19

Spring is on its way and, along with it, the blockbuster season — that part of the year when we analyze, dissect, and rip apart (and maybe even enjoy) the entertainment industry's newest slate of giant set-piece sci-fi / comic book / fantasy films.

Let's kick off what is sure to be a period of heightened activity on the site by cringing together at some of the less-than-stellar productions of days gone by — the more terrible they are, the better!

(What's a "Movie Night", you ask? Your question has been wonderfully answered by our usual movie night organizer.)

The event will take place in the SFF chatroom Mos Eisley at

23:00 UTC on Tuesday 22 March!

But first, we need to nominate and vote on our favourite terrible sci-fi / fantasy films!

I'll kick this off with a suggestion or two.

Voting closes at 23:00 UTC on Sunday 20 March.


By the way, even though we are talking about terrible films, we'll decide by highest number of votes rather than lowest number. ;-)


UPDATE: Flash Gordon (1980) has received the highest number of votes! Join us as we watch it together in Mos Eisley at 23:00 UTC on Tuesday 22 March!

marked as duplicate by AncientSwordRage Apr 4 '16 at 5:58

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

  • 2
    It would be nice if when people suggested a movie they posted if it is available via legitimate online streaming companies (such as Netflix, Hulu, Crackle, etc). – Jack B Nimble Mar 14 '16 at 19:52
  • 3
    JustWatch.com is a movie sight where you can search for a movie and it will tell you all the online vendors it knows about for streaming, rental, or purchase. – Jack B Nimble Mar 14 '16 at 20:03
  • I've already posted an answer but another one might be Plan 9 from Outer Space. Or Superman IV: The Quest for Peace. – Wikis Mar 14 '16 at 20:46
  • @Wikis : Feel free to post them, too! It's totally fine to post more than one suggestion. :-) – Praxis Mar 14 '16 at 20:47
  • @Praxis - indeed, but I'll keep those for another time. This time I want to focus on just the one. :) – Wikis Mar 14 '16 at 21:04
  • 1
    I'd join you but I am, alas, once again banned from chat. Poor me. – Valorum Mar 15 '16 at 22:47
  • I'd vote Dungeons & Dragons, but $10 is $15 too much to get a legit copy. – user31178 Mar 17 '16 at 17:24
  • Can't believe no one brought up Leprechaun in the Hood. – Michael Brown Mar 23 '16 at 2:14
  • 15 votes is a very high number. Did it translate into a record number of participants? – Valorum Mar 23 '16 at 12:01
  • @Richard : 4 watchers, 3 interested lurkers. Consistent with last year's events, but not a record by any measure. – Praxis Mar 23 '16 at 12:46
  • @praxis - Interesting. The best attended film last year was the lowest voted – Valorum Mar 23 '16 at 13:17
  • @Richard : There does seem to be only a low correlation between voters and viewers. – Praxis Mar 23 '16 at 13:23
  • @Praxis - An inverse correlation, perhaps? Our best was about nine participants and 10+ lurkers of various sorts from a film with four upvotes. That being said, I did make efforts to publicise it. – Valorum Mar 23 '16 at 14:17
  • 2
    @Richard : Apart from posting on meta, pinning various reminders in chat, getting the advert featured on the main site, setting up a notice on the event schedule, and corralling folks (all things I've done), I'm not sure what other publication means there are.... – Praxis Mar 23 '16 at 14:31
  • @Praxis - Well, for starters I gained commitments from those who attended the previous event to come to the next one. I also made efforts to get those who upvoted to commit to attending, something that hasn't really happened below. – Valorum Mar 23 '16 at 14:44

16 Answers 16

14

My nomination is the 1980 classic, Flash Gordon. It has everything: Brian Blessed!1 Max Von Sydow! Topol! Timothy Dalton! Richard O'Brien!2 Sam J. Jones! A brilliant soundtrack by Queen! Beautiful, incredibly unique backgrounds! Boar worms! Ridiculously bad acting! Absurd dialogue! A fight in the form of a bizarre alien football game! This thing!

this thing

Just look at the poster:

poster

It absolutely screams "Campy Sci Fi!"

Look how big Brian Blessed's mouth is!

It's enormous

Watch the video for the amazing theme song!

Read how much of a cluster#%£@ the production was! Screenwriter Lorenzo Semple, Jr. said:

[Producer] Dino [De Laurentiis] wanted to make Flash Gordon humorous. At the time, I thought that was a possible way to go, but, in hindsight, I realize it was a terrible mistake. We kept fiddling around with the script, trying to decide whether to be funny or realistic. That was a catastrophic thing to do, with so much money involved... I never thought the character of Flash in the script was particularly good. But there was no pressure to make it any better. Dino had a vision of a comic-strip character treated in a comic style. That was silly, because Flash Gordon was never intended to be funny. The entire film got way out of control. Wikipedia

That's right - they weren't sure if the movie was a comedy or not, even while they were filming it. The producer didn't care that the main character was about as complex as a piece of cardboard. It was less like producing a film, and more like releasing a sack full of angry, drunken badgers into a kindergarten classroom just to see what would happen.3

But it gets even crazier than that! Sam J. Jones, the star and titular character, hated Dino De Lauretiis so much that he quit before post production began. A voiceover actor had to dub most of Jones' lines, and no one can remember who that voiceover actor was:

According to a 2012 interview in Maxim, Sam J. Jones had disagreements of some sort with De Laurentiis and departed prior to post-production4, which resulted in a substantial proportion of his dialogue being dubbed by a professional voice actor, whose identity is still a mystery.
Wikipedia

Can you even imagine a film production so screwed up that no one thought to write down the name of the guy who recorded most of the lead character's lines? Well, if you vote for this movie, you won't have to imagine it, because you'll see it for yourself!

Freddie Mercury explains why we need to watch this movie:

  • Flash is the Savior of the Universe

  • He'll save every one of us

  • He's a miracle

  • King of the impossible

  • He's for every one of us

  • Stands for every one of us

  • He'll save with a mighty hand every man, every woman, every child

  • Just a man, with a man's courage

  • You know he's nothing but a man, but he can never fail

  • No one but the pure of heart may find the Golden Grail

In light of this argument, I genuinely and emphatically believe that we owe it to Flash to watch this film. After all, he did save every one of us.

1During filming, the battle scenes had to be reshot because Brian Blessed was making "Pew! Pew!" noises every time he fired a weapon, and you could see his mouth moving. The director was not pleased.

2Best known as the writer-director of Rocky Horror Picture Show, in which he also played the role of the butler, Riff-Raff

3Seriously, it was ridiculous. The producer referred to Flash Gordon as "the only improvised $27 million dollar movie ever made". You can read all about it here.

4The article linked in note 3 describes Jones' departure rather differently: "At Christmas, he went to Los Angeles and never returned". The producer was proud that he was responsible for the only major studio film that was completed with the star AWOL.

  • 3
    Available for rent on Amazon, and available for purchase on Amazon, Google Play, Vudo, Playstation, and XBox. – Jack B Nimble Mar 14 '16 at 20:04
  • 7
    WRT footnote 3, Iron Man (2008) was an improvised $140 million film. The actors ad-libbed the majority of the film with no script, just general outlines of how key scenes were supposed to go. And the finished product was awesome. – Mason Wheeler Mar 14 '16 at 21:06
  • 1
    I see you've used the same strategy here as on the main site: massively long answer; well-organised with lots of different sections, lists, quotes, and footnotes; chuck in some images and videos; and watch the upvotes pour in. – Rand al'Thor Mar 15 '16 at 2:05
  • 3
    Ah, argumentum ex Mercury. The single best reason for doing anything. – moopet Mar 16 '16 at 10:19
  • Dang! Great choice, but I watched it for the first time since it came out last weekend and I don't think I can bear to see it again for another thirty years! – James McLeod Mar 17 '16 at 1:38
  • That is a big mouth. – user46509 Mar 17 '16 at 9:04
  • @MasonWheeler You forgot the quotes around "awesome". – DCShannon Mar 19 '16 at 1:06
  • 1
    GORDON'S ALIVE! – maguirenumber6 Mar 20 '16 at 5:19
  • 2
    @WadCheber : Congratulations! We'll be watching your selection on Tuesday night. :-) – Praxis Mar 20 '16 at 23:10
  • @Praxis - ALL HAIL FLASH! SAVIOR OF THE UNIVERSE! – Wad Cheber Mar 20 '16 at 23:12
4

Highlander 2: The Quickening

A critic called this film "the sound of a franchise flushing itself down the drain". Recently reviewed by our very own @JackBNimble, Highlander 2 is arguably uniquely terrible amongst sci-fi films. There's a lot to cringe at...but also a lot to laugh about!

This film even has one of those scenes from romantic comedies where a character is being fitted with different outfits in a dressing room with a musical number playing over the scene and facial expressions of store personnel to indicate whether the outfits are good or bad....

NOTE: You do not have to have seen the first film. They have basically no connection. Anything you need to know about the first film is summarized in this one.

enter image description here

  • 1
    Available for streaming on Hulu (with ads), for rent on iTunes and Amazon, and for purchase on iTunes, Amazon, and Xbox. – Jack B Nimble Mar 14 '16 at 20:02
3

Star Wars: The holiday special

It did say awful.

This one should probably be saved for next christmas.

enter image description here

  • 2
    Shouldn't we save this for next Winter? – Rogue Jedi Mar 17 '16 at 14:15
  • 1
    @RogueJedi eh, probably. – Riker Mar 17 '16 at 15:58
2

Battlefield Earth.

enter image description here

I haven't seen it but I really want to! It is considered one of the worst films ever made (not just in sci-fi) in part because it tries to sell Scientology to the world outside Hollywood.

  • 1
    This appears to only be available to buy (for streaming) on XBox. – Jack B Nimble Mar 14 '16 at 20:52
  • @JackBNimble - you can view it on Putlocker - don't know if that is legal? – Wikis Mar 14 '16 at 21:04
  • 3
    It was such a shame, too ... the book was awesome ... awesomely large I might add. L. Ron Hubbard did a masterful job with it. They should have made this movie by splitting the book in half ... there was a great part in the book where this would have been easy. I didn't thing the movie Psychlos were anything like what was in the book. I still liked the move, but that was more because of how much I liked the book, I'd imagine. John ... Why did you do this to us!!! – Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 Mar 15 '16 at 1:22
  • 1
    They did split the book in half. It's just that the box office for the first one didn't warrant investing in the conclusion. (See Bakshi's "Lord of the Rings" for another example.) Concur on the tone, though: They should've stuck to the book, which was pure pulpy fun. – user3810626 Mar 15 '16 at 1:43
  • 1
    +1 I approve this message! Worst film EVER!! – Cherubel Mar 15 '16 at 11:15
  • @ᴘᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 I also liked the movie okay, but mostly because it seemed like it was based on a good idea. Then I read the book and confirmed that. – DCShannon Mar 19 '16 at 1:12
2

Zardoz

Sean Connery as Zed
(Yes, that's Sean Connery)

  • 4
    This is the best movie ever made. "The Penis is evil! The Penis shoots Seeds, and makes new Life to poison the Earth with a plague of men, as once it was. But the Gun shoots Death and purifies the Earth of the filth of Brutals. Go forth, and kill! Zardoz has spoken." – DCShannon Mar 19 '16 at 1:07
2

Plan 9 from Outer Space

enter image description here

Aliens resurrect dead humans as zombies and vampires to stop humanity from creating the Solaranite (a sort of sun-driven bomb). - IMDb

Plan 9 from Outer Space (originally titled Grave Robbers from Outer Space) is a 1959 American black-and-white science fiction horror film released by Distributors Corporation of America (as Valiant Pictures). The film was written, produced, directed and edited by Ed Wood, and stars Gregory Walcott, Mona McKinnon, Tor Johnson, Vampira and posthumously bills Bela Lugosi as a star (silent footage of the actor had actually been shot by Wood for another, unfinished film just prior to Lugosi's death in 1956).

The script is so bad, I cannot even start explaining. Mostly known with this unfathomable line:

And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future.

Like... wtf?!

2

Night of the Lepus

enter image description here

Might I humbly suggest the 1972 classic Night of the Lepus.

It has everything, science fiction, horror and giant rabbits.

It also has DeForest Kelly in a rare post Star Trek role.

enter image description here

It's also extremely rubbish.

1

Fantastic Four (2015)

Why don't we watch a newer film, while the hate is still fresh in our minds?

enter image description here

Fantastic Four is described by many as the worst superhero movie of all time and is the most critically panned mainstream superhero film released post-2000. This unintentionally hilarious movie has it all: bad acting, plot-holes, poor directing, blatant continuity errors, special effects failures, no Stan Lee...

Oh, and this idiot:

enter image description here

A jumble of predictable but also incoherent plot turns, dreadful dialogue, and unfortunate visual choices.

Two distinctly different approaches to filmmaking are employed here and neither of them manages to eke out a victory over the other.

I can't help but feel that this was another type of film, but someone put his hands on it and it all went to hell

features subpar visual effects and one-dimensional characters, along with a story that lacks emotional depth or any meaningful subtext leading to the obligatory trumped-up finale.

For now, the only big screen on which Fantastic Four deserves to be seen is the one in your living room, on a Saturday afternoon, on Syfy.

There are so many things wrong with Fantastic Four . . . that you could never squeeze them all into a conventional film review.

The story of the film's incredibly troubled production is also highly entertaining. This video series on it is great and I would highly recommend it.

  • Worst of all time? Worse than Steel? I refuse to believe that. – Jack B Nimble Mar 14 '16 at 20:51
  • 1
    This is available for rent or purchase on iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, and Playstation. – Jack B Nimble Mar 14 '16 at 20:51
  • 1
    @JackBNimble Meh, Steel wasn't all that bad. I would have phrased that as "Worst of all time? Worse than Batman and Robin? I refuse to believe that." – Mason Wheeler Mar 14 '16 at 21:07
  • @MasonWheeler B&R has 2% more critically and 3% less with audiences, so I'd say it's a tie. – Rogue Jedi Mar 14 '16 at 21:16
  • @JackBNimble Steel has 3% more critically and 4% less with audiences, so again is probably a tie. – Rogue Jedi Mar 14 '16 at 21:19
  • I'd rather gouge my eyes out – AncientSwordRage Mar 15 '16 at 8:32
  • The first half of this movie is actually pretty decent, but is completely ruined by everything that comes later. – DCShannon Mar 19 '16 at 1:10
1

Imagine Elvis directed Mad Max as a music video, under the tutelage of Quentin Tarantino

That's Six String Samurai.

Available on Netflix

movie poster

In 1957, World War III ended and the United States lost. Decades later, Buddy (Jeffrey Falcon), thinking that he's a dangerous Buddy Holly, traverses the radioactive landscape with a guitar and a sword. Dodging mutants, cannibals and the occupying Soviet army, he heads for "Lost Vegas," picking up an orphan sidekick (Justin McQuire) along the way. In the ruined city, Buddy competes with other rockers for the title of "The King," now available in the wake of Elvis Presley's recent death.

Here's an example of one of the crazy groups our hero faces

crazy Soviet band

You'll love the film, just like that:

snap

snap

  • Looking at the reviews on the cover, I'm not sure it's terrible enough! – Adeptus Mar 17 '16 at 3:59
  • @adeptus it's terrible while still being watchable. Admittedly it's no where near Wizards or Troll 2. – AncientSwordRage Mar 17 '16 at 8:02
0

The Man from Planet X (1951)

0

Slave Girls from Beyond Infinity (1987)

  • It's awful and repetetive, but it's hard to get hold of isn't it? – moopet Mar 15 '16 at 19:49
  • @moopet I don't know, I have it on video tape. – user14111 Mar 15 '16 at 20:59
-1

Attack of the 50 Foot Woman (1958)

-1

Troll 2

Another film that has nothing to do with its predecessor and which is shockingly terrible. Despite the name, there are no trolls in the film. There are goblins, and it takes place in Nilbog (hint hint hint).

enter image description here

Below, the most famous line from Troll 2...in 5 languages!

  • This "film" is available for rent or purchase from: iTunes, Amazon, Vudo, and Playstation. – Jack B Nimble Mar 14 '16 at 20:01
  • Isn't this the one with the infamous "oh my goood!" guy? – TARS Mar 16 '16 at 12:12
  • @TARS : Uh-huh. :-) – Praxis Mar 16 '16 at 13:18
  • When I saw this as a kid I was so impressed by the "Nilbog" thing on the water town, seen backwards. That's all I remember from the film. – user31178 Mar 17 '16 at 17:12
  • @TARS : I've added a clip. :-) – Praxis Mar 17 '16 at 20:39
-2

Masha Porter and the Magical Ring

Worst film I've ever seen. I'm not even sure if it was sci-fi or fantasy - at least I'm sure it was horrible!

A bit of an obscurity though (available online, but likely not in real stores).
Kinopoisk page here; I could not find it on IMDB (but it's an actual movie, I swear).

-2

Not really sci-fi or fantasy, but has some fantasy elements:

My Name is Bruce

IMDb:

B Movie Legend Bruce Campbell is mistaken for his character Ash from the Evil Dead trilogy and forced to fight a real monster in a small town in Oregon.

My name is bruce poster

Why it should be picked

Becuase its fantasy, comedy, B-Movie, and Bruce Campbell, why else‽

-4

Mythica: A Quest for Heroes.

The young magician Marek dreams of exciting adventures. When she meets the help-seeking priestess Teela she offers her assistance and provides a motley troupe. Together they go in search of Teela's sister, who was kidnapped by a wild ogre.

I don't know what this movie is, other than it has Kevin Sorbo and someone randomly left it at my brother-in-law's house and he gave it to me. Apparently this movie has two sequels.

According to JustWatch.com, this movie is only available for rent or purchase from: iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, and XBox whatever.

enter image description here

  • 2
    If you don't actually know anything about the movie, how do you know it's terrible? :P – Mason Wheeler Mar 14 '16 at 21:18
  • 1
    @MasonWheeler Intuition. – Jack B Nimble Mar 14 '16 at 22:15
  • 1
    @MasonWheeler It actually got decent reviews. – Rogue Jedi Mar 15 '16 at 0:09
  • 1
    This has Sorbo in it ... can't be all bad!!! – Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 Mar 15 '16 at 1:22

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .