Cult Film Reviews

A cult film (also known as a cult movie/picture or a cult classic) is a film that has acquired a highly devoted but specific group of fans. Often, cult movies have failed to achieve fame outside the small fanbases; however, there have been exceptions that have managed to gain fame among mainstream audiences. Many cult movies have gone on to transcend their original cult status and have become recognized as classics; others are of the "so bad it's good" variety and are destined to remain in obscurity.

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Cult films often become the source of a thriving, obsessive, and elaborate subculture of fandom, hence the analogy to cults. However, not every film with a devoted fanbase is necessarily a cult film. Usually, cult films have limited but very special, noted appeal. Cult films are often known to be eccentric, often do not follow traditional standards of mainstream cinema and usually explore topics not considered in any way mainstream—yet there are examples that are relatively normal. Many are often considered controversial because they step outside standard narrative and technical conventions.

Film Review: Race With the Devil (1975)

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SYNOPSIS:

Two couples vacationing together in an R.V. from Texas to Colorado are terrorized after they witness a murder during a Satanic ritual.

REVIEW:

Frank (Warren Oates), Alice (Loretta Swit), Roger (Peter Fonda) and Kelly (Lara Parker) are two couples out for the vacation of a lifetime. They have a fully stocked RV, complete with a color television and are heading from Texas to Aspen, Colorado, the first real vacation they’ve had in … Continue reading

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Film Review: Caged Heat (1974)

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SYNOPSIS:

“A girl is caught in a drug bust and sent to the hoosegow. The iron-handed superintendent takes exception to a skit performed by the girls and takes punitive steps, aided by the sadistic doctor who is doing illegal electroshock experiments and raping drugged prisoners. After a while the prisoners put away their petty differences and plan the Big Prison Escape.” (courtesy IMDB)

REVIEW:

Caged Heat … Continue reading

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Film Review: Tonight For Sure (1962)

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SYNOPSIS:

“On the Las Vegas strip, two unlikely men rendezvous: Samuel Hill, an unkempt desert miner, and Benjamin Jabowski, a John Birch Society dandy from the city. Intent on some sort of mayhem, they enter the Herald Club before the burlesque show starts, and they wire something to the electrical box, set to blow at midnight. They sit at the back of the club to get to … Continue reading

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Film Review: The People vs. George Lucas (2010)

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SYNOPSIS:

Uses a courtroom debate approach to explore the issues of filmmaking and fanaticism around one of the industry’s most famous franchises and its creator. The innovative film combines filmmaker and celebrity interviews with fan films – submitted via the film’s site – to make this the world’s first digitally democratic feature documentary.

REVIEW:

If anything is to be said about George Lucas … Continue reading

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Film Review: Drive (2011)

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SYNOPSIS:

A Hollywood stunt performer who moonlights as a wheelman discovers that a contract has been put on him after a heist gone wrong.

REVIEW:

“Driver” (the character name given to Ryan Gosling) loves to Drive. He works on cars during the day, races cars for money and even takes the occasional heist operation on for extra cash. He feels at home behind the wheel, which is evident in his … Continue reading

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Film Review: Lunacy (2005)

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SYNOPSIS:

A horror movie testing two approaches to running an insane asylum – absolute freedom versus control and punishment – within the context of a world that combines the worst of both. Jean Berlot, a young man subject to a nightmare of being forced into a straitjacket by two orderlies, is befriended by a marquis. At the marquis’s estate, Jean witnesses a black Mass, buries someone alive, and is invited to try preventive therapy. … Continue reading

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Film Review: Psycho (1960) – Review 2

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SYNOPSIS:

“Phoenix office worker Marion Crane is fed up with the way life has treated her. She has to meet her lover Sam in lunch breaks and they cannot get married because Sam has to give most of his money away in alimony. One Friday Marion is trusted to bank $40,000 by her employer. Seeing the opportunity to take the money and start a new life, Marion leaves town and heads … Continue reading

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Film Review: Casino Royale (1967)

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SYNOPSIS:
“Sir James Bond is enjoying his retirement when four international agents press him into service again in hopes of smashing SMERSH and topple Le Chiffre at the baccarat tables. Bond is taken in by Agent Mimi (alias Lady Fiona McTarry) who immediately falls in love with him. Bond’s illegitimate daughter, Mata Bond, whose mother was the late Mata Hari, is going to help out. The current agent using the Bond … Continue reading

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Film Review: The Philadelphia Experiment (1984)

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SYNOPSIS:

Based on an “actual event” that took place in 1943. About a US Navy Destroyer Escort that disappeared from the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard, and sent two men 40 years into the future to 1984.

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Film Review: Cut-Throats Nine (1972)

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SYNOPSIS:

A wagon load of convicts on their way to prison is being escorted through the mountains by a cavalry troop. They are attacked by a bandit gang, and only a sergeant, his beautiful young daughter and an assortment of seven sadistic, murderous prisoners survive, and they are left without horses or a wagon. The sergeant must find a way to get his prisoners to their destination while protecting … Continue reading

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Film Review: In a Glass Cage (1987)

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SYNOPSIS:

A former Nazi doctor-turned-pedophile, paralyzed from the neck down after a suicide attempt, is forced to accept a boy as his nurse under threat of blackmail: the boy secretly witnessed the doctor’s torture and murder of another boy, and possesses the man’s diary, which details his wartime experiments and his subsequent descent into pedophilia and murder. Before long, the boy displays his ambition to follow in the older … Continue reading

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Film Review: Reflections of Evil (2002)

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SYNOPSIS:

Julie, who died of a PCP overdose as a teen in the early ’70s, searches from beyond the ethers for her little brother, Bob, an obese watch-seller, who is dying of sucrose intolerance, in the early ’90s.

REVIEW:

It was 2002, when I received this film in the mail. At the time the creator, actor and director Damon Packard was marketing himself in rather odd fashions. I wasn’t sure … Continue reading

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Film Review: Evil Dead II Dead By Dawn (1987)

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SYNOPSIS:

“A young man named Ash takes his girlfriend Linda to a secluded cabin in the woods where he plays back a professor’s tape recorded recitation of passages from the Book of the Dead. The spell calls up an evil force from the woods which turns Linda into a monstrous Deadite, and threatens to do the same to Ash. When the professor’s daughter and her entourage show up at … Continue reading

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Film Review: Blue Velvet (1986)

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SYNOPSIS:

Jeffrey Beaumont is an honest young all American man. On an afternoon stroll he finds a human ear in a field near his home. His curiosities lead him to a twisted and wildly freakish syndicate of characters existing in his quiet picturesque little town, forever changing the way he views reality.

REVIEW:

Director: David Lynch
Cast:
Kyle Maclachlan-Jeffrey Beaumont
Isabella Rossellini-Dorothy Vallens
Dennis Hopper-Frank Boothe
Dean … Continue reading

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Film Review: Straw Dogs (1971)

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SYNOPSIS:

Dustin Hoffman plays a regular American mathematician, who gets into some trouble with local bullies. He is made fun of and then his wife is raped. When they attack his home, he fights back. His outbreak of violence is extreme. Upon moving to Britain to get away from American violence, astrophysicist David Sumner and his wife Amy are bullied and taken advantage of by the locals hired to do construction. … Continue reading

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Film Review: Wild At Heart (1990)

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SYNOPSIS:
“Lula’s psychopathic mother goes crazy at the thought of Lula being with Sailor, who just got free from jail. Ignoring Sailor’s probation, they set out for California. However their mother hires a killer to hunt down Sailor. Unaware of this, the two enjoy their journey and themselves being together, until they witness a young woman dying after a car accident – a bad omen.” (courtesy IMDB)

REVIEW:
David Lynch‘s … Continue reading

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Film Review: Targets (1968)

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SYNOPSIS:
“Peter Bogdanovich’s debut feature is a thinly disguised account of ex-marine Charles Whitman, who, after murdering his mother and his wife, armed himself with a number of rifles and handguns and on a sunny 1966 Texas morning, began a shooting spree that killed fourteen people and wounded thirty-two people. Bogdanovich’s version tells two stories concurrently, about an aging horror-film star who feels that his type of movie monster has become … Continue reading

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Film Review: Kissed (1996)

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SYNOPSIS:

Over the years, a child’s romantic ideals about death blossom into necrophilia, the study of embalming and the most profound relationship of her life.

REVIEW:

Titles of films can sometimes be very misleading, in the case of “Kissed” I am very happy to say that this is not a stupid romantic comedy. This is a highly romantic and a little bit depressing film dealing with the emotional responses of the … Continue reading

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Film Review: The Last Circus (2010)

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SYNOPSIS:

1937, Spain is in the midst of the brutal Spanish Civil War. A “Happy” circus clown is interrupted mid-performance and forcibly recruited by a militia. Still in his costume, he is handed a machete and led into battle against National soldiers, where he single handedly massacres an entire platoon. Fast forward to 1973, the tail end of the Franco regime. Javier, the son of the clown, dreams of following … Continue reading

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Key Genre Films 1970s

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With The Andromeda Strain (1971) director Robert Wise proved that he was still as adept with science fiction themes as he was with the supernatural. A well constructed thriller, it tells of a group of scientists trying to analyse a strange alien spore which comes to earth. Stanley Kubrick, having explored the sterile depths of space in 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), returned to a grungy Earth to show what might be happening in … Continue reading

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Key Genre Films 1960s

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Throughout the sixties, Hammer studios continued with their blood-and-thunder remakes, including The Curse Of The Werewolf (1960), The Two Faces Of Doctor Jekyll (1960), The Brides Of Dracula (1960), The Phantom Of The Opera (1962), Kiss Of The Vampire (1964), The Evil Of Frankenstein (1964) and Dracula Prince Of Darkness (1966). Hammer also delved into other aspects of fantasy over the next few years: Science fiction in Five Million Years To Earth (1967), lesbian … Continue reading

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