MST movies that you genuinely like

While the show definitely has its targets with absolutely no redeeming value, there’s also several that would probably be goofy fun just on their own, and I’m sure I’m not the only one who found a few they genuinely enjoyed on their own merits.

Time Chasers: Put aside the ludicrous bits as a consequence of having absolutely no budget, and this is a quite fun and surprisingly complex time travel story, with truly surprising plot twists that really had me wondering how it was going to end up.

Kitten with a Whip: I’d actually argue even Mike got genuinely caught up in this one, with his “Just go, you idiot!” near the end coming off like someone who got invested in the hero’s predicament and wants to see him get out of it.

The Land That Time Forgot: I’d actually seen this film years before Season 11 came around, and without any kind of preconceptions and being a big dinosaur nerd, I really liked it. It also helps that I’m a huge Edgar Rice Burroughs fan, and it’s based on one of his lesser known stories, so it was nice to see it get that kind of attention.

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The Russian folklore films. Though the Corman edits and dubs of the Ptushko movies that MST did are not as good as the originals. So, yeah, those movies, but the Russian originals of those movies (Sadko, Sampo and Ilya Muromets), not as much the Cormanized cut versions (Sinbad, Day the Earth Froze, and Sword and the Dragon). So does that still count? (BTW the originals have been restored and look gorgeous)

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The first one that comes to mind is “Phase IV.” I grew up on early '70s sci-fi and loved this one. I find the story interesting (albeit a bit slow), and the desert setting, cinematography and effects are really cool. The soundtrack adds to the trippy vibe.

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I actually kind of enjoyed This Island Earth and Overdrawn at the Memory Bank.

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I like The Crawling Eye, and I’m with @JakeGittes that the folktale films are beautiful and best enjoyed in a proper subtitling or dubbing. I think the Hercules and El Santo films accumulated extra goofiness in their modification for American audiences as well. One might even argue the same for Gamera.

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Moon Zero Two.

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I’m a huge Hammer/Amicus fan, so I’m actually rather fond of Moon Zero Two and The Deadly Bees, which were less bad movies and more products of their time. Diabolik also falls into that same category. It’s from one of my favorite eras of cinema and television, right around 1969 where everything was bright, colorful, and hyper-exaggerated. It’s sort of up there with watching old episodes of The Avengers, Department S, The Prisoner, and other ITV shows from the same era.

I’d also include the Land that Time Forgot, and to a lesser extent, At The Earth’s Core from Season 11. Land that Time Forgot was actually a pretty popular movie, and gets credit for being a fairly faithful adaptation of the Edgar Rice Burroughs story. At The Earth’s Core was significantly less good, but it does star Peter Cushing who’s always good even when the movie is bad.

All that said, do I have any objections to MST3K riffing on these movies? None whatsoever.

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I am quite fond of Werewolf, Overdrawn at the Memory Bank, and Space Mutiny. I watch them several times a week. Both Fugitive Alien movies also hold a special place in my heart.

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Parts: The Clonus Horror had such an interesting concept that I didn’t care how bad it was.

The Screaming Skull. I don’t know why, but i was so invested in the story I was ignoring the riffs.

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This Island Earth. Despite the requisite cheesiness in places, it’s actually not a half-bad flick.

“We’re not all masters of our souls, Meacham…I learned that on Earth.”

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Santa Claus, Moon Zero Two, and The Thing that Wouldn’t Die

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Overdrawn at the Memory Bank got cut back a lot to fit it into the show; the original uncut makes more sense, even if it’s not really the story Varley told in the original novella.

This Island Earth is a pretty good movie on its own. Not up in the science fictional cinematic stratosphere where Forbidden Planet and the original Day the Earth Stood Still reside, but solid and – unlike some of the beasties we’ve seen – well shot and well edited.

And I’ll always have a soft spot in my head… er, I mean in my heart for most classic Godzilla, Ed Wood, and Hercules/Samson/My Cheesesteak… sorry, Maciste movies.

And with enough gin, even Manos: Hands of Fate is watchable uncut and unMSTed… but no amount of liquor can salvage Monster a-Go Go, Red Zone Cuba, or Carnival Magic

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Space Mutiny - it’s cheesy as all hell, but there’s something SO campy about this movie that i end up just loving it. i think it’s both cringe and super cute that the leads are married. consider the range in work (from “none at all” to “wow you tried really hard huh”) at the sets and the wardrobe. imagine discussing with the writer her canon for the universe. is it baffling or inevitable that three editors lead to such a huge anachronism with the killed lieutenant? what was Calgon on?

it’s (fool’s) gold.

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In the early '80s, my parents would go over to a friend’s house with me in tow and watch random weird movies. One in particular stood out in my memory because it was such an odd mishmash of things that small boy would find cool: Giant stop-motion monsters, spaceships, a glowing pyramid, a little green dancing alien. For decades, I tried to figure out what that movie was and finally convinced myself that I must have been conflating several movies in my memory, or maybe even dreamed up some of those things myself. Oh, how happy I was when Season 12 premiered and showed me that “The Day Time Ended” was, in fact, a real movie!

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I just saw this one last night and it was fantastic. The plot is super fast, however. But the acting was actually pretty good.

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I was a fan of “Earth VS the Spider” even before MST took it on. It’s pretty hilarious all on its own. What can I say, I’m a sucker for a good process shot.

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The Thing That Couldn’t Die is a solid creepy movie. It’s begging for a modern remake and has the potential to be a real cool flick.

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Me too.

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The Last Chase. Lee Majors and Burgess Meredith in a completely ludicrous movie pitting a fighter jet against an awesome race car. I found a copy of the episode once and the audio was so bad I couldn’t understand most of it, (Still looking for a good copy.) but as a kid who loved all things jet related, seeing The Penguine fly a jet (Eat your heart out Happy Feet!) against the Six Million Dollar Man was just a blast.

Update: Just found a high quality update on YouTube. I know what I’m watching tonight.

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I’m a fan of this film too! I do love a good psychodrama mixed with a ghost story.

I also like Operation Kid Brother (aka Operation Double 007). It’s well made, has loads of Bond secondaries, and that fantastic music by Morricone. I think part of the reason it’s such a great MST3K episode is because there is so much quality material to work with. It’s miles from a one-location Corman or Wood vehicle.

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