5 Ridiculous Movie Genres We Used To Be Obsessed With

In a hundred years, our descendants are going to look back at the movies we made and wonder why we were so inordinately preoccupied with superpowered maniacs and the other superpowered maniacs who fought them. But that won’t be a new phenomenon. If you look back, Hollywood history is littered with the corpses of some truly bizarre trends. Like how …


Evil Cars Were Once All The Rage

Before Steven Spielberg persuaded America that nothing was more terrifying than a rampaging shark, he wanted to prove that there was nothing more scaring than a rampaging, uh … truck. Yes, there was a time when horror movies featured a parade of cars possessed by the devil, aliens, or simply the ghost of bad screenwriting. Spielberg’s first feature film, 1971’s Duel , was technically about a truck with an actual human driver, but we never see that driver.

Universal Pictures And if the truck doesn’t kill you, the tetanus certainly will.

The truck is hellbent on running a middle-aged salesman off the road for reasons, but that’s not important now. It’s only important that the cinema kicked off an entire subgenre which lasted over a decade before audiences ultimately woke up and realized that being scared of vehicles was a bit silly. Highlightings include 1974’s Killdozer and 1977’s The Car , which both feature vehicles possessed by … badness? It’s never made clear.


A few brave movies did attempt to explain how and why a vehicle could turn evil. 1983’s Christine centered around a 1958 Plymouth Fury that goes on a rampage because it has serious co-dependency issues with its owner, and the title vehicle of 1980’s The Hearse went bad because it once transported the corpse of a Satanist.

Crown International Pictures It merely takes one .

The final fingernail in the tire was Stephen King’s directorial debut and parting, 1986’s Maximum Overdrive . In it, all of the world’s vehicles and machines turn evil because of a passing comet, but also maybe aliens? Whatever, King was swimming in cocaine for most of that decade anyway.


The ‘8 0s Were All About Body-Swapping

Every kid dreams of the day when they’re ultimately old enough to buy a tiger that only fees algebra educators. And every adult dreams of those halcyon days when they were young enough to run naked through the rain without having to attend sexual harassment meetings afterward. When Freaky Friday came out in 1977, Hollywood unwittingly tapped into one of humanity’s most primal recommends — to fully switch bodies with person from a different generation and inherit their supposedly easy life.

Walt Disney Pictures And now you have several generations to choose from for your generational swap.

Freaky Friday ‘s plot revolves around a harried homemaker and her petulant daughter switching bodies, and eventually learning that they both have equally difficult lives and are worthy of respect. It constructed five times its budget, prompting a mad rush of producers hoping to capitalize on the premise. First came a Tv series, Turnabout , wherein a husband and wife swap bodies thanks to a gypsy statue. Then there was 1984’s All Of Me , in which a man and a woman cohabitate Steve Martin’s body. Four more body-swapping films came out between ‘8 7 and ‘8 9, a stern reminder that Hollywood has always had issues with originality.

Universal Pictures They started with the standard Steve Martin poster and wrote the movie from there.

In Like Father Like Son , a magical Native American switchings the minds of a father and son. 18 Again ! was totally different; in that one, a man and his grandson switch bodies due to “an accident.” Then Judge Reinhold and Fred Savage switched bodies in Vice Versa , which was our high water mark.

Columbia Pictures In body-swap movies and Judge Reinhold’s career.

But Dream A Little Dream pushed the body-swapping genre too far, like the Manhattan Project of hack screenwriting. In this movie, a yoga mishap results in four characters switching bodies and learning important life lessons. 1992 ‘s Prelude To A Kiss spelled the end. Alec Baldwin’s fiancee decides to make out with a lecherous old man, which naturally causes their souls to switch. Baldwin then has to learn how to love his previously sexy fiancee for her beautiful soul alone, even if it is now housed inside a pervy senior citizen. And since that was about as existentially terrifying as the genre could get, Hollywood called it a day.