Best Movie Monster
A woman’s head with dangling entrails controlled by a witch in Mystics in Bali?
Guilala, the X from Outer Space?
That Babadook with that top hat of his?
The dolls in Dolls?
The stop-motion dinosaur things in The Day Time Ended?
Worst Movie Monster
I’m putting both Godzilla and Spiky Guy here from Godzilla vs. Gigan because they talked. Like, with actual human speech. Talking. Godzilla and another monster. TALKING!
The monster in Beach Girls and the Monster
The Predator rip-off in Aliens vs. Avatars
The claymation demon thing in Night Train to Terror
The turkey-headed Blood Freak
The ridiculous-looking elf in Elves
Those are some lousy movie monsters. The one that tops them all, however, is the Creeping Terror’s walking human-devouring carpet.
Most Special Special Effects
Again, that woman’s head with the dangling intestines thing in Mystics in Bali. Pretty much everything that happens in Wizards of the Lost Kingdom is bad enough to make a guy notice. A guy cutting off his leg in Tusk. All that fun stop-motion animation in The Wizard of Speed and Time. Black Devil Doll from Hell’s clever use of a child to show the doll walking. Dummies ziplining in Godzilla vs. Gigan. An unfortunate guy getting his arm ripped off in Aliens vs. Avatars. A Tanzanian beetle landing on a fake hand in Night Train to Terror. The jellyfish CGI in Birdemic 2, something that made the birds look halfway decent. Jurassic Shark’s CGI. Breen’s floating jism in Fateful Findings. An awful-looking dragon thing in Mortal Kombat: Annihilation, or really any of the effects in that movie. Ghosts in the cave in Holy Flame of the Martial World. Those skeleton hands after the Death Bed has partially eaten an unfortunate character in Death Bed: The Bed That Eats.
All good. Or bad. Or a combination of good and bad. But the winner’s obvious--a fake baby in American Sniper which makes me laugh just thinking about it. I can’t believe that was left in a movie that was so critically acclaimed. Let's watch it again!
Best Action Sequence
The Benny Hill effects and jowl-shaking in Petey Wheatstraw after the character’s back seat and one tire are stolen from his car would make Bruce Lee lose sleep. The Raid and Mad Max: Fury Road are two movies that are like giant action scenes, but the scene with the hatchet guys in the former really stands out. Godzilla and Spiky Guy put on a good show against Gigan and Ghidorah. There’s a fun car chase scene in THX 1138. I watched every 5/7ths of the Fast and the Furious franchise this year, and any number of scenes in that could win, especially ones involving a safe drug through city streets, an out-of-control tank, a car leaping from one skyscraper to another, or a gas heist that somehow works in a lizard. There’s Keaton’s flight in Birdman, Frankenstein guy vs. the good guys in Holy Flame of the Martial World, and Silky in Dr. Black and Mr. Hyde pulling a switchblade on a car about to pin him against a wall for a second time. There’s Animal’s death in Hollywood Cop, a crotch shot, etc.
The winner is Gunda! And that’s for pretty much any of the scenes in Gunda, but especially notable is a climactic fight scene featuring both a baby and a monkey.
Worst Action Sequence
There’s loads of stuff from Mortal Kombat: Annihilation, physics-defying moments and just general silliness, that could win an award like this. But there’s also Jeff Daniels punching a woman in Timescape, a fight sequence between the lady cop and the bald guy in Thunderstorm, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles truck-tumbling-down-a-mountain stupidity, and the improbability of Jurassic Shark’s flip and chomp at the end of that movie.
The worst action sequence though, one that makes me giggle just thinking about it, is at the end of Karate Dog, the Matrix-style battle complete with wire-fu nonsense between Jon Voight and a dog voiced by Chevy Chase. It’s the kind of scene that motion pictures were created to share with us.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JXYk3HBrqZE (This is totally worth watching.)
Best Ending (Probably Spoilers)
Enemy’s what-the-fuck spider moment
Dirty Mary, Crazy Larry’s train
Birdman, with a smile at the sky, so ambiguously wonderful
Caesar’s eyes in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Jurassic Shark ambitiously setting up a sequel
The cat in The Uninvited attacking a lifeboat twice (“Ahhh! It’s not over yet! Ahhh!”)
The freak-out montage of I Can See You
They’re all good, but I’m going with that drum solo in Whiplash. That editing!
The Lew Zealand (Best Puppet)
Mr. Bonetangles from Chef, the demon cat in The Uninvited, the ventriloquist dummy treated just like a normal human being in Blood Diner, or the beach monster puppet in a beach party scene during The Beach Girls and the Monster?
None of those puppets is beating the rapin’ and cursin’ troublemaker from Black Devil Doll from Hell!
A Big Chug “Eh” Lug cup in Tusk
A bell in Hollywood Cop
Thor’s hammer in Thunderstorm (not the Avengers movies though)
Neil Breen’s black cube in Fateful Findings
The guy’s polka-dotted gun in Dillinger Is Dead
Neil Breen’s can of tuna in Double Down
The winner is. . . .well, I wouldn’t have used four dots in my ellipses if it wasn’t Neil Breen! Neil Breen’s can of tuna wins!
There were lots in that Five Kids of Kung-fu movie which is good because even though not everybody speaks the same verbal language, we can all understand and appreciate the language of flatulence. But the winner is Adam Sandler farting on David Hassellhoff after freezing time in Click. I guess. I don’t know. I just got really depressed.
Best Death Scene
Somebody dies by swirly in Satan’s Sadists.
A guy gets himself electrocuted by an electric robot in a wild scene from Night Train to Terror.
Every single time a person was eaten by the monster from The Creeping Terror is pretty awesome.
Deanna Lund’s bathtub electrocution in Elves with that ridiculous oozey elf looking on.
And there’s a girl’s touching Christmas death in C Me Dance, a scene that somehow makes leukemia funny.
Any other year, Bryan L. Roquemore, a Tootie nominee, would win for making me laugh during the death of a child in Petey Wheatstraw.
But this one’s going to a scene that makes me laugh every single time I think about it. This scene, which I’ve watched more than any other scene this year and that includes certain scenes with Scarlett Johansson, set the bar pretty high. Once more, Neil Breen wins with the (should-be-famous) pool scene in Double Down. My God, that’s brilliant!
The granola bar scene in The Butterfly Effect, another scene that makes me laugh every single time I think about it
The Telephone Book
Raiders of the Magic Ivory
Beach Girls and the Monster, one they didn’t even bother to finish coloring
Army of Darkness
Uninvited [Click here for a bunch more.]
Love and Mercy
So, which one of those would you pick to win? It's Astro-Zombies for me. It's a classic!
The Satan in The Killing of Satan was great, Tony Giorgio in Night Train to Terror was an interesting take on the devil, and Pierre Palau from La Main du Diable is really good. But the best devil of the year was G. Tito Shaw, Lucipher in Petey Wheatstraw.
I like Owen Wilson’s character’s prayer in Armageddon, but the guy at the blues man’s funeral in Get Crazy (a funeral attended by only blind people) beats it. “God, this is my man, and you better take care of him or I’m gonna wax your ass.”
Again, I’d like to point out that I watched 5 Fast and Furious movies this year. My favorite car in all of those was Twinkie’s in Tokyo Drift. So that wins.
Best Food-Related Moment
The pair of troublesome picnics in Fatal Deviation, an Irish kung-fu movie; the almost pornish glimpses of food preparation in Chef, the kung-fu shenanigans in God of Cookery?
Nope--I’m going with Neil Breen spilling tuna in his lap because that’s a scene that deserves to win multiple awards.
Karg, from Masters of the Universe.
Best Scene Featuring Coughing
The narrator (and co-writer/director Brad F. Grinter) ending his narration duties in Blood Freak with a coughing fit.
Best Achievement in Stunting
Along with 5 Fast and Furious movies, I also saw all the Mission: Impossible movies. And that Tom Cruise? Well, the little guy just impresses me. And I’m still amazed at that airplane stunt that starts off Mission: Impossible -- Rogue Nation. That guy’s a lunatic.
It’s got to be the headband that says “NINJA” on it in Godfrey Ho’s Godfrey-awful Ninja Champion.
It’s got to be obvious that we’re just making up awards for Neil Breen to win, doesn’t it? I Am Here. . . .Now, a movie title that invented the Breenlipses.
Favorite Discovery of the Year (Not Named Neil Breen)
Best Reader Comments
I don’t get nearly as many as I would like. Here are my favorites though.
Cory’s speculation that Joseph Gordon-Levitt is “kind of a perv”
My brother’s use early in the year of “a tinker’s damn” in reference to Star Wars.
Josh: “This movie made me feel sorry for ice!”
Josh again: Most of what he wrote about The Neighbors, but especially “This is like meth-heads doing a “Whose Line Is It Anyway” show.
Barry: “As a movie about a really bad spy, I guess it should get a 16 or 17. As a movie about James Freaking Bond, it gets a 5.
Spam: “If you are a big fan of Nicolas Cage, he must know all about wearing brown leather jacket. Now you can get it. Nicolas Cage Brown Leather Jacket.” (There’s a link if you’re interested.)
And the very best one of all, from Josh: “Any chance I get to be in the vast universe that is your cinematic experience is a great moment for me.” Isn’t that beautiful? It brings a tear to my eye.