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The Onion's "Year of Flops"

Av_club_logo_4 Movie lovers don't necessarily limit themselves to Oscar-worthy arthouse films, as The Onion A.V. Club knows all too well. So for anyone as likely to ironically enjoy the Bee-Gees and Peter Frampton in Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band as they are to praise Brokeback Mountain, the A.V. Club's Nathan Rabin has taken it upon himself to spend an entire year writing in-depth analysis of more than 100 under-appreciated cult classics (and/or simply awful movies).

Recent entries include "case files" for the big-budget adaptation of Stephen King's Dreamcatcher (with a "seemingly unsustainable level of craziness it somehow manages to keep up for 134 delirious minutes"), The Apple ("the story of Adam and Eve reborn as an intergalactic Dionysian sex musical, only much, much weirder"), and Catwoman ("You know a movie is in trouble when the public says 'Halle Berry crawling around in revealing leather bondage gear? No thanks. I’m sure there are Golden Girls reruns on somewhere we could watch instead.'")

From My Year of Flops Case File #69: The Cat in the Hat:

Cat In The Hat isn’t all jokes about drunken clowns, tortured animals, or Hepatatis. It also finds time to explore the humor endemic in hairballs, castration, erections, flatulence, lactose intolerance, plumber’s butt, beer, belching, cross-dressing, Myers calling a filthy garden utensil a "dirty hoe," the acronym for the Super Hydraulic Instantaneous Transporter and, last but not least, a Cat in a hat getting hit in the nuts with a bat.

Rabin's "My Year of Flops" examines the merits of each of these films sincerely and lovingly, and evaluates each of them as either a Failure, a Fiasco, or a Secret Success. He hates some of these films, loathes them, yet keeps enough of an open mind to occasionally find hidden diamonds in the rough. His tone is not simply mocking, but also legitimately curious as to how these movies could even exist, let alone be screened in multiplexes. And of course, these movies should all be at the top of your Netflix queue by this time next week.

-- Daniel Lehman

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