You might call these movies crap, but there are many who would disagree. In fact, some would go so far as to say these are some of the best films ever made! Who’s to say they’re wrong?
Cinema can be very polarizing and opinionated and what if all the critics are wrong about what constitutes a masterpiece? These films might be crap, indeed, or they might just be the most powerful, influential and historically significant films in the entire landscape of cinema, since it’s very beginning, nearly 50 years ago.
None can say for sure, but the films speak for themselves.
1. Attack Of The 50-foot Woman (1958)
On the way home one evening, Nancy crashes into an alien giant who tries to steal her diamond necklace. Nobody believes her story. Her husband Harry, has an affair with another woman and together they plot to separate Nancy from her inherited wealth and keep it for themselves.
This is the most boring masterpiece on this list, on account of it being in black and white, but it’s still a masterpiece. It’s a great film because it’s about something and how often is a movie really about something these days?
What this movie is about, is how crazy your romantic partner can get when you didn’t even do anything wrong. Nancy didn’t even know her husband was cheating on her, but she still got mad for some, unspecified reason. It is perhaps cinema’s first (and best) love triangle.
This movie features some fantastic special effects, for the 50s. It’s hard not to be astounded when the giant knight is on screen, but the giant woman is where this film truly shines. The film deals adeptly with the truth about jealousy and the audience is forced to face its harsh realities.
2. Miami Connection (1987)
Dragon Sound; pop-rock band and masters of Taekwondo, have their only steady gig threatened by a rival band, who don’t even understand music. The lead guitarist of Dragon Sound has his relationship with their beautiful lead singer threatened by her crazy brother (who also has martial arts training and deals with a shady gang of bikers who are also highly trained ninjas). The eveil band and the gang join forces to try to take them down, but of course, nothing can overcome the powerful, twin forces of friendship and Taekwondo.
This movie features some incredible fight scenes, incomparable to any filmed before or since. Out of this ocean of incredible choreography and music, arise some truly powerful themes: Friendship, love and being an international band (the characters’ ethnicities, respectively are; Irish, Israeli, Korean, Italian and half black American and half Korean. The Lead singer’s ethnicity is never mentioned) which hence suggests a path towards peace and love in the world across all nations and creeds, through martial arts.
What really makes this movie a masterpiece is the ensemble cast and the ways in which the film tests not only their relationships and fighting skills, but also its own explicit meaning.
As the closing title card plainly puts it: “Only through the elimination of violence can we achieve world peace.” to which the obvious subtext is “even if it must be eliminated by extreme violence.”
3. Samurai Cop (1991)
Joe Marshall is a specialist brought in from San Diego, in order to eliminate the local death merchants; the Katana gang (for those who don’t know; Katana means Japanese sword), but they won’t go down without a fight.
Samurai Cop features great performances from all the actors, especially Mark Frazer, who plays Joe Marshall’s partner. He brings a levity to the serious scenes that’s much needed in a film this dark. The action scenes are enthralling and one wonders how they managed to get the car chase scenes to be so realistic, without putting lives in danger.
All in all, this is just the absolute benchmark for the buddy-cop sub genre, striking the perfect balance between humour and tension.
4. Trash Humpers (2009)
A found footage style film shot on VHS about a gang of four elderly people who meander the streets of Nashville, Tennessee. They commit acts of vandalism and hump trash and trees, respectively. They cross paths with a few locals, mostly middle-aged men living alone, who appear to be as delusional as they are. Many of them are subsequently killed by the gang.
Momma (the only woman in the group) starts to recede from the others, taking less joy in their shenanigans. This becomes the centre of the film.
What makes the film a masterpiece is its perfect execution of the Hero’s Journey plot structure, perhaps the best embodiment of it, along with potent and relevant social commentary. The film is clearly about the pitfalls of consumerism and the American dream, displaying the most viable out for society; Anarchy.
5. Fateful Findings (2013)
When Dylan, a wealthy novelist, is struck by a speeding Rolls Royce, he finds himself in the possession of a magical gem. The stone imbues him with a supernatural ability to hack into the world’s computers and discover government secrets. He’s no longer working on his next novel, he’s working on revealing the truth.
He fights to complete his mission, but at what cost? Thankfully he finds a long lost love from his childhood, to help him succeed on his divine quest.
One can sense the influences of Elephant Man and Meet Joe Black, alike. Fateful Findings is a timeless work of art. It reveals its own kind of truth. Not government secrets, but a deeper, more human truth. Directed by visionary director Neil Breen.
6. Double Down (2005)
Aaron Brand, international hacker and secret agent of legendary status, hides out in the deserts of Las Vegas and suffers tremendous grief in the wake of his wife’s assassination by the government. So much so that he begins hallucinating both his wife and his dead parents in the desert sands. He’s in hiding from the government and now he’s getting revenge, with a plot to shut down Las Vegas.
Once again featuring Renaissance man, Neil Breen, executing enthralling action scenes while delivering a powerful performance; still the best of his career, to date.
The themes of patriotism and power will challenge even the most intelligent viewers to re-evaluate their roles in the system.