Dear Cult Fans,
If you like your movies with an extra dash of weird, this is the video for you.
For the latest instalment of our Greatest Movies A-Z series with WatchMojo, we’re assembling the best movies that weren’t properly appreciated at first glance. These are not movies about cults, but rather off-kilter movies that have accumulated relatively small but rabid fan-base. Enjoy!
As you can see, we gave ourselves some guidelines:
- One film per letter
- Articles don’t count (the, an, a, etc.)
- Final list should encapsulate the genre
Beyond that, we also had an unwritten rule about not choosing films that eventually became mainstream hits (like Scarface, Fight Club, Mad Max, etc). That’s harder to define criteria for, but also kind of obvious when a movie doesn’t fit the bill.
So here’s some take-aways from our decision-making process. If your favorite movie isn’t in our final video, just tell yourself it has even more cred now.
TOP DECADE: 1970s
The American New Wave made way for all sorts of strange and unorthodox voices. As a result, wacky auteurs flourished, and one-off wonders were able to capture people’s imaginations. The legend of these films often only grew through word of mouth (before VHS), making late-night movies must-see events for fans of the unorthodox.
BEST LETTER: A
We had great options from almost every decade with this letter. Aguirre, the Wrath of God (1972), The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension (1984), After Hours (1985), Army of Darkness (1992), The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert (1994), American Psycho (2000). But we went with one of the first films to make so-bad-it’s-good a badge of honour.
CHEATED OUT: Plan 9 from Outer Space
Of course it belongs on the list, but we recently put it on our Worst Horror films of All-Time A-Z list, so we took this opportunity to put some shine on John Waters. A good filmmaker who revels in being bad.
HARDEST CHOICE: The Rocky Horror Picture Show vs The Room
This one wasn’t fair. The Room is probably the most beloved midnight movie of the past 20 years… or at least, the most popular/entertaining/viewed. But it was up against the undisputed champ of cult movies, and dammit, Janet, we were powerless over that sweet transvestite.
SPECIAL CONSIDERATION: Josie and the Pussycats
If all you remember is the incredible thud this movie made upon its release, you haven’t been paying attention the past couple of decades. Young Millennials reclaimed this piece of pop candy and ate it up, when critics were far too quick to spit it out. It also doesn’t have a lot of competition in the J department, but still worth a re-watch (or probably a first watch for most people).
Think your list would be better? More balanced? Less heart-breaking? Let us know.
Dear Cast & Crew