Monday, 18 August 2014

Top 5: Guilty Pleasure Movies (Blogathon)

The lovely ladies over at Flick Chicks are knee-deep in hosting their very first blogathon, Guilty Pleasure Movies. I've had a real whale of a time reading their stuff in the short while I've been following their blog, and wanted to jump onboard this fun idea while I had the chance.

Check out what I came up with!

First things first, blogathon rules - fairly straightforward, but here they are nonetheless;
  1. You can choose and discuss as many or as few movies as you like. We both did a Top 10, but you can just choose 1 movie if you like. Just tell us a bit about the movie and why you like it so much.
  2. Please create a new post for our Blogathon, rather than linking an old post you may have already done.
  3. Please include our Blogathon Banner anywhere in your post

Now this one was a tough one - guilty pleasure movies aren't in short supply so picking just a handful was never going to be easy. I'm glad there was a lot long lead time on this blogathon otherwise this would've been a very hastily put together post. I've put together a brief Top 5, along with some honourable mentions.

Honourable mentions: The Mummy series, Van Helsing, Doom, 

5) Underworld series

(See also: Resident Evil)

Underworld. Like so many horror franchises, it's the critical whipping boy of the January release slot. A dumping ground for so many blockbuster wannabes, the month of January is a figurative wasteland of cinematic trash - we all know that there are two types of films that come out in the New Year; Oscar bait, and shite like Underworld

Anyway, January tangent aside, Underworld is a consistently enjoyable crapfest that keeps me coming back time and again. When a series has an average Rotten Tomatoes score of 27%, it's sort of hard to quantify why this is, but I'll give it a damn good try. It goes something like this...

Kate Beckinsale + leather catsuit + duel pistols + vampire teeth = sold. 

Simple as that. Guilty pleasure cinema at its finest. 

4) Pirates of the Caribbean

(See also: The Lone Ranger, Prince of Persia)

I think I speak for every 90's kid on the planet when I say that the Pirates of the Caribbean movies are the bees knees. Well, the first couple anyway. The rest, not so much. But that doesn't stop me from watching (and enjoying to some degree) them all. They're just so gosh darn fun!

Firstly, there's Johnny Depp. He gets a lot of schtick for the Jack Sparrow role sometimes, but he does it damn well. Keira Knightley is also pretty underrated in these films, whilst all sorts of praise should be heaped upon Bill Nighy as Davy Jones.

Everything about the first film in particular is classic stuff - despite being a film about pirates, it's a film that many of us can quote in our everyday life. Here's a few of my faves;

Will: This is either madness... or brilliance.
Jack: It's remarkable how often those two traits coincide.

Jack: A wedding? I love weddings. Drinks all around!

Mr. Gibbs: Then, on the fourth day, he roped himself a couple of sea turtles, lashed 'em together and made a raft.
Will: He roped a couple of sea turtles?
Mr. Gibbs: Aye. Sea turtles.
Will: What did he use for rope?
Jack: Human hair [pause] From my back.

And of course, the unforgettable;

Jack Sparrow: This is the day you will always remember as the day you almost caught Captain Jack Sparrow!

What I'm trying to say is, if you can repress a smile when that Hans Zimmer theme kicks in, you're probably dead inside. Sorry, it's a fact. 

3) She's The Man

(See also: She's All That, 10 Things I Hate About You)

Ahem, maybe I'll just leave this one here and skim on rather quickly...

She's The Man is a 2006 teen comedy starring Amanda Bynes about a girl pretending to be a guy so she can play soccer - the Wikipedia page claims that the film is 'inspired by' William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night, but that's kind of like saying Sesame Street inspired The Wolf of Wall Street - they bear pretty much 0% resemblance.

I'm joking, of course the similarities are kind of there, but let's be honest here - there's essentially no Shakespeare here other than the really rough plot outline concerning cross-dressing. No teen is going to watch this and go, "you know, I really want to read the Elizabethan play that inspired this movie!" and rush down to the library and read Twelfth Night.

Jokes aside, She's The Man is a really fun teen movie that pretty much anyone my age has seen (along with Mean Girls and the like). It's funny, aimed at teens and endlessly quotable - the kind of film you whack on at a sleepover and stay up all night reciting. I assume, I mean I've never done it so I wouldn't know...

Also, can you believe Channing Tatum is in this movie? Not only that, but can you believe he's actually pretty good in this movie? "Why do you always have to talk about women in such graphic ways!" - gets my every time.

Side note: If they really wanted to be true to the Shakespearean influence, Amanda Bynes' character would've been a boy playing a girl pretending to be a boy. Just sayin'.

2) Fast and Furious series

(See also: Need for Speed)

Here's a philosophical question for you; if a guilty pleasure movie list doesn't make reference to The Fast and Furious films, is it truly a guilty pleasure movie list? Of course not, therefore I'm pretty sure nobody is surprised by its inclusion here.

That doesn't make them any less warranted. The Fast and Furious films are a complete guilty pleasure of mine, I daresay everyone, and celebrated for it pretty much globally.

We all pretty much accept that the films are overblown testosterone festivals that have no regard for the laws of physics, but that doesn't stop us from loving the hell out of them (well, the most recent two anyway - the first four are kind of crap). Whether it's the unending gear change shots, the repetitive street race scenes littered with mini skirts and crop tops or The Rock's oiled-up biceps, everything about this series screams guilty pleasure.

1) Independence Day

(See also: Armageddon)

So coated in cheese it's actually 70% pizza, Roland Emmerich's Independence Day is the kind of film I could watch over and over, despite knowing it's really silly and overblown. A defining 90's blockbuster, it's the ultimate guilty pleasure of mine, one that never gets old.

I mean, let's be honest here; this movie is so awesome that it makes this tea-drinking English kid want to punch the air, sing The Star Spangled Banner and scoff an apple pie.

You know the kind of ludicrously patriotic stuff I'm talking about - Will Smith punching an alien and then yelling "Welcome to Earth!" (after zooming through the Grand Canyon in a jet fighter) or watching in horror as the White House is levelled by an alien mothership. Oh, and who can forget the quintessential, all-American speech Bill Pullman's POTUS gives near the end. Brilliant stuff.


  1. Great list! Independence Day is also one of my favorite guilty pleasure movies - it was just awesome!

    1. I know right! Never get old :) Thanks for commenting!

  2. Great choices! Pirates would definitely land on my list, likely topping it.

    I would also have to include Transformers and White Chicks, just off the top of my head.

    1. I did consider Transformers, but there has to be some form of enjoyment involved - and only the first one is worth a rewatch, IMO. Also, I was going to add the Expendables :)

  3. Great choices. I love the last two F&F movies and the 1st Underworld, also. BTW, She's the Man more closely resembles an 80s comedy called Tomboy (a film also claiming to be inspired by Twelfth Night). It's practically a remake. Just change the protagonist from soccer player to school paper reporter.

    1. Cool, nice little fun fact Wendell :) Thanks for commenting!

  4. I love the Underworld movies too at least the first two...the third veered off too much from the main characters of the series, and the last one had Selene chasing a phantom.

    1. I thought the fourth one was half-decent - the prequel, ehhh. Pass. Thanks for commenting mate :)

  5. Thanks for taking part! I absolutely love this list. I have fond memories of me and my friends making sure we sure the latest Pirate of the Caribbean movie the first night it came out! I've heard of She's the Man but have never actually seen it - and now I want to after reading this!
    - Allie :D

    1. You should see it! It's pretty funny, and it's weird seeing Channing Tatum in something from so long ago. Thanks for hosting Allie, I had a lot of fun putting this list together :)

  6. HA! I kind of love all of these (except the Underworld/Resident Evil movies). Such guilty pleasures that I don't feel too guilty about loving!

    1. That's what I was thinking about Independence Day - I'm sure it'd be hard finding anyone who doesn't love it! :) Thanks for commenting!

  7. I agree with your entire list, including the special mentions!! I think your She's the Man list could have included What a girl wants, if it's ever on TV I just have to watch it even though I know it's awful!

    Thanks for taking part in the Blogathon :) - Jenna

    1. My pleasure Jenna! Thanks for pitching such a fun idea, it was certainly a lot of fun writing :) I think I've see What a Girl Wants also, it rings a bell - not sure I'll take a refresher on it though ;)

  8. Some nice movies listed here. I like quite a few of them myself, though I personally wouldn't consider most of these guilty pleasures myself. ;)
    Especially nice top choice with Independence Day. Hell, that's one that would land relatively high on a list of my absolute favorite movies of all time! Love that one!

    1. I know right? Can't help but love the cheesiness - and Will Smith is hilarious in it :) Thanks for commenting Chris!

  9. Oh, I like She's the Man. It is hilarious. Amanda Bynes I think is an amazing comedy actress and way better and funnier than Lindsay Lohan. I just hope she can take the time to sort herself out and maybe get back to do a comedy.

    1. That would be good to see - maybe a She's The Man reunion in 20 years time - She's The Middle-Aged Man? :)

  10. Some great choices on this list, I cannot believe I never even thought about She's The Man! What a guilty pleasure filled film!

    1. Thanks! :) I know, and I'd totally forgotten it included a young Channing Tatum :)



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