The mad scientist chapter of DK Canada’s Monsters in the Movies brings me the always enjoyable, and sing a long to every song, film, The Rocky Horror Picture Show starring Tim Curry, Susan Sarandon and Barry Bostwick.
It’s a musical send-up of science fiction and horror films of the 50s and 60s, that also reveled in its sexual identity and liberation. The film follows two virginal characters, Brad (Bostwick) and (Dammit) Janet (Sarandon) as they delve deeper into mystery, horror and sex when a flat tire and a thunderstorm forces them to take cover in the old Frankenstein place, where Dr. Frank-N-Furter (Curry), a sweet transvestite from transsexual Transylvania who delights in teasing the two characters, is about to unveil his creation, the perfect man, Rocky (Peter Hinwood).
Filled with fantastic music and songs, written by Richard O’Brien who plays Riff Raff (a handyman), I remember the first time I saw this film, and was completely gobsmacked by what I was seeing. It was so fun, so sexy, and so unlike any musical I had seen before.
Tim Curry is absolutely perfect as Frank-N-Furter and his mean, charming and appealing as he struts around seducing any and all, but mainly focusing on Rocky and the corruption/liberation of Brad and Janet.
Very recognizably the 70s, the film has stood the test of time both as an homage to the classic horror and science fiction films of yesteryear as well as musicals. The film, and stage show on which it is based have developed cult followings, and draw huge crowds to each performance.
Tim Curry who has had an amazing career will seemingly always be linked with this role and this film, and he really is a joy to behold.
Now, it can be argued that not everything necessarily works in this film, Eddie (Meat Loaf) seemingly comes out of nowhere, and is then only used for a gruesome callback a little later on in an almost pointless role, but it’s still fun to watch.
In fact, any time Curry isn’t on screen you could argue that the film perceptibly slows down. What is amazing though is how many pieces of dialogue and snippets of songs have found their way into my every day vernacular.
That alone speaks to the enduring legacy of this film, and yes, the mad scientist in this film is definitely a wee bit mad, he’s also a lot of fun. So if you haven’t seen this one before, gather some friends and settle in for an evening of fun. And if you have isn’t it time to do the Time Warp again?
Or maybe you prefer some other macabre tale, well pick up a copy of DK Books’ Monsters in the Movies and find something bloody fun to watch tonight!