Update: A Turkey Hunt
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I have no potatoes. I have tomatoes lumbagos tornados and excuses instead. My new novel, the Ragazzo (working title until I Google it and find some illiterate bastard has stolen it years ago) is happening, a few sentences at a time. Ok, I think it’s a blinding idea but I can see some blustering popinjay of a film producer making a massive turkey out of it, one that features on Bad Film lists for years to come. So a warning to filmmakers: hands off.

Why do some films get labelled Great Turkeys?

Here’s Wikipedia’s list of the worst films of all time:


Ok, so just indulge me for a minute here – because Rotten Tomatoes have covered this topic too and it’s worth a read. Click on the link, have a read and a laugh and come back to me:


Done that? (if the link doesn’t work c&p into your browser)

Ok, let’s admit that rampant sexism and sex features in several of the greatest turkeys of all time. I mean, even Woody Allen can make a turkey. In fact he has made many! Usually when he does the utterly gorgeous young sexy miss falling for his drooping ass. Straight away, not just unbelievable but quite revolting. Many of the turkeys are turkeys because they are made by old men for teenage boys to wank over. Tits all over the place. But what the old guys forget is teenage boys wank over porn sites. Not turkeys. That’s for old men – baste the turkeys! But don’t expect box office success. Don’t show women in bondage, subservient, sexy, compliant and expect to make a profit. Yuk.

Then there’s Science Fiction, or rather SF formulaic garbage that’s less creative and innovative than a bad back. And quite as uncomfortable. Hell, I love SF, but it has to get away from the tropes embedded in the genre by  Star Trek and Star Wars. Let’s see what happens to the latest in this category: Valerian. All the well-worn formulaic cliches are here: pretty young stars who beat all opposition (insert aliens and baddies in hats) via massive intergalactic adventuring to fulfil a Quest which is almost exactly the story of the Holy Grail. Of course they win. Do they kiss at the end after starting out in contention with witty put-downs? I haven’t seen it but I bet they do. So will the world conclude that this film should join the Turkey Farm? I predict it will do ok at the box office, but not THAT ok, and most critics will pan it.

How about the Emoji movie? Here’s an example of a Turkey of Turkeys, likely to feature in the Turkey Hall of Fame for ever and ever. Ghastly animation, a worse plot, horrible voiceover. Somebody spent millions on this shit. Somebody was so enthused by the project they came in our pants. The only place for a movie like this. Not MY pants! Ugh. Change the underwear immediately!

In the list of recent releases, identified as a Turkey by Rotten Tomatoes (10% of critics liked it) is a film called the Black Prince. Yes, me too. Never heard of it. “…a tragic, yet fascinating true story about the last King of the mighty kingdom of Punjab, Maharaja Duleep Singh..” (Flixster)…Heyyyy. Now THAT sounds really interesting. Must go. Will I regret it?

Obviously everyone thinks of Kevin Costner’s Waterworld as a great example of a Turkey that Farted. Don’t we all love it when a star is brought to earth! All that hubris explodes all over the place. Personally, I adored the failure of John Travolta’s Battlefield Earth. Firstly, because I believe anybody who takes L. Ron Hubbard’s writings literally is as much of an idiot as people who believe the Earth is 6,700 years old (or whatever) because that’s what the Bible says. And speaking of Scientology idiots, I do love it when anything with Tom Cruise in it flops. I just adore imagining Mr Chisel-chops gritting his perfect teeth in agony as box-office receipts slap his inflated ego into touch…as if! I very much doubt if anything in the Real World impacts on the Church of Scientology apart from their revenue. I just wish those two actors would enter the realm of humans and confirm all those rumours about their repressed sexuality, just so that we could allow ourselves to love them again and forgive them everything.

But most of the SF movies on that Rotten Tomatoes list are purest B-movie kitsch! I LOVE movies which are so bad they’re good. Which are so wrapped in their bizarre plots that they become hilariously delightfully camp. You know what: I can’t wait to see Glen or Glenda! And Plan 9 from Outer Space! And what about Robot Monster! You too, I’ll bet. Reserve my place on my sofa now….and come and join me if you’re around!



  • 1. American Psycho (portrayal of women in this movie is not okay)
    2. Autopsy of Jane Doe (silly than scary)
    3. Girl on the train
    4. The Mummy 2017 (total mess with some good parts)
    5. Love Actually

    • Of your 6, I hated 3 most. So clumsily plotted, made and acted! Number 1 is undeniably sexist! And the latest Mummy – gee, what an insult to the original film. One near guarantee of Turkeyness: sequel of a sequel of a sequel! Though not always.Star Wars sequels got progressively worse until the last one. The last Police Academy sequel (I think it was 5, or was it 7?) was one of the turkeys of the century. Are there any sequels which are better than the original film? Big subject!

  • There are not many films I actually thought were awful. I’m generally quite lenient to films when judging them… Apart from…. District 9

    District 9 was awful. The Storyline was a ripoff of alien and the fly with nonsense filled in the middle. The aliens in the film are called ‘prawns’ as a derogatory term and are segregated from mainstream society in modern South Africa. It definitely feels as though the storyteller is trying to make comparisons between this world and the world of the apartheid. It’s just done very badly with flaws in the storyline which never seems to lead to any moments of excitement or thrill. There are a few comical scenes that will make you laugh. That’s where it ends.

    I left the cinema feeling upset/traumatised… but not in the same way that I felt when I left after watching schindlers list or American History X… it was the trauma of “Ill never see that £15 again…” and “2 hours of my life wasted…”

    • Aww – I quite liked it! I suppose because the equivalence with Apartheid was pretty stark for me, and I loved the way it was made to look both terribly dangerous and awkwardly silly at the same time. Which is, in a way, what I tried to do in my own novels. Well, we can’t agree on everything! Thanks for posting.

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