December 27, 2009

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I Love Bad Movies Volume 1

Edited by Kseniya Yarosh and Matt Carman
Contributions by Cristina Cacioppo, Matt Carman, Byron Case, Alan Gamboa, Elliott Kalan, Joseph Kirkland, Sarah Marshall, Laura Martin, Dan McCoy, Ben Shapiro, Alex Smith, Scott White, and Kseniya Yarosh
Illustrated Essays by Jeremy Jusay and Anja Verdugo
Self-Published

I'm a huge fan of Mystery Science Theatre 3000 and Rotten Tomatoes, so I Love Bad Movies is one of those zines that feels like it's written with me in mind.

Over the course of a little over 40 pages of text, Carman and Yarosh collect a series of essays that skewer absolutely terrible movies, sometimes lovingly, sometimes with a biting wit that only the worst of movies can deserve.

The zine starts with an explanation of how it happened, as a lack of something to watch turned into an obsession with picking up cheap VHS tapes to find all the bad goodness available from people with just enough money to produce a film. They even offer some tips on starting your own collection.

From there, it's into the movies themselves, as the contributors skewer a few movies I knew (The Stuff and Road House), a few movies I knew I wanted to avoid (Alien: Resurrection being at the top of the list), and an awful lot of movies with Winona Ryder. (Apparently, she loves bad movies, too, having been in so many of them!)

Each contributor has their own way of presenting the movie. Some just describe the plot and tell their favorite awful scenes. Others pull quotes from the movie. One contributor talked about his personal connection to the film and how his view of the movie changed radically on re-watching. The variety of perspectives helps keep this zine fresh, even if the movies included are absolutely rotten.

I was surprised to see the two graphic essays, but I thought they were a nice addition. One used panels to show the stupidity of the movie and the other was more of a personal piece about how the creator was influenced by Winona Ryder. They're sprinkled into the rest of the essays, giving a nice breakup to the primarily text zine.

The final essay is a plea for watching an entire bad movie and not just "the best part" as defined by Youtube postings. It's very tongue in cheek, but I can see the author's point. Sometimes, you have to slog through all of Starfighters to understand its awfulness. (Not really--I don't advise anyone watching Starfighters, not even the MST3K version.)

The editors promise another edition of I Love Bad Movies early in 2010. I can't wait to see what they and the contributors come up with for what the promise will be an issue dedicated to relationships, love, and sex. Because, as we all know, there's never been a bad good movie in that vein.

You can pick up a copy of I Love Bad Movies at a zinefest or by going to their Etsy site. If you or someone you know is really into bad movies, it's definitely worth grabbing. After all, sometimes reading about a bad movie is just as much fun as watching it!