Get SF Weekly Newsletters
Pin It

Rocky Horror Show so good it shuts up its audience 

Wednesday, Nov 5 2008

The Rocky Horror Picture Show — released in 1975, dismissed by critics, and revived in the late '70s as a midnight movie — might be the most audience-dependent film ever made. If you've ever attempted to watch it at home, without the benefit of a rowdy crowd hurling rice and insults at the screen, you know that it's a weirdly unsatisfying experience. The movie feels like a stage production under glass, which is why filmgoers have always needed to step in and provide the vital energy that the film alone lacks. For that reason, a well-executed live production of Rocky Horror will be a revelation for fans of the movie, because a good live version places the energy squarely where it belongs — with the performers. In Ray of Light's joyously sleazy production at the Victoria Theatre, the near-perfect cast manages to pay tribute to the film while outpacing it in almost every way. The only problem is that some audience members aren't quite sure what to do, since the beautifully executed production numbers render audience participation more or less irrelevant. The whole thing is brilliant proof that Rocky Horror doesn't need a cult following to be a smash.

Tags: ,

About The Author

Chris Jensen


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed


  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"