LowComDom Performances Presents
Film Review - Rocky Horror Picture Show, The
I'm going to review this film a little different than most. In general, when I write a review, I'm speaking of the craft of the movie, or the enjoyment of watching the film. If I were to review this film in that manner, I would give it a very low rating. However, The Rocky Horror Picture Show is fairly unique. It's the only audience participation movie, and so it's not fair to review it only has the craft of film making or the enjoyment of watching the movie. It only makes sense to review this as a night out. With that perspective, I can give a very high rating.
The movie isn't that good. The best part of the film are the songs which hold it up. The sets are okay, and the acting fair. Simply, a young couple steps into a castle inhabited by sexually liberated and perverse aliens from another planet. The couple is forever changed by the experience. That's the movie. Big deal.
The real big deal is what happens in the movie theatre. The audience comes dressed as the characters. They recite the dialog, they talk back to the screen. They ask question, the characters in the movie answer. They throw rice during the wedding scene. What started as a mediocre film was adopted by the audience and made better. No one planned this, it just happened. There's been nothing else like this in the history of cinema.
Can you imagine if Star Wars was like this? It would be even more fun. The closest I have ever seen was the audience booing Darth Vader's entrance. But since we are taught to sit down and shut up during a film, Rocky Horror satisfies a craving to be naughty at the movies. Almost nothing said back to the screen is complementary. Why should it? We're all letting loose and blowing off steam.
My first viewing of Rocky Horror was in 1978. Recently, I rented the 25th anniversary DVD. Of course this is nothing like being in the theatre, but I would like to complement the production of the DVD set. You can switch sound tracks to include an audience talking back to the screen. This is very funny if not hard to understand. (Too many voices on the track.) There's also subtitles which tell you when to toss the rice, or fire up your Bic lighter. The second DVD of the set has documentaries, out-takes, the alternate ending, and Karoke. This is a great set for the die hard fan.
But if you have never seen Rocky Horror, do not rent a tape or DVD. You won't get it! You must go to a midnight showing in a theatre and sit amongst the audience. Don't worry that you can't hear the movie very well. It's not important. Look at the other people around you. Just don't admit that this is your first time, unless you like people pointing at you screaming "VIRGIN!"
Directed by Jim Sharman
Released in 1975
MPAA Rating: R
Reviewed by Mongo