I'ts Monday, October 3rd which means...the return of the Top Five Lists! Don't tell me you're not excited to see my arrogant opinion on which film ranks higher solely on the basis of my taste. This years list were a little bit more challenging and required a little bit of research, that I'm still actually in process of doing, but I like them and I think that they are fair. Then again it's all my opinion so if your list is completely opposite of mine please post it.
Not everyone appreciates or even understands the it's so bad its good film concept. I however have always loved those films that tried their best but didn't quite make it. Some of my most enjoyable horror viewing experiences have been laughing at the unintentional humor in films. This set is limited as filtering through the good and the bad is more difficult, and you're more likely to come across the latter. Also this is one of the more nostalgic lists for me, I've never been a huge fan of newer B films for they haven't had the time to ripen. Therefore my honorable mentions are limited to only one film. Anyways for the first list of the month I give you The Top Five Best (Worst) B Horror Films:
This film's raison d'etre is to define the term bizarre. Maybe the most illogical film I've ever seen, I left Dr. Phibes wondering what the hell I had just watched. Not in the sense that it didn't make sense but as to why things happened was more or less beyond me. My only possible conception of a description is House of Wax and A Shot in the Dark having rough sex for an hour and a half. Literally the depiction of a madman fucking the absurd slapstick of inspector Clouseau. The film comes quipped with bats being hung by string and Price's make up peeling off. In addition to being a strange little B-movie the film does have a brilliant display of set pieces, creepy and elegant. A Vincent Price film making this list was inevitable; even if this is not your favorite Price film (as it is not mine) it's for sure a strange film.
#4 Dolls (1987)
Dolls is likely the least known of this list. A small film I managed to catch on Chiller one night, it's like Puppet Master with a more whimsical approach. The meaning of the inner child being discussed and Judy's daydreaming of her parents getting eaten by a giant teddy bear are played in effect towards that. The doll effects are independent movie good of their times (which means not good), with two creepy Madonna wannabe British chicks that may scare more than the actual dolls. Several humorous moments, likable characters, and grotesque kills warranted Dolls a second watch for me.
#3 Plan 9 From Outer Space (1959)
Ed Wood Jr. is the godfather of B-movies. Infamy of such Glen or Glenda can only be mastered by a man passionate to believe that what he's making is good. There's quite a lengthy list of Wood films that are the quintessential of bad B-movies but Plan 9 is the classic. A little slow but mildly entertaining with cult horror stars Bela Lagosi and Vampira. A classic opening by The Amazing Criswall, the psychic, and the iconic image of the toy space craft being caught on fire over a miniature Hollywood model make for the birth place of B-movies. The film is claimed to be the worst film of all time, I disagree, its bad but in a lovable way.
A reviewer on Netflix basically summed it up in a sentence "Troll 2 is so bad it transcends film" (And because of Netflix I'm unable to properly quote them, but the rest of their review is available on the Troll/Troll 2 double feature page). Troll 2 is rare in that there is no irony, the intent of the film is to be serious and serious it is not. Director Claudio Fragasso was aiming for a family film, not the hot mess of a film that would reach cult status nearly twenty years later. There's an illimitable amount of discussions as to why Troll 2 qualifies (or doesn't in others opinions) for this list. But where do I start? The actors and their genuinely bad performances? What about the film not even being about trolls but rather goblins? What scene or line do I pick? "Nilbog is Goblin spelled backwards!" or "Oh my GAWWWWWWWWWWWWWWD"? Troll 2 is beyond description, its impractical of me to attempt to accurately convey it in a paragraph; it speaks for itself.
#1 Killer Klowns From Outer Space (1988)
Simulating a few of the lists last year Killer Klowns ranks above the rest because it does more than its genre title limits it. It's one of the few B-movies that looked at itself, knew it was a B-movie, and went all out with it. The film has everything that could be reserved as campy, cotton candy webs, popcorn guns, a space shipped replicate of a circus tent. Who's not drawn in to the love triangle between Mike, Debbie, and Dave? Or what about the two brothers who drive the ice cream truck to pick up girls? Despite none of its being serious, Killer Klowns is able to rest on people's phobia of clowns, so in a way it still manages a scare. I have no doubt that others will disagree with this list, particularly this film in exact, but as I said it's the B-movie that knew it was a B-movie, and embraced itself.
Honorable Mentions: The Gate (1987), two boys discover their backyard is the gateway to hell, through a heavy metal record no less.
If you've made it this far post your own.