As cool as a cult member

By Laura Bardsley

Although at first glance the kids parading out of the darkened movie theatre sporting lingerie and painted faces seem like the types you wouldn’t want to associate with, there’s still a temptation to further your knowledge about them. Said temptation is quite normal– human beings are curious about anything they don’t understand. This same temptation could even lead you to join those kids with their crazy hair and makeup. But this is okay. These kids were attending their favourite cult classic film, living the interactive live experience that makes up cult classic films.

These films are usually the kinds that bomb at the box office when they are first released, but end up developing an underground following later on.

Cult films will always be better than regular, mainstream popular films because they’re really, really different. Compared to mainstream films, cult classics are like a slap in the face from a triple contact electro-magnet. It is a quality slap, however, that jars you and shows you an outlet for your quirks. Not only are the films, like The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975), The Big Lebowski (1998), Pulp Fiction (1994) and Fight Club (1999), pleasantly different, but so are the atmospheres that accompany them.

When viewing these films you can formulate clever cuts at the characters’ actions– for example, shouting out, “Get an umbrella, you cheap bitch!” at a character when she uses a newspaper to block the rain. Instead of telling you to be quiet, the audience will respond with another quip or appreciative laughter.

Joining such a following can be one of the best ways to get your weird out. Instead of the many, many almost creepy things you could do to showcase your weird inclinations, you could just join a cult film’s following. It doesn’t have to be a commitment, simply going to one of the showings at your local movie theatre would suffice. Then you can fully experience what it’s like to be part of a niche way of thinking. You could even take it so far as to dress up and act as one of the characters from the film in the “shadow cast” (act out the scenes on stage in sync with the movie).

The most attractive aspect of such participation is the mentality of it all. In dressing up as the characters, acting out the scenes in sync and fully interacting with the movie, one can discover a fun, new and exciting pastime.

So the next time you see those kids emerging from a darkened movie theatre in their strange dress and makeup, don’t look down your nose at them. Instead, ask them when the next showing is happening and tell them you’ll meet them there.

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