Contest Results, Pt. 1: Honorable Mentions

Yes, it’s true. The results are for our Kick-Off Contest are finally in! I have to say, we here at The Bonus View are very pleased with the turn-out. Unfortunately, we don’t have enough prizes to give something to everyone who submitted a worthy response to the contest question, as much as we may like to. Because there were so many excellent entries, we’re going to drag the suspense of this out a little by starting with a rundown of the honorable mentions.

To recap: We asked for the name the guilty pleasure movie not yet available on Blu-ray that you’re hoping will be released in the future, why you like it, and what about it you can’t wait to see in high definition. We had a lot of great answers to these questions. And yes, I read through every single entry. Ultimately, the winners were chosen at my own (very subjective) discretion based on all three of those criteria.

First, let’s talk about what didn’t win. As stated in the original post, the deadline for entry was Friday, April 30th. Any submissions made after that date were not eligible. Any entry that named a movie already available on Blu-ray (such as ‘Over the Top‘, for example) had to be disqualified, regardless of how guilty a guilty pleasure it may be. I also tried to stay away from movies that have been announced for release in the near future. It was very important that entrants answer all three parts of the question. A great many people simply threw out titles for movies they’d like to see on Blu-ray without much explanation. Even if I happened to agree or like the pick, those entries could not win.

It seems that a lot of people had trouble understanding what a “guilty pleasure” is. I explicitly stated in the original post that widely-praised or beloved movies would not qualify. A guilty pleasure is a bad movie that you love anyway, regardless of how unpopular it may be. Nevertheless, we received entries for numerous Oscar winners, genuine classics, influential masterpieces, and hugely popular blockbusters. Under no stretch of the imagination is ‘Singin’ in the Rain’ a guilty pleasure.

Nor is ‘Jurassic Park’, and we had several entries for that one. Now, don’t get me wrong, ‘Jurassic Park’ may have its flaws. However, as a general rule, no movie that has ever held the title of the Highest-Grossing Film of All Time can be called a guilty pleasure. As cheesy as that Céline Dion song may be, that means no ‘Titanic’ either. Sorry.

I had to draw a distinction between Cult Movies and guilty pleasures. Titles like ‘Re-Animator’, ‘The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the Eighth Dimension’, and ‘Bubba Ho-Tep’ are very popular in some circles, and were in fact deliberately made to cater to a cult audience. Likewise, I also tried to avoid picks that I felt were too obvious. Titles like ‘Plan 9 from Outer Space’ and ‘Howard the Duck’ are widely renowned and actually have quite significant cult followings for being Bad Movies. For that reason, I couldn’t rank those entries as winners.

What I was most looking for here was not just the name of a bad movie, but also a genuine affection for that movie, despite its reputation or acknowledged poor quality. For example, take this early post from our own Dick Ward. (Note that Dick was not eligible to win, due to being an Internet Brands employee.)

And just for fun, here’s my pick for a guilty pleasure that needs to hit Blu-ray: ‘The Wizard.’ Why? Because it’s so offensively bad that it needs to be watched again and again. Imagine that final round of the tournament in high definition, or hearing “The Power Glove. It’s so bad,” in 7.1 channel surround!

But mostly, I just want an excuse to watch it again.

That’s the kind of thing I’m talking about. In fact, now I feel an overwhelming sadness that I can’t yet watch ‘The Wizard’ on Blu-ray.

There were many duplicate entries for the same movies from different people. I didn’t necessarily pick the person who submitted the movie first. I always sided with the person who made the best defense for that movie.

So, with all that in mind, let’s go to the…

Honorable Mentions

Edwin said:

I have many guilty pleasure movies so to pick one was tough. Personally I think a real guilty pleasure movie isn’t just a movie that most people don’t like. To me it’s a movie you’re actually embarrassed to tell someone you own. So the guilty pleasure movie that stands out to me is The Adventures of Ford Fairlane staring Andrew Dice Clay.

I’ve always loved this horrible movie from the first time I saw it. I was friends with the guy at the video store and he looked it up on the computer and their copy of Ford Fairlane had been rented a total of 12 times and all 12 times was me. I had recorded it when they showed it on HBO and kept that copy in my collection for years until I picked it up on VHS. Then years later I found it in the $3 dollar bin at Wal-Mart. I was so excited it was embarrassing. This movie is where I got one of my favorite insults of all time that I still use today… “Snapperhead.” Love it!

I can’t even sit here and come up with any technical or home theatery reason I want this on Blu-ray. There is nothing visually or sound wise that would make me want this on Blu-ray. I want it simply because I like having my favorite movies in hi-def. So for that reason alone I would want it re-mastered and presented in the best picture available. I know the source material is probably horrible and it won’t be even be a 3 star release, but even still it will look, unless they screw the pooch, better than it ever has. So there it is.

Yes, Edwin gets it. Nicely done.

Al said:

Xanadu. Tremendous guilty pleasure and one that needs to hit Blu-ray. Why? It would make my wife crazy. She knows of my Olivia Newton-John crush. But ‘Grease’ is not enough! Not when there is more roller-skatin’, spandex wearin’, ELO dancin’ to be had! Bring it on!

And speaking of bringing it on, Adam said:

I have to go with Bring It On for my guilty pleasure. The sound could be great on Blu-ray and who doesn’t want to see more Eliza Dushku in high definition?

I honestly don’t believe that ‘Bring It On’ is a bad movie. It’s quite good for what it tries to be. However, my wife certainly gives me a lot of guilt when I stop to watch it every single time I run across it on cable. So, if for no other reason than that, Adam deserves an honorable mention.

Along similar lines, Don said:

My guilty pleasure: “Stick It.” Starring Jeff Bridges & Missy Peregrym (Heroes & Reaper fame).

Yes it’s a gymnastics movie, but I’ve yet to find a guy that would deny enjoying this movie. It’s a funny and enjoyable movie that I have honestly bought 5 times on DVD (used & new). It’s the only movie I’ve ever seen that is a girl’s movie interlaced with plenty of guy attitude. Missy Peregrym is smokin hot in it. The soundtrack is so diverse and awesome; from Missy Elliott, to Jurassic 5, to Green Day (the sound quality of Blu-ray HD = epic).

As I already stated, Missy Peregrym is smoking hot in it. Missy Peregrym and several other fine young ladies doing gymnastics, bending, jumping all while in tight, shapely outfits in High Definition! Along with superior sound and a good movie in itself, I don’t think it would ever leave my Blu-ray player if it came out.

I need to see this movie… Uhhh, for the appearance of Oscar winner Jeff Bridges, of course. Yup, that’s why.

A different Adam said:

Guilty Pleasure: “Megaforce”

That’s right…”Megaforce.” I remember as a kid seeing this movie and being blown away. Flying motorcycles, color changing dune buggies. With characters like “Ace Hunter,” “Dallas” and “Major Zara,” how could you go wrong? We attached lawn darts to our bicycles and acted out every scene. It’s amazing nobody was hurt as we flung lawn darts around the yard while popping wheelies. On the back of comics there were these ads/forms you could send in and join Megaforce. When I got my crappy membership card and form letter I was a little disappointed, but I still loved the movie. I saw it on VHS a few years back and the cheese factor is an 11 for sure, but that just made me love the movie all over again, if for very different reasons. An over the top grinning Barry Bostwick in gold spandex is just too freaking funny to be missed.

Okay so the movie never came out on DVD (in the U.S. anyway) so a Blu-ray release is wishful thinking, but hey “Flash Gordon” is on its way so ya never know.

True story: As a kid, I had the complete set of Megaforce Hot Wheels cars, but I’d never seen the movie! I just thought the Hot Wheels cars were cool. I wasn’t introduced to the cinematic cheesefest until well into my adulthood.

Ryan said:

Masters of the Universe.

This film (and the cartoon series) encompass my formative years as a young child. I had EVERY (and I do not exaggerate when I say this) He-Man action figure, and most of the vehicles, castles, and cartoons on VHS. The live-action film was one of the first movies I ever saw in theaters, and I watched it endlessly when it played on The Movie Channel in the late ’80s. To say I was obsessed would be an understatement.

I think it will look like crap on Blu-ray, but if it is ever released, it will be a Day One purchase for me!

I had a small collection of Masters of the Universe toys in the ’80s. I eventually sold them to a neighbor kid. G.I. Joe was really my thing, but I can definitely understand a good obsession.

Eric said:

Guilty Pleasure: The Black Hole

This was one of the first Sci-fi movies I had seen as a kid and really loved it. I first saw it on TV during the wonderful world of Disney. Later in the 90s I watched it again as a teenager and could see all the flaws that it had, but it holds a special place in my heart as being a movie I really loved as a kid. It came out around that time after Star Wars and you could see Disney hurried this movie out to cash in the space craze at the time. Seeing the special effects and the Robots makes you laugh today but as a kid it looked so cool.

This movie could use a HD make over to bring a classic sci-fi movie to Blu-ray. Disney usually does a great job on there Blu-rays. Also who doesn’t want to see a giant black hole in HD?

‘The Black Hole’ was the very first movie I ever saw in a theater. And indeed it’s quite cheesy. Excellent choice, Eric.

Corey said:

The Mission! Talk about guilt…

Robert De Niro runs his brother through with a sword for having relations with his wife, spends time in prison for it, gets sprung by a Jesuit priest cause he needs help toting crap up a waterfall, gets absolved of his guilt by a little boy who thinks he is a complete moron for dragging his armor behind him the whole way, learns to laugh again, then dies heroically attempting to defend the natives he has helped save from everlasting death even though that defense gets an EPIC FAIL when he can’t demo the bridge properly, allowing the soldiers easy access to the blood bath that quickly ensues.

The plot alone needs to be in HIGH DEFINITION, but I would especially love to see the breathtaking cinematography given a deserving showcase.

This is entirely the wrong kind of guilt and not at all what I had in mind. But I think it’s pretty funny, and I appreciate Corey’s clever twist on the subject. Thanks for that.

Bill said:

Mine would be: Brainsmasher – A Love Story.

This stars Andrew Dice Clay and Teri Hatcher, and is one of the most ridiculous movies ever made. He is a bouncer and he has to protect her from ninjas running through Seattle trying to get a rare flower back that her sister sent to her to keep away from the ninjas. It’s so bad, you can’t stop watching. It needs to be on Blu-ray because…well just because! It’s just one of those movies you could watch over and over again.

I’d never heard of it before, but that movie sounds AWESOME!

Nathan said:

I want to see Tank Girl on Blu-ray. This movie reminds me of my mom back before she got a terminal brain injury in a car accident when I was 16. We used to watch it with her all the time as kids, and she even took us to MGM on Ice because she heard there was a Tank Girl section. That’s right, I saw Tank Girl ON ICE. And. It. Was. Awesome. It’s just one of those things that reminds me of a better time in life before a lot of really bad things happened.

Ehhhn. That post brought me to a sad place. Anyway. Tank Girl.

That’s a great (though sad) story, Nathan. And a reminder that even bad movies have the power to form deep emotional connections with us, even if for unintended reasons.

Dan said:

I’d like to see them come out with Wisdom, starring Demi Moore and Emilio Estevez. It’s a take-off on Bonnie and Clyde, where Estevez and Moore fall on hard times and start robbing banks. They become heroes to the everyday man, since they decide to burn up all loan notes, keeping the banks from collecting on debts.

It’s a total cheeseball movie, but I’m a fan of Demi Moore and would like to see the young, pre-enhanced Demi in all of her high-definition glory. Plus, I’m hoping to get some extra credit for talking about a totally random movie.

Extra credit indeed, Dan.

ehtamgnie said:

I’m blushing as I write this but my guilty favorite has got to be “Elvira, Mistress of the Dark”.

Not only does it bring waves of nostalgia back to staying up late as a teenager watching schlocky horror movies, but it is really damned funny. Elvira was always racy without being vulgar when it came to her *ahem* assets. There is so much camp and homage to other films (leg warmers and Flashdance, Arnold with a Bazooka) that it is just a riot to watch.

To see this movie on Blu-ray high definition would be, pardon the pun, a scream since the Production values would likely make themselves even more apparent. Rather than diminish the film, I think it would only enhance the campiness of the movie.

I think Elivra would be proud of your (appropriately) lame pun there, ehtamgnie.

Jonathan said:

One of my favorite guilty pleasure movies is The Car (released in 1977).

George Barris, car customizer extraordinaire, did the work on the titular car, and it’s freaking AWESOME!! Perfectly menacing. There’s 70s fashion, cheesy dialog, Native Americans, and Ronnie Cox of Robocop fame as an ex-drunk cop who delivers one of the cheesiest dramatic lines in history! Plus, it’s got James Brolin in full-on macho Marlboro Man swagger-mode, before he fell into the bottomless pit that is Barbara Streisand. The filming location of the movie is absolutely beautiful, and the desert vistas and Rocky mountains would look superb if restored in High Definition. And the sound would be great too, just hearing the distant rumble of the car blazing toward you at 6,000 RPMs, and the evil wind preceding its arrival… it is meant to be! I know I’ll more likely become President of the United States before this film actually gets a full-on restoration, but I can dream, can’t I?

For some reason, I find the comment about “[falling] into the bottomless pit that is Barbara Streisand” very disturbing.

Justin said:

Lord of Illusions

Why: Clive Barker has his own cult following thanks to movies like Hellraiser, yet my favorite of his horror genre is more of a thriller until the end. In some of Scott Bakula’s most believable cheese as Harry D’Amour, I love the visuals and the way its story unfolds around the unseen underbelly of the magician’s world. Along with the resident B-Movie star is the wonderful Famke Janssen role to support him. What more do you need? Any Famke is good Famke after all… Then you have Kevin J. O’Connor in a very hard to dismiss role as the marvelous Swann! Kevin J. O’Connor fans probably remember him most for The Mummy, but before he was the sniveling swine in Egypt, he was marveling those willing to watch in this film. With a wonderful film noir atmosphere, there are plenty of visuals to look forward to in the upgrade to 1080p. The last 15 minutes in the film stand out most in my mind. The last movie Barker directed himself, there is absolutely no reason this one shouldn’t be upgraded as soon as possible.

I’m actually quite fond of Lord of Illusions. It doesn’t quite work, but I think it’s Barker’s most ambitious film project. Unfortunately, Scott Bakula is terribly miscast in the lead. He just doesn’t fit the character at all. Yet for some reason, Barker liked him so much that he claims to have used Bakula’s performance as the basis for his writing in subsequent Harry D’Amour novels. I find that very odd.

Jason said:

I absolutely love Color Of Night. No wait, come back!

I only recently saw it for the first time, and could not believe the epic mindfuck that it was. If you haven’t seen it (and judging by its box office, you probably haven’t), it’s one of those “sexy” “thrillers” with a “twist ending.” Except it isn’t sexy. Or particularly thrilling. And the “twist” seems to announce itself with trumpets mere minutes into the film.

So why is it so great? Well, unlike other inept films, Color Of Night has an incredible stable of character actors in supporting roles who keep the craziness coming. Just when you think the film can’t get any crazier or more idiotic, its craziness and idiocy multiplies. I watched about 90% of it with my mouth open, aghast.

But it has no following. Cultists and bad film lovers have no idea what they’re missing and likely never will. I’m sure Bruce Willis has taken it off his resume and will deny it was ever made. Which is actually another of the film’s attributes: it proved he can be shamed, although only after an insurmountable amount of effort has been shot gloriously in all the wrong directions.

‘Color of Night’ is indeed an insanely bad… and insanely entertainingly bad… movie, and a terrific guilty pleasure. But you forgot to say why you’d like to see it on Blu-ray, Jason.

The obvious answer to that is Jane March, who is enthusiastically naked through much of the movie. That, or the notorious shot of Bruce Willis’ junk.

Comixguru said:

Guilty pleasures are something you shouldn’t like but do. That’s tough for me. I love a lot of different types of movies. Being young and not knowing any better, I grew up in the 80s seeing every teen comedy, action schlock-fest, and jump-fright horror that came along. Then in late 80s and early 90s, my eyes opened a bit and art house and revival movie theater trips got me interested in foreign and classic films. In the late 90s, I jumped on the indie film craze and now devour those, too.

I’ve always been something a geek, in love with comix, and I attribute that to my love of animation. Mrs. Guru is younger than me by a decade and brings along a love of new genre films that I probably wouldn’t have the time for, but still thoroughly enjoy.

After thirty year love affair with movies, there’s not much I don’t like. My initial ideas were movies I’d just love to see in high definition. For instance, I don’t think 1993’s Searching for Bobby Fischer qualifies as a guilty pleasure for me. It’s about chess. I was, sadly, in chess club in middle and high school. Conrad Hall’s wondrous photography and the excellent sound design of this film made chess come alive along with a thrilling story about genius, mentoring, and the teetering potential for lost childhood. Blu-ray would make extreme close-ups of towering pawns and rooks all that more thrilling to watch on my home theater while wrapped in James Horner’s score.

With my background, the only thing I’m left with that I don’t fall over myself trying to see are musicals, chick flicks, weepy or meaningful dramas, and those that lie somewhere in between. There’s always a few of these, though, that get through the cracks. I kept coming back around to one film that brought it all together — Gary Ross’s Pleasantville.

In late 90s, I would sometimes go to the theater and just see something I hadn’t seen before. Take a plunge and just enjoy something I wouldn’t normally pick out of the movie section of the local free weekly. I remember looking at descriptions of Rounders and Apt Pupil on the glass of the ticket booth and picking this at the least likely for me to see.

There’s plenty of reasons why I shouldn’t like this film. Neither Maguire nor Witherspoon are of any interest to me. I have no love of 50s television. The movie opens with atrocious TV Time intro and follows with “Once upon a time…” as if it is about to launch into a fairy tale. I think I actually groaned in the theater when I saw that. In 1998, I particularly remember seeing a fairy tale remake, Ever After, and absolutely loathing every last minute of the thing.

Pleasantville, though, turned out to be just the thing for a gray November weekend. What I love and would like to see on Blu-ray from this movie is the massive shift from black and white to vibrant color. That would be the eye candy backdrop for all the other amazing things that come together in this film. Randy Newman’s score given new life with a lossless presentation would be the last bit necessary to transport you to the fantasy of this film. Then, all you need to do is sit back and enjoy.

And the supporting performances here. Spectacular performances from Joan Allen, William Macy, Jeff Daniels, and J.T. Walsh are a pleasure unto themselves. I can’t think of a movie with so much story told through the supporting cast. For once, we get to see these lesser stars rise and shine.

Lastly, I long to see the visual delights this film has to offer given a perfect film-like presentation in the home. The color fire on the tree. The painted glass windows of the diner. The girl’s red lips. Seeing this on Blu-ray would be like a kiss from those lips.

I don’t think that ‘Pleasantville’ qualifies as a bad movie or guilty pleasure in the traditional sense. But this was a good story and your love for the movie is obvious. You get an honorable mention for that alone.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is just a sampling of some of the many, many terrific responses we received. There are far too many to list again here, including plenty that are just as worthy and well-reasoned as anything I’ve chosen above. Unfortunately, it’s my responsibility to winnow the results down to a manageable few. These were some of the ones I liked most. But that shouldn’t be taken as a slight against anyone else.

Stay tuned for the runners-up and grand prize winner, which we’ll announce in a follow-up post shortly.

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