“One two… Freddy’s coming for you… 3, 4 better lock your door… 5, 6 grab a crucifix… 7, 8, gonna stay up late… 9, 10, never sleep again!”
Back in the ‘90s, Freddy Krueger is sure to have made you shudder. Despite your screams, some of your friends and family members kept watching it over and over. You’d think that was cruel, but you never really stood a chance against a cult film’s power.
So what really makes a cult film?
Cult films come from various movie genres. The common characteristic they all share is that they have a select but eccentrically devoted audience who engage in celebratory rituals, repeat screenings, and ironic reading strategies (i.e., excess, camp, “paracinema”). Their memetic charm also makes their one-liners and scenes popular, sometimes to the point that these even get into modern-day movie scripts.
What makes them unique is that they transgress common conceptions of good or bad stories, as well as challenge conventions such as coherent storytelling. Most of these films combine elements of innovation, “so-bad-it’s-good” appeal, and nostalgia through plot devices such as time travel, supernaturalism, and gore. Basically, the first word that comes to mind is “strange”, which is what makes this type of cinema alluring.
Before, people used to wait for a DVD release of a film to watch it. With the advent of more powerful devices and better connectivity to the Internet, however, you can now watch movies online free through streaming websites like ViewLorium.com. Geoffrey Macnab, a renowned author on cinema, elaborates on what this means for the medium as a whole:
“First, there was video. Then came DVD. Now, we’re beginning to be able to download films. Films of every kind have benefited – the best horror pics, the creakiest B-movies, literary adaptations and old studio classics. It is Hollywood’s version of the “long tail” – where the web fuels endless small cults that add up to a massive audience.”
If ever you find yourself hankering for some cult horror flick on your Friday movie night, just browse for some free English movies online. If you are in for a hilarious and horrific mishmash of the zombie genre and your favorite fast food chicken, you might want to try Poultrygeist: Night of the Living Dead.
(Source: Cult Classics take on the Blockbusters as Audiences Switch on to Internet Downloads, Independent.co.uk)