A-List B-Movies: Chronicle Of Greatness

It’s been a while since I chronicled my top movies and while I still pretty much stand by that list (Okay, so Rambo 1 and The Day The Earth Stood Still deserved more), I remember deciding to myself that movies should be rated on watchability as well as greatness. So step out of your french art-house-critic suit for a moment and smell the burnt celluloid; some movies, bad movies, are just awesome. That’s what we call A-list B-movies.


Directors, actors, effects-people, you who are about to be listed, I salute you.

1 means awesome, 2 is awesomer and 3 is awesomest.

    1. Time Cop, Zardoz, Braindead, Cobra, Death Race 2000, Judge Dredd, Soldier, Mortal Kombat, Masters Of The Universe, Total Recall, The Lawnmower Man, Commando
    2. Escape From L.A., Leviathan, Plan 9 From Outer Space, Beneath The Planet Of The Apes, The Last Dragon, American Ninja, Bloodsport, Highlander 2, Soylent Green
    3. Forbidden Planet, The Running Man, Escape From New York, Cherry 2000, Westworld, Logans Run, Outland, Journey To The Far Side Of The Sun

To make this list extra handy for your next hot-pockets powered get-together, here’s a really quick checklist to let you know when you’re watching an A-List B-Movie:

    • It features an action hero that says “He had to split” after sawing a man in two or “He blew a fuse” after electrocuting him.
    • Smoking is allowed aboard the space ship.
    • Sidekicks proclaim: “I’m not your buddy, pal!”
    • Features green milk.
    • Has a montage to either of these fine songs: “Live to win”, “Fight for love”, “Push it to the limit”, “You’re the best”, “Eye of the tiger” or “Hearts on fire”.

By the way, despite being a highly exact science, somehow everyone inherently knows how to enjoy B-movies. With that in mind, please educate me on which B-movies I haven’t yet had the pleasure of watching. Pings and discussion are open. Oh, and please: no Uwe Boll movies; they set the standard against which all badness is measured. I leave you with Hearts on Fire by John Cafferty:


33 thoughts on “A-List B-Movies: Chronicle Of Greatness”

  1. Levi says:

    I haven’t heard of a lot of those movies, some of them sound interesting. Made a little list for myself, will try and get through as many of them as I can. 🙂 Thanks for curing some afternoon boredom Joen!

  2. Total Recal and Judge Dredd deserves a place on the “awesomer” list. Otherwise I agree.

    Here are some of my favourites not in any particular order:

    Santa Claus Conquers the Martians (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0058548/) – was once on the bottom 100 on IMDb.

    Killers from Space (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0047149/) – With a young Peter Graves

    Collission Course (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0097081/) – With Jay Leno and Pat “Mr. Miyagi” Morita.

    1. Joen says:

      Great additions. Consider them added to m “to eventually watch” list!

  3. Oh man I haven’t seen American Ninja in years.

    1. Ice Pirates

    2. Rad

    3. Iron Eagle

    And I think it goes without saying anything starring Patrick Swayze up to and including Point Break

    1. Joen says:

      American Ninja 1 is good, 2 is watchable. 3 is almost bearable. 4 is unbearable and 5 is torture. Just, you know, a heads up.

      Adding your three movies to the b-list 🙂

      Oh, and Patrick Swayze! Road House FTW!

  4. chris says:

    Like I said before, Big Trouble in Little China will rock your lists.

    1. Jeff Byrnes says:

      Hell yes! I’ve gotta toss in my vote for Evil Dead 1 & 2 and Army of Darkness.

    2. Joen says:

      I loved Army of Darkness!

  5. Joen says:

    Some additions to this list from friends and collegues:

    • Barbarella, Queen of the Galaxy (Jane Fonda nude!)
    • The Creature From The Black Lagoon
    • Swamp Thing
    1. Jeff Byrnes says:

      Swamp Thing! Awesome.

    2. chris says:

      and Big Trouble in Little China. hrrrmmmph!

  6. Joen says:

    I bet this is a great movie as well, though I haven’t seen it.

    1. Joen says:

      Holy shit indeed!

  7. chris says:

    Hot Resort from the early 80s. Is that a B movie?

    1. Joen says:

      It sure sounds like it.

  8. Jenny-fa says:

    I recommend Ultraviolet starring Milla Jovovich of Resident Evil fame. It has an awesome techno score. And some rather hilarious/disconcerting continuity errors.

    Speaking of usability (since I saw your other entry on that topic), what about usability on your blog? Those yellow links around the comment form are damn near unreadable.

    1. chirs says:

      criticize master joen???? oh nooooo youuu diiiiiiiidn’!!!!!!

    2. Joen says:

      I saw ultraviolet, and wanted to like it because I like Kurt Wimmers “Equilibrium”. Alas I just found it boring, more-so than the B movies listed here!

      As for usability, oooh I love criticism. In the words of George Bush, bring it on!

      To rebute your statement, the usability of those links may not be superb (blue and underlined would be preferrable), it’s more a matter of accessability in the fact that they’re hard to read.

      Because this is also a personal blog and not an admin interface, I find the conscious choice of picking a little style over substance should be permissible.

  9. Jenny-fa says:

    Oh yes I did. Can you even spell, chirs? I thought not.

    1. chirs says:

      are you mocking my name? just because i may be the first, and possibly only Chirs you run into, I ask that you respect my Azerbaijanian heritage.

    2. Joen says:

      Hi. Larious!

      Heh heh heh. 10 points for the joke. But be nice Chris. Or I’ll kick you. Remember, I know where you live 😉

  10. Jenny-fa says:

    To rebute your statement,

    Sorry to burst your bubble, but “rebute” isn’t an English word. You want “rebut” or “refute.” Or is that the British spelling?


    1. Joen says:

      Aaaw, now you’re being mean 🙂

      I meant refute, you spelling nazi 🙂

    2. Jenny-fa says:

      Whoops, add “accessability” and “preferrable” to that list. o.O

      Haha, I’ll stop now.

  11. Ulf says:

    Sir, your list is seriously lacking Killer Klowns from outer space and Hell Comes to Frogtown. And if I allow myself to get started, I can dig up even more. Great post!

    1. Joen says:

      They sound like excellent choices! Added to the steaming pile of to-watch.

    2. Joen says:

      Oh you’re just throwing gold in my general direction. Excellent.

    3. Ulf says:

      Heh, I knew spending my entire youth watching B-, C- and D-movies would be good for something. Do you want really bad? Try Seed People. Ow. Ooowww.

    4. Joen says:

      Wow, almost sounds like a porno.

      I need B, C or D bad, not Transformers 2 bad! “Seed People” looks like it’s only slightly better than Transformers 2.

    5. Ulf says:

      It would probably have been better AS a porno. What a waste that movie was!
      Want an underrated B movie gem instead? Pumpkinhead.

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