Do you think Django the Bastard should be enshrined in the great canon of movie history? Should Can't Stop the Music be on the AFI's 100 Years... 100 Movies? Should Screwballs have swept the Oscars in March of 1984? Do you think the works of Herschell Gordon Lewis should be given serious study at NYU?
I want you to make your case. To me, to the world.
The weekend following April 5, I'm going to host the Trashy Movie Celebration Blog-a-thon. The date will honor Roger Corman's birthday, as he has more than his share of movies that are either trashy, great or often both, and also the opening weekend of Grindhouse.
I don't want to hear about how you enjoy watching Army of Darkness despite your better judgment. Save your guilt for church!
I don't want to hear about Tod Browning, Sergio Leone, Paul Verhoeven, Quentin Tarantino or, most likely, even the work of Corman himself, at least as a director. All of them have a substantial base of critical and popular support. I do want to hear about Sergio Martino and Norifumi Suzuki. I want to hear about modern hacks like Uwe Boll and Leigh Slawner.
I don't want to hear about movies like Night of the Living Dead, The Texas Chain Saw Massacre or Beyond the Valley of the Dolls. I want big budget messes like Boom or Catwoman. I want grindhouse madness. I want Spaghetti westerns, chopsocky, softcore porn, slasher movies, rape-revenge, etc. I want to know what expanded SNL sketch you think is funnier than The Producers (unless, of course it's The Blues Brothers or Wayne's World).
But I don't want to hear why they're good or better than people think. This is not the forum for tepid defenses. I want essays that convince me and everyone around that the movie you have chosen is truly great, not beyond its reputation but within the Pantheon of Cinema. This should be a movie, filmmaker or weird sub-genre you love and believe not only shouldn't be vilified or ignored but should indeed be celebrated by audiences and critics the world over.
Think of what that is. You know there's something deep in your mind. The movie on your shelf that you tell the good neighbors is a guilty pleasure, but you really watch it no-holds-barred and love it. Come out of the closet and dance with it.
In Conventional Contrarianism: A Practical Guide, Jeff Ignatius wrote, "In this Web-democratized age when every possible opinion already has its champion, how the hell can one be a contrarian?"
It's a good point. And trash has many defenders now, but even they tend toward the guilty pleasure, or worse yet, the lazy pleasure, defense. I want the vigorous defense.
Shout from the rooftops, "I love Ilsa, She-Wolf of the SS and so should you! The problem isn't my love, it's your lack of love!"
And, please, if you're reading this and interested in seeing this succeed, spread the word. I'm giving plenty of time, but for some people I know it won't be easy. That guilt builds up.