leader, with Terri Garr and Jeffrey Jones pulled into an intergalactic battle while on vacation.
“The Postman:” Not the first, and certainly not the last, in the Kevin Costner “Swing and a Miss” collection. He lives in a post-apocalypse United States of America and ushers in a revolution by pretending to be a postal carrier. It also has Tom Petty and it’s three hours, 18 minutes long.

So if you’re ever really, really bored, you could knock out half a day watching all of them consecutively. Or you could put together your list. I’m sure you’ve got some terrible, I mean great picks.

Kevin Wilson is a columnist for Clovis Media Inc. He can be contacted at 575-763-3431, ext. 319 or by email:
kwilson@cnjonline.com