Five Really Really Really Bad Sci-Fi Movies
Theres bad and then theres bad, yknow? As a connoisseur of fringe culture, I try to keep my threshold of intolerance high. If I feel it slipping, I pop one of these into the VCR. If Im the last to leave the room clutching my head, I know I still have that edge.
Lukas Haas, following his child-star-making turn in Peter Weirs Witness, plays a post-apocalyptic deaf-mute orphan who finds a glowing silver orb called Bodhi that can cure deafness and make it rain indoors, and doubles as a space-lacrosse ball. When a Native American orphan steals Bodhi, Haas chases him, followed by his entire Rollerblade team. Fortunately, the entire parched post-nuclear wasteland is crisscrossed with skate ramps. Then theres a city made of tires, some eco-terrorists and a torture robot, and the plot kind of falls apart after that. But its an allegory, man. As one Amazon reviewer observes, The kids are not following a glowing ball, they are following an ideal, a higher consciousness that we all possess if we can only find it. The water represents a rare kind of nourishment that comes from the depths of the cosmos, a nourishment that is indeed becoming more and more scarce in todays world. Amen.
Slapstick of Another Kind
This one isnt even on Amazon. Released the same year as The King of Comedy, this Jerry Lewis vehicle is auteur Steven Pauls incoherent adaptation of Kurt Vonneguts 70s novel Slapstick. Lewis and Madeline Kahn play the mutant twins with hidden superhuman capacities, and Marty Feldman is their father. Includes cameos by Merv Griffin and I kid you not Sam Fuller. More effective at stopping rational cognition than a zen koan.
Leprechaun in the Hood
The fifth in the series, and second using Hollywood genres as a jumping-off point, following the highly compelling Leprechaun in Space. This gets the nod because of the presence of Ice-T and the heretofore-unsuspected resonance between the ancient Celtic tradition of limerick-speech and the contemporary urban subculture of rap music. Oh, wait: I forgot about House of Pain. They should cover the theme song, Lep in the Hood Up to No Good! Talk about street cred!
Mac and Me
This is not a really cheap version of E.T., okay? So theres a loveable diminutive pop-eyed scrotal alien puppet hiding in a kids closet and nobody believes hes there and the government agents are after them, but in MAC (Mysterious Alien Creature), the kid is in a wheelchair and played by a real authentic paraplegic, and theres awesome cross-branding culminating in the big dance contest in the McDonalds, presided over by Ronald McDonald himself, with MAC in a bear costume breaking on the service counter. And in the end theres not just one MAC but a whole pop-eyed scrotal family and they put on dorky 50s clothes and get sworn in as American citizens and drive off in a pink Cadillac down the 405, illegals no more! So much for your rip-off theory! Still waiting for the promised sequel.
Hercules in New York
Our governor, a.k.a. Arnold Strong, in his first (1970) feature film as the heroic demigod transported to Central Park by a bolt of rebar. To find himself. This is so gay. The DNC needs to copy and distribute a few million copies before 2008.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss LA Weekly's biggest stories.