Some B movies are so bad they're good, and others are just flat-out amazing.
Rocket Jump / giphy.com
But what is a B movie anyway? There are a few definitions floating around, but let's start with the term itself. When double-features would play in movie theaters, there would be the main attraction that studios were confident would do well, followed by a cheaper movie that was often just "filler." Like an "A side" and a "B side" on a record. Since these B movies played later at night, they were often associated with horror, horny teenagers, and general raunchiness.
The term "B movie" is now used for any film that's made with limited resources. But cheap doesn't mean bad, so while some of these movies are pretty rough, others did incredible things with small budgets. One thing they all have in common, though, is that they're entertaining as hell.
1.The Room (2003)
Chloe Productions / giphy.com
The king of corn, you should watch The Room with as many people as possible. And if you see it in a crowded theater, remember to bring spoons.
IMDb summary: "Johnny is a successful bank executive who lives quietly in a San Francisco townhouse with his fiancée, Lisa. One day, putting aside any scruple, she seduces Johnny's best friend, Mark. From there, nothing will be the same again."
2.Plan 9 From Outer Space (1957)
Valiant Pictures / giphy.com
Ed Wood's masterpiece, this B movie walked so others could run. Film critic Roger Ebert said of Wood, "He was so in love with every frame of every scene of every film he shot that he was blind to hilarious blunders, stumbling ineptitude, and acting so bad that it achieved a kind of grandeur.
IMDb summary: "Evil aliens attack Earth and set their terrible 'Plan 9' into action. As the aliens resurrect the dead of the Earth, the lives of the living are in danger."
3.Troll 2 (1990)
Epic Productions / giphy.com
The three things you need to know about Troll 2:
1 - There are no trolls.
2 - There is no first Troll movie (well, there is, but it has no connection to this one).
3 - The Italian filmmakers and American actors were largely unable to communicate due to a language barrier.
IMDb summary: "A vacationing family discovers that the entire town they're visiting is inhabited by goblins disguised as humans, who plan to eat them."
4.Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! (1965)
RM Films International / giphy.com
With a title like Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill!, the film basically markets itself.
IMDb summary: "Three go-go dancers holding a young girl hostage come across a crippled old man living with his two sons in the desert. After learning he's hiding a sum of cash around, the women start scheming on him."
5.Hard Ticket to Hawaii (1987)
6.Chopping Mall (1986)
Concorde Pictures / giphy.com
This techno-horror flick became a classic thanks to home releases on VHS and cable. A remake has been in talks since 2011, but so far there's been nothing concrete.
IMDb summary: "A group of young shopping mall employees stay behind for a late night party in one of the stores. When the mall goes on lockdown before they can get out, the robot security system malfunctions, and goes on a killing spree."
7.Samurai Cop (1991)
Demel International / giphy.com
Matt Hannon's eyes as he swings that sword tell you everything you need to know about the energy in this movie.
IMDb summary: "Joe Marshall and Frank Washington are two tenacious police detectives who seek at all costs to stop the Katana, a renegade Yakuza gang composed of violent and sadistic killers who want to lead the drug trade in Los Angeles."
8.Killer Klowns from Outer Space (1988)
Trans World Entertainment / giphy.com
Some B movies don't have much in the way of originality, instead ripping off more famous properties (see Transmorphers further down). This is not the case for Killer Klowns From Outer Space, which is first and foremost inventive, unique, and completely absurd.
IMDb summary: "Aliens who look like clowns come from outer space and terrorize a small town."
9.I Bought a Vampire Motorcycle (1990)
The Asylum / giphy.com
As the film's tagline puts it, "Enough said!"
IMDb summary: "When a freak hurricane swamps Los Angeles, nature's deadliest killer rules sea, land, and air as thousands of sharks terrorize the waterlogged populace."
11.Black Samurai (1976)
13.FDR: American Badass (2012)
14.I Am Here….Now (2009)
15.Future War (1997)
16.The Blob (1958)
Paramount Pictures / giphy.com
If there was ever a movie perfectly suited for the drive-in theater experience, it's this one.
IMDb summary: "An alien lifeform consumes everything in its path as it grows and grows."
18.House on Haunted Hill (1959)
Allied Artists / giphy.com
Part of the genius of B movies is that, even though they were typically cheap, movie studios often made a good amount of money off of them. After all, when you're a teenager at a drive-in, does it really matter how deep the movie is? House on Haunted Hill is a blast to watch, and it made back plenty of money. Alfred Hitchcock noticed this, and it is partly what inspired him to make Psycho, which was released the following year.
IMDb summary: "A millionaire offers $10,000 to five people who agree to be locked in a large, spooky, rented house overnight with him and his wife."
19.It Came From Beneath The Sea (1955)
20.To Die Is Hard (2010)
21.Birdemic: Shock and Terror (2010)
22.Carnival of Souls (1962)
Herts-Lion International / giphy.com
This movie flew under the radar after it was first released, but slowly and surely people started to notice this now-classic horror film. It is included in the Criterion Collection and ranked #51 on Slant magazine's list of the "100 Best Horror Movies of All Time."
IMDb summary: "After a traumatic accident, a woman becomes drawn to a mysterious abandoned carnival."
23.Attack of the Crab Monsters (1957)
Allied Artists / giphy.com
This movie perfectly fits into the original definition of a B movie, as it was literally made to be a cheap yet profitable horror movie for teens. The film did remarkably well, proving that cheap thrills, teens, and drive-in theaters are the perfect combo for making money.
IMDb summary: "Scientists become trapped on a shrinking island with intelligent, murderous giant crabs."
24.Pink Flamingos (1972)
New Line Cinema / giphy.com
This movie's a lot like Marley & Me in that you shouldn't watch it with your dog...
IMDb summary: "Notorious Baltimore criminal and underground figure Divine goes up against a sleazy married couple who make a passionate attempt to humiliate her and seize her tabloid-given title as 'The Filthiest Person Alive.'"
25.Foxy Brown (1974)
American International Pictures / giphy.com
Starring the legendary Pam Grier, Foxy Brown is arguably the most influential blaxploitation film of all time. It was also immensely influential on Quentin Tarantino's Jackie Brown, which also stars Grier.
IMDb summary: "A voluptuous Black vigilante takes a job as a high-class prostitute to get revenge on the mobsters who murdered her boyfriend."
28.The Toxic Avenger (1984)
Troma Entertainment / giphy.com
Fulfilling every '80s kid's fantasy of going from a nerd to a giant sludge-monster fighting for justice, The Toxic Avenger is a splatter film for the ages.
IMDb summary: "Tromaville has a monstrous new hero. The Toxic Avenger is born when meek mop boy Melvin falls into a vat of toxic waste. Now evildoers will have a lot to lose."
American Cinema Marketing / giphy.com
When you ask your mom for Gremlins and she says there are Gremlins at home.
IMDb summary: "A young security guard must track down diminutive aliens who kill people even as they make their fantasies come true."