Occasionally, there are films that are so bad they’re good, and such films obtain a cult status. Cult classics are often movies or films that are terribly written or acted, but retain a level of entertainment value based on the humor found in their poor execution. They make up a good portion of the cult classic genre. Here are a few films that make it into that category:
“Reefer Madness” follows two drug dealers, Mae and Ralph. The story unfolds as crimes are committed in the name of “Reefer.” A series of events occur that lead to murder, manslaughter and attempted rape. “Reefer Madness” was originally a 1936 propaganda film. It portrayed a dramatized impact of marijuana on high school students. Originally, the film was titled “Tell Your Children.” Funded by a church group, the film showed the impacts of marijuana as the characters spin further into deepening madness. The film portrays marijuana use as a direct gateway to violence. The film did not find a following until the 1970’s when the marijuana reform movement rediscovered the film. Since then, it has been viewed as an over-the-top comedy. Scenes, such as Mae playing the piano cartoonishly fast, led to the new comedic appeal of a film that was supposed to be a cautionary tale of drug abuse.
“Dünyayı Kurtaran Adam” (“The Man Who Saves the World”)
“The Man Who Saves the World” follows the story of Murat and Ali, two heroes who crash on a desert planet. The lead character in the story, Murat, uses the wrong whistle and attracts monsters who must then be defeated in hand-to-hand combat. Upon victory, Murat and Ali are captured by the main villain who, it is then revealed, is a 1,000-year-old space wizard who has unsuccessfully attempted to take over the Earth. The wizard needs a human brain to defeat the brain molecules that somehow protect the planet. From there, our heroes must stop the space wizard at all costs. If the ridiculous storyline, seemingly made by a 10-year-old, wasn’t enough to interest you in the film, then add on the fact that most of the special effects are lifted from other movies. The Turkish film is known for its unlicensed use of “Star Wars” footage.
“Super Mario Bros.”
This movie is the 1993 film adaptation of the well-known Mario Brothers game franchise. The movie was an initial flop and has only recently found its place with a small cult following. The plot of the movie follows two plumbers, Mario and Luigi. The two intrepid plumbers run into Daisy, who is digging for dinosaur bones beneath the Brooklyn Bridge. After a series of events, Mario and Luigi are sent down a tunnel chasing after Daisy and her strange kidnappers. The tunnel leads the brothers into a parallel world where dinosaurs have evolved to take on human-like forms. It turns out Daisy is the daughter of the previous king of the Mushroom Kingdom, now being ruled by Bowser. The brothers must now work together to rescue Daisy and put Bowser in his place, while foiling a plot to take over the Earth and meeting what to viewers would be old friends from the video game in new forms.
These cult films have attained their status for various reasons, mainly because of how horribly written and acted each of them is. While their original intention may have been lost over time, now they provide comedic gold for people to enjoy. In the end, that isn’t so bad, because they continue to do what they were intended to: entertain the public.