"Panic in Year Zero" could have or should have been joined on the list by another Ray Milland stinker, "The Man With the X-Ray Eyes."
Oh, Hollis, my friend, another dagger into my heart. After THE INCREDIBLE SHRINKING MAN
, my favorite '50s sci-fi movie exploring the foibles of Man and the search for something greater is X: THE MAN WITH THE X-RAY EYES
Then Judith said:
I really think the most sublimely terrible movie I've ever seen was The Thing with Two Heads, starring Milland and Roosevelt Greer as the heads
I've wanted to see this one for years.
And then Judith said:
I will cast a vote now, though, for the movie I think was truly terrible and made me angry (and maybe a little insane, because of its unrelenting awfulness despite how highly it was touted): Last Year at Marienbad.
I am acutely aware of our disagreement over that movie. Setting that difference of opinion aside, you hit on why I have some difficulty in discussing "Bad", "Baddest" or "Worst" movies. My guess is that we all could come to some consensus over what makes a movie "good" or "great". We may disagree over whether any specific movie has those attributes, but we'd probably agree on what attributes are in play.
We, however, probably wouldn't come to a consensus as to what attributes constitutes "Bad", "Baddest" or "Worst". So awful it's funny? Boring? Makes one angry?
I would contend that a movie that makes one laugh or "angry (and maybe a little insane...)" has, at some level, been successful -- and if successful, then not "Bad."
I'm in the Bad = Boring camp with Dewey. (Right? Help me here.) Take a director who has made some fine films (say, for instance, CURSE OF THE CAT PEOPLE
, THE SET-UP
, THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL
, WEST SIDE STORY
), add some stars, some music, a big budget, and studio clout, then make it Boring -- that
, I contend, is Bad.
And far be it for me to hold any alleged editing of a film based on a Booth Tarkington novel against such a director.