What motivates people to watch BAD films??

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Jim_K, Jan 6, 2002.

  1. Jim_K

    Jim_K Executive Producer

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    I'm really curious as to what motivates some people to watch films that have a reputation as being a bad film?
    The criteria for being a BAD film for me would be BOTH an overall majority of bad reviews by respected critics and also bad word of mouth from average filmgoers.
    Just a few examples off the top of my head would be these films:
    Wild Wild West
    Battlefield Earth
    Grinch
    Now I’ve never had the desire to see these films because they have a reputation as being bad films and I also judged them from their trailers/previews. Now for me personally I find it a waste of time to purposefully watch what I’m pretty sure will be a Bad film. Yet it seems that many people actually go out of the way to see these films anyway whether going to the theater, renting the DVD and worst of all buying the DVD just because the got it for a good price. This is pretty obvious when you look at the top Sales/Rental charts. I can tell this phenomenon is not relegated to the average Joe 6-pack (I do hate this term BTW) by the numerous threads here on HTF when these films are released on DVD. For example “I just watched (insert title)-what a pile of crap!!” I usually get a good laugh at this because I wonder what would motivate someone to see a film that’s generally considered bad.
    Now in all honesty I can’t say the above examples are actually bad films having never seen them but I think I can live myself without having probably wasted my time or money. Now I’m not trying to offend anyone who enjoyed my examples but they do have a reputation as being Bad films. I’m also not trying to offend the people who actually watched these films but I’m just curious as to the mindset or motivations behind seeing them.
    So what is the motivation?
    Is it that you have to judge films for yourself no matter how bad it looks and no matter how many bad reviews it gets?
    Is it because you enjoy watching all new films no matter what?
    Is it morbid curiosity like watching a car wreck?
    Is it the ED WOOD syndrome? (i.e. it’s so bad its good)
    Is it that you treat it like an unintentional comedy?
    Is it the big budgets/special effects?
    Maybe I’m the one missing out on something here.
    Please enlighten me. [​IMG]
     
  2. Alex Spindler

    Alex Spindler Producer

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    I watch films that I expect to be bad mainly as an entertainingly educational exercise. You can look for faults and try to figure out the way to correct them. Was it a fault with the script? With the premise? With the direction? With the acting/casting?

    Plus, it gives you great perspective on how really good the good movies are. You need to have something at the lower end of the scale for comparison.
     
  3. Guy_K

    Guy_K Second Unit

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    I always thought real film fans are those who watch every type of film, even the bad ones (Alex's explanation)
     
  4. Terrell

    Terrell Producer

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    First of all, nobody watched Battlefield Earth and Wild Wild West. They both flopped big time at the box office, with Battlefield Earth flopping even worse than Wild Wild West. As for The Grinch. It's not a bad film. It is a masterpiece compared to the other two you mentioned.
    You must understand, that the average movie-going fan, which is practically 95% of the people that see films, go to have fun and escape for two hours. They don't post on movie forums such as this. They don't take movies as seriously as we do. They just wanna have fun. They aren't looking for some sort of education. So they go to get away from the worries of everyday life. But what you and I may consider bad, average fans may consider fun. There is no definitive word on what is a bad movie. Only an opinion.[​IMG]
     
  5. Jim_K

    Jim_K Executive Producer

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  6. Chuck Mayer

    Chuck Mayer Lead Actor

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  7. Terrell

    Terrell Producer

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    By the way, what did Wild Wild West do at the box office? I know it was considered a bust, but can't remember the numbers. Anyone know?
     
  8. Jim_K

    Jim_K Executive Producer

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  9. Mark Pfeiffer

    Mark Pfeiffer Screenwriter

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    I'll grant you Wild, Wild West and Battlefield Earth, but, much to my befuddlement, people seem to like The Grinch.

    I think there's always the curiosity factor. It couldn't be that bad, could it? As it can be with voting, name recognition doesn't hurt either. The title may be familiar, even if the reason it is recalled is because of the bad reviews and word of mouth. ("I remember hearing a lot about Wild, Wild West, but I can't remember what it was.")

    What puzzles me more are those who intentionally seek out bad films to mock. I enjoyed doing this in high school, but I don't feel like wasting the time to spend with them now. (I have to suffer through them once in the standard reviewing procedure.) I understand the appeal, but I can't understand doing it all the time.
     
  10. Jim_K

    Jim_K Executive Producer

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  11. Marc Colella

    Marc Colella Cinematographer

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    I make it a point to watch some bad films.

    It makes me appreciate well made films that much more. I also like to educate myself on what to avoid when making a film.

    What I will not do is spend money on these bad films.

    I watch them by borrowing DVDs or viewing them on the movie channels on my dish. It's not an issue of spending money, but an issue with supporting crap (which I will not do). Bad films get made because people spend money on it.
     
  12. Neil Joseph

    Neil Joseph Lead Actor

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    What is one man's chicken soup is another man's chicken poop.
     
  13. Paul_D

    Paul_D Cinematographer

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    Without bad films, there would be no good films! [​IMG]
     
  14. MichaelPe

    MichaelPe Screenwriter

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  15. ace peterson

    ace peterson Second Unit

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    I have never even heard of Wild Wild West. Most of the time if I've never heard of it there is probably a good reason for that.... It sucks!

    I haven't seen Battlefield Earth either. If I hear from so many people and places that a movie is that bad, and it tops the list of the year's worst movies, I think I can skip that one. To me, I fell like I wasted 2 hours of my life by watching some of these shows.

    The first time I saw The Big Lebowski I remember thinking that this WAS the worst movie of all time. I rented it because a friend of mine recommended it highly. It was on cable a few months back and I watched parts of it again because it became a standing joke in our family. We compared all bad movies to The Big Lebowski and we always get a laugh when we think about how we wasted 2 hours watching that terrible movie. Well, when I was watching parts of it again, it wasn't so bad the second time around! It was actually kind of funny!

    Most of the time though, I'll just avoid movies that I hear from the majority of people as being "bad."
     
  16. PhilipG

    PhilipG Cinematographer

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    I'll watch a reputedly bad film simply because I don't always agree with the majority. There is no critic in the world I agree 100% with all the time.
    Let's take the case of Battlefield Earth. I thought the trailer was good, it had a decent enough cast (inc. John Travolta & Forest Whitaker), and the DVD had a commentary track from the director (which is always interesting even if the film is bad - if only to get their side of the story). I happened to enjoy BE as a piece of unassuming pulp sci-fi.
    Of course there is the morbid curiosity / Ed Wood / unintentional comedy side to it as well. [​IMG]
     
  17. george kaplan

    george kaplan Executive Producer

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    First of all, everyone has a different idea of good & bad. But, leaving that aside, I do refuse to make any conclusions about a movie until I've seen it myself. However, there are so many films I haven't seen, that I have to admit my list of films to see is in order of what I expect (as best I can predict from review, content matter, director, etc.) to enjoy most to least.
    So Battlefield Earth is on my to see list, but it's probably at #17,000 or so, which means I'll probably die before I get around to seeing it. [​IMG]
     
  18. Scott Weinberg

    Scott Weinberg Lead Actor

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    Though it's up to the individual to decide if a particular movie is "bad", my response is simple:
    I like to see everything. It's hard to write reviews when you don't see the movies!
    Over a course of one week last month, I sat through Black Knight, Out Cold, Summer Catch, Two Can Play That Game, Tomcats, Bubble Boy, The Glass House, Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles and The Musketeer.
    Of course I had HEARD how awful each of these movies was (and they all were), but I still have to see them for myself!
     
  19. Jim_K

    Jim_K Executive Producer

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    Scott,
    wow. I'd have to be beaten and tied to a chair to make me watch most of those films you listed.
    I'm surprised you can still type through that straightjacket.
    [​IMG]
    And for the fans of the mentioned films no need to flame me all was in jest.
    [​IMG]
    Jim
     
  20. Mike Broadman

    Mike Broadman Producer

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    I share the same POV as the thread starter. I haven't seen the movies listed because they just look so awful; or rather, they hold no interest for me.
    You can say that one can't judge a film without having seen it. Fine. But I know my own tastes, and I know I would absolutely despise a movie where Jim Carrey runs around in a green costume. So I don't watch it.
    Sometimes, though, I get the compulsion to see a movie if eveyone is talking about it, and it may have the possibility of being decent, even if it would otherwise hold no interest for me. The perfect example is Titanic. I had no desire to see it, as it looked like another romantic big budget bore. Then it broke all the box office records, was heralded as the greatest thing since Jesus Christ, and everybody loved it. Well, I had to watch it. I did. It turned to be another romantic big budget bore.
    Another example for me is the English Patient. This is the kind of movie where people kept saying, "If you don't like this, then you don't appreciate good cinema." Being the pseudo-intellectual snob I am, I wanted to see it and like it. I saw it, but could barely stay awake. I guess I just don't appreciate good cinema. [​IMG]
    I treat movie watching as a game: if I see a good one, I win. If I see an awful one, I lose. I get angry that I wasted my time and money on it. Unlike most of you, I don't love movies; I love good movies. I don't need to see bad ones, or ones I just don't like, in order to know which ones I do like.
    Although, I confess, I am curious to see Battlefield Earth.[​IMG]
     

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