On January 16th, The Rocky Horror Picture Show turns 41. The movie starred Susan Sarandon, Tim Curry and Barry Bostwick. The film was a satirical homage to Science fiction B-movies of the 1930s. Originally a stage production, it found its way to the silver screen in 1975. Written by Jim Sharman, the film opened to mixed reviews, but would eventually gain cult status as audiences began frequenting the midnight showing on a regular basis. Regulars would dress up as the characters and act out the musical while it played.
The release of the film coincided with the glam movement. David Bowie was touring as the androgynous Ziggy Stardust which only added to the film’s popularity. Tim Curry played a cross-dressing mad scientist, Dr. Frank N. Furter, who builds the perfect man to be his lover, Rocky. Susan Sarandon (Janet) and Barry Bostwick (Brad) play a young couple whose car gets a flat tire and shows up at the doorstep of the scientist and from there, it just gets weirder and weirder. Singer Meatloaf was cast as Eddie, the biker who ends up being dinner at the hands of Furter.
The soundtrack follows the storyline, so even if you never watched the movie, you can still get the gist of the film. All the music was written by Richard O’Brien and performed by the cast members. Standout tracks include, “Time Warp” when the young couple first enter the mansion to discover a party is going on, “Sweet Transvestite,” when we first meet Furter, and “I’m Coming Home,” when Furter meets his impending demise.
Besides the original soundtrack, there are several tributes out, including the 1995 release of Musical Highlights From the Rocky Horror Picture Show, which featured Robin Cousins, Nick Curtis and Cheryl Baker, the 2013 Music from the Rocky Horror Picture Show by the Polyphonic Spree, and Rocky Horror International, which features cast members from all over the world.
On October 12th, 2014, a documentary was released called How Rocky Horror Saved My Life. The Rocky Horror Picture Show has become an international classic that continues to garner new fans 41 years after its release.