WEEKLY TOP TEN-#8
MY FAVORITE GUILTY PLEASURES
Every year, there are a number of films that get released that are panned by critics. Sometimes the critics are correct when they point out miserable garbage. Other times, there are films that I feel are just plain misunderstood, films that I can relate to, films I really enjoy watching. I have never been one to allow critics to sway my opinion, or let them judge what I like or don't like. I have never let the words of others influence my own opinion, which is how I believe it should be. I love any movie that offers a genuine experience, I love movies I can relate to, I love movies that showcase my own personal believes and philosophy or challenge those beliefs. How much a movie makes at the box office or what major critics say about them, doesn't really affect me. Sure, I read those numbers and what those critics have to say, but truly believing those words as fact isn't my cup of tea.
For this weeks top ten, I chose to highlight my favorite films that seemingly nobody is a fan of. Movies that may not have made a big cash grab at the box office. Movies that were almost universally panned by critics, but were enjoyed by me. Movies that opened and nearly vanished without a trace soon after. They may not have been for everyone but they sure were for me. That's all I really care about.
10. Drowning Mona (2000)
This comedy wasn't a big hit with critics, but that's alright. They missed a funny comedy with a whodunit mystery underneath. With a cast that includes Danny DeVito, Jamie Lee Curtis, Casey Affleck, Bett Midler, Neve Campbell, and Marcus Thomas. Even Melissa McCarthy and Will Farrell show up in small but effective scenes that will surely make you laugh. I love when mystery and comedy collide and honestly, I do love this film very much. There is a lot to cherish of it.
9. Spaceballs (1986)
Mel Brooks is one of my favorite comedic directors. I loved nearly everything that he has been attached to, including this ode to "Star Wars." Many people think that this is one of the lowest points in Brooks' career, and I admit; this is not the same quality as "Young Frankenstein," or "Blazing Saddles." But this has a lot of joy and fun going on in it. I laugh every time still as I watch it, and this will be something I will always hold in my heart.
8. From Dusk Till Dawn (1996)
Now this is a cult favorite, so this has a very small but effective following. Honestly, this is a Tarantino script. Since I am a Tarantino nut, I always have small place in my heart for this film. Its unlike anything Tarantino did before or after, and I like that. I love his crazy script and I love how Robert Rodriguez directed this delirious vampire movie.
7. Batman (1989)
The early Batman movies don't get a whole lot of love from anybody. But I did enjoy Tim Burton's two-title run at the character. He got the angst, noir-ridden world that Bob Kane created with his comic book, just like Christopher Nolan did. Unlike Nolan's films, I felt Burton still made the film feel like a comic book, which I absolutely loved. It seems weird to compare Nicholson to Ledger, honestly I think it's impossible. I think Nicholson was effective with how his Joker was written. I still feel like this movie is relevant, even in a post-Nolan world.
6. The Room (2003)
Hailed as the "Citizen Kane of Bad Movies," I can vouch that "The Room" is very awful on a logical, narrative level. However, if you take this movie for what it is, you can have lots of fun with it. That is due in full to Tommy Wiseau. He's maybe a poor actor, but he's got mannerisms and a style that carries the movie. He's created a movie that on paper maybe remembered for the wrong reasons, but every time I watch it, I laugh out loud.
5. Clue (1985)
I love the board-game Clue, and I felt the movie did a particularly good job of living up to the mood and atmosphere of the game. Sure, its comedic but I think that adds to the fun being had with this motion picture. I love the cast, and I love what the crew did with the material, really quite simple. I'd prefer this to something like "Battleship."
4. Big Trouble in Little China (1986)
If any movie on this list deserved a franchise, its this movie. I would follow Jack Burton, brought to life by Kurt Russell, into any adventure. I had a ton of fun with "Big Trouble In Little China." I find it remarkable that the crew was able to combine kung-fu, magic, monsters, machine guns, early Chinese history and a little lightning altogether and make it interesting. This is a movie that proves with enough respect and nurturing, anything is possible entertainment-wise.
3. Desperado (1995)
An action movie featuring a mariachi with a guitar case full of guns letting loose on a bunch of drug dealers. Its great!
2. Gone In 60 Seconds (2000)
We are well into June now, and I can't help but think of my favorite summer blockbusters from the past. Even those that didn't do well commercially or critically. I think the idea of a movie about stealing fifty cars in one night is perfect for the summer season. And I still find myself popping in this DVD, amazed that this is better than it needed to be. This is the least crazy Cage has ever been, and I think we are richer for it. With fast cars, and big action, there a lot to love about this!
1. Armageddon (1998)
I know I wrote about my love of this movie last week, this is a great summer film. And it is pretty much hated by everybody who has ever had a job in journalism. I think I said everything I could say about this last week, but everybody knows just how wonderful this movie actually is. It's more emotional than it needed to be, its funnier than it needed to be, and it was more dramatic than it needed to be. I will always be a closeted Armageddon freak, and I wear that like a badge of honor.
So what are your favorite guilty pleasures!