For example: While 1990’s Troll 2 is surely a terrible film (I watched it last week for the first time), there are definitely films with worse acting, cinematography, set design, etc. to rank them lower in the bowels of cinema sin.
Yet over the last two decades, Troll 2 has taken on a cult following based on its “worst movie ever” word of mouth – spawning special screenings, Troll 2-themed parties, even body art dedicated to the awfulness of this film.
In this documentary, actor Michael Stephenson (the child star of Troll 2) travels the country and speaks to fans and cast members of Troll 2 to find out how a low-budget horror film, shot in Utah, starring a dentist-turned-actor and directed by a thickly accented Italian, found a second life as a cult classic.
The unofficial star of Best Worst Movie is George Hardy, a career dentist who played the dad in Troll 2 and seems to be one of the most likeable guys on the planet (even his ex-wife thinks he’s awesome). He’s in nearly every scene of Best Worst Movie, his personality and laughter are contagious, and he’s unabashedly proud of being part of Troll 2’s, uh, legacy.
Just as one man’s trash is another man’s treasure, some of the cast and crew of Troll 2 actually think they made a good movie. The film’s editor has the cajones to say that movies like the Harry Potter series owe their existence to Troll 2, while actress Margo Prey (who played the mom in Troll 2 and is now an eccentric recluse living with her mother) puts Troll 2 in the same company as the films of Katherine Hepburn and Humphrey Bogart.
In addition, the husband/wife team of director Claudio Fragasso and screenwriter Rossella Drudi still see Troll 2 as an important film that tackles serious topics like family, society, and mortality. Fragasso is especially interesting to watch as he displays both confusion and pride at the cult-like popularity of his film.
Best Worst Movie is fascinating to watch, even if you’ve never seen Troll 2. It’s surprisingly moving to see how revered the cast is by fans, especially when the actors show up at sold-out screenings across the country. It’s definitely a case of the fans laughing with the cast, not at them – and when you watch this oddly touching documentary, you’ll do the same.
Is it suitable for your kids?Best Worst Movie does contain adult language (including several F-bombs). And in a clip from Troll 2, a woman’s bare breast is briefly shown.
Will your FilmMother want to watch it?Even if your FilmMother’s not into horror or so-bad-it’s-good movies, I believe she would enjoy watching Best Worst Movie with you.
Best Worst Movie
* Director: Michael Stephenson
* Screenwriter: Michael Stephenson
* Stars: George Hardy, Michael Stephenson, Darren Ewing, Jason Steadman, Jason Wright, Claudio Fragasso, Connie McFarland
* MPAA Rating: N/A
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