Eric's Bad Movies

Weekly columns written 2008-2014 for Film.com and GeekNation. The point was to be funny rather than fair, and they're full of spoilers, so I don't consider them "reviews." What do I consider them? Delightful. (I'm posting them -- all 252 -- in the order I wrote them, newest on top.)

Eric's Bad Movies

Weekly columns written 2008-2014 for Film.com and GeekNation. The point was to be funny rather than fair, and they're full of spoilers, so I don't consider them "reviews." What do I consider them? Delightful. (I'm posting them -- all 252 -- in the order I wrote them, newest on top.)

Cutthroat Island

If you're Renny Harlin, the problem with being married to Geena Davis is that she might suggest you direct a pirate movie starring her as the lead pirate. If you're Geena Davis, the problem with being...

Bats

A lot of people find bats creepy, not just because they turn into Draculas, but also because they are basically rats that learned how to fly. So it's surprising that bats have been the subject of so f...

Above the Law

People who have watched Steven Seagal movies -- "victims," as they are known -- have often wondered how the humorless, dough-faced goon managed to make so many films when nearly all of them were terri...

Can’t Stop the Music

You probably know the Village People as a popular Halloween costume or the punchline to a joke, but there was a time in American history when they were an actual group of recording artists who perform...

Johnny Mnemonic

"Johnny Mnemonic" presents a grim vision of the future. It is set in 2021, a time of unimaginable horrors in which corporations run America and people die in the streets while pharmaceutical companies...

Empire of the Ants

Bert I. Gordon is an American success story. He grew up during the Great Depression, and in Wisconsin, where everything is always a little more depressing. Then he made his way to Hollywood and became...

Invasion U.S.A.

One of our favorite pastimes in the 1980s was fantasizing about what would happen if Russia invaded us, and how awesome it would be to teach those Commie bastards a lesson. Thanks to hilarious comedie...

A*P*E

Today, South Korea is best known for two things: being the right answer when you're trying to remember which of the two Koreas isn't run by a lunatic, and producing bloody films about obsessed men see...

The Saint

You might think that stealing money for a living would be a fulfilling occupation, but no! No sir or madam! It is actually lonely and sad. Another thing that is lonely and sad is Val Kilmer. This is a...

Hocus Pocus

Children love Halloween! This has been proven by scientists. It stems from children's natural fondness for candy and evil. And you know what else children love? Bette Midler! The li'l tykes can't get ...

Bolero

When you think of creepy old men, the name John Derek should spring obscenely to the top of your mental list, like a peeping Tom springs from the bushes when illuminated by a police officer's flashlig...

Solarbabies

"Solarbabies" takes place in a post-apocalyptic world in which water is a scarce commodity, but no one in the movie ever gets very thirsty, not even when they have to walk across vast deserts. From an...

Buddy

"Buddy" is disappointing for a number of reasons, chief among them the fact that no one in it ever gets torn apart by an angry gorilla. Very few movies do feature such incidents, of course, and while ...

Fluke

Parents of small children are often stymied as they search for a movie to watch with the kids. You want something with cute puppies, sure. But you also want something that has dogs being shot by cruel...

Sssssss

What is it with mad scientists and animals? It seems like most mad-scientist-based movies (which comprise about 75 percent of all movies) focus on the crazy doctor's efforts to turn a person into an a...

Fortress

Christopher Lambert must lie awake at night and wonder, in French, why other men became action stars and he didn't. He's as stone-faced as Steven Seagal and as hard to understand as Jean-Claude Van Da...

Mr. Nanny

We used to have something in the United States called "professional wrestling," in which beefy men would fight each other publicly, using an array of fanciful maneuvers and following a scripted formul...

Only the Strong

Almost every movie about martial arts has focused on karate or kung fu. Meanwhile, enthusiasts of capoeira, the graceful system of fight-dancing from Brazil, are frustrated. "When will our peculiar me...

Godzilla (1998)

As far as I can tell, the 1998 American version of "Godzilla" is about a contest between the U.S. military and a giant monster to see who can destroy more of New York. And honestly, Godzilla is hardly...

Flowers in the Attic

There was once a very popular young-adult novel called "Flowers in the Attic," about a teenage brother and sister who get locked in their evil grandmother's attic for three years and have sex. There's...

DOA: Dead or Alive

Do you like it when attractive young women fight each other while wearing clothing that does not cover very much of their bodies? Do you imagine you could watch 85 minutes of this without getting tire...

Double Team

When you're an actor who's not very good at acting, one strategy you can use to camouflage your deficiencies is to find co-stars who are even worse than you are. It appears that oily European kickboxi...

3 Ninjas

You know how sometimes when you're a little kid you have a Japanese grandfather? And how sometimes he teaches you the art of ninja warfare, which you then use to defeat an international arms dealer? 3...

At the Earth’s Core

You know what I like? A bad movie that's cheerfully stupid. Well, maybe "like" is a strong word. I still prefer movies that aren't stupid at all. But if a movie HAS to be stupid -- and one could argue...

In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale

Uwe Boll is a German filmmaker working almost exclusively in the fertile medium of terrible crap based on video games. Movie fans -- who generally refer to him by his full name, "that damn Uwe Boll" -...

Firestorm

At first I was hesitant to use "Firestorm" as a subject for this column because it stars former football player Howie Long, and I was pretty sure I already did a Howie Long movie, and I don't want to ...

Cool As Ice

Among the many obscure and demanding clauses in the typical recording contract is one that requires the performer, once he or she has sold a certain number of records, to star in an irredeemably crapp...

Wing Commander

There have now been a couple dozen terrible movies based on video games, but that wasn't the case in the late 1990s. Back then, there had only been a few terrible movies based on video games, so the i...

Babylon A.D.

Readers of a certain age might recall a time when Vin Diesel was poised to become the next major action star. He had a deep voice, and it was usually hard to understand what he was saying, and those a...

Piranha II: The Spawning

Is there a more fearsome aquatic creature than the piranha? Yes! The shark. And also the killer whale. And Ursula the sea witch. But after those three, the piranha is definitely the most fearsome aqua...

Conan the Destroyer

I didn't think that not having seen "Conan the Barbarian" would put me at a disadvantage when I watched its sequel, "Conan the Destroyer." Surely any plot threads left over from the first film would b...

976-EVIL

Before scientists discovered the Internet, the easiest way to get a stranger to talk dirty to you was to dial a special phone number that started with 1-900 or 976. Your phone bill would be charged $2...

Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

Do you love the music of The Beatles but wish you hated it? Then have I got the thing for you! The 1978 film "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" accomplishes what many scholars believed was imposs...

Gooby

Canada is a magical, faraway land that few people have ever seen. Some scholars believe is mythical, like Narnia. The "Canadians," as they are known, have many fantastical customs, such as putting the...

Bangkok Dangerous

In 1999, a pair of Hong Kong-born twins, Danny and Oxide Pang, made a film called "Bangkok Dangerous," about a deaf-mute Thai assassin. After the Pangs came to Hollywood, they remade "Bangkok Dangerou...

Sleepwalkers

You can tell Stephen King was losing his touch when he wrote "Sleepwalkers." It's a story about shapeshifting vampires who require the life force of young virgins to stay alive, and what does King cal...

The Manitou

Another week, another cookie-cutter piece of junk from the Hollywood assembly line. Can't they ever come up with anything new? No, of course not. Instead, we get "The Manitou," about a woman who has a...

Under Siege 2: Dark Territory

After Steven Seagal's first movie, "Above the Law," was a hit, he quite reasonably assumed he could continue to make the same film over and over again without anyone getting tired of it. Even the titl...

Virus

Ever since man first gazed heavenward and sought to explore the outer reaches of space, he has been troubled by one forbidding thought: What if an alien life form commandeers our spacecraft, uses our ...

The Island of Dr. Moreau

"The Island of Dr. Moreau" begins with three men adrift on a life raft, dying of thirst. Two of them fight, stab each other, and fall into the ocean, where they continue fighting until a shark arrives...

Exorcist II: The Heretic

"The Exorcist" contains one of the most chilling accounts of demonic possession in all of history, but there is another incident even more disturbing. It is reported that shortly after the film was re...

Rambo III

After the success of "First Blood" and its sequel, "Rambo: First Blood Part II," Sylvester Stallone was stymied. His character, monosyllabic killing machine John Rambo, had already defended himself ag...

The Apple

Menahem Golan and Yoram Globus are a pair of Israeli cousins who have turned up frequently in Eric's Bad Movies, thanks to their uncanny ability to make awful films very cheaply and very quickly. They...

Baby Geniuses

Sometimes we gaze into the eyes of an infant and wonder what secrets lie in its precious, innocent little mind. Perhaps babies hold the keys to all life's mysteries, if only we could become more child...

Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare

Unlike "Friday the 13th," which was lousy from the beginning, the "Nightmare on Elm Street" franchise started out scary. Who wouldn't be afraid of a prune-faced man who visits you in your dreams and m...

American Ninja

Everyone knows that ninjas were super-stealthy spies and assassins who operated in Japan hundreds of years ago. But what if there were ninjas TODAY? And what if one of them were -- stay with me here -...

Jaws 3-D

"Jaws" is an entertaining and suspenseful blockbuster from 1975 about a shark that is punished for acting like a shark. The film is very scary. Afterward, many people were afraid to go anywhere near R...

Heartbeeps

Today Andy Kaufman is best remembered as a stand-up comedian who specialized in finding ways to annoy or confuse his audience rather than amuse them. Evidently this was a lucrative career path. But th...

Hercules (1983)

One of cinema's most enduring characters is Hercules, the lovable Greek strongman who was the son of Zeus and had the special power of being able to lift heavy things and unscrew stubborn lids. He has...

Body Rock

September 1984 was an uneasy time in our nation's history. The breakdancing movie "Breakin'" had been released, but its follow-up, "Breakin' 2: Electric Boogaloo," was still three months away. "Beat S...

House II: The Second Story

In the 1980s there was this weird trend of making sequels that had nothing to do with the movies they were supposed to be sequels to. "Halloween III: Season of the Witch" was entirely separate from th...

Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation

In discussing "Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation," it would be easy to dwell on the film's failure to include even one chainsaw-related death. So let's do that. Three people die in the movi...

Superman III

"Superman III" may be a terrible movie, but I admire the way the filmmakers stuck to their guns. Many of us, given the opportunity to make a Superman film, would be tempted to include some scenes of t...

D-War: Dragon Wars

Every year, hundreds of low-budget films are released on DVD without having played in theaters first. This is usually due to theaters not wanting them. "Ew," the theaters say. "A horror sequel with no...

Night of the Lepus

Ever since someone figured out that small things could be made to appear large by putting them closer to the camera, movies have featured giant animals. Audiences can't get enough of oversized beasts ...

The Pagemaster

Books can take you to magical, far-off places, to lands you've never dreamed of, allowing you to experience all manner of excitement and wonder. I guess movies can do that too, but you wouldn't know i...

Wizards of the Demon Sword

I can't find any evidence that "Wizards of the Demon Sword" was ever screened in an actual movie theater. It seems unlikely. That's like wondering whether the answering-machine tape at your dentist's ...

Cool World

Ralph Bakshi is best known for making "Fritz the Cat," a 1972 film that holds the distinction of being the first animated feature to receive an X rating. What's surprising is that it took until 1972 f...

Firewalker

Surely the hand of fate has guided Chuck Norris throughout his career. When he agreed to star in the film "Firewalker" in the mid '80s, he couldn't have known that several years later he would star in...

Jack Frost (1997)

There were two films released in the late 1990s under the title "Jack Frost." One was a sappy family comedy in which Michael Keaton dies and is reincarnated as a snowman, all the better to first terri...

Frogs

Frogs appears to be a movie about killer frogs, and yet -- and I cannot overstate this -- at no point in the movie are any frogs responsible for the death of any person. There are a lot of frogs in th...

Jack

While some people manage to take bad-sounding ideas and turn them into good films, it's comforting to know that some ideas are so bad they're beyond redemption. Like "Jack," for instance. It's about a...

On Deadly Ground

When the subject of Steven Seagal trivia comes up -- and one could argue that all Seagal-related matters qualify as "trivia" -- even a beginner knows the basics. His first film was "Above the Law"; he...

Dracula 2000 (Eric’s Bad Movies)

I know that in previous columns I have demonstrated a tendency to obsess over a film's title almost as much as its content, and while I strive to overcome that impulse I can't let it go in the case of...

Volcano

"Volcano" is a very famous movie because it happened to come out two months after "Dante's Peak," which was also about a volcano but which, lucky for the makers of "Volcano," hadn't used the word "vol...

Surf Ninjas

Let's say you write a weekly column about bad movies, and that this column is extraordinarily popular and has made you beloved the world over. (LET'S JUST SAY.) Then let's say someone suggests as fodd...

King Kong Lives

Our film this week is from 1986, and it is called "King Kong Lives." "What??" you're saying. "No he doesn't!" King Kong fell off the Empire State Building in 1933, or off one of the Twin Towers in 197...

The Next Karate Kid

If there is one thing we learned from Mr. Miyagi in "The Karate Kid," it's that you can heal a broken leg by rubbing your hands together and then touching it. Countless lives have been saved with this...

Death Wish: The Face of Death

In 1974, movie audiences were enchanted by "Death Wish," a delightful romp in which a man named Paul Kersey (Charles Bronson) goes on a killing spree after his wife is murdered and his daughter raped....

Leonard Part 6

For every George Clooney who makes the transition from a successful TV career to a successful film career, there are a hundred Bill Cosbys who never manage to do anything other than star in self-title...

Meteor

In the very likely event that you have not seen the 1979 disaster film "Meteor" and do not wish to have the entire plot spoiled for you, please avert your eyes from the following paragraph! A five-...

Two of a Kind

You can imagine how excited people in Hollywood were after the enormous success of "Grease" in 1978. "Wow!" they must have thought. "We can make millions of dollars just by sticking John Travolta and ...

Stone Cold

Brian Bosworth was a football star at the University of Oklahoma in the mid 1980s before spending two disappointing years with the Seattle Seahawks. He followed this with a disastrous movie career, st...

Sleepaway Camp

I never went to summer camp as a kid. Neither did anyone else I knew. As far as I could tell, it was one of those things that movie adolescents did that real kids didn't, like showering after high-sch...

Troll

One of the hazards of renting an apartment instead of owning a home is that there's a chance you'll move into a building where there's an ancient troll living in the laundry room. This is common knowl...

Krull

It is absurdly difficult to make a good movie about sword-wielding medieval types who cast spells and wear tunics. It is even harder when one of your main characters is a magician who turns himself in...

The Arrival

There was a time when Charlie Sheen was a charismatic and likable actor. Several years after that period ended, he made "The Arrival." I heard he's now on a popular and long-running TV sitcom, but I h...

Cobra

"Cobra" is a cool title for a movie, sure, but the coolness is diminished by the fact that it has nothing to do with the movie it's the title of. The main character is named Cobretti, and "Cobra" is h...

Surviving the Game

The rapper-turned-actor Ice-T is so awful in every performance he gives that I'm amazed he doesn't appear in more bad movies. Think about it. If you're trying to make a bad movie, your job is half-don...

The Good Son

Friday night, Craig, Gina, Jess, Stacy, Joe, Mari, and I went to see "The Good Son." It was amusing in its badness, and then we went to Denny's. -- Actual entry in my diary, Sept. 26, 1993. Mov...

Teen Witch

In all the Harry Potter talk that we've been inundated with the last few years, one thing that the mainstream media has consistently failed to report is how J.K. Rowling stole all her ideas from the 1...

It’s Pat

You can choose almost any movie based on a "Saturday Night Live" character and use it as an example of how not to make a movie. The "SNL" films are good for that. Someone should compile them into a te...

The Care Bears Movie

Imagine a terrifying world in which bears have the power of speech and can shoot lasers out of their chests as a punishment against those deemed "uncaring." Imagine these bears barging into your home ...

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie

In the mid 1990s, America was attacked by a foreign enemy known as "Mighty Morphin Power Rangers," a Japanese TV show about costumed heroes who spend their free time beating the suck out of evildoers....

Red Sonja

As an actor, you should take it as a bad sign when you play the title character and appear in every scene of a movie, yet you get second billing under someone who only has 15 minutes of screen time. T...

The Neverending Story III

"The Neverending Story III" is a dumb kids' movie, by which I mean it is a movie for dumb kids. Do you know any dumb kids? Then plop them down in front of "The Neverending Story III" and watch them ti...

The Ice Pirates

According to Wikipedia, "The Ice Pirates" is "considered to be a cult classic by many science fiction and B-movie fans." This is followed by "," which I couldn't have phrased better myself. Who are th...

The Other Sister

It's tricky to write about "The Other Sister," because it's about two young mentally handicapped people who fall in love, and that subject is very sensitive, and the word "retarded" is often used as a...

The Forbidden Dance

Do you remember where you were on March 16, 1990? Of course you do. That's the day that two -- yes, TWO -- movies about a sexy dance called the lambada hit theaters, and you had to choose which of the...

The Wizard

(Note: This movie contains no actual wizards.) "The Wizard" is both a tender family comedy about a 9-year-old boy mourning the death of his twin sister, and a Nintendo commercial. You might have th...

Star Trek V: The Final Frontier

A confession: I am almost entirely a "Star Trek" virgin, and not in the way that virginity is usually associated with "Star Trek." I've seen only clips from the original series, even less from the spi...

Howard the Duck

Sometimes movies get reputations they don't deserve. Gigli was heralded as a new low in disastrous filmmaking, but there were at least a dozen films the same year that were worse. Ishtar is a famous f...

The 13th Warrior

Here are my main complaints about "The 13th Warrior," starring Antonio Banderas as a 10th-century Arab Muslim who goes on an adventure with Norse Vikings: - It stars Antonio Banderas as a 10th-cent...

Showgirls

It is my belief that "Showgirls" was conceived on a dare. Dutch director Paul Verhoeven and Hungarian screenwriter Joe Eszterhas had collaborated very profitably on "Basic Instinct" and, as a follow-u...

The Garbage Pail Kids Movie

The hottest toy in the mid-1980s was the Cabbage Patch Kid, a line of ugly plush dolls that were each "unique" and came with individual "adoption papers." The designer of the doll, Xavier Roberts, tat...

Hudson Hawk

Before he became a big-time action star, Bruce Willis was just the smirking wise-cracker on TV's "Moonlighting," which was a great show, on the rare occasions that Willis and Cybill Shepherd could be ...

Waterworld

"Waterworld" is notorious for being a big-budget flop and an embarrassment to the otherwise pristine and unimpeachable career of master thespian Kevin Costner. But there's something that gets overlook...

Shanghai Surprise

You kids might not know this, but there used to be a very popular singer named Madonna. Her gimmick was to dress, talk, and act like a common street whore, and in so doing, to empower women. (It didn'...

Orca

Any film that achieves huge success inspires copycats in Hollywood, but few people realize what a burden this is on the imitators. For example, when the Harry Potter movies came around, everyone else ...

Congo

(Note: This column uses the words "ape," "monkey," and "gorilla" interchangeably, even though it is technically incorrect to do so. The author apologizes in advance for not caring if this bothers you....
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