In the culture of film fandom and criticism, it’s so easy to jump aboard a bandwagon; once a legion of critics have chimed in and deemed a film terrible, it’s very easy for everyone else to fall in line, even if they’ve not seen the film, or in truth, didn’t think it all that terrible.
Still, sometimes a closer reading of an awful movie – not exactly the most tantalising of prospects, mind – can make it clear that, inexcusable though the film is, it isn’t without its single meritorious aspect.
These 10 films are without question awful at pretty much everything they tried to do, except this one unexpected, overlooked benefit, either a performance or sequence that was buried amid all the mediocrity, or a consequence of the film that had ripples throughout the industry. Here are 10 terrible movies with overlooked positives…
10. It Saved Matthew McConaughey’s Career – Ghosts of Girlfriends Past
Why It Sucked: Matthew McConaughey delivers another phoned in performance as a handsome yet irritating romantic lead, which critics noted was a lazy rehash of his Dazed and Confused role.
The Overlooked Positive: In a recent interview, McConaughey confessed that a few years ago, he got his assistants to gather every negative review he’s ever received, and together, they read all of them.
While this is slightly speculative, looking at the actor’s filmography, it’s easy to see at which point the epiphany came; prior to Ghosts of Girlfriends Past, he had starred in Surfer, Dude, Fool’s Gold and Failure to Launch. And after? Oh, just a string of critically acclaimed hits including The Lincoln Lawyer, Bernie, Killer Joe, Mud and Magic Mike.
Clearly, this was the film to finally make the actor realise that, yes, he was capable of far more than being shirtless (though that never hurt anybody), and for that reason, I suppose we have to be glad that it exists.
This article was first posted on August 22, 2013