Hello Geeks and Ghouls, Famous Monster here. Well, it’s finally October and you know what that means? Breast Cancer Awareness 5Ks? Good guess. Pumpkin Spice Lattes? Delicious, but no. Halloween? YES. Horror movies? DOUBLE YES!
Welcome to 31 Days of Horror, where I’ll cover at least two noteworthy horror films a day for the entirety of the month. That’s 31 Days of Horror and 62+ scary movies perfect for a cold, dark October night. Be sure to visit Geeks of Doom every day this month for a double-shot of chills and thrills!
Today’s double-shot features a couple of comical send-ups to the horror genre with Jim Sharman‘s 1975 cult musical The Rocky Horror Picture Show and Mel Brooks‘ 1974 classic, Young Frankenstein. Two doctors who would love nothing more than to make you a man…
Narrated by The Criminologist (Charles Gray), The Rocky Horror Picture Show tells the story of newly-engaged couple Brad Majors (Barry Bostwick) and Janet Weiss (Susan Sarandon), who find themselves lost in the woods with a flat tire on a dark and dreary night. Searching for a phone to call for help, the terminally heterosexual couple find a secluded castle where they discover a group of bizarre and sketchy folks attending an Annual Transylvanian Convention.
Brad and Janet watch as the Transylvanians dance and sing along to the film’s signature song, “Time Warp.” Brade and Janet are soon swept into the world of Dr. Frank-N-Furter (Tim Curry), a transvestite” from Transsexual, Transylvania and his loyal servants Riff Raff (Richard O’Brien), Magenta (Patricia Quinn), and the tap-dancing Columbia (Nell Campbell).
That Creepy Scene:
Being as The Rocky Horror Picture Show is a rock’n'roll musical tribute to the horror and science-fiction films of the ’50s and ’60s, there aren’t many genuinely creepy or disturbing scenes in this cult comedy. My favorite scene, however, is of course the introduction of Dr. Frank-N-Furter and the musical number “Sweet Transvestite.”
The Transylvanians have just passed out from exhaustion after a rousing rendition of “Time Warp.” Brad asks if any of them know how to Madison, which embarrasses Janet and sparks a half-hearted argument about how the All-American couple is going to get home. Behind them, an elevator cage slowly drops into view with a pair of tapping high heels coming into view. “Look, I’m cold, I’m wet, and I’m just plain scared!” As Janet says this, she turns around to see Dr. Frank-N-Furter and promptly screams and faints.
The cage door slides open and the good doctor makes his grand entrance, beginning “Sweet Transvestite” with “How d’you do I? See you’ve met my / Faithful handyman / He’s just a little brought down because / when you knocked / He thought you were the candyman.”
Frank-N-Fruter struts down a runway of red carpets proclaiming, “I’m not much of a man by the light of day / But by night I’m one hell of a lover.” Frank rips off his cloak revealing his transexual attire, complete with corset, sparkly panties, fishnets and, of course, a pearl necklace.
The Rocky Horror Picture Show is the definition of ‘cult classic.’ It’s the best ‘so bad, it’s good!’ movie out there. The film has the longest-running theatrical release in film history (37 years and counting). Rocky Horror has a huge international cult following and is one of the most well known and financially successful midnight movies of all time.
With Rocky Horror fan clubs in practically every city in the country, there’s a good chance you can catch this 1975 classic at a midnight screening near you – where fanatics will be in costume throwing hotdogs and bread at you during the movie.
In 2005, The Rocky Horror Picture Show was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant.” And it is – it’s one of the most culturally significant films ever in my opinion, a subversive film that celebrates sexual freedom and allows the repressed to truly let their freak flags fly. And I’m comfortable enough in my own sexuality to admit that Tim curry looks damn good in a pair of heels…
Director Mel Brooks followed his western parody, Blazing Saddles, with Young Frankenstein, a send-up of ’30s Universal horror classics. Determined to live down his family’s reputation, Dr. Frederick Frankenstein (Gene Wilder) insists on pronouncing his name “Fronckensteen” and seems uninterested in continuing his grandfather’s work of making monsters.
But when he is lured by Frau Blucher (Cloris Leachman) to discover the aptly titled journal, How I Did It, in his grandfather’s castle, Fronckensteen decides to carry on the torch. With the help of voluptuous Inga (Teri Garr), batty assistant Igor (Marty Feldman), and a stolen brain, the doctor creates his monster (Peter Boyle).
Igor, however, grabbed the wrong brain, and the monster escapes the castle, encountering a little girl and a blind hermit (Gene Hackman). Fronckensteen eventually tracks the monster down and trains him to do a little “Puttin’ On the Ritz” soft-shoe before the monster seduces Frankenstein’s bitchy fiancée Elizabeth (Madeline Kahn).
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