What major movies out there are so bad that they bring shame to the Lone Star State?
In the past we've looked at the best horror movies to be set in Texas (and Oklahoma), as well as underappreciated movies set in Texas. But now we're going to the other side of the coin to look at the stinkers that are set in Texas.
First, there are going to be movies on here you like. That's a given. Enjoyable movies aren't always good, and good movies aren't always enjoyable. Its not a bad thing to admit that a movie we like just isn't a very good movie.
What Texas movies do you think are a waste of good film?
The mainstream introduction of work from Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard could not have gone worse.
Set in the year 3,000, Earth has spent 1,000 years under the control of the alien race known as Psychlos. A group of slaves take advantage of their job of mining gold to stage a revolt by using strangely still functional harrier jets from Fort Hood.
The film was a financial and critical failure, setting the record for the most Golden Razzie awards, which stood until 2012. Though it now has a cult following for being so bad its good, its widely considered to be one of the worst films ever made.
'Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation'1994
For such an iconic horror movie like 'The Texas Chainsaw Massacre', the franchise as a whole has one of the worst good-to-bad ratios in the history of horror.
While people criticized 'Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2' for departing from the tone of the first film, and 'Leatherface: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 3' for being an cookie cutter horror movie, both films have come to be appreciated and are considered worthy additions to the overall franchise. It wasn't until the 4th film that fans collectively came together and said, "Yeah, that sucks".
The film's biggest criticisms came down to the acting, especially from Matthew McConaughey, and the changing of Leatherface from a threatening character to a weakling who cowers when yelled at by Renée Zellweger.
After the disasterous "Next Generation" film, Leatherface and the Sawyer clan saw a return to prominance with a well-received reboot in 2003, and a not entirely sucky prequel to the reboot in 2006. But all of the credit the series got back was crapped away in 2013 with 'Texas Chainsaw 3D'.
Going back to the original continuity and ignoring all sequels, this movie opens immediately after the events of the original film and shows the demise of the Sawyer family, except for an infant that was taken in by one of the officers involved in the raid. Moving to modern times, the infant is now in her early 20s (though the original was set in the 70s and a baby then would be pushing 40) and is unknowingly drawn back into her birth family's homicidal antics.
The filmmakers here just showed they have no idea what Texas Chainsaw is supposed to be, by using clearly CG blood, taking great pains to avoid nudity and gore, and trying to make Leatherface the hero in the end.
"Let's take an iconic Texas movie franchise and film it in... BULGARIA!"
Serving as an origin story to the iconic killer, 'Leatherface' follows four escaped mental patients who kidnap a nurse on her first day on the job and are trying to run away from a crazed cop looking to avenge his daughter.
The story itself isn't bad, but the filmmakers decided to add in the twist by making the audience guess which character would end up becoming Leatherface. And this is where the filmmakers really showed a complete misunderstanding of the character of Leatherface. Giving the audience a red herring in the form of Bud, a large, mentally challenged, mute boy who looks and acts exactly like a young Leatherface, the film ends with the handsome and short Jackson being revealed as the future Leatherface, becoming such after being rejected by a woman and getting shot in the face.
Though a financial success and warranting a sequel five years later, we cannot deny that 'Ghost Rider' is not a very good film.
Nic Cage as Johnny Blaze just doesn't do anything special with the film, and his performance is very bland for a character who sells his soul to save a loved one. Cage doesn't become interesting until he becomes the Rider, but then it just makes us want to fast forward through his normal points to get back to the flaming skull Rider. Along with a very weak villain in Wes Bentley as Blackheart, the best character by far is Sam Elliot's Carter Slade, the emotional guide for Blaze who is revealed to be a former Texas Ranger and another Rider.
'Manos: The Hands of Fate'1966
With a limited budget, rumored to be only $19,000, and a crew with no movie making experience, there was no hope of this being a good movie.
The only reason we're still talking about this movie over 50 years after its release is that it developed a cult following after being featured on 'Mystery Science Theater 3000'.
"But... but... but... wasn't this a blockbuster of 1998?"
Yes, yes it was. And the movie blows.
This movie is just mindless entertainment, which isn't a bad thing, but it gets so mindless to the point of insulting the audience's intelligence. When you really start looking at the plot and actions by the characters, the film just doesn't hold up (We're supposed to believe they're able to track down the entire team across the country and bring them to Houston within a day?). And the so-called science presented in the film has lead to a legitimate misunderstanding of astrophysics by movie-goers.
Its a typical Michael Bay movie, all flash, no substance with one-dimensional characters and space scenes that make Star Trek look believable.
'The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl'2005
Robert Rodriguez has made a career out of making crappy but enjoyable movies. Even when he tried to appeal to younger audiences, he made a set of movies out of 'Spy Kids' that were even enjoyable for the parents to watch. But once he jumped the shark with 'Spy Kids 3D', instead of correcting course, Rodriguez doubled down on the green-screen CGI 3D fest with 'The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavalgirl'.
It stars a young Taylor Lautner, and lets be honest, he's never done a good movie. The 3D is distracting and harms the effects of the purely green-screen backgrounds, the child actors have minimal personality compared to the Spy Kids franchise, and the film itself is so dull that parents and children both get bored out of their minds.
'Universal Soldier: The Return'1999
JCVD had a good thing going for a while, and 'Universal Soldier' was definitely a high point in his career. It ended on a pretty definitive note and didn't require a sequel. But as his career started to falter in the late 90s, Van Damme went back to the well and continued the story of the Universal Soldiers.
Luc Deveraux is now completely human and works to train a new generation of Universal Soldiers. But as the program is going to be shut down due to budget cuts, the Self-Evolving Thought Helix (S.E.T.H.) A.I. that runs the soldiers goes rogue and uses the soldiers, and a body he created for himself, to fight against their pending shut down.
The original film had a gritty and violent tone that made it a hard-hitting action movie. The sequel, though rated R and given a theatrical release, felt more like a toned down PG-13 straight-to-DVD movie you'd pick up in the $5 bin at Walmart the week its released. By itself, this movie would have been average. But going off the legacy of the original, it failed in just about every way.