The Worst of 2018

Yes, all too soon it’s that time of the year. A time for reflection, to pause for thought, to wonder why I wasted my time watching all this cinematic dreck. As usual, I’ve listed what I feel are the worst 30 films that I sat through. But, first, a word of explanation!

It has been pointed out that my blog seems to be missing some big hitters in the bad movie department. Where is my review of ‘Plan 9 From Outer Space’ (1959) for instance? Where are my posts on ‘Robot Monster’ (1953), ‘The Creeping Terror’ (1964), or ‘Attack of the 50-Foot Woman’ (1958)?

Well, the reason is simple. I only review films on a first watch, and I saw all those movies years before I started this blog. Decades, in some cases! It’s why you won’t find any of the Universal classic monsters here, or many examples of 1950s science-fiction, Ed Wood projects, or Hammer Horrors. I’ve already seen them all (or almost all…!)

I’ve been watching cult movies for most of my life, and I have little desire to re-visit most of what I’ve already seen (can you blame me?) After all, there are always delicious new horizons of weirdness to explore! And what can anyone really say about ‘Plan 9’ that hasn’t already been said a hundred times before?

However, there’s always an ‘exception that proves the rule’ (a nonsensical phrase if ever there was one!), and that is ‘Santa Claus Conquers The Martians’ (1964). I wanted an appropriate movie for Christmas Day, so I watched it again. Obviously, this was an error of judgement on my part. A big error. As a re-watch, it doesn’t feature on the list below, but would be quite high if it did.

My sympathies if you’ve ever suffered through any of these:

  1. Lemon Grove Kids Meet The Monsters (1964) (d. Ray Dennis Steckler/Ted Roter)
  2. The Sky Divers (1963) (d. Coleman Francis)
  3. Come Spy With Me (1967) (d. Marshall Stone)
  4. Star Odyssey/Sette Uomini D’Oro Nello Spazio (1979) (d. Alfonso Brescia)
  5. Santo and Blue Demon Versus The Monsters (1970) (d. Gilberto Martinez Solares)
  6. Beyond the Bermuda Triangle (1975) (d. William A Graham)
  7. Adventures of Captain Africa, Mighty Jungle Avenger! (1955) (d. Spencer Gordon Bennet)
  8. Dr Orloff Against The Invisible Man (1970) (d. Pierre Chevalier)
  9. Stargames/Star Games (1998) (d. Greydon Clark)
  10. Alabama’s Ghost (1973) (d. Fredric Hobbs)
  11. Ultra Warrior (1990) (d. Kevin Tent/Augusto Tamayo San Román)
  12. Jungle Jim In The Forbidden Land (1952) (d. Lew Landers)
  13. Yeti: Giant of the 20th Century (1977) (d. Gianfranco Parolini)
  14. Mysterious Two (1982) (d. Gary Sherman)
  15. Manhunt In Space (1955) (d. Hollingsworth Morse)
  16. The Embalmer/Il Mostro Di Venezia (1964) (d. Dino Tavella)
  17. The Beast From The Beginning of Time (1965) (d. Tom Leahy)
  18. Luana, The Female Tarzan (1968) (d. Roberto Infascelli)
  19. Chloe, Love Is Calling You (1934) (d. Marshall Neilan)
  20. The Phantom (1931) (d. Alan James)
  21. Assignment Skybolt (1968) (d. George G Tallas)
  22. A Scream In The Night (1935) (d. Fred C. Newmeyer)
  23. Night of A Thousand Cats/La Noche De Los Mil Gatos (1972) (d. Rene Cardona Jr)
  24. Code 7 Victim 5! (1964) (d. Robert Lynn)
  25. The Big Blackout/Perry Grant, Agente Di Ferro (1966) (d. Luigi Capuano)
  26. The Wizard of Oz (1925) (d. Larry Semon)
  27. James Tont Operazione U.N.O./Goldsinger (1965) (d. Bruno Corbucci/Giovanni Grimaldi)
  28. Night of The Cobra Woman (1972) (d. Andrew Meyer)
  29. Slaughter Hotel/La Bestia Uccide A Sangue Freddo (1971) (d. Fernando Di Leo)
  30. James Tont: Operazione D.U.E. (1966) (d. Bruno Corbucci)

What have I learnt from watching all these movies this year?  Radiation can be carried around in a box and gets in through the eyeballs, skydivers really like coffee, Frankenstein’s Monster can drive a car, giants are really just tall werewolves, you can rebuild the world after the nuclear holocaust by watching half a dozen old videotapes, and the land of oz isn’t somewhere over the rainbow at all, it’s just down the road.

Happy New Year!

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The Worst Films of 2017

It’s the end of the year and time for a quick roundup of the worst viewing experiences of 2017. Unfortunately, I was not able to post as often as I would have liked (especially later in the year) but this was mainly due to my getting two book projects off the ground; one as editor and publisher and one as author (‘Dogs on the Highway’ is out in March, folks!) So this may not be as comprehensive a list (or as bad a one) as previous years but I did my best. Without any further ado, the awards go to:

01. Blood of Ghastly Horror (1966/67/72 etc.) (d. Al Adamson)
02. Zeta One (1969) (d. Michael Cort)
03. Can Heironymous Merkin Ever Forget Mercy Humppe and Find True Happiness? (1969) (d. Anthony Newley)
04. The Devil’s Man/Devilman Story (1967) (d. Paolo Bianchini)
05. Lucky The Inscrutable/Agente Speciale L.K. (1967) (d. Jess Franco)
06. Bloodthirsty Butchers (1970) (d. Andy Milligan)
07. Invasion From Inner Earth/They (1974) (d. Bill Rebane)
08. Jungle Goddess (1948) (d. Lewis D Collins)
09. Moscow-Cassiopea (1974) (d. Richard Viktorov)
10. Teenage Devil Dolls/One Way Ticket To Hell (1955) (d. Bamlet Lawrence Price Jr)
11. Bomba, The Jungle Boy (1949) (d. Ford Beebe)
12. Sabu and the Magic Ring (1957) (d. George Blair)
13. Valley of the Dragons (1961) (d. Edward Bernds)
14. Searchers of the Voodoo Mountain/Warriors of the Apoclaypse (1985) (d. Bobby A Suarez)
15. Bomba and the Hidden City (1952) (d. Ford Beebe)
16. Daughter of Dr Jekyll (1957) (d. Edgar G Ulmer)
17. The Last Shark/Great White/L’ultima Squalo (1981) (d. Enzo G Castellari)
18. Space Is The Place (1974) (d. John Coney)
19. Nippon Chinbotsu/Japan Sinks! (1973) (d. Shirô Moritani)
20. Things Happen At Night (1948) (d. Francis Searle)
21. The War In Space/Wakusei Daisenko (1977) (d. Jun Fukuda)
22. Legend of Dinosaurs and Monster Birds (1977) (d. Junji Kurata)
23. Message From Space (1978) (d. Kinki Fukasaku)
24. Katarsis (1963) (d. Giuseppe Veggezzi)
25. The Alien Factor (1978) (d. Don Dohler)
26. Malenka/Fangs of the Living Dead (1969) (d. Amando De Ossorio)
27. The House of Secrets (1936) (d. Roland D Reed)
28. Maneater of Hydra/The Blood Sucker/Island of the Doomed/La Isla de la Muerte (1967) (d. Mel Welles)
29. Teens in the Universe (1975) (d. Richard Viktorov)
30. Captive Girl (1950) (d. William Berke)

So what have I learnt from this years trawl through the smelly underbelly of (mostly) low buget cinema?

Don’t go to see Dr John Carradine if you’re feeling a bit under the weather, don’t get lost in a jungle full of deadly stock footage, don’t go and see a country & western band in Japan, and don’t go to the cinema to see a Darren Aronofsky film ever again.

That’s all folks!

The Worst Films of 2015

So that was 2015 – the year I discovered the joys of Turkish Cinema!

The roll of shame for 2015 is as follows. As usual, I’ve listed them beginning with the very worst, but I haven’t spent hours agonising over getting the order exactly right – after all, that might mean watching some of them again!

Special kudos this year to – who else? – Jerry Warren!  Two titles in the Top 10 and he grabbed the number 1 spot. It’s probably his last year of glory though, as I only have one more of his films to track down. Also congratulations to René Cardona who also managed two films in the Top 10 – one a family ‘comedy’ and the other a nasty, tasteless horror film. Such versatility must be praised!

01. The Wild Wild World of Batwoman (1966) (d. Jerry Warren)
02. Venus Flytrap (1970) (d. Norman Thomson – probably)
03. Santa Claus (1959) (d. René Cardona)
04. Mission Mars (1968) (d. Nicholas Webster)
05. Uçan Daireler Istanbulda (Flying Saucers Over Istanbul) (1955) (d. Orhan Erçin)
06. Turkish Star Wars (Dünyayi Kurtaran Adam) (1982) (d. Çetin Inanç)
07. The Fat Spy (1966) (d. Joseph Cates)
08: Night of the Bloody Apes (1969) (d. René Cardona)
09. Face Of The Screaming Werewolf (1964) (d. Jerry Warren)
10. The Woman Eater (Womaneater) (1958) (d. Charles Saunders)
11. Fenomenal and the Treasure of Tutankamen (1968) (d. Ruggero Deodato)
12. Gor (1987) (d. Felix Kiersch)
13. The Devil’s Daughter (1939) (d. Arthur H Leonard)
14. The Norseman (1978) (d. Charles B Pierce)
15. Turkish Superman (Supermen Dönüyor) (1978) (d. Kunt Tulgar)
16. Danger!! Death Ray (1967) (d. Gianfranco Baldanello)
17. The Loch Ness Horror (1981) (d. Larry Buchanan)
18. Turkish Star Trek (Turist Omer Uzay Yolunda) (1973) (d. Hulki Saner)
19. Girl In Gold Boots (1968) (d. Ted V Mikels)
20. The Secret of Treasure Island (1938) (d. Elmer Clifton)
21. Mistress of the Apes (1979) (d. Larry Buchanan)
22. Son of Dracula (1974) (d. Freddie Francis)
23. Time of the Apes (1987) (d. Kiyo Sumi Fukazawa/Atsuo Okunaka)
24. The Yin And The Yang Of Mr. Go (1970) (d. Burgess Meredith)
25. Laserblast (1978) (d. Michael Rae)
26. Jungle Moon Men (1955) (d. Charles S Gould)
27. Goldface, The Fantastic Superman (1967) (d. Bitto Albertini)
28. 2+5 Missione Hydra (1965) (d. Pietro Francisci)
29. Santo y Blue Demon Contra El Doctor Frankenstein (1974) (d. Miguel M Delgado)
30. Casus Kiran / Spy Smasher (1968) (d. Yilmaz Atadniz)

So what have I learnt this year by watching all these bad movies?

You navigate aboard a spaceship using a sextant, if you’re ever on the Planet of the Apes watch out for random UFO attacks, Moon Men wear beach towels, never keep a carnivorous plant in the basement if you’re trying to make a move on a girl who does the hula, Nessie goes for the shoulder, the name of Olaf will live on in the land of the Norse, and what happened to Larry Kent.

…and the 1960s were a terrible time for films. Or should that be a very good time? Hmmm….  That’s all, folks!

See you next year!

The Worst Films of 2014

So 2014 bites the big one and I’m left to pick through the wreckage of battered old VHS boxes, bargain bin DVDs and dubious downloads. By my count, I watched about 240 movies. And I have to confess to being a little disappointed. A lot of what I saw was terrible – of course! – but a lot of it was just plain dull. Maybe my bumper success in tracking down some of the worst of the worst last year rather spoiled me!

Anyway, the roll of shame for 2014 is as follows. I’ve tried to put them in some kind of order as usual, beginning with the very worst but I didn’t sweat it too much. Special kudos this year to Al Adamson – 2 in the Top 10!

01. Space Mutiny (1988) (d. David Winters/Neal Sundstrom)
02. Horror of the Blood Monsters (1970) (d. Al Adamson)
03. The Clones of Bruce Lee (1980) (d. Joseph Velasco)
04. The Alien Dead (1980) (d. Fred Olen Ray)
05. Quest for the Mighty Sword (1990) (d. Joe D’Amato)
06. The Astro-Zombies (1968) (d. Ted V Mikels)
07. Dracula Vs. Frankenstein (1971) (d. Al Adamson)
08: The Incredibly Strange Creatures Who Stopped Living and Became Mixed-Up Zombies!!? (1964) (d. Ray Dennis Steckler)
09. Agent For H.A.R.M. (1966) (d. Gerd Oswald)
10. Lost Continent (1951) (d. Sam Newfield)
11. Agente S03: Operation Atlantis (1965) (d. Domenico Paolella)
12. The Lost City (1935) (d. Harry Revier)
13. Skidoo (1968) (d. Otto Preminger)
14. The Naked Witch (1961) (d. Larry Buchanan/Claude Alexander)
15. Night Train to Mundo Fine/Red Zone Cuba (1966) (d. Coleman Francis)
16: Omoo-Omoo The Shark God (1949) (d. Leon Leonard)
17. Nocturna (1979) (d. Harry Hurwitz)
18. Boggy Creek II: And The Legend Continues (1985) (d. Charles B Pierce)
19. Commando Cody: Sky Marshal of the Universe (1953) (d. Franklin Adreon/Fred C Brannon/Harry Keller)
20. Great Desperate Monster Battle: Diagoro Vs Goliath (1971) (d. Toshihiro Iijima)
21. King Dinosaur (1955) (d. Bert I Gordon)
22. Iron Warrior (1987) (d. Alfonso Bresica)
23. Tentacles (1977) (d. Ovidio G Assonitis)
24. Curse of the Stone Hand (1965) (d. Jerry Warren/Hugo Christensen)
25. Beware! The Blob (1972) (d. Larry Hagman)
26. Fury of the Wolf Man (1972) (d. Jose Maria Zabalza)
27. Invasion of the Neptune Men (1961) (d. Koji Ohta)
28. Space Probe Taurus (1965) (d. Leonard Katzman)
29. Monsters Crash The Pajama Party (1965) (d. David L Hewitt)
30. The Girl From Rio (1969) (d. Jesus Franco)

So what have I learnt this year by watching all these bad movies?

Vampires come from outer space, clones don’t have to be identical, everyone in the deep South spends all day swillin’ beer and huntin’ ‘gators and a mighty warriors needs a great hairdresser.

Just remember to punch the air and sing: “Maybe I’ll fall and maybe I’ll fly… Here I stand!  On the Edge of a Dream!”

Happy new year.

The Worst Films of 2013

Well, that was 2013. By my count, I watched about 300 movies. Not bad, huh? Sadly for every one directed by a Tarantino or a Scorsese, there were 5 or 6 helmed by the likes of an Ed Wood, a Jerry Warren, a David L Hewitt or a Larry Buchanan.

The roll of shame for 2013 is as follows. I tried to put them in some kind of order, beginning with the very worst but I didn’t spend a lot of time on it; I’m not THAT sad. Special kudos to Jerry Warren – 3 in the Top 10!

01. Maniac (1934) (d. Dwain Esper)
02. Creature of the Walking Dead (1965) (d. Jerry Warren)
03. Dr. Terror’s Gallery of Horrors (1967) (d. David L Hewitt)
04. Gonks Go Beat (1965) (d. Robert Hartford-Davis)
05. Queen Kong (1976) (d. Frank Agrama)
06. Frankenstein Island (1981) (d. Jerry Warren)
07. Track of the Moonbeast (1976) (d. Dick Ashe)
08: Zaat (1971) (d. Don Barton)
09. The Nasty Rabbit (1965) (d. James Landis)
10. House of the Black Death (1965) (d. Harold Daniels/Jerry Warren)
11. The Mighty Peking Man (1977) (d. Meng Hua Ho)
12. Horrors of Spider Island (1962) (d. Fritz Böttger)
13. A*P*E* (1975) (d. Paul Leder)
14. Birdemic: Shock and Terror (2010) (d. James Nguyen)
15. Frankenstein Meets The Space Monster (1965) (d. Robert Gaffney)
16. End of the World (1977) (d. John Hayes)
17. Queen of the Amazons (1947) (d. Edward Finney)
18. Curse of Bigfoot (1972) (d. James T Flocker)
19. The Omegans (1968) (d. W Lee Wilder)
20. Las Monstrous Del Terror (Assignment: Terror) (1970) (d. Julio Diem Cherl)
21. Guru, The Mad Monk (1970) (d. Andy Milligan)
22. La Mujer Murciélago (The Batwoman) (1968) (d. Rene Cardona)
23. Invasion of the Star Creatures (1962) (d. Bruno Ve Sota)
24. She Gods of Shark Reef (1958) (d. Roger Corman)
25. Bigfoot (1970) (d. Robert F Slatzer)
26. The Cape Canaveral Monsters (1960) (d. Phil Tucker)
27. Santo Vs. The She Wolves (1976) (d. James Juenel Ross)
28. Gamera Vs Monster X (1968) (d. Nobiaki Yuasan)
29. Have Rocket Will Travel (1959) (d. David Lowell Rich)
30. Zombies of the Stratosphere (1952) (d. Fred C Brannon)

What have I learnt by watching all these bad movies? Sod bugger all.

But remember my friends, future movies such as these may affect you in the future, because:

‘It may sound ridiculous but it’s theoretically possible!!’

Happy new year.