Golden Raspberry Awards: 1986
The Golden Raspberries started off as an informal joke. Something for a publicist and his friends to do after the Oscars had ended. Over time, it has become and enduring and irreverent tradition. In theory, The Razzies poke fun at the worst movies of the year. But like any awards ceremony, the Razzies frequently make the wrong call. We’re going back and looking at the history of the Golden Raspberry Awards one year at a time.
The seventh annual Razzies nominated the movies of 1986. Top Gun and Crocodile Dundee were the big movies that year. Platoon won Best Picture at the Oscars and Hannah and Her Sisters swept the supporting categories with wins for Michael Caine and Diane Weist. The Razzies saw an influx of 80’s pop stars as well as the arrival of a talking duck.
Worst Career Achievement Award: Bruce the rubber shark from Jaws (1975), Jaws 2 (1978) and Jaws 3-D (1983)
The Worst Career Achievement Award has been handed out intermittently and the Razzies never seemed to get a handle on what it was supposed to be. At this point, they just threw up their hands and gave it to the mechanical shark from the Jaws movies. Once again, they have given out the award prematurely. Jaws the Revenge would be the final entry in the franchise in 1987. Seems like they could have waited a year for this gag.
I don’t really know what to say about the “career” of a mechanical shark. Obviously, the same device wasn’t even used in all three movies up to this point. Everyone talks about how “the shark looks fake” but I have never really understood the criticism. At least not for the first two movies. The shark in Jaws 3-D looked fake as f*ck. But in the seventies audiences were scared silly of that rubber shark. Seems to me like it got the job done. Roy Scheider sure didn’t think it looked fake.
This is the last we’re going to see of the Career Achievement Award for a while. It wouldn’t be invoked again for over two decades. As this award was being retired, the Razzies introduced a new category.
Worst Visual Effects
- Howard the Duck, visual effects by Industrial Light and Magic
- Invaders from Mars, special visual effects by John Dykstra, creatures designed by Stan Winston
- King Kong Lives, creature creations by Carlo Rambaldi
Winner: Howard the Duck
The Worst Visual Effects award ties in thematically with Bruce the Shark being awarded Worst Career Achievement because Bruce was essentially a special effect. I haven’t looked ahead, but I am willing to bet we will see a nomination for Jaws: The Revenge next year.
I’m probably going to be pretty disagreeable when it comes to this category. Looking back from a modern perspective, those old-fashioned practical effects seem pretty special. Yeah, the Kong of King Kong Lives was a guy in a suit. I miss the days when giant gorillas were played by guys in suits!
I don’t think these movies were guilty of bad special effects so much as they were guilty of being bad movies that relied heavily on special effects. That’s especially true for the winner, Howard the Duck. For the time, the special effects in Howard the Duck were pretty spectacular. The problem was that they were in service of a lousy movie.
Next: Worst Original Song