The actual question is, is it truly a bad movie if you enjoyed it? Guilty pleasure movies should not leave us feeling guilty for the amount of happiness they bring, yet here we are with a whole list of them. These are typically bad movies that tanked in cinemas or received negative criticism upon release. However, after a couple of years and rewatches, they don’t seem so bad anymore.
Let’s have a look at some of them!
1. Good Burger
If you grew up in the 90s watching Nickelodeon, chances are you’ve watched or at least seen a glimpse of Good Burger. This ridiculous movie is far from a big blockbuster hit, but it is memorable for all its humor and outright wackiness. Kenan Thompson and Kel Mitchell are the duo we never thought we needed.
It starts when a high-school student wrecks his teacher’s car and has to pay off his debt. He starts working in Good Burger with an eccentric co-worker, but things get difficult when a new burger chain opens next door.
Truthfully, it’s a good time to revisit the movie with Good Burger 2’s release on the horizon. The second movie is back after 30 years, with the same duo and a new group of employees added to the roster. You can read more about it here.
2. Batman and Robin
Upon release, Batman and Robin garnered a ton of negative reviews, deeming it a cheesy movie with a ton of bad special effects. However, we have yet to see a Batman and Robin duo portrayed with such camaraderie. The film is charming and campy, different from your typical superhero formula.
Furthermore, we see Uma Thurman as Poison Ivy and Arnold Schwarzenegger as Mr Freeze. Two somewhat underrated characters in the DC universe that don’t get much spotlight in mainstream media. As such, we get an action-filled movie with fun visuals and a fantastic villainistic duo to thwart Batman and Robin.
Poison Ivy puts Batman under her spell this time and teams up with Bane and Mr Freeze to turn humans into mutant plants. This puts a strain on the Batman and Robin relationship. If you don’t overcomplicate yourself with lore, the movie has a certain novelty.
3. White Chicks
Controversial for its ‘whiteface’ – a spin on ‘blackface’ prevalent in Western media, White Chicks remains one of the best movies by the Wayan brothers. The movie is about two black police officers who go undercover as rich white girls behind their boss’s back to prevent themselves from getting fired. The costume and prosthetics get-up was ridiculously bad, but no one in the movie’s world notices anything.
It’s a comedy, chick flick, undercover movie which is as entertaining as it sounds. The film is supposed to poke fun at the endless amounts of chick flicks released in the 2000s with its cliques and mean girl quips. There’s even a whole dance battle scene in a bar where the two steal the show against the other rich, mean girls.
White Chicks is a timeless comedy movie with great one-liners and absurd scenes that will leave you laughing even after years. Sure, there may be an underlying message that speaks about racism or double standards that get obscured, but that hardly matters. It’s one of those highly rewatchable guilty pleasure movies.
4. Spider-Man 3
Look, Spiderman 3 is messy, but that’s what makes it memorable. It’s one of those movies you watch, and by the end, you think, ‘It’s so bad, it’s good’. People tend to look at superhero movies and expect certain qualities and heroes to act a certain way. They forget that these heroes are people, and Spiderman is just a young adult somehow blessed with powers.
This is the last movie with Tobey Maguire as Spider-Man with Sam Raimi directing. Part of why the film is considered messy is because there are too many plotlines to tie off and follow. We have him struggle with the idea of getting revenge for Uncle Ben with a symbiote messing with his emotions. Then we have Peter’s love life with Mary Jane and the situation with his former best friend, Harry Osborn.
But other than that, we have some memorable moments, like the opening fight scene with Harry’s version of the Green Goblin and the cringy, goofy dance scene that gives everyone a feeling of secondhand embarrassment.
5. Con Air
At first glance, this movie feels like a rip-off of Top Gun with Nicholas Cage adorned with long, scraggly hair. This is evident from the movie’s posters if you do a simple Google search. However, it’s the opposite of Top Gun. There are no handsome pilots to be had or incredible flying sequences.
However, there’s an over-the-top explosion and a ton of thrilling action that’s borderline ridiculous. The movie screams 90s action film with an unlimited budget that pulls out all the stops. It has some of the best cast on board, with Nicholas Cage, John Cusack, John Malkovich, and Steve Buscemi, among others.
Con Air follows Cameron Poe, a wrongly convicted prisoner about to be released when the prisoner transport plane he’s on gets hijacked. As they continue to seize control of the plane, he fights back to try and gain his freedom.
6. The Bee Movie
It feels like a crime to include this, but it also feels like a crime not to. The Bee Movie has achieved a whole other level of mimicry in meme culture, and rightfully so. It’s so ridiculous that it’s somehow good.
Especially if you look past the sexual innuendos and the absurd idea of a human woman falling in love with a literal bee, you get a comedic and unserious movie about saving the bees. Truthfully, The Bee Movie probably did more to spread awareness about bees than activist groups.
We get Barry B. Benson, a freshly graduated bee who ends up suing humanity for the exploitation of bees. The wild thing is, he won. The movie descends into chaotic bee activism as Barry skyrockets to stardom. He even gets a human girlfriend who helps him with the lawsuit. If you’re rooting for Barry the Bee, it’s easy to see how this may fall into the category of one of your guilty pleasure movies.
7. She’s the Man
A different type of rom-com, She’s The Man, has now achieved cult status, especially amongst those who grew up with the movie and the iconic Amanda Bynes. Although, it is a wonder how no one seems to notice that she’s a girl.
Due to some complications, Viola somehow disguises herself as her brother and attends his elite boarding school. She joins their football team and develops a crush while she’s at it. As you can imagine, her whole disguise makes life significantly tricky as she gets caught in the most awkward situations.
Additionally, this was supposed to be a modern retelling of Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, kind of how 10 Things I Hate About You is a retelling of Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew. Albeit a bad attempt, it is still an entertaining movie to watch, especially if you enjoy gender-switching tropes.
8. The Cat in the Hat
A crass and highly controversial adaptation of Dr Seuss’ Cat in The Hat, this movie even gets condemned by Dr. Seuss’s wife, who vowed never to let Hollywood near any of his works ever again. Honestly, we get where she’s coming from. This movie is not for kids; we’re not even sure if it’s entirely suited for certain adults, either. It’s one of those guilty pleasure movies you will feel slightly guilty after watching.
Even so, it is a weird and dirty movie with its jokes that are colorful, wacky, and inventive. That’s what gets you hooked – the weirdness and oddity of it all. It’s the sort of low-brow comedy that will get you trying to withhold a laugh, especially with some of its highly inappropriate jokes.
The Cat in The Hat is about a literal anthropomorphic cat with a hat that appears in the lives of two children to entertain them with his tricks and magic. There’s supposed to be a lesson learned in the movie, but it is easily overlooked by all the wild things that go on throughout.
9. Big Trouble in Little China
This action comedy was supposed to be a Western but somehow ends up being set in San Fransisco’s Chinatown. The movie didn’t do well upon release but emerged as a cult classic when released on home video. Furthermore, some depictions of the characters do feel stereotypical and racist, but it feels like a minor problem as a whole.
Big Trouble in Little China is about truck driver Jack Burton that gets roped into helping his friend Wang Chi to rescue his fiancee from some bandits in the San Fransisco Chinatown. There’s a whole seedy underworld to Chinatown that they venture into, where they fight off against an evil sorcerer.
Yes, this supposed ‘Western’ turns into something entirely new instead, with some magic and ancient curses involved. It’s a mix and match of your classic martial arts Chinese movies and American action movies sprinkled in with some humor. It’s weird, it’s loud and it works.
10. Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle
Understandably, Charlie’s Angels never seemed like a spy movie that anyone would take seriously. It’s an entertaining and ridiculous take on the spy movie genre with an overt use of sex appeal. Full Throttle specifically showcased the worst and best of what we love about the Charlie’s Angels movies.
This time, the trio is on a mission to track down rings that contain the names of people in the FBI’s witness protection program. Things get trickier when these witnesses get murdered one by one. One of the Angels decides to go off alone after encountering an old flame, while an old Angel reappears.
Full Throttle is your typical campy, over-the-top action movie with three unassuming girls. It’s a great summer movie not to be taken seriously. There’s drama and a fantastic chemistry between the three girls that makes you feel all warm inside. This is one of those guilty pleasure movies that would never have worked without the friendship those three have.
11. Howard the Duck
It is adding another sleazy movie to the list! Mainly because Howard the Duck appeared in one of the more recent Marvel movies, which led to speculations that it may make a comeback. Revisiting this title is a wild one, but we will say this – it’s a trash movie but enjoyable trash. You don’t get many titles like these anymore.
The movie is about Howard, an anthropomorphized duck that has to save humans from an alien invasion after a scientific experiment has gone wrong. The character is based on a Marvel character and was initially intended to be an animated film. Yet somehow, it turned into a live-action, CGI mess. The characters’ performances were great, though, and the humor is commendable.
Aside from that, the one qualm most people have about the movie is Howard’s sexual nature. This is a duck that reads Playduck magazine with a cigar and has sex with a human woman. Since this movie was released in the 80s, most of his actions don’t seem too far-fetched from the average idea of a man, but the concept of bestiality is too much for most to handle.
12. The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift
Tokyo Drift had mixed reviews upon release, with many people commenting on the actor’s stale performances and noting that it feels like there’s no plot. Yet, over the years, Tokyo Drift has risen from the dead to become one of the best movies in the franchise.
Honestly, if you look at the other titles in the franchise, you should know by now not to take these movies seriously. Tokyo Drift has memorable driving and drifting sequences with exciting characters, making it a fun watch. There are beautiful cars, a catchy soundtrack, and illegal death-defying stunts. What’s not to love?
Sure, the plot is nonexistent besides the part where cars go fast and a white man finds himself in a yakuza racing ring. But that’s part of the fun. You can turn off your brain and watch cars drift by.
13. High School Musical
There was a time when High School Musical seemed to be the best thing ever to exist. For those who grew up with Disney Channel as their main form of entertainment, you know what I mean. This movie spawned numerous sequels, a TV show, and even a musical on Broadway.
With all that said, it is a cringy movie when you rewatch it, though. There’s no doubt that. It’s just a nostalgic title to look back on with catchy songs to sing along to. Furthermore, this movie shot Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens to stardom. It may be slightly embarrassing to admit this as one of your guilty pleasure movies, but it shouldn’t be!
High School Musical is exactly as its title suggests: two high school students who are total opposites somehow decide to audition for the school’s musical. They surprise the school with their talent, which threatens the musical elite. At the same time, the two are at war with what they want to do with their life after high school.
Here’s another stellar example of teenage obsession skyrocketing actors to stardom. Twilight is for the emo teens or those who prefer something darker compared to High School Musical. Yet, they’re almost the same thing, with two teens in high school falling in love. Twilight is more on the fantasy side, though.
Honestly, the latter movies in the Twilight franchise are pretty good, but its first-ever movie is as cringy as it gets. It does prove difficult to watch with its flavorless characters and awkwardly stilted acting. But Twilight is a nostalgic and comforting movie to watch, especially when the leaves start to fall off the trees and days turn colder.
We get the shy and awkward Bella as she moves to a small town and gets acquainted with the Cullen family. She falls in love with Edward Cullen and discovers he’s a vampire. Somehow, the two have to figure out a way to be together while keeping the whole vampirism thing to themselves.
The Anaconda movie is supposed to be a snake version of Jaws, but it did not provide the expected effect. There’s no tense thrill or subtlety in Anaconda; it’s not as refined as the Jaws experience. However, it perhaps did garner more fear in snakes, even with its comically gigantic snake.
In Anaconda, we follow a documentary crew and a snake hunter as they attempt to film an indigenous tribe hidden deep in the Amazon rainforest. However, more danger lurks in those waters than simply humans. Plus, it doesn’t help that the snake hunter tries to divert their plans to search for the legendary Anaconda.
Even at the ridiculousness of it all, Anaconda is a fun movie to watch that has spawned numerous sequels and media adaptations. It’s a fun movie with cheap thrills, one you should make time for if you have time to spare. It’s on the more thrilling side of guilty pleasure movies.
And that’s a wrap for our list of guilty pleasure movies we secretly enjoy! Truthfully, if you genuinely enjoy a movie, you shouldn’t feel guilty about it, even if everyone else thinks it’s bad. Some terrible movies are comforting to watch simply because they are terrible. Plus, your opinion does not have to depend on others.
Anyway, if you’re looking for more terrible movies, we’ve got the list for you!
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