The Wiseau: Yet another new award! This one goes to the individual who showed the greatest versatility of sucking by writing, directing, and starring in a movie. Tommy Wiseau would, of course, win this with The Room if I wasn't excluding movies I'd previously seen, but this year’s winner would actually give him a run for his money. That would be Y.K. Kim, the guy who wrote and directed the awesome Miami Connection and who mumbled and kicked his way into our hearts as one of its stars. Devastatingly awful writing, directing, and acting--a trifecta of stink!
Best Actress: This is a category that usually just shows how chauvinistic I am. Jennifer Lafleur is good in The Do-Deca-Pentathlon. Shirley Stoler is awesome, if not quite in a traditional acting role, in The Honeymoon Killers. I’ve always loved Piper Laurie’s mother in Carrie, and Cathy Moriarty is so good in Raging Bull. Bubbles Cash and Rosa Maria Gallardo are great in Mars Needs Women and The Brainiac respectively. And I’ve already mentioned Eva Marie Saint’s work in North by Northwest. I really would like to give this award to Quvenzhane Wallis for Beasts of the Southern Wild and probably should, but the way Shirley MacClaine chews refried beans in Bernie is enough to give her the edge.
Best Actor: Jack Black’s also very very good in Bernie. I loved the subversive performances of Matt D’Elia and Tim Heidecker in the subversive sort-of-comedies American Animal and The Comedy. I like McConaughey in Killer Joe, Christoph Waltz in Django, Paul Muni in The Life of Emile Zola, Joaquin Phoenix in The Master, and Robert De Niro in Raging Bull. Those are performances that most people would appreciate, but I’m an oddball and love Jeffrey Combs in The Frighteners, James Franco in Spring Breakers, Peter Ustinov in Logan’s Run, Howard Vernon as Dr. Orloff and in that women’s prison movie, and Donald Pleasance and his nipples in Wake in Fright. Oh, and Dominique Pinon as multiple clones in City of Lost Children. Mathieu Amalric is powerfully great in Chicken with Plums. Presley Chweneyagae is unforgettable in Tsotsi. But this award belongs to a guy who blows them all away as one of the main characters in Ruben and Ed. That’s right--Crispin Glover gave the best acting performance in any movie I saw in 2013.
The Torgo: In case you’re new to this nonsense, this is the award I give to the worst acting of the year. As mentioned, I watched a ton of bad movies on purpose this year, so this year’s Torgo is hotly contested. A woman has never won this award, but Gail Neely almost grabs it with her performance in Surf Nazis Must Die and Linda Ho gives a dreadful performance in Hillbillys in a Haunted House. Of course, Don Bowman as “Jeepers” outshines her in that same movie with a truly baffling performance. But he can at least sing. Perennial favorite Marjoe Gortner was his usual self in Food of the Gods, but I’ve definitely seen him do worse. Rudy Ray Moore stunk in Disco Godfather (“Put some weight on it” still makes no sense to me), a guy named Septimus Caton messes up his lone line in that terrible Wolverine movie, Stallone is brutal in Over the Top, and Iggy Pop is just plain distracting in Cry-Baby. Charles Conklin, Jack MacGowran, and Raymond Hatten are bad in the 50’s B-movies The Beast with 1,000,000 Eyes, The Giant Behemoth, and Invasion of the Saucers Men respectively. A guy named Ivan Agar is magically awful in a role with no lines--a mute Indian in Shriek of the Mutilated. Two other performances really stand out. Bart Bronson stars in Suing the Devil and made me laugh inappropriately at references to both brain cancer and suicide. And Stuart Chapin is unbelievable in his role as the anti-hero in Shotgun and would win some kind of Best Hair award if I had one. But this year’s Torgo goes to Eric Roberts who provides the voice of the cat in A Talking Cat?!? That’s right, he’s bad enough with only his voice to take this award home. Congratulations, Eric Roberts!
Worst Movie: Making movies is hard, and it seems mean to pick a worst. But I’m doing it anyway. This award is for movies that were not enjoyable bad movies. We’re talking about the most painful movie experiences of the year. Here are the nominees:
Suing the Devil, more obnoxious because of an over-the-top Christian message
Big Money Rustlas, although I have a place in my heart for it as our first Bad Movie Club selection
Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, although I have a place in my heart for it as the movie that my wife thought was Lincoln for 11 minutes and 39 seconds
The Incredible Burt Wonderstone, incredibly not funny
Class of Nuke ‘Em High, the most boring Troma movie I’ve ever seen
ThanksKilling, despite the three references to Jonbenet Ramsey
And what’s the worst movie I watched this year? Easily the crappy Christmas movie Jingle All the Way. It's a movie that could actually ruin the holidays.
The Manos: Of course, some bad movies I really enjoy watching. The Manos is for the Best Worst movie of the year. And check out these nominees! Disco Godfather, Mac and Me, Food of the Gods, Mars Needs Women (by former Manos winner and shane-movies favorite Larry Buchanan), Zeta One, The Dragon Lives Again, Oasis of the Zombies (although that might just belong in the Worst Movie category), Alien Predator, Star Slammer, The Beast with 1,000,000 Eyes, Gor, Abar: The First Black Superman, Cobra, Attack of the Crab Monsters, Barbarian Queen, Shotgun, Werewolves on Wheels, Frankenstein Island, Badlanders, and Shriek of the Mutilated. Here are the very best of the best worst though:
A Talking Cat?!?, a movie I thought was a shoe-in for the Manos this year
Hillbillys in a Haunted House, a bizarre family horror country western musical thing
Miami Connection, an absolutely incredible find by Bad Movie Clubber Josh
Can’t Stop the Music, the best worst musical ever
But the winner? The only 1/20 that I handed out this year (at least to a movie I’d previously not seen): Santa and the Ice Cream Bunny. To be honest, a lot of people would put this in the Worst Movie category, but this is truly something special. I'm telling you though: If you like fun bad movies, I would recommend any of those.
Best Movie of the Year: As always, I exclude movies I’ve already seen. So no Dead Poets Society, Exterminating Angel, Juno, Carrie, Tokyo Story, 2001: A Space Odyssey, The Searchers, Se7en, Slap Shot, Shaun of the Dead, North by Northwest, Pee Wee’s Big Adventure, Star Wars: A New Hope, Raging Bull, City of Lost Children, Blue Velvet, Mulan, Even Dwarfs Started Small, Alien, Belle de Jour, The French Connection, City of God, or The Godfather.
That leaves the following best new-to-me movies:
Bringing out the Dead
The Honeymoon Killers
Ruben and Ed
Beast of the Southern Wild
Raise the Red Lantern
Wake in Fright
Perks of Being a Wallflower
Perks of Being a Wallflower
The Life of Emile Zola
Chicken with Plums
Reflections of Evil
But the best movie of the year? The Master
Like last year, here are a bunch of movies that I liked or thought were interesting that I wish more people (or, anybody) would have commented on. If you haven’t seen them, you should check them out:
The Do-Deca-Pentathlon, from the Duplass brothers
Metropolitan, honestly not sure if I even liked this movie
Planet of Vampires and Bay of Blood, a sci-fi movie that predates but reminds me of Alien and a horror movie, both directed by shane-movies favorite Mario Bava (the latter is also called Twitch of the Death Nerve which is my favorite title ever)
Stingray Sam, from Coby McAbee who did another shane-movies favorite The American Astronaut
O.C. and Stiggs, a wacky teen comedy from the great Robert Altman
The Awful Dr. Orloff, an actual good-ish and fairly normal movie from the depraved Jesus Franco featuring that awesome Howard Vernon performance
Duel to the Death, the best kung-fu movie I saw last year--ninjas galore!
The Brainiac, certified cult classic from Mexico
In Search of One-Eyed Jimmy, not a great mockumentary but an interesting cast keep this fun
Motorama, a surrealistic road trip movie from the director of After Hours
Primer, a time-travel movie that I did not understand
Save the Green Planet!, a fascinating Korean movie that makes you think
Fubar, a hilarious mockumentary that I watched the sequel to last year
The Comedy and American Animal, two challenging movies that would probably offend most people
Finally, here are my favorite movie quotes of the year. As always, I’m not providing any movie titles. See if you can recognize them. Keep score and send it to Bazooka Joe or something.
“Kiss him with a wrench.”
“Is that the name of the game today? Teasing midgets?”
“I woke up with a hard-on, and it had your name on it.”
“Peace is for queers, and now you’re gonna die.”
“Most men I’ve done this to are now homosexuals.”
“For the vegetable, it was exquisite.”
“The love you lost will be in each note you play.”
“I always look both ways when I cross the street.”
“Dan Marino should die of gonorrhea and rot in hell.”
“Nothing is so healing as the human touch.”
“I forgot to tell you--if you catch any squirrels, give them to me.”
“Why deny that for a moment there, God was you?”
“It was Doug Glatt in the conservatory with his ass.”
“She claimed the ham was crying and didn’t want the ham ruining her party.”
“Because I’m an old lady and I dig your little ass.” (to Billy Curtis)
“You’re only going to be on the planet for 80 years, so you better get on it. Time’s running out.”
“I heard you had balls big enough to cum in a dump truck.”
“This sucks more than anything that has ever sucked before.”
“My cat can eat a whole watermelon.” (If I had to pick a favorite. . .)
“I’m such a silly little pussy. You can spank my body if you want to.”
“Semen retentum venenum est.”
“Look at my shit.”
“Uh oh. Ninjas.”
“He’s making a woman suit!”
“If I were to not put on the ritz when I’m perfectly capable of putting on the ritz, wouldn’t that make me fucking crazy?”
“Using sex like some people use a flyswatter.”
“If my dick hadn’t been blown off in ‘Nam, I’d whip it out and piss in your face.”
“Nothing sadder than a dead fish.”
I think that’s all I have to say this year. Thanks for reading.