In Defense of “So Bad it’s Good”

by on October 25, 2012  •  In Articles

I recently read an Article on Wired.com entitled “Miami Connection Destroys the Myth of ‘So Bad They’re Good’ Movies” I take umbrage with this idea. So I read the article, rather enjoyed the article as well, but the biggest issue I had was the negative attitude towards to the term “so bad it’s good”. I like to consider myself an avid fan of bad movies, I watch a ridiculous number of bad movies every year. Hell, I co-host a podcast devoted to no-budget films, which allows me to discuss one of my favorite loves… BAD MOVIES.

According to the article because I enjoy these bad films I should, for some reason, start calling them good. This makes absolutely no sense. Troll 2 is not a good movie. Birdemic is not a good movie. The Room is not a good movie. I enjoyed all three a great deal, but I’m not so delusional to think that any are anything but terribly produced, directed, acted, and edited films. They are anything but good. What they are, however, is entertaining. A great deal of which is unintentional.

Conversely, Robert Z’Dar *is* actually a good actor.

Now before you jump down my throat and assume I’m one of these point and laugh film fans who watches bad movies ironically. Let me assure you, I have a genuine love and affinity to these films. As was so aptly pointed out in the article, if you didn’t love the films why would you devote so much time to them? I love to laugh and I love film, why shouldn’t I be allowed to laugh at a film that I find funny, even it’s unintentionally humorous? It doesn’t make me love the film any less because it’s poorly made. However, I repeat my previous point of, why would I call a bad movie good?

Case in point let’s look at Miami Connection, a film I have never seen. All I have to judge this film are production stills, the trailer, and some MP3s I heard of the soundtrack. The film looks dated, poorly made, the plot looks completely bonkers, and the idea of a synth pop band that consists entirely of black belts in Tae Kwon Do is laughable. On the other hand, Miami Connection also has just about everything I want to see in a film, EVER! The songs are incredible and oftentimes leave me with a giant smile on my face. The trailer has the same affect on me! I sit there, bleary eyed, wondering what exactly it is I just witnessed and absolutely loving it. If I’m honest with myself, however, I know this is not a good movie.

It just doesn’t hold up like 1985′s ‘Tuff Turf’.

I guess I just feel that doing away with “So Bad It’s Good” is a little off the mark. I’d like to offer up a couple of other terms that maybe we, as a film watching community can finally do away with:

Ironic film watching – I am in 100% agreement with the articles stance on ironic film viewing. If you need to bolster your own self worth by degrading a film that people put hard work into and showed more passion about than you’ll ever show anything then you deserve a kick in the crotch. I hate the idea of watching a film ironically or with a “too cool for this” attitude. Seriously, go fuck yourselves and find a better hobby and let the real film fans be! This of course brings me to the other term I have a huge beef with and thats…

Guilty Pleasure – Can we do away with this finally?! If you’re watching the movie and enjoying it (or listening to a band or reading a book) don’t feel guilty about it. Embrace your love for these things, even if they are bad. I have never once called a bad movie a “guilty pleasure” and why would I, I have never once felt guilty about watching any of them. I celebrate my taste in film. If you feel guilty about enjoying Yor: The Hunter From the Future, Things, Mandroid, The Adventures of Rat Pfink a Boo Boo, anything by Troma or anything put out by Something Weird Video then I suggest seeing a shrink because you clearly have unresolved issues. While you’re there get me some meds…the good stuff this time!

I long to see the day when the community of true fans of bad cinema can stand tall free of guilt and labels. The day when we can call a spade a spade and a bad movie a bad movie. In closing, let’s keep “So Bad it’s Good” and get rid of “Guilty Pleasure”…..and Michael Bay, can we just fucking be rid of that asshole once and for all.

Drink Up,
Moe Porne, Lover of Bad Films and Large Chested Women

wut?

PS please bring Miami Connection to New Haven, CT and I will personally go see it 3 times and bring all my friends!

moeporne

Moe Porne

When he's not busy plowing Japanese girls, Moe is the host of the "Drunk on VHS" Podcast.
  • telestoat

    So if they are sincerely enjoyable, why call them “bad”? It seems to refer to conventional Hollywood technical standards, but how does that really affect the viewer in a bad way? If a viewer enjoys it, so what if it is “bad” by some arbitrary standard? Is “bad” just a name for a genre, and another name could work as well?