I saw The Rocky Horror Picture Show for the first time in 20 years tonight. This was my 21st time watching it in a theater. The first time way back in November 1993 in Long Beach. I went on and off for the next few years. As a young college kid, was one of the few places I felt like I was free to express my repressed Catholic School graduate mind back then. It was a campy movie that was released the same year I was born. I was drawn to it, largely due to the fact that it was released on VHS my sophomore year of high school. (That seems like 2 lifetimes ago!)
Amusingly, the theater I went to tonight was a block or two down from the place where I went to the Hardcore parties earlier in the year. It’s a great place to get in some Pokemon Go while waiting for the movie to start. (Nothing special was caught, but I stocked up on presents, which is always good. I also won a couple of Grunt battles by remembering what kid of team to assemble according to their comment.)
It was a sold out show, and I was glad I’d bought my ticket last week on my last payday. It’s so odd to have a movie ticket on my phone, still. I don’t think I had a mobile phone with a color screen the last time I saw this movie in a theater, back in June 2001, when I was 26 and married to Kevin just over a year. There was a special showing in Hollywood for that year’s RHPS fan convention. After managing to fit into my 6th grade uniform skirt for the last time so I could dress up as a schoolgirl (’cause why not?!), I took the subway down to Sunset and caught a bus west for a couple miles. (I wasn’t keen on driving my RX7 down Barham into Hollywood in those days.) While waiting to get into the theater that night, a community sing of “Bohemian Rhapsody” broke out. The guest of honor was Patricia Quinn, which was a treat!
On that late summer night on the cab ride home, I had a feeling I wouldn’t be able to see this movie in a theater again for awhile. I was content, for the most part. It was a good night. I could file it away as something of my youth.
When I hit my 40’s, I started to think “Maybe one day.” And that day was tonight.
The traditional notion of a RHPS Shadow Cast is still alive and well. This cast was terrific. It was one of the best casts and shows I’ve ever seen. This is a true artistic endeavor that has been passed along amongst a certain crowd over the past few decades. It’s a shared experience that is still rewarding, therefore it is still sought out. It’s been re-imagined and re-done over the years, but the movie still seems to be the gold standard. It’s been a Cult Classic for quite a long time–way longer than I really want to admit!
As the movie went on, I realized a lot of the lines I used to shout shamelessly on all those Saturday nights may not be acceptable today. Most of the great lines are still in use, and I remembered as many as I’d forgotten.I stopped myself from saying a few things, just ’cause I knew I’d chosen to memorize those specific lines due to their “edginess.” I can keep those in my head and chuckle to myself.
The more things change, the more things stay the same, indeed. One thing I was quite surprised to see was the large portion of “Virgins” in the theater. I shouldn’t have been surprised–it is on Hulu, after all. I couldn’t help but wonder if any of these kids had been to the Hardcore Parties. As the attire for both events are quite different from each other, it would be hard to tell.
There were certain parts that used to drag for me that just flew by. I think because the cast was so engaging. It takes a lot to perform a musical in front of a movie screen on a tiny stage. It takes a labor of love in order to do this as well as it was done. Makes it awful tempting to go every couple months, especially considering the friend I went with is joining the cast.
I think some parts of our youth are worth revisiting, and I think it would be neat to get to seeing RHPS in a theater 30 times by the time I’m 50. 9 times in just under 4 years? I think that’s more than doable!
I wrote a poem while I was waiting for my ride to the theater. I need to take a gander at it and decide if I want to post it.
Ramping down my meds has been fairly easy. I was probably taking too much for a couple months. I’m starting to feel alive again, for the first time in longer than I really want to admit. It’s taken awhile to get here, but it’s been a good ride, all things considered.