Thursday, October 6, 2011
Post #2 Pop Cultural Narrative
Well friends, I'll be discussing a rather obscure director in this post. Although I doubt many of you know his name I'm betting at least half of you know his most famous movie. Ed Wood, notorious for making what is considered the worst movie in history; "Plan Nine From Outer Space". You may also be familiar with the movie made about his life; "Ed Wood" directed by Tim Burton and starring Johnny Depp as the titular Ed Wood.
It is easy to condemn Ed Wood because, let's face it, his movies are absolutely terrible. Plan Nine is a nightmare and none of his other movies fair much better. So why do some people remember the catastrophically bad Director? Why did Tim Burton take one look at Ed Wood and say "This man deserves a movie,"? The answer, to me, is quite simple.
Ed Wood did not give up hope. His movies all have a sort of charm to them because you can feel the effort he poured into them. The movies weren't bad because he didn't try, they were just quite literally poorly made by a man who didn't know what he was doing. There is something respectable about someone who refuses to give up even when everyone tells you to quit. That doesn't make his movies good, it makes him a dedicated man.
Furthermore I've always felt that the title of Worst Movie Ever was unfairly given to Plan Nine From Outer Space. The movie is horrendous, yes, but it is incredibly entertaining because of the failure involved in it. For instance; Bela Lugosi died during the filming of the movie and instead of cutting out his scenes he was replaced by a man who just held a cape in front of his face so in theory no one would notice that he wasn't Lugosi. (If you somehow don't know who Bela Lugosi is, he is most famous for playing the original Count Dracula and the original Igor along with many other incredible roles). To me, a movie is bad if it is boring. If you make a bland movie, that is the worst kind of movie, but something so bad it is funny has some worth in this world.
Ed Wood would later be immortalized by Johnny Depp and Tim Burton, who both respected the fact that Ed Wood believed in each and every one of his movies. Unlike some modern directors he stood by his movies no matter what. I respect him, not for his art, but for how loyal he was to his art. I once heard some say "A bad movie is one you mock. A terrible movie is one you forget," and I can promise you if you watch an Ed Wood movie you don't forget it anytime soon.