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What does "Cult Film" mean?


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Funny ya ask this question classic...I had checked into "cult films" myself awhile back. I, like you, wanted to know what it was that made a movie a "cult" movie.


Here's what I found:


Cult film

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.


A cult film is a movie that attracts a small but devoted group of obsessive fans or one that has remained popular over successive years amongst a small group of followers. Often the film failed to achieve mainstream success on its original release, but this is not always the case. Sometimes the audience response to a cult film is somewhat different to what was intended by the film-makers, although usually a film that becomes "cult" started-out with unusual elements or subject matter.


A film reaches cult status due to an audience's relationship to the film. This makes the designation of cult status to a film difficult, however continued success amongst a subset of moviegoers many years after the film's original release is a key defining factor.



A good site to check out a HUGE list of so called "cult" films is:




Hope it helps!


~*~ SteLLa ~*~

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Classics, I too had wondered about the term. I used to (mistakenly) think it had to be a movie about "the Moonies" or "Jim Jones"! *L*

Stella gives a great definition, and probably the most classic example would be "The Rocky Horror Picture Show". The film is from the early '70s, but still has a cult following today - even had weekly midnight showings here in St. Louis at the old Varsity Theater until just a few years ago. The audience would come dressed as their favorite character, recite dialogue along with the film, dance & sing during the musical numbers, and even bring props (i.e., rice to throw at the wedding scene, etc.)

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Thank you Stella and Stigal. I pretty much had it right, but just wanted to make sure. Thanks for those links, Stella..I'll check them out. Stigal, I also think of The Rocky Horror Picture Show" as the definitive "cult" movie. I have friends who go to see it and have told me that everyone in the audience is totally involved in the movie, which makes it feel like "live theatre".


I also have thought that the movies of Charlie Chaplin, among others, have found a new following by being shown in theatre's again, which might also put them in the "cult" realm now. And, there are countless others, I'm sure. Thanks for your help.

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