So, a couple of days ago, I watched The Rocky Horror Picture Show for the first time, ever. It was an experience, to be sure. Rocky Horror is one of the films that permeates the pop culture psyche; a flop upon its initial 1975 release, it gained a cult following due to its incredible strangeness, and became a bizarre audience participation event that is still ongoing. I’ve never personally attended one of these screenings, I chose to watch this in the comfort of my own home, which did not diminish the film whatsoever.
Rocky Horror is almost certainly the strangest film I have ever seen. A strange combination of supernatural and sci-fi horror, comedy, and musical, the film takes Hammer horror sets, outfitted them with somehow even more camp, added glam rock songs, fishnet stockings, and a distinctly British sensibility, involving such character actors as Tim Curry and Charles Gray.
Rocky Horror is so distinctive, so unique, that it could’ve come off as bizarre, alien, and off-putting, but it didn’t. It has such self-aware charm, a catchy soundtrack that sticks in the head for days, and hilarious performers, that it overcomes its rather dull protagonists. Of course, Brad and Janet have their own charm as parodies of the square-jawed hero and his girl, but they will always be the least interesting characters on screen.
The film itself is a bizarre comedic exploration of 70’s sexuality, that often causes hilarious results. Everything about Rocky Horror screeches “CAMP” at the top of its lungs, and, as an avid fan of camp, I have to call it appreciated.
The Rocky Horror Picture Show is not a film for everyone. One could find its crowd appeal limited. But, those who enjoy things like Adam West’s Batman and Little Shop of Horrors will find this film to their liking. An oddly structured film featuring the always enigmatic Charles Gray, The Rocky Horror Picture Show earns an easy A-.
That’s enough of my ramblings for now. I hope you enjoyed reading, and I’ll be back next week with another review. What it’ll be, nobody knows. But until then, so long!