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Top 10 Bad British Movies That Everyone Loves

VO: Richard Bush
Written by Sean Harris Critical acclaim and commercial success don’t always go hand in hand. Welcome to WatchMojo UK and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 bad British movies that everyone loves! For this list, we’ve looked at British films that fared unfavourably with most movie critics, but have landed thousands of fans regardless. As usual, today’s entries are all full or part-British productions. Special thanks to our user RichardFB for submitting the idea on our interactive suggestion tool: WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Top 10 Bad British Movies That Everyone Loves


Critical acclaim and commercial success don’t always go hand in hand. Welcome to WatchMojo UK and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 bad British movies that everyone loves!

For this list, we’ve looked at British films that fared unfavourably with most movie critics, but have landed thousands of fans regardless. As usual, today’s entries are all full or part-British productions.

#10: “St Trinian’s” (2007)

Ranked as one of the highest-grossing British indie films of the twenty-first century, “St Trinian’s” demands attention – and obviously gets it. Centred on an all-girls school crammed with every clique imaginable, the cast list reads like a mish-mash of mid-2000s celebrity – with Gemma Arterton, Russell Brand, Colin Firth and Paloma Faith all popping up. There’s also early roles for Lily Cole and Jodie Whittaker, plus cameos for every member of Girls Aloud. The critics filed some frosty reviews, but the film’s mainstream popularity soon triggered a sequel.

#9: “The Beach” (2000)

It’s fairly rare that Danny Boyle makes a misstep with the critics, but “The Beach” proved a patchy effort by his standards – with the director acknowledging his own disappointment at how the film panned out. Released three years post “Titanic” and just as Leonardo DiCaprio was establishing his A-list credentials, it became a classic case of style over substance, with a story and characters that just didn’t hold up. Still, two hours of DiCaprio in his swim shorts was always going to bring big numbers at the box office.

#8: “Carry On Emmannuelle” (1978)

We might’ve picked any number of “Carry On” capers for today’s list, but “Emmannuelle” is probably the worst offender of the lot. Stacked with clumsy crudeness and ill-judged innuendo, it actually marked the beginning of the end for the series, serving as final flittering for many of the regular cast. But the very fact that this was the 30th of thirty-one “Carry On” films released, is testament to the comedy’s inexplicable staying power. These haven’t dated well, and that’s an understatement.

#7: “Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason” (2004)

With Bridget becoming a cinematic icon after our first foray into her famous diary, she waltzed into this sequel with style, grace and expectation. But, as with many follow-up films, “The Edge of Reason” couldn’t grab the critics with quite as much gusto as its predecessor – despite (or maybe because of) a story which sees Bridget incarcerated in Thailand on drug smuggling charges. Not that tepid reviews damaged ticket sales, with the movie making big, big bucks at the box office.

#6: “Mean Machine” (2001)

The early-noughties craze for footy violence films brought many a bad-but-brilliant hit, with “Mean Machine” leading the way. Starring ex-pro Vinnie Jones, and featuring early roles for Jason Statham and Danny Dyer, this movie marries “Football Factory” with “Shawshank Redemption”, for a feistier, Brit-based adaptation of “The Longest Yard”. And, as with most films that feature Danny Dyer, the quality’s questionable, but the fans love it. The cheeky chappie, cockney geezer act pulls in the punters, apparently.

#5: “Spice World” (1997)

Released when the Spice Girls were at the headiest heights of their all-conquering international fame, “Spice World” saw Scary, Sporty, Baby, Posh and Ginger stage a race against time to perform at the Royal Albert Hall. The plot has been likened to “A Hard Day’s Night” with the Beatles, but the comparisons should probably stop there. It’s another film filled with famous cameos, though – including Roger Moore, Meat Loaf, Stephen Fry and Elton John – and another that sparked massive mainstream interest.

#4: “Johnny English” (2003)

As a general rule, anything with Rowan Atkinson in it is usually worth watching. And “Johnny English” is probably no different, even if it did meet with mixed reviews. Casting a midway point between James Bond and Austin Powers, English cuts a tame spoof in the eyes of some, but the film and sequel still sold out cinemas worldwide. And the not-so-super spy has become one of Atkinson’s most recognisable characters, alongside Bean and Blackadder. For Queen and country, his heroics know no bounds.

#3: “Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie” (2016)

While there’s little doubt that “Ab Fab” is one of the UK’s finest TV comedies, Patsy and Eddie’s outrageous escapades couldn’t quite light up the big screen. For a story centred on the presumed death of super model Kate Moss, our high fashion favourites head to France to escape a media firestorm – but things quickly get out of hand. Still, fans of the show left cinemas satisfied – thanks in part to another five-star cast of cameos. Seriously, there’s just too many to list.

#2: “Kevin & Perry Go Large” (2000)

You might expect a spin-off movie from a BBC sketch show to flop as a feature-length film. But, this one definitely didn’t. “Kevin & Perry Go Large” brought Harry Enfield’s ‘Kevin the Teenager’ to the big screen in 2000, and topped box office charts by doing so. Since then, “Go Large” has gone large, earning cult classic status and becoming an unexpected beacon for rave culture. The critics weren’t gripped by the movie’s gross out tactics, but Kevin couldn’t care less. Clearly.

#1: “Mamma Mia!” (2008)

A musical phenomenon in 2008, “Mamma Mia!” grossed more than £400 million worldwide, catapulting ABBA back into mainstream public consciousness. But the film’s success left many scratching their heads, given its cheesy storyline and unconvincing vocal performances – particularly from Pierce Brosnan. A ‘Super Trouper’ of a blockbuster, it drowned out its critics with feel good lyrics and singalong scenes stacked with karaoke classics. Still, the unintended hilarity of watching Pierce painfully perform “SOS” isn’t lost on anyone.
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