Everyone has a movie that they are inexplicably connected to…and most likely you are not alone. Cult films are a unique breed of cinematic achievement in which the actual movie is less-than-Oscar-worthy, but over time the fans create a following that over time, dubs the movie a “classic.” So…in honor of all of the cult classics out there, I present my favorites:
Obvious Honorable Mention: The Rocky Horror Picture Show. This is the movie that started it all. Were there any cult movies BEFORE this one? While I believe RHPS deserves a place on anyone’s list, if I am truly honest, the be-all and end-all of cult movies leaves me a little cold. I like the concept, but I’m not a horror movie person. I never subscribed to the British fascination with men in drag and aside from the “Time Warp” and “Hot Patootie/Bless My Soul” I can do without it.
Number 5. Newsies. I remember going to see this at the theater during its original run when I was younger and being unimpressed. The film features a very pre-Batman Christian Bale and Ann Margaret and I thought it had a bit of an Annie-esque quality. I hadn’t realized that the show gained a cult following, until I heard that someone brought it to Broadway, but I would love to go to a midnight show and see the audience singing to “I’m the King of New York.”
Number 4. The Wall. Pink Floyd’s grand concept film played every weekend at the Eastgate General Cinema theater for I don’t know how long. I was never permitted to be out so late at night so I did not get to experience it in the theater setting. I was suck with MTV’s eventual commercial-filled presentation and a VHS tape.
Number 3: The Song Remains the Same. Led Zeppelin’s epic concert film from the Houses of the Holy tour was a must see on my teenage itinerary. I’m too young to remember this ever being shown in the late-night runs, but I have been told that it was. My first experience with it was during MTV’s Led Zeppelin weekend in the fall of 1985. I fell in love with the band, the music and everything even though I would learn in time that there was better footage of the band in existence. I love the inclusion of the fantasy sequences highlighting the band’s “inner personalities.”
Number 2: Christmas with the Kranks. Now, I admit-most people would not consider this a “cult” movie…but if you were around my house from Thanksgiving to Christmas, you would realize that this particular film has achieved that status for no other reason than we seem to watch it every day, we can quote the dialogue and we seem incapable of turning it off if we happen by it on TV. Though it may only have a following of a select few at the moment…it’s only a matter of time before the Kranks hit it big!
Number 1. Jesus Christ Superstar. What’s the buzz about this movie? Well aside from being the Greatest Story Ever Told, JCS rocks! Like many of the others on my list, it only found its following in the late night show, but I am fairly convinced that the main character is OK with getting his audience wherever he can. (Isn’t that the whole point of the show anyway?) I loved the 1970’s movie, have seen Ted Neely and Carl Anderson reprise their iconic roles on stage and I own a number of updated versions of the show as well. The O2 performance from 2012 is very impressive…but I’ll always have a special place in my heart for the original flick. “Everything’s all right…yes, everything’s all right…”