Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Students dress up, get wild for Rocky Horror Picture Show event

On Saturday night, people packed the Crossroads Food Court in the International Center for MSU’s annual interactive showing of ““The Rocky Horror Picture Show”:”

For the uninitiated, Rocky Horror is the tale of a young couple’s car breaking down in front of Dr. Frank-N-Furter’s Castle, which houses a troop of sexually-unrestrained alien transvestites from Transsexual, Transylvania.

Devoted fans across the country have shown up to replays of the 1975 cult classic for 38 years. The battle between conservatism and hedonistic liberation unfolded before about 500 excited and sometimes apprehensive Spartans. Some yelled profanities and jokes in key parts during the film, and most threw bread and cards while squirting water on each other and shielded their heads.

That’s the standard audience participation at most showings, and one of the reasons the film gained such an impressive and dedicated cult following across the country.

“I’ve been planning this for a month,” said Katherine Cox, a professional writing freshman. “It’s very strange … If you’re into it, you’ve got something in common with someone else here already.”

Clad in tight-fitting movie garb and white face paint, Saturday’s event was Cox’s first participatory showing. She and her friend Roxanne Partak, a criminal justice freshman, were visibly excited.

Partak first fell in love with the film in 6th or 7th grade. Now she’s a die-hard fan, dressing with frazzled purple hair and face paint like the character Magenta.

“It’s so different from any other movie out there,” Partak said.

Costumes often are encouraged at showings, which have always been packed close to capacity during the 10 years MSU has hosted them, said Cathy Fitzpatrick, a UAB advisor at the event.

The event, which took about a month to prepare, cost the university less than $3,000 for movie rights and other expenses.

Fitzpatrick said she has a tender history with Rocky Horror not unlike many cult classic followers.

“My parents were hippies,” she said. “They took me to this movie in probably eight or 10 different states.”

Another student present, sophomore Jalen Adams, recalled the first time he saw the movie.

“I just remember having this weird feeling after it was over,” Adams said, adding that he hopes work for a video game company. He said he wants it run by alien transvestites.


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