10 Movies That Are So Bad They Are Actually Good

By Robert Scucci | Updated

In a way, bad movies are sometimes more entertaining than films that are critically acclaimed. But beauty is most certainly in the eye of the beholder. Sometimes you just want to sit back, and watch disaster unfold on your TV set as you get sucked into convoluted plot lines, cheesy special effects, and laughably bad dialogue.

And not only are bad movies super fun to watch, but the conversations that surround them after viewing are also an additional form of entertainment.

So if you’re ready to watch some movies that are so bad that they’re actually good, then grab some popcorn, strap in, and we’ll break down 10 of our favorite flicks that should have never seen the light of day.

Showgirls (1995)

Showgirls is a 1995 erotic drama thriller that boasts an NC-17 rating because of its startling amount of sex, violence, and sexual violence. At the time of its theatrical release, this bad movie bombed at the box office, pulling in just $37 million against a $45 million budget.

But it’s worth noting that the film became profitable upon its home video release, which was made possible when director made an R-rated cut to boost sales in rental outlets.

Showgirls leaves a lot to be desired and is widely considered to be a bad movie because of its poor acting, dance numbers, plot, and gratuitous amounts of sexual content. The plot focuses on the dark underside of sex work, and critics have stated that the film is contemptible and misogynistic in its telling of Nomi Malone’s (Elizabeth Berkley) story which is at its very best disjointed. At its very worst uncomfortable and traumatizing.

But at the end of the day, this bad movie garnered a cult following. And if you love being shocked as much as you love picking apart bad movies, then you might consider checking Showgirls out when you have a couple of hours to kill. Just don’t tell your loved ones that you’re watching this one.

Batman & Robin (1997)

Widely considered to be one of the worst Batman movies ever made, George Clooney has actually publicly apologized for his hand in the creation of 1997’s Batman & Robin. And he was right to do so because this bad movie so famously missed the mark that it’s beyond the point of redemption.

From Arnold Schwarzenegger’s cheesy one-liners (“Ice to meet you!”), to whatever accent Uma Thurman was trying to pull off while portraying Poison Ivy, Batman & Robin’s attempts at humor fell flat with every single punchline.

Though the Smashing Pumpkins took home a Grammy for their song, ‘The End is the Beginning is the End,” which was recorded specifically for this bad movie, even Billy Corgan himself couldn’t save this film from its fate of being one of the worst movies ever made.

In other words, even though this movie actually has a pretty good soundtrack, the movie itself is only worth watching if you turn counting Mr. Freeze’s puns into a drinking game.

Mac and Me (1988)

Speaking of music, we have to talk about Mac and Me if we’re taking the time to rank bad movies. And the music we’re talking about in this second-rate E.T. knockoff comes in the form of a five-minute McDonald’s dance-off that can be found in the third act.

And this isn’t the only product placement found in Mac and Me; they really pulled no stops in letting the audience know that Coca-Cola is in fact a real beverage that you can actually buy in real life.

But there’s one thing that we do love about this bad movie, and it’s the fact that Paul Rudd would frequently ambush Conan O’Brien with one of the scenes from this movie while doing the talk show circuit to promote his own upcoming films. Instead of playing a clip to actually promote an upcoming Paul Rudd film, he would play the clip from this movie in which Eric Cruise gets thrown off a cliff in his wheelchair at a breakneck speed.

Though Mac and Me is a bad movie in every conceivable way, we’re glad that its legacy lives on in the form of talk-show tomfoolery.

Miami Connection (1987)

We have some advice for any aspiring filmmaker who wants to make a movie that involves local bar bands, cocaine, and martial arts: don’t. Miami Connection is one such film, and it’s definitely worth a watch if you are a fan of bad movies that are unintentionally hilarious.

The film follows the lives of a club band called Dragon Sound, and chronicles their superior Taekwondo skills as they fight off rival bands.

There’s even a rescue mission in this bad movie after their lead guitarist gets kidnapped by a gang that’s hired by a rival band on the club circuit. But as convoluted as Miami Connection may be, it’s ultimately one of those “so bad it’s good” movies, and it’s only going to cost you 84 minutes of your time.

In the words of film critic Roger Hurlburt, Miami Connection “is a cocaine-war-rock-ninja-motorcycle-gang film, with aspirations of being an action-adventure musical.” So not only is Miami Connection a legendarily bad movie, it apparently invented its own genre.

Samurai Cop (1991)

Speaking of cocaine, we’re going to quickly segue this bad movie list to 1991’s Samurai Cop. The premise is simple on this one: a Japanese gang infiltrates the Los Angeles cocaine trade, and the LAPD recruits Joe Marshall to neutralize the situation. Marshall dresses like a commoner, but has extensive training in martial arts, and speaks fluent Japanese.

And this bad movie never even had a chance to do well at the box office because it was a direct-to-video release. Still, much like the other films on this list, it’s a fun film to watch because of its unintentional humor, and nonsensical plot. The film has also garnered some notoriety for its “horny nurse scene,” which you can see for yourself with a few quick keystrokes on YouTube.

Birdemic: Shock and Terror (2010)

bad movies

What do you get when you combine the horror of Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds with the environmental message of Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth, and a budget of $10,000? You get a famously bad movie called Birdemic: Shock and Terror. It’s worth noting that the entertainment value of this film alone really makes it worth a million bucks.

Birdemic has some of the worst CGI we’ve ever seen, but it’s highly amusing to watch acid-spitting eagles crash into the ground with airplane sounds dubbed in while they wreak havoc on Silicon Valley. Much like Sharknado (which we’ll get into soon), this movie features dialogue that is stifled, musical cues that miss their mark, and cinematography that is inconsistent at best.

Plan 9 from Outer Space (1959)

bad movies

In the legendary words of Jerry Seinfeld, “Just a movie?! You don’t understand. This isn’t Plans 1 through 8 from Outer Space, this is Plan 9, this is the one that worked. The worst movie ever made!” And he’s not wrong to make this statement about such a laughably bad movie.

Originally titled Grave Robbers from Outer Space, this bad movie’s plot involves an alien race, and their attempt to reanimate hordes of recently deceased humans to march into all of the world’s Capitals. In a different universe, Plan 9 could have been a great science fiction flick. Instead, it’s more like a case study in how not to make a film.

Despite its poor quality and laughably bad special effects, most fans of bad movies cite this one as one of the best bad movies ever made. You just have to see the flying saucers for yourself, and simply let this film happen to you.

Sharknado (2013)

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Sharknado differs greatly from every other film on this list because the assignment from the get-go was to make a supremely bad movie. And everybody involved, from the crew, to the actors, to the VFX coordinators were up to the task. The premise is as simple as it sounds: Los Angeles is being attacked by a plague of shark-infested tornadoes, and the tornadoes need to be bombed VIA helicopter.

The best part about this bad movie is that all of the special effects were added in during post-production. What’s more, there are scenes where you see Fin and his crew on dry land, only before being drowned in a torrent of sharks, only to hop into their car and drive off again with no water in sight.

One important thing to know about this bad movie is that everybody was in on the joke, which is why Sharknado boasts a 74 percent on Rotten Tomatoes.

Troll 2 (1990)

bad movies

Troll 2 is a bad movie that takes place in the town of Nilbog, which is backwards for “goblin.” That’s all you really need to know. Oh yeah, there’s also this really insane plot about goblins wanting to feed on the Waits family while they’re vacationing in a farmhouse.

The most egregious aspect of this bad movie is that the goblins are ultimately put at bay when Joshua eats a double-decker bologna sandwich. This basically means that the goblins can’t eat him anymore because they’re vegetarians, and can’t prey on victims who consume meat.

There is also an implied sex scene that involves an ear of corn that is both feral and disgusting. At the end of the day, Troll 2 is a bad movie that’s not without charm. If you like cringe-worthy unintentional comedy, then you’ll have a good time watching this one.

The Room (2003)

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Did you think we’d rank the ultimate list of bad movies without mentioning The Room? This film was written, directed, and produced by Tommy Wiseau, who also stars in the film. This movie is widely considered to be one of the worst movies ever made and for good reason.

There are several plot points that are brought up and never addressed again. Boasting over 10 minutes of uncomfortable sex scenes, the love triangle between Johnny, Lisa, and Mark is not only convoluted but just straight-up unhinged.

The Room was such a bad movie that it was adapted into a film called The Disaster Artist, which was based on a novel of the same name. The Disaster Artist highlights the troubled production surrounding The Room, and shows us insight into Tommy Wiseau’s creative process, as well as the questionable ways in which he personally financed the film.

In order to truly enjoy this bad movie, you need to watch it not as a film, but as an unhinged passion project with a $6 million budget. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, and you’ll laugh some more as you watch the plot (or lack thereof) unfold in front of your very eyes, and we strongly recommend that you give it a watch.