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7 Greatest Cult Films Of All Time

Written By

July 19th, 2011

So what exactly makes a cult film a cult film?  They obviously stretch across every genre of cinema, from comedy to drama to horror.  Some claimed their cult status by being so bad they were good (Plan 9 From Outer Space).  Others were extremely well made pictures that for whatever reason got off to a slow box office start (The Big Lebowski).  Others still were so camp and cheesy (Rocky Horror Picture Show) they had no other choice.     Whether you prefer midnight showings or playing your VHS copy until the tape breaks, chances are you have a favorite cult classic.  Maybe you’ll find yours on this list.

1 – This Is Spinal Tap

The first and still greatest mockumentary of all time and probably Rob Reiner’s best film.  And for my money the funniest movie ever made.  Christopher Guest is perfect as clueless lead guitarist Nigel Tufnel.  I’d like to see Harry Shearer get the cucumber through TSA in 2011.

2 – Rocky Horror Picture Show

The cross-dressing mother of all midnight movies.  Rocky Horror pretty much invented the modern version of a cult classic.  Cheesy costumes.  Catchy Songs.  And all the repressed sexual tension you could hope for.  Plus you gotta love the audience participation.  My friends and I tried to go all “Rocky Horror” at our second viewing of The Three Amigos and got thrown out of the theatre.

3 – The Big Lebowski

Like the top two movies on the list, a cult classic has to have some timeless quotable dialogue.  Lebowski has it in spades.  Every scene has multiple keepers that every Dude knows.  “Eight year olds, Dude.”  “You are entering a world of pain.”  “I’m just gonna go find a cash machine.”  And of course, “shut the f@*! up Donny.”  That’s not even scratching the surface.  Heck, this one even has it’s own festival.  So put on your pajamas, pour yourself a White Russian, and enjoy.

4 – Fight Club

A brilliant story from an equally brilliant novel with one heck of a twist ending.  Whether you’re a fan of self-help groups, domestic terrorism, anti-consumerism, or homemade soap preparation this one has something for everyone.

5 – A Clockwork Orange

Stanley Kubrick’s twisted futuristic morality tale was disturbing and way ahead of its time.  Critics were split on its value as social commentary with no less than Roger Ebert and Pauline Kael calling it pornographic.

6 – Withnail & I

The British Big Lebowski, but written a decade earlier.  Two out of work actors go on holiday to the country, only to find that maybe they would have been better off staying in their freezing, food-deprived apartment.  Withnail fans know the brilliant dialogue by heart.

7 – Easy Rider

Easy Rider hasn’t held up quite as well as the other movies on this list, but it remains the definitive film of freedom for the generation it represents.  And the soundtrack is perfection.

6 – Withnail & I

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