For the tenth year in a row (uh … ignore some of those early years I guess) it’s the award show everyone is clamoring for. On the tenth anniversary of Bad Movie Thursday, it is a truly special event, so time to look back at the movies we watched this year and give them the award with the name as bad as the films. It’s ….
Smaddies Baddies! Smaddies Baddies! As usual an amazing year here at BMTHQ. We were ready and raring to go with the 2020 bad movie slate chock-a-block full of … what’s that? They didn’t release any movies this year? The dreams of the Bad Movie Twins Media Empire are shattered? Our lives are in ruins as the promise of those big BMT bucks will now never come through and we’ll die unknown paupers? … Welp, it was still a good year! Indeed without any films being released to theaters we had to be nimble BMT lads and yes-and some special holiday and anniversary films like the improv ninjas that we are. Crocodile Dundee, The Blue Lagoon, Dolittle? Who needs to travel when we can travel in our BMT minds? And we got our first ever true blue Stallone day on December 31st! That’s been a long time coming.
We’ll start with the BMT awards which are usually cut for time: the 6W awards. Let’s go!
The Joey from Hackers Best Planchet Baddie (Who?) goes to Knock Off. You know, the Jean Claude Van Damme classic co-starring Rob Schnieder. As often happens when you pair a comedian with a martial artist, the comedian is amazed by his co-stars martial arts skills, tries to do karate while embarrassing himself, and then the protagonist spends the entire film saving the comedian’s life over and over while women, bad guys, and regular citizens sneer at the comedian for being a worthless schlub. Read that description again. Alright, you’ve basically watched Knock Off now, just add a dash of counterfeit jeans laced with explosives (not joking). Bonus Shoutout to Booster from the television show from within Jingle All the Way. This might be the first ever Meta-Planchet, which has to count for something. He’ll be an actual Planchet once they pick up that Turboman adaptation I’ve been pitching (a la the upcoming Buzz Lightyear film). Every character is like “Booster what a goddamned joke. HAHAHAHAHA” both in and out of the Turboman show. Children literally punch and kick him at the end because they hate him so much. No wonder he came shockingly close to winning this award.
The I Know Who Killed Me Best Twins Ever Baddie (Who?) has to go to Double Impact. Here’s the pitch: we’re going to make a film where Jean Claude Van Damme, a serviceable actor on a good day, pulls split screen duties as his own twin. And get this, the biggest fight in the whole film will be between the two JCVDs! And the craziest thing? JCVD is the best part of this film! The rest of the film is somehow worse than JCVD having to act opposite of himself. Mind boggling. We got two Bonus Shoutouts for this one. First, for actual twins nothing beats Archetypal Twins, and what an archetype “crazy looking body builder who dresses like a ten-year-old” is. The Paul twins look like cartoon characters in Twin Sitters, but just missed out due to their lacking martial arts skills. And second shoutout to Woman of Desire, you know … the Jeff Fahey classic we brought along as a friend with Mrs. Winterbourne. Not because Steven Bauer played a particularly distinguished set of twins. No, because Jeff Fahey and Bo Derek have sex on a motorcycle. Go and watch the scene, it is the best thing that has ever happened to me. It almost spawned a podcast where we just review films where people have sex on motorcycles… which apparently would be just us reviewing two movies over and over again.
The Adam Sandler Memorial Product Placement Baddie Brought to You By McDonalds, Ba-da-ba-ba-ba, I’m Lovin’ It! (What?) And the winner is Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles which features, I think, our first Wendy’s product placement. Crocodile and Jacko just cannot get enough of the deliciously never-frozen quarter pound hamburgers from Wendy’s. Have you tried their Frosty™?! It’s to die for. Quality truly is their recipe. Bonus Shoutout to another fast food chain in Masters of the Universe which features a scene in which Robert Duncan McNeill doesn’t eat Burger King, but then puts a load of Burger King wrappers (and two oranges) into the sink so he can wipe down a table. Wild guess: Courtney Cox was supposed to work at Burger King, but then the product placement fell through and they changed it to a generic fake restaurant after a few scenes were already complete. Regardless, that is the type of random out of nowhere placement we like to see, just not enough of it to win. They should have had a Masters of the Universe dance sequence at the local BK, that would have done it.
The Bangkok Dangerous Setting as a Character Baddie (Where?) This year we were going fast and furious on exotic locals due to the expansion of the Mapl.d.Map. And naturally the winner had to be In The Army Now for a rare Africa setting, and the rarest Chad setting! It might actually be the only major film ever set in Chad, and it is terrible. That is what BMT likes to see. Some of the best settings come from that early-90s period where Hollywood was grasping around for a replacement for the Soviets as bad guys in bad Pauly Shore comedies, so why not have Libya invade Chad I guess? Bonus Shoutout to Graveyard Shift. Sure the setting isn’t that flashy, just up the road in Maine. But when you get multiple characters putting on fake Maine accents that sound like the sheriff from Murder She Wrote? That’s when you know the setting-plot-characters have fused into some monstrous blind rat/bat monster under your textile factory / graveyard and created something special. 10/10 nailed the landing on that metaphor.
The Marion Cobretti Memorial Super Secret Holiday Film Baddie (When?) This year we watched a few very-not-secret holiday films like Boo! A Madea Halloween, Dutch, and Jingle All the Way. Those don’t count. But Turbulence does, because you know you can’t have a psycho-on-the-plane Die Hard scenario unless it is set during the happiest time of the year, Christmas! Nothing says it is Christmas at BMTHQ like Ray Liotta’s cackling mask-like face. Bonus Shoutout to Knock Off which isn’t set during a holiday per se, but is set explicitly during the handover of Hong Kong from British to Chinese control on July 1, 1997. We love those very specific temporal settings, it really allows us to think “we should make a BMT calendar, but all of the holidays would be specific dates set during bad films.” Billion dollar idea right there, patent pending.
The Street Fighter Legend of Chun Li Best MacGuffin Baddie (Why?) Every year we say it, and every year it is true. We love MacGuffins. You can’t help but laugh when they come up with something ridiculous with a ridiculous name that actors have to say over and over and over again. This year’s winner is Masters of the Universe for the Cosmic Key. Everyone is looking for the Cosmic Key, because you know … it makes music and allows you to travel across dimensions maybe? Or is He-Man just from some other part of the infinite universe? Is there philosophically a difference between those two ideas? Only the Cosmic Key would allow me to know, which is why I, like Skeletor, must possess its power!! Bonus Shoutout to Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life. A very rare A+ MacGuffin. Genuinely no one really knows what the Cradle of Life is until they get there. Turns out it inverts gravity and has Pandora’s Box in it and is magic? Our beautiful minds didn’t see that one coming, but that is what MacGuffins are all about, the unknowable power you must possess!
The 88 Minutes Starring Leelee Sobieski Worst Twist Baddie (How?) Twists come in many flavors. You have the dumb twists, the crazy twists, and the rote we’ve-seen-this-before-a-lot twists. This year the award goes to Fantasy Island for one of the crazier dumb twists I’ve ever seen. Lucy Hall is on Fantasy Island to fulfill her fantasy: to avenge the death of the man she loved! But in the meantime she’s going to pretend to be a guest on the island and put on a master class of acting even when other people aren’t around? Surely there must be more to it, but I can assure you there is not, it really is like a Mad Libs style ending to a horror film. Bonus Shoutout to Perfect Stranger which does a solid we’ve-seen-this-before-a-lot twist revealing that it was the hero, Halle Berry, the whole time! But of course everyone already knew that.
Phew. Now onto the big awards, officially based on The Good, The Bad and The BMT (plus Live!). And without further ado:
The Freddy Got Fingered Surprisingly Good Baddie (The Good) Nominees: Kiss the Girls, Event Horizon, Now and Then, Dutch, and Sanctum
And the Winner is: Kiss the Girls! It is rare that a bad book adaptation turns out to be … kind of good? Odder still, I read the book loooong before I saw the movie and the book is … also kind of good? Stunning development that shattered the BMT universe, aren’t Ashley Judd thrillers always bad? We’ve watched like twelve of them I think. But gotta say, this one had us wondering whether she wasn’t underrated. Pretty good in this one. Anyways, I liked the symmetry in a way because Along Came a Spider is terrible as a sequel. If you are looking for a trashy serial killer movie or a trashy serial killer book you could do worse than Kiss the Girls. I mean, it isn’t Hackers, but still it is pretty good as far as bad films go.
The Strange Wilderness Unpleasantly Terrible Baddie (The Bad) Nominees: Holmes & Watson, Perfect Stranger, Heartbeeps, The Identical, and Blame it on Rio
And the Winner is: Perfect Stranger! What’s that? You’ve never heard of this Halle Berry and Bruce Willis classic? Neither had we before we decided we just had to watch it, and I now wish I still hadn’t heard of it. It is a rote, predictable thriller that is not thrilling. Worse, it is set in a grimy New York City with a pathetic character played by Ribisi. The whole thing is such an unpleasant journey to the predictable conclusion that I would rather watch Heartbeeps or Blame it on Rio again instead of Perfect Stranger. At least those are amusing in their weirdness, this is just unpleasant in its roteness. Boom, take that Perfect Stranger.
The Here on Earth Most BMT Baddie (The BMT) Nominees: Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2, Congo, Turbulence, The Island of Dr. Moreau, The Specialist
And the Winner is: Turbulence! Were there bigger, badder films this year? Yes. But nothing is more enjoyable than when Ray Liotta takes his mask-face and bites right into a script and tears it to shreds with a performance. It is hard to tell whether you are supposed to know he is, in fact, a serial killer at the beginning of the film. It feels like you aren’t. But Ray Liotta is so supremely creepy you sit there and HOPE he’s a serial killer, because for him to be an unlikely convict-hero would just be too much. I cackled along with Liotta while nary a whisper of turbulence disturbed their cross-country flight on Christmas Day and our convict-villain tore a plane apart. I would watch this again immediately, back-to-back with Liotta’s other great tour de force, In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale. Take that The Island of Dr. Moreau, weirdo fat Brando has nothing on cackling serial killer Liotta!!
The Jack and Jill Worst of 2020 Baddie (The BMT Live!) Nominees: Bloodshot, Dolittle, and Fantasy Island
And the Winner is: Fantasy Island! Unfortunately due to the pandemic there were far fewer officially qualifying films in 2020 than we are accustomed to (and most of those were horror releases from January). Regardless, we got to hit up two of the sub-20% reviewed films, one of which, Dolittle, was probably the most notorious release of the year … welp, guess what dummies, we picked Fantasy Island! With one of the dumbest twists imaginable, and that nice Blumhouse sheen, Fantasy Island was the most entertainingly bad movie of the year. Dolittle was just a little too cobbled-together-kids-movies for our tastes. It isn’t Cats, but really, what could be? Instead, come to our fantasy and learn the ultra dumb reason the one character is nicknamed Tattoo. You’ll hate it, I guarantee it.
Smaddies Baddies, Smaddies Baddies. All things considered a great year I think. Watching Dutch is a milestone for BMT since I have, no joke, seen the film maybe 30 times in my life. For those who fell asleep during the announcements: watch Masters of the Universe, Turbulence, and Congo. Skip Knock Off, Perfect Stranger, and Blame it on Rio. Ah, you got me, as usual you should just watch them all. Watch all 600 BMT films, do it, ruin your life, you know you want to!