Guilty Pleasures Part Deux: The Movies Strike Back (Is It Baseball Season Yet? No.)

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Really, Mila Kunis?

Yesterday, we discussed the awful songs we can’t help but love. A tie is declared between yahmule’s Barbie Doll and Paper lions’ I’m Too Sexy (for fWAR) with honorable mention to COPO’s Party Rock and Lefty’s Cherry Pie.

Today, the movies strike back (thanks for the suggestion, COPO). I only watch indie films with obscure actors that no one’s ever heard about, so I’m out. Once people hear about them, I no longer like them anymore and I move on. You can take the girl out of Brooklyn, but you can’t take the Brooklyn out the girl.

Ha, ha, j/k. My mom only dated a guy who lived in Brooklyn. Several years ago, I injured my back at work, and my doctor prescribed Flexeril. I took one and proceeded watched Dude, Where’s My Car? Either Flexeril is a helluva of a drug, or Ashton Kuchter is hilarious. Stiffler was in it too. I have never attempted to watch that movie again so judging by the rating on Rotten Tomatoes (18%), I’m going to say I was higher than Kilimanjaro. I have a propensity to lose my car regularly in parking lots so I recall feeling for their struggle. “Poor stoners lost their car. I lose my car too.” I can’t remember many details about the movie because again, muscle relaxant. Kids, don’t do drugs. They make you think Ashton Kuchter is funny.

I was sober when I watched Not Another Teen Movie (28%). I remember giggling at the Janey’s Got a Gun serenade in the bleachers and how hot Janey became when they… took off her glasses. Molly Ringwald’s cameo at the end was exquisite. To a generation of us, she is the Queen Bee. Teenagers. To this day, if I find the movie on television, I’ll watch it.

Road House, Point Break, and Red Dawn are some other guilty pleasures (hey, Patrick Swayze is apparently my guilty cinematic pleasure, although yuck, Ghost). Although no one would ever confuse those for high cinema, so many people like them it almost seems cliche to list them. Actually, by my own unwritten rules, which much like baseball’s are arbitrary and may earn you a HBP, Point Break might have to be eliminated. It scored well on both IMDB’s and Rotten Tomatoes’ rating system. What do you think? While those movies aren’t great cinema by any means, they’re good trash as opposed to bad trash. As Pauline Kael once said, “Movies are so rarely great art, that if we can’t appreciate great trash, there is little reason for us to go.” Great trash, I suppose, isn’t the point of this post. It’s movies you’re a little embarrassed to admit you’ve liked, even just a little bit. Or that you should be embarrassed to like. I realized yesterday that everyone here is  shameless. Shameless–I hear that’s a pretty good show.

I was hoping to find a baseball movie guilty pleasure, but pretty much all the ones I like are pretty good movies. I guess I’m a baseball movie snob. We all know too much about the game. It’s the reason I have trouble watching medical shows. I’m too close to it, and it all looks and sounds fake. I have trouble losing myself in it.

Now, play fair. Don’t go look for 0% movies on Rotten Tomatoes to win. You actually have to have enjoyed the movie. Let’s hear those guilty movie pleasures.

139 thoughts on “Guilty Pleasures Part Deux: The Movies Strike Back (Is It Baseball Season Yet? No.)

  1. Road House was awesome and should never be on a list of bad movies, ever

    I used to fuck guys like you in prison!

    What does that even mean!?!?

    Also my guilty pleasure:

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I love the Captain America movies. In fact, I saw Cap 2 at the theatre seven times. Yes. Seven times. I am – as the kids say – Bucky Barnes trash.

    I also like “The Wedding Singer.” I hate Adam Sandler, and yet I have seen that movie so many times it’s ridiculous.

    I’m a great appreciator of the made for TV movie. That’s the sort of garbage I enjoy. Usually I watch it in a way that suggests I’m going to practice my own MST3k-style riffing skills, but still. I’m psyched for the James Franco remake of “Mother, May I Sleep With Danger?” – don’t laugh.

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  3. Basting my brain in MST3K for decades has given me an appreciation of truly horrible movies and movie-making. Unintentional comedy is still comedy. For example, The Room.

    That’s just a tiny highlight reel of the unrelenting MVP-caliber shitstorm that movie assaults viewers with. There’s so much to love, but my personal favorite bit starts around the 5:30 mark of that video, maybe the greatest temper-tantrum ever filmed. From the painting on top of the fireplace that doesn’t fall because it lands against the camera, to the TV that definitely doesn’t almost slide off the back of the stand when he picks up it, to the random zoo noise they inserted into the audio track before he blandly shoves an innocent dresser to the ground. The joy I get from this catastrophuck is boundless.

    On the complete opposite end of the spectrum, intentional comedy is great too. UHF would easily be one of my “desert island” movies…

    Liked by 2 people

    • I know so many guys who have a thing for Aubrey Plaza. I’m weird and sarcastic, too, but that never helped me with the fellows. Lollllll I must’ve been born at the wrong time.

      Liked by 1 person

      • That’s funny because it actually did work for me. I had a friend I hung out with a lot who was more stereotypically attractive–tall, blonde, blue eyed. You know, your total nightmare, ha. Guys were drawn to her like a bee to honey. After speaking to us, many times they ended up liking short, brown eyed, brown hair me more because although she was very attractive, she had very little to say and had no sense of humor. You needed a hot friend to draw them in, then you could slay them with your sparkling wit. 😉

        Liked by 2 people

  4. Cube was a low budget Canadian horror movie made in 1997. It only cost them $350,000 to make, but due to a non-existent advertising campaign and limited release, it only made about twice that amount as a theatrical release. It achieved cult status and spawned two execrable sequels. A remake is planned.

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    • Cube was/is awesome as well. If you like those low-budget psychological thrillers, The Exam and Circle* are great as well. While The Exam isn’t on netflix anymore, Circle is.

      *Try not to read even the netflix description as it gives away too much info.

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      • Leaven: This room moves to 0, 1, and -1 on the X-axis, 2, 5, and -7 on the Y and 1, -1, and 0 on zed.
        Quentin: And what does that mean?
        Leaven: You suck at math.

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      • House of 9 is along similar lines as well, and it has Dennis Hopper in it. Generally pretty rare for that type of movie to have an actual name in it.

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      • Also, The Exam is actually on youtube. Doesn’t seem to be a terrible quality video…

        Sadly, those subtitles don’t ever go away. I’m fairly used to watching foreign-language movies, so it’s easy for me to ignore them, but others might not be as skilled at that as I am.

        Liked by 1 person

      • House of 9 is along similar lines as well, and it has Dennis Hopper Kelly Brook in it.

        Fixed that for you. Also I’ll check it out, thanks

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    • Wow. I haven’t thought about that movie in a long time. There was a period of time when our little group of friends latched on to the phrase “human boot” as an insult. And yeah, the first was the only decent movie in the series. I’m not exactly eager for a remake/reboot of that series, I’ll definitely watch it.

      Did Cube start that whole horror sub-genre of “strangers locked inside some murderbox”? Kinda seems like it did…

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      • Cube was inspired by a Twilight Zone episode called Five Characters in Search of an Exit. “Clown, hobo, ballet dancer, bagpiper, and an Army major—a collection of question marks. Five improbable entities stuck together into a pit of darkness. No logic, no reason, no explanation; just a prolonged nightmare in which fear, loneliness, and the unexplainable walk hand in hand through the shadows. In a moment, we’ll start collecting clues as to the whys, the whats, and the wheres. We will not end the nightmare, we’ll only explain it—because this is the Twilight Zone.”

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      • Ok, but that still puts what…30 years…between that Twilight Zone episode and Cube? There’s been probably 20-something Cube-ish movies in the 20 years since it was released.

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        • Especially Saw 2, which was essentially “Cube in a run-down house”.

          If Cube had just been more popular at the time…we would have referred to all of these types of movies in the same way we refer to the movies that followed Die Hard as “Die Hard on a plane/train/wherever”.

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    • I guess I need to stop reading this page now. I’m finally going to see it today and I’ve done a damn near Herculean effort in preventing spoilers from entering my eye and ear holes.

      Would be a shame to get this close to the finish line just to have one of you shit sippers tell me something like “Yoda is alive and well”…

      Liked by 1 person

    • Nope. I’m not ashamed for enjoying an entertaining space opera. It’s not Citizen Kane, but it’s not the Phantom Menace either. Now Phantom Menace. That was atrocious, dull tripe. The worse kind.

      Let’s see–TFA stands at 93% on Rotten Tomatoes, 90% from the viewers.

      Kevin’s getting an HBPiD.

      Liked by 2 people

      • And Britney Spears sold millions of CD’s. Something to keep in mind about TFA’s Rotten Tomatoes ranking is that it is not reviewers rating it 90%, it is the percentage of positive vs negative reviews. If a reviewer rates the movie 3 stars out of 5, it gets a positive point on RT’s scale.

        There is nothing shocking to me that most people liked it. The prequels were horribly bad. This is not on the level of the originals, but it didn’t make you want to walk out. Thus, positive review. And the rating scale goes higher.

        Having watched it myself I don’t think its as bad as Kevin does. It has positive points. The new heroes are likeable and decently acted despite nonsensical lines and plot. The effects were good, except for the always distracting alien CGI. It didn’t make me want to walk out.

        But I don’t have any real desire to see it again. The villain, while better than Darth Maul, was pretty laughable as a threat overall. The Empire built a Death Star. Again. A janitor knows the necessary details to destroy a top secret super weapon. The characters go to various places….because…with no real reason for them to make most of the stops they made besides the director needing to give them something to do. Planets are apparently tiny since going down to a planet from orbit always ends up with you in the same few hundred square kilometers. Oh, and correspondence courses for The Force are of such high quality now that what took Luke three movies and years of training can be learned in a few days with uneducated guesswork.

        Again, it wasn’t a bad movie per say. But absent the SW branding and anticipation I doubt it would have been in theaters for more than a few weeks and been rated quite poorly. It does not stand on its own like the ANH or ESB. And it definitely requires you to turn off your brain.

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        • Women just rock the Force.

          I disagree with some of your points and agree with a couple. The movie was a fun ride.

          Popular does not always equal bad. Don’t be a snob.

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      • I docked it some points because there were no Ewoks in it. In fact, none of the characters in this new movie seemed to be 100% created and designed for toy shelves like the fabulous furry creatures from the sainted original trilogy.

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      • My point was not that popular made it bad. I have a long list of popular movies that I love. And again, nuance, I didn’t say it was bad, I said it has very serious flaws. Story and character breaking ones, and some that are just WTF moments. It was fun for me, once, but it is also forgettable. There are lots of eye candy/weak plot movies I enjoy, for instance The Fifth Element. I would rewatch that any day of the week, and twice on Sundays. But I don’t claim the acting or plot are good. It just gets so many other things right or at least enjoyable.

        I didn’t get that feeling from TFA, it was generic sci-fi with a Star Wars theme. The plot and dialog honestly reminded me of the quality of writing I see in most fan fiction. It scratched an itch for seeing lightsabers again, but it didn’t make me excited, or make me think, or have me at the edge of my seat. Ultimately I walked out with a “meh” combined with a general like of the new characters and a few wtf problems that I couldn’t forget easily.

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      • I didn’t feel the need to watch the movie any more after that, so I spent the subsequent eleven years not knowing how Star Wars ended, despite having owned a C-3PO shirt in elementary school and even having a Yoda plushie at one point

        My bro bought a bootleg version of Fight Club that we watched at my dorm at Fordham. I got sick that evening, so we turned it off with like 10 minutes to go. Took me years to rewatch, so I never knew (Spoiler alert) that Pitt was a figment of Norton’s imagination.

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      • I haven’t seen it yet….and probably won’t see it at the theater. I asked a colleague that is a massive sci-fi fan what he thought. Essentially, he said:

        1) He really enjoyed it.

        2) Typical of Abrams movies, there were some massive plot holes that could have been fixed if they cared enough to make the plot coherent.

        3) They relied too much on old tropes and devices from the previous movies instead of developing their own story-telling approach.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I wouldn’t say that reviewer gets it. The review actually makes quite a bit of sense, as someone not as heavily invested emotionally in the original trilogy would have a much easier time focusing on the new characters (who were awesome!) and would be much less bothered by how it dumps on much of what came before it.

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      • People love congratulating themselves for spotting plot holes, but effective filmmakers understand that there’s a balance between being entertaining and exacting. I think it’s sad when someone enjoys a sequence in real time during a movie and then criticizes it later because they’ve been convinced by internet pedants that it actually sucked.

        Liked by 2 people

        • I saw Force Awakens yesterday and I continue to have no interest in surfing around the net to find out what everyone else thought about it. I’m quite capable and content to form my own opinions on such things. I liked the vast majority of it, with a few little gripes here and there, and I reckon it should serve as a solid springboard for however many more of these movies they are planning on making (which is a fuckload more than can be said for Phantom Menace).

          Liked by 1 person

      • 2) Typical of Abrams movies, there were some massive plot holes that could have been fixed if they cared enough to make the plot coherent.

        I’d argue that part of that is because you know there are sequels already being made. Let’s take Cube up there. Everything is explained in the movie, because no one thought there’d be a second. So they explain how the Cube was made, how it works, and why they were in there.

        With TFA, you know there’s already two movies being planned so those holes will probably be filled with later movies.

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  5. As someone who was a teenager in the seventies, I grew up with lots of great movies to love… I had the disaster movies like “The Towering Inferno”, the blockbusters like “Jaws”, the crime movies like “The Godfather”, the war films like “Apocalypse Now”, Sci-Fi stuff like “Close Encounters” and “Star Wars”, the scare-the-living-shit-out-of-you movies like “The Exorcist”, and even the scare-the-living-shit-out-of-you Sci-Fi movies like “Alien”. But even though I grew up with (and loved) Dirty Harry Callahan and Rocky Balboa and James Bond, I also absolutely loved Terrence Hill and Bud Spencer in their hilarious westerns, I thought “Animal House” was a classic, and was (and still am) an unapologetic Monty Python fan who loved The Holy Grail and The Life of Brian. I watched a lot of movies in the eighties as well, but by that time I was in the Air Force and seeing the world. Since I got married and had kids, I’m pretty certain I’ve seen more Disney movies than Oscar-winners — not that that’s a bad thing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • My father worked in the studios in the 70’s. His last film before he left California was Close Encounters. He was the construction foreman for all the sets. His brother, my uncle Barrett, was the construction foreman for a lot of movies after that, his last movie was The Shawshank Redemption, and he actually managed to get a credit for it as the union had just negotiated his role into the credits that year, so for his last movie he finally got a credit.

      Liked by 2 people

  6. I give the Mayan end of the world because the artic poles shift so all the billionaires make off on giant arks movie an honorable mention, but I got to go with Battleship. To be truly awful a movie should try and fail miserably to be a genuine action flick and Battleship does that with an élan which I can’t resist.

    The army guy with artificial legs sends an alien molar flying with a punch, while in the company of the bad boy hero’s girl friend – beautiful and brave daughter of the fleet admiral, the “I will find you I will kill you” guy.

    The hero’s Japanese friend finds a way to give us a scene which looks like the battleship board game. The producer must have known that we know just how smart those dern Asians are.

    The aliens are stopped by the big guns of the Mighty Mo after it stops on a dime while at battle speed by dropping its anchor, making the nasty rolling bomb things of the Aliens fall harmlessly in front of it.

    Even after all the aliens are dead the cheese doth not end. The “I have a very specific skill set … I will find you I will kill you” iconic admiral leads the proudest day in your life awards ceremony with all the young heroes arrayed in spotless navy white, aboard, of course, The Mighty Mo, after which he grants his permission for the bad boy hero to marry his beautiful daughter. I usually have to speed up my drinking to be ready to enjoy this scene.

    I would watch it on you tube but I don’t want to spoil it as a surprise treat when it shows up on cable after the start of drinking time.

    http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=battleship+movie&view=detail&qpvt=battleship+movie&mid=8DF09B0B6E81B9E4DE718DF09B0B6E81B9E4DE71&rvsmid=6010D26DFD9173D552366010D26DFD9173D55236&fsscr=0

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  7. I’ll give you a couple of period pieces:

    Beyond the Valley of the Dolls (1970). So bad it was hilarious. As a side note, Roger Ebert collaborated on the script. Soft porn never looked so pretentious.

    A Boy and His Dog. (1975) Your perspective can either be it is great because of the blazing cynicism and horror of the Harlan Ellison script. Or it is junk because of the staggeringly low production values and overall acting. Jason Robards must have needed money. Don Johnson had to get his start somewhere. I oscillate between “great” and “garbage.”

    And I will respectfully disagree with you, Indy, on most baseball movies being good. Too many of them deteriorate into mawkish sentimentality (Field of Dreams) or unlikely heroic conclusions (For Love of the Game, The Natural). (Wow, two Kevin Costner films. Coincidence? I don’t think so). Bull Durham? In a heartbeat. Damn Yankees? Too much fun to turn down (“Whatever Lola wants, Lola gets). Pride of the Yankees? Unavoidable. But they generally disappoint me.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I meant that most baseball movies that I enjoy are actually good movies, not that most baseball movies good. Heavens, no. I am sorry that wasn’t clear. I agree with you. For example, I disliked Field of Dreams for the same reason you gave. Many baseball movies also disappoint me and that is why I don’t have guilty pleasure baseball movies. I have high standards for them.

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      • Got you. We are on the same page.

        I started to list “Clerks”. I watched it one afternoon when my wife was out shopping. It was vulgar, irredeemable garbage, and I laughed through the whole thing.

        But I couldn’t list it. Everyone else liked it, too.

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    • I hated the Natural. I was already bored with it when the Babe Ruth analog The Whammer came on the scene and then I really hated it. I’ve never seen Field of Dreams. I can’t stand Costner, but I will give him credit for nailing his role in Bull Durham.

      My favorite baseball movie remains Bad News Bears (1976). One of those movies I can’t stop on while channel surfing or I’m certain to get sucked back in again.

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  8. Mule, I never liked Cube. And nbjays, you may have missed the point (GUILTY pleasures) for no one should feel guilty for liking anything on your list (Animal House was and remains a classic with lines like “Seven years of college down the drain…”
    You see, the guilt come from liking something unlikable. Harold and Kumar, Zardoz, One Million Years B.C., these are guilty pleasures because: H&K – racial/gender/religious stereotypes; Zardoz – incoherence; 1MYBC – only one redeeming feature (or two, depending on how you count redeeming features).

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  9. This took some pondering. I think I finally remembered a movie that is truly horrible that I really enjoy. Much of that is likely due to nostalgia now, and the rest is the fact that I was a huge Kiss fan when I was a kid.

    I still have this on VHS, but haven’t seen it in a long time…though, you can now watch the entire thing on youtube.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Nailed it, Paper! I will also admit to being a huge Kiss fan and also loved the movie when it came out, although I don’t think I’ve seen it since.

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      • You can watch it on youtube for free…it’s only about 75 minutes long….and you may not make it the whole way unless you are stoned (or have strong painkillers handy).

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        • Your friend hit the nail re: TFA.

          I enjoyed it.

          Typical Abrams. I’m looking forward to the next one, which will not be directed by him. I want to see what someone else does with these characters.

          Very derivative of the old ones. It’s a remix.

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        • Good to know. He’s a smart guy and he takes his sci-fi very seriously (in book, comic book, and movie forms)…but he’s also able to separate, “did I enjoy that” from “was it flawed”….probably the scientist in him that can’t turn off the critical thinking. He repeated “but I really enjoyed it” a couple of times and also said he’d “have to go see it again”.

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        • I feel the same way he does and also want to see it again. I know on a visceral level I really liked it. I was rooting for the characters. I was invested in their story. I care what happens next. There were things I thought were not perfect. It was flawed. I thought during the movie a few times, “Wait a sec–that doesn’t make sense”, and then “Who cares, this is fun! I’ll think about it later.”

          Seriously though–stop building Death Stars, guys.

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      • Ooooo, good one….I freaking love that movie…and much of my love is because of how obviously bad it is…the acting is stilted, the writing is lazy and bad, the effects are horrible, the story is horrible….but the sound track….the sound track is gold!

        “Flash! Flash I love you, but we only have 14 hours to save the Earth!”

        Pure gold.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. I don’t believe none of you love the Police Academy movies which are so dumb and awful and I got dragged to a couple by friends. I just know some of you laugh at that dumb, stupid moronity. And probably dumb Porky’s stuff too. Don’t admit it because I’m already judging you.

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  11. I’m way too late on this one. This is something I ought to be able to win because I have such low standards for cinema I’m sure I’ve seen many movies I liked/loved that would make all of you puke. But I suspect I tend to hover around the cinema Mendoza line and won’t actually be able to list something truly atrocious that I love to watch.

    That said…

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