MacGruber hits theaters today and boldly promises to be the best movie since Wayne's World (but is already being panned by critics). The action-comedy stars Will Forte (who also co-wrote the script) as MacGruber (a dim MacGyver-style special agent), wtih fellow SNL castmember Kristen Wiig as Vicki St. Elmo. Val Kilmer is the villainous Dieter Von Cunth, and Ryan Phillipe plays MacGruber sidekick Lt. Dixon Piper.
In honor of this latest Saturday Night Live sketch-turned-feature film (and probable misstep), CultureMap rated SNL's other forays into cinema. We welcome your feedback — just try to keep it civil. And if you didn't like Blues Brothers (or enjoyed The Ladies Man) then, frankly, you don't belong here.
The Blues Brothers, 1980 — One of my top five favorite movies of all time, the soundtrack is reason enough to love John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd's take on two criminally inclined brothers who must reunite their blues band to save their old school. Immortal one-liners like, "We're on a mission from God," a young Aretha and James Browns' church number make the first attempt impossible to top.
Wayne's World, 1992 — If you're still quoting it more than 15 years later, it was a success.
Superstar, 1999 — Perhaps it's because I was an exceptionally awkward adolescent myself (and wore a strikingly similar uniform), but Molly Shannon's armpit-sniffing famewhore-in-the-making, Mary Katherine Gallagher, is totally endearing. Who hasn't, in a moment of excitement, hit that deep lunge, thrown their hands in the air and exclaimed in a throaty whisper: "Superstahhhhhh!"
Coneheads, 1993 — It wasn't technically "good," I know, but to this day, I believe the scene where (conehead matriarch) Prymaat's water breaks with tidal force prepared me for the birth of my youngest sister.
Night at the Roxbury, 1998 — It's one of my earliest memories of Will Ferrell, but low on the list because of the painful stretching of one narrow joke and how gross the Butabi brothers make me feel.
Stuart Saves His Family, 1995 — Don't remember it? It was easy to forget. CultureMap's resident film expert Joe Leydon wrote (for Variety) in 1995: "Stuart Smalley, the lisping self-help specialist created and portrayed by Al Franken, simply isn't amusing or interesting enough to sustain a feature."
The Ladies Man, 2001 — A film Roger Ebert called, "desperately unfunny," Tim Meadows never recovered.