Browse the straight-to-DVD bin and you’ll find them. Flick to the Syfy channel and you’ll be overwhelmed.
The B-Movie rip-off. The self-dubbed “Mockbuster”. Most are awful. In fact, being generally unwatchable has become somewhat of a triumph for mockbuster production companies such as the aptly named Asylum – riding into bargain bins worldwide on the crest of a recent blockbuster’s popularity.
For this week’s So Bad It’s Good, here are some of the most blatant – and hilarious – rip-offs of Hollywood blockbusters.
300 years after an alien invasion forces the last surviving members of humanity underground, a crack spec ops team launch an offensive to capture one of their alien overlords for testing. Heading to the surface they come into contact with one of the dastardly beings and lo and behold, find them to be not so much aliens but shape-shifting robots that can transform themselves into the products of various car manufacturers. Where have we seen that before?
AVH: Alien vs. Hunter (2007)
Fresh from scrapping with the similarly named Predator, a certain infamous Xenomorph (although for copyright purposes, a few elements are changed) is pursued by a new foe intent on its destruction. Hunter, who bares a striking resemblance Tin Man from Wizard of Oz, is the new breed chasing the bounty on the head of Old Xeno. The bro-down location? Our humble planet Earth.
Snakes on a Train (2006)
Ah, the many trials of standard class rail travel: wailing babies; football fans engulfing fellow passengers in the miasma of lager breath; snakes hatching out of the belly of the resident Mayan woman. Wait – what?! Welcome to the plot to Snakes on a Train, which also includes a train-eating snake and a cameo by a character hilariously dubbed “Gok Wan” after the famous fashion icon.
Sunday School Musical (2008)
Surprisingly similar to High School Musical, yet with sprinklings of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ rather than Zac Efron. When financial woes befall their beloved Sunday school, a bunch of actors in their late 20’s masquerading as 16 year old kids enter a singing contest to score the hefty cash prize.
The 18 Year Old Virgin (2009)
Not as far-fetched a proposition as The 40 year-old Virgin on which this 2009 feature from The Asylum is based. Some guy refuses to take a girl’s virginity, so she proceeds to sleep around with every bloke in the movie in an effort to prove her self-worth. Check this out if you like nudity – and talking cocks.
Almighty Thor (2011)
Spawned from the enduring success story of Norse mythology and Marvel comics, Almighty Thor sees the bare-chested warrior lose his trusty hammer to scheming brother, Loki. Of course, without the rights to call Mjolnir by its proper name, Thor’s weapon hilariously becomes “The Hammer of Invincibility”.
Atlantic Rim (2013)
The same plot as monster vs robots hit Pacific Rim, except this time it all goes down in the icy waters of the Atlantic. With a much lower budget. Can’t really say anymore than that.
Abraham Lincoln vs. Zombies (2012)
Drawing inspiration from the Oscar-award winning biopic Lincoln and some other film about hunting vampires, the famous American president takes a moment away from the Gettysburg address to lead a one-man army against the most dangerous foe of all; the confederate undead.
Jurassic City (2014)
This is what would happen if you took the last scene of The Lost World: Jurassic Park and stretched it out into a feature length movie. Poorly realised CGI dinosaurs cause a ruckus in Los Angeles. A crack team of special forces operatives are called in to deliver Jurassic judgement to their reptilian adversaries. Extinction, once and for all!
King of the Lost World (2005)
When a plane crashes on a mysterious island, the survivors haphazardly traverse it and must deal with its many dangerous inhabitants: giant insects; CGI dragons, F-16 jets and some fellas in gorilla costumes. Loosely (and I mean loosely) based on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s famous The Lost World novel, and rather similar to a certain Peter Jackson remake of the same year.
Allan Quartermain and the Temple of Skulls (2008)
Indiana Jones, erm…I mean Allan Quartermain, heads out on a whip-cracking adventure to search for a mythical treasure hidden in the uncharted wilderness of Africa. There, he discovers the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, erm…I mean, the Temple of Skulls. Hmm…
So Bad It’s Good:
- Unintentionally hilarious games
- Best bad dancing videos
- Two Worlds – the best bad game ever
- Nick Fury: Agent Of SHIELD
- Hilariously awful horror movie villains
- Entertainingly terrible movie vampires
- How to make a good bad movie
- Denny ‘Blazin’ Hazen on being the real Average Homeboy
- Can music ever be so bad it’s brilliant?
- Kung Fury: a time travel action movie about beating up Hitler
- Urban Gothic: the crap British Twilight Zone
- Samurai Cop is the best bad action movie
- The joy of bad video game dialogue