Up for a Freak Show?

A miracle in midnight-movie finery; a spot-on analysis of adolescent ambition, gender struggles and xenophobia; an eternal pop-culture time capsule; Richard O'Brien's madcap musical, adapted with and directed by Jim Sharman, offers participation-primed audiences -- who aren't sounding their smartest these days -- the secret ("To life?")to life ("Itself?") itself! Apple-pie Americans Brad and Janet (Barry Bostwick and Susan Sarandon) bumble into the castle of mad "Transylvanians" Riff Raff, Frank-N-Furter, Magenta and Columbia (wild O'Brien, saucy Tim Curry, marvelous Patricia Quinn and amazing Little Nell Campbell), while boy toys Rocky and Eddie (Peter Hinwood and Meat Loaf), skeptical Dr. Scott (Jonathan Adams) and the Criminologist/Narrator (Charles Gray) attend the tuneful romp. The songs are smashing -- from the childlike nostalgia of "Science Fiction Double Feature" to the fairly good advice of "Don't Dream It, Be It" -- and the delirium is well tempered by doom: high camp and low tragedy in one of the greatest motion pictures ever made.
Fri., Aug. 28, 11:55 p.m., 2009
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Gregory Weinkauf