Not the real movie cover, but waaay better than the original.

Not the real movie cover, but waaay better than the original.


Cult films aren’t for everyone. More than a few times I’ve been seduced into a movie that the local rep theatre swore up and down was the greatest and most underrated cinematic masterpiece of its time only to emerge after two hours feeling confused and duped. Eraserhead, anyone?

Still, the good experiences with hidden gems have generally outweighed the bad, and so I continue to plop down my admission fees in the hope of finding something truly remarkable and wholly different from standard Hollywood fare (which, let’s face it, CAN be pretty dreadful at times too!)

To my chagrin, I still haven’t been to a proper screening of the granddaddy of all cult films – The Rocky Horror Picture Show – but this weekend, I took in a fairly new-to-the-scene cult film that promised to be a laugh riot: The Room, which was only released about 10 years ago.

The Room has been called the Citizen Kane of bad movies, and late-night screenings of it have basically degenerated into enormous and ribald heckle-fests as drunk theatre-goers pelt the screen with plastic spoons and mercilessly mock everything about the movie: the acting (such as it is), the dialogue, the plot holes (and there are many), the music, the credits, the camerawork (“focus!!!”), the horrible, gratuitous, and awkward sex scenes (“Oh gawd! UNFOCUS!!!”). It’s crowded and noisy, but damn, it’s fun!

After one of the (many) sex scenes, the main character heads to the loo and you're "treated" to this view of his butt: not a pretty sight, especially on the big screen. It's the reason for the "eww."

After one of the (many) sex scenes, the main character heads to the loo and you’re “treated” to this view of his butt: not a pretty sight, especially on the big screen, and the reason for the “eww.”

The Mayfair Theatre in Ottawa screens it on a monthly basis – and while this was my first time (thanks for taking me along, Steve!) it’s pretty clear that multiple viewings will only enhance the experience. It’s also pretty clear that next time, I’ll need to walk so I can have a few more drinks! But there WILL be a next time – that’s not in doubt.

Anyone want to join me? While I’m still pretty new myself, I feel like I could offer my services as a guide for anyone interested in (but timid about) going see this thing. Still not sure but want to get a sense of what you’re in for? Check out this entry on the Mayfair Theatre blog, which will give you a sense of some of the more common shared audience participation bits.

Now I just need to find someone to take me to my first Rocky Horror screening.

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