Yeah, so, I worked at a few movie theaters in my day.
From 1988 to 1996, I sold tickets, cleaned auditoriums, popped popcorn and let customers know that for a quarter more they could get the large-size drink. I was working my way through college. And yes, I know that it took me a while to get through college. I knew that I had my entire life to sit in a cube, and I wasn’t in a rush to get started. Also, I paid for college myself, which meant that sometimes I could only afford to go part time and … Wait a second. I don’t have to explain myself to you people.
So anyway, I started at the Regency Cinemas in Pleasant Hill, which is now a Lamps Plus. When it closed down, they sent the employees to the Festival Cinemas in Walnut Creek, which is now a McCovey’s restaurant. When I started attending Chico State, I got a job as an assistant manager at Chico Movies 10, which I believe is a church or something now. Oh, and somewhere in the middle of that I worked a week at Contra Costa Cinemas in Martinez during a spring break.
I picked up a lot of half-full large drink cups and swept up a lot of popcorn while listening to the horrible music that plays over the end credits of movies. Some of the songs were so terrible that even though it’s 20 years later, I still remember them. And some of the songs were so bad that I’ve completely blocked them out. For example, Pauly Shore made movies then, and I’m sure the songs over the closing credits were terrible, but I can’t remember them.
When working on this list, I didn’t want a glaring omissions, so I pestered some of my former coworkers on Facebook for some of the most dreadful songs we were forced to listen to day in and day out, sometimes for months at a time. Here’s what we came up with, but keep in mind this list only includes songs from my movie theater days, 1988 to 1996:
“The Addams Groove” by MC Hammer from “The Addams Family”
Please! Hammer! Don’t! Hurt my ears! Not only did this song play over the closing credits of “The Addams Family,” I believe this music video played before some movies as a special preview.
Vanilla Ice channeled his inner-Hammer and wrote did a song for “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2” that makes you wish you were born without ears. I believe it played over the credits of that movie, but years of alcohol consumption finally erased it from my memory, and I’m not YouTubing it to find it and reintroduce it to my psyche.
“Good Guys Don’t Always Wear White” by Jon Bon Jovi from “The Cowboy Way”
I don’t know why but this shitty song really annoyed me in the theater. I mean, it’s a shitty song, but it’s pretty forgettable. I think it’s the ending; the part when Bon Jovi screams, “Good guys don’t always wear … whhiiiiiiitttttteeeeeeee.” Ugh. And not only was the song bad, but the movie was terrible, too, but the people in Chico seemed to love it. They were probably drunk.
“Can You Feel the Love Tonight?” by Elton John from “The Lion King”
OK, now, “The Lion King” played at the Chico theater for — no joke — almost a year. For about four to six months of that, the movie played on multiple screens. That meant during an eight-hour shift, we probably heard this song 12 to 15 times. So, can we feel the love tonight? The answer is no.
I should mention that several of my movie theater people brought up Disney songs as the worst, including “A Whole New World” from “Aladdin.” I remember particularly hating “Color of the Wind” by Bette Midler from “Pocahontas.” Color of the wind? What the fuck does that mean anyway?
I chose “Can You Feel the Love Tonight?” because the movie played so long in the theater. “The Lion King” was out on video and still playing at our theater. Seriously.
“I Will Always Love You” by Whitney Houston from “The Bodyguard”
Good buddy Aaron reminded me of this one. Enjoy the freeze frame at the 4:15 mark. “And IIIIIIIIIiiiiiiiiiiiIIIIIIIIIIIIiiiiiiiiiiiiiiIIIIIIIIIII will always love youuuuuuuUUUUUUUUUuuuuuuuuuuuuuUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUuuuuuuuuuu!”
The Bryan Adams Trifecta
In the ’90s, Bryan Adams was like Kenny Loggins in the ’80s; oh, except Kenny Loggins songs were better.
Have You Ever Really Loved a Woman?” by Bryan Adams from “Don Juan DeMarco”
If Bryan Adams ever really loved a woman, he wouldn’t have written this piece of shit.
“All for One” by Bryan Adams, Sting and Rod Stewart from “The Three Musketeers,” the 1993 version starring Kiefer Sutherland, Charlie Sheen, Oliver Platt and Chris O’Donnell. Egads.
What’s really terrible about the music video, besides everything, is the song has a cheesy guitar solo in the middle that the director tries to make it look like Sting is playing it, even though he is playing a bass.
“Everything I Do (I Do It For You)” by Bryan Adams from “Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves”
Hey Mr. Adams, if everything you do, you do it for me, then how about you don’t write anymore songs for movies? Thanks.