The Rundown: Bad Movies We Absolutely Love

Above (clockwise): Road House, Step Up, Ocean's 12 and She's All That top our list of bad movies we absolutely love

If you like movies, you have a few different lists of favourites. You’ve got your “critically acclaimed, more serious” movies that you mention whenever you’re having a discussion about your favourite films with other film buffs. You’ve also got your selections from the host of widely accepted, generally fun, fairly entertaining popcorn flicks and flawed dramas that everyone has seen and enjoys. And then you’ve got the critically panned, seriously flawed junk that you just can’t help but love.

Don’t deny it. We know you have them because we have them too. Everyone does and just to make you feel better, we’ve listed some of ours here: bad movies that we absolutely love.

Note:we’re not talking about Manos Hands of Fate or Plan 9 or various Direct-to-DVD duds, so you won’t find any of those here.


Beyond the fact that no one is ever going to fall in love and agree to marry a pan-flute player named Lars, the whole idea that Jonathan (John Cusack) and Sarah (Kate Beckinsale) would spend one great night hanging out and then suddenly get the urge to look for each other one more time when they’re each on the brink of getting married is ridiculous. But dammit if it isn’t a great bad romantic flick that we can’t stop watching at least once a year.

Road House

Some of my friends are going to send me “How dare you call Road House a bad movie” texts and that’s perfectly fine. They’re in denial about a movie they love and I understand because I love it too, but the cult classic where Patrick Swayze rips a dude’s throat out with his bare hands is a bad movie.

Masters of the Universe

If you grew up in the ‘80s and played with He-Man, you loved this movie as a child and why wouldn’t you? Here was your favourite action figure-slash-cartoon hero come to life on the big screen, except it wasn’t good and it came out after He-Man’s popularity had dipped.

Grease 2

Michelle Pfeiffer is a terrific actress and Grease was a fun flick, but combining the two and getting a return to Rydell High makes for one really tough to watch flick. Still, movies with musical numbers are an easy bet to bring you back because you’ll end up randomly getting one of the songs stuck in your head and then next thing you know, you’re watching Grease 2 again.

Step Up

Dance movies fit that description as well and one of the best bad dance movies in recent memory is this little number that is largely responsible for introducing Channing Tatum to the world (and his wife, Jena Dewan-Tatum as well). The dance sequences and love story make you forget that Tatum turns community service hours for B&E and vandalism into dancing with a pretty girl and ultimately a place in a prestigious arts school.


Let me start by saying I paid to see this movie in theatres, so there is that. Creature features are often a good bet to be bad and this one hits the mark, with the added bonus of having a relatively star-studded cast for such a debacle, including Jennifer Lopez, Ice Cube, Jon Voigt and a not-yet-famous Owen Wilson. Plus, the animatronic snake is just hilarious in hindsight.

The Boondock Saints

The idea of vigilante brothers that shoot up Boston bad guys was super-appealing in college, when males between 18 and 22 fell in love with this movie. But it’s bad – like really bad – and yet finger tattoos that say “Aequitas” and “Veritas” are still kind of appealing.

She’s All That

“But it’s a modern spin on Shakespeare” blah blah blah. Not only was it over the top and heavy handed when it came out, but it hasn’t aged well at all either. That being said, it’s still impossible to skip Rachel Leigh Cook and Freddie Prinze Jr. falling in love and Matthew Lillard writhing to Rick James.

The Rock

What is less believable: Nic Cage as an FBI Special Agent nerd type named Stanley Goodspeed or said character teaming up with Sean Connery to infiltrate Alcatraz and stop a small army of military traitors? Who cares – this is an infinitely re-watchable, “Michael Bay blows stuff up” flick with plenty of quotable lines.

Ocean’s 12

This wasn’t so much a movie as it was Clooney & Co. finding a reason to hang out again in various exotic and beautiful locations. It’s nowhere near as well-executed and fresh as Ocean’s 11, which was great, but you know you’re watching it whenever it comes on, especially if you liked the first one or find yourself locked into a marathon.

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