End Of The Year Almanac #7: Best WTF Movies Of 2016 (& The Worst)


Every now and then you see a film and you think to yourself, “What did I just see?”  It can be a good thing or a bad thing, but either way it stays with you.

Note: click on the links below to watch trailers and find out where these films are available.

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Swiss Army Man – After my sister and her boyfriend saw this they left the theater and said, “Well…” and that was their review of the film.  That about sums it up.  Swiss Army Man needs to be seen in order to embrace how unique and strange it is.  (Warning: if you don’t think fart jokes or corpse boners are funny, skip this one.)

The Neon Demon – I appreciated that this film had more emotion than Nicolas Winding Refn’s Drive and Only God Forgives, but it’s more out there than the two of them combined.  In the end I thought of it as a “feminist nightmare”- more of a bad dream than a story trying to say anything.  Elle Fanning plays the lead with the same cipher-like quality Ryan Gosling brought to the table, so as a result the film is definitely owned by its trippy visuals and supporting characters: a star turn from Abbey Lee, a repellant Keanu Reeves (that was a first) and a balls-out performance by Jena Malone.  Some of the images in this will haunt you for days.

The Lobster & Youth – Both of these films take place on secluded estates and feature Rachel Weisz.  They also focus on isolated individuals coming to terms with their fates and mortality, whether it’s due to the passage of time or running out of time altogether.  What’s more, a magic realism permeates the two of them.  For example, there is a cowbell orchestra and a young woman who turns into a pony.  These are scenes you’ll most likely see only once in a lifetime.

Dude Bro Massacre III – If you’re a fan of Kung Fury and Too Many Cooks, then this is the kind of film for you.  Made by the creators of 5 Second Films, this horror-comedy is shot to make it look like it was taped on a VHS at four in the morning.  It also features Patton Oswalt, Larry King, Bruce Campbell, Andrew W.K., Greg Sestero of The Room and a police officer made of bananas.  You should probably be stoned when you watch this.

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Bonus: Worst Movie I Saw This Year

Plush – Someone gets drowned by a garden hose in this film.  Believe me, reading that sentence isn’t as ridiculous as watching it happen in real time.

Plush is ridiculous and bad in an entertaining, emo trainwreck sort of way.  It seems like fan fiction a fourteen-year-old would write after hanging around a Hot Topic too much, but I’d excuse them because they’re fourteen.  This was written, directed and acted out by adults who have had much better moments in their careers.  I have no idea how this could have seemed like a good idea.


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