Straight-to-TV future cult classic and cinematic car crash Sharknado debuted on the SyFy Channel this week and created quite a stir. 1.4 million tuned in to watch and the film became the most tweeted TV event of Thursday night with approximately 5000 tweets per minute at its peak. As someone who would walk 50 miles to see a good B-Movie, a low budget picture about a tornado of sharks terrorising L.A. is pretty much my perfect film. Throw in some zombies, a great car chase and a Yeti and I would literally never have to watch anything else for the rest of my life.
Of course, bad films aren’t thin on the ground but the really terrible ones are something to cherish. You can buy or rent them but some of the very best are available in full length on YouTube. These are just a few of my favourites.
Plan 9 from Outer Space (1959)
Consistently voted the worst movie of all time, Ed Wood’s 1950’s classic holds a special place in the heart of every B-Movie enthusiast. The film starred Hollywood legend Bela Lugosi who tragically died before filming had even begun. Never one to give up, Wood used the few minutes of footage he had of Lugosi from another project, then got his wife’s doctor to stand in for the famous actor for the rest of the time, hiding his face with a cape. The budget was so tight that Wood improvised with string and cardboard for most of his props. Outstanding.
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 65% | IMDB Link
Slugs: The Movie (1988)
Slugs are vile and hateful creatures and make a great subject for any horror film. In this feature length movie, a small town is being terrorised by a rout of detestable, mutated, toxic waste addled black slugs. Only one person, health worker and hero Mike Brady has the solution but will the town listen to him?
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 33% | IMDB Link
The Beastmaster (1982)
Starring the sublime Rip Torn, The Beastmaster is a terrible, terrible fantasy film about a young lad’s search for revenge on those who snatched him from his mother’s womb. Or something. Growing up, never knowing he is the son of the imaginatively named King Zed, our protagonist Dar, develops the ability to talk to the animals, Dr Doolittle stylee and enlists the help of ferrets (!!!) in his quest for the truth. Proposterous but fun.
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 42% | IMDB Link
The Wasp Woman (1959)
Directed by shlock-master Roger Corman, mad as a box of frogs scientist, Dr Zinthrop has created an anti-aging formula from Royal jelly extracted from Queen wasps. Cosmetics mogul, Janice Starlin funds further research into this, on the condition she becomes the human guinea-wasp for the project. Bad times follow.
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 45% | IMDB Link
Fog Island (1945)
Secluded island. Creepy mansion. Vengeful ex convict host. Hand picked guests. Thick Fog. Secret passages. Paranoia! Drama! Tension! Weather!
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 22% | IMDB Link
The Navy Vs The Night Monsters (1966)
I was very tired when I first saw this film title and remember reading it as ‘The Navy Vs The Tight Trousers’ for some reason. Anyway, I digress. A scientific expedition to Antarctica discovers some unusual tree specimens from the first Ice Age. On their way back home, the plane crash lands and most of the passengers disappear. The trees survive and are successfully replanted before revealing themselves to be the hellish, depraved, nocturnal people killing monsters that they really are.
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 14% | IMDB Link
The Wild Women of Wongo (1958)
An ultra low-budget yarn with an idiotic storyline and the worst acting you’re ever going to see, WWOW is rife with sexist undertones and appalling hairdos. The angelic goddess like wild women live on the island of, yes, Wongo, alongside their nasty, neanderthal menfolk. On a nearby island live the hunky dreamboats. Plot twist: their women are less than desirable. Both groups of men fight each other, but the saucepots of Wongo defend the dreamboats. The crocodile God is furious at this treachery, lots of nonsense happens and the dreamboats end up with the Playboy bunnies while the ugly people of both islands unite and live happily ever after.
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 21% | IMDB Link
I Was a Teenage Werewolf (1957)
Produced and written by Michael ‘Little House on The Prairie’ Landon, this shocker has been one of the stalwarts of the B-Movie genre. A mixed up teenage kids resorts to hypnotherapy to help him with his issues, but his shady doctor has other ideas and experiments on him while under, transforming him into a diabolical werewolf type yoof. Fun fact: It was originally released as a double feature alongside ‘Invasion of the Saucer Men’. Full length video removed now but here’s the trailer:
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 44% | IMDB Link
Jesse James Meets Frankenstein’s Daughter (1965)
If the title isn’t enough to draw you in, this cult classic is probably not the kind of thing you are going to sit down on the sofa with a beer and a bag of pretzels to watch. This movie set out to capture not only the imagination of horror/sci fi fans but those of Westerns too. Dr Frankenstein’s grandchildren move to the American West and use the prairie lightning storms in their experiments on unsuspecting victims. They create a monster, it terrorises the townfolk, Jesse James gets all wrapped up in the shenanigans. The film was originally released as part of a double feature with Billy the Kid vs. Dracula. Of course.
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 17% | IMDB Link
Gamera the Invincible (1966)
I couldn’t find a full length movie of Godzilla (the proper one, not the Mathew Broderick nonsense) so instead bring you the story of Gamera, the giant, fire-breathing turtle monster who gives Tokyo a gigantic pasting for waking him up. I can’t begin to do this film justice in so little words so point you in the direction of this excellent review.
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 29% | IMDB Link
We might never see the full length version of Sharknado on YouTube but at least we can watch the trailer. I think you’ll agree, it has all the makings of one of the worst films ever. And that for one makes me very happy :-)