Craptastic Cinema

Celebrating The Best Of The Worst Movies

Rocky Horror Picture Show

Year : 1975 Director : Jim Sharman Running Time : 100 minutes Genre : ,
Movie review score

Ah, The Rocky Horror Picture Show.  What better film for our first induction/review can there truly be?  This is without a doubt the granddaddy of all cult classics.  No other movie captures the spirit of what this site is about quite the same way.

Released in 1975 to bad reviews, and low attendance, The Rocky Horror Picture Show did not become quite the sensation we know it as until it started to be shown as a “midnight movie” at the now famous Waverly Theater in New York a year later.  The audiences started to grow, and with those new crowds came audience participation.  People would dress as their favorite characters, and act out the movie below the screen.  The audience would stand in the isles and dance The Time Warp.  Everyone created a secondary “call back” script to shout out lines that enhance the viewing experience.  The end result was an experience like no other.  Filmed imagery, live acting, and audience participation… this has three out of the three main types of theatrical experiences.  3 out of 3 ain’t bad.

The general plot line is that newly engaged couple Brad Majors (Barry Bostwick) and Janet Weiss (Susan Sarandon) decide to go on a road trip to visit their old science professor Dr. Everett V. Scott (Jonathon Adams).  Along the way, their car blows a tire, and they determine that they should go to a castle they passed on the road to see if they have a phone.  Once they arrive at the castle they discover that the people who reside there are not your ordinary cast of characters.  They first meet Riff-Raff (Richard O’Brian) and Magenta (Patricia Quinn) who are servants to a yet to be introduced “master”.  After a little song and dance, and the introduction of Columbia (Nell Campbell), they meet the master, one Dr. Frank-N-Furter (Tim Curry), who is a transvestite alien from the planet Transsexual in the galaxy of Transylvania .  He informs Brad and Janet they they arrived on a rather special night.  For that night, Frank-N-Furter plans on creating a “creature” named Rocky (Peter Hinwood) in a style very reminiscent to Frankenstein’s Monster.  Brad and Janet also meet Eddie (Meat Loaf) and eventually Dr. Scott shows up too.  During their time in the castle, Brad and Janet explore the boundaries of sexual normality, and are forever changed because of it.  This is all set to a rocking 50’s doo-wap inspired soundtrack, and narrated by The Criminologist (Charles Gray).

Originally a stage production that was made into a movie, The Rocky Horror Picture Show has never been pulled out of theaters.  That means that as of August of 2012, this movie has a 37 year theatrical run.  Thus making it one of the longest runs of any movie in theaters.  A “sequel” was commissioned to be made, but the result was the less than spectacular “Shock Treatment”.  Trust us, we will be covering that movie in another post soon.

This movie has been released in many formats over the years.  The Blu-Ray is a perfect addition to any collection, however it makes small changes to the original print of the movie.  None that will ruin the movie, but they are odd changes (removing a blue tint in one scene for example).  If you want perhaps the best version out there, pick up the 25th Anniversary DVD print.  Either version you get, be sure to watch the UK version for the full original movie.  The US version cuts the final song from the movie.

This movie gets 5 out of 5 stars, a true cult classic, and is nothing short of a must own for any movie collection.

Random Tidbit: Trivia and history buffs will set this movie with a date of August 8, 1974 because of Richard Nixon’s speech when he resigned from being the President of the United States being heard on the radio early on in the film.

-Matt Camarco


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