So I’ve come to the end of my series on bad movies. At the beginning of this process, I stated that this final section would be about movies with no redeeming value whatsoever. As I wrote more and more about bad movies and spoke to people about the articles, I began to realize that no matter how bad some movies may be, they still have redeeming qualities.
Don’t get me wrong, that bizarre video your watched on YouTube last week with the sexy sax man or the one with the dramatic squirrel are not movies. Television programs, even the best ones, are not movies either (although movies and television programs have their similarities). A movie is intended to be watched in one sitting from beginning to end, usually in a theater. A movie, whether fictional or factual, asks us to forget that we’re in a theater or on the couch, and asks us to imagine that we’re someplace that it wants to take us instead.
In the end a movie has to convince us to follow it where it’s going. Good movies entertain us by persuading us to escape our reality for a few hours. Great movies challenge us to question our reality.
Bad movies are tired troubadours on hopeless campaigns. They certainly fail to challenge us and usually fail to entertain us. But they never fail to inspire us to imagine improvements, and the worst of them never fail to make us laugh. And that is why we love bad movies.
(c) 2012 D.G. McCabe