If a film is already considered a midnight movie, that just means it has officially reached cult status. The number of devotees who dress up and religiously attend each screening solidifies the influence these midnight movies have on pop culture. The Rocky Horror Picture Show is often considered as the crème de la crème of all midnight movies as it unites individuals with similar interests and blesses them with an innate feeling of acceptance within a group.
So aside from the aforementioned film, ExploreTalent is bringing you a list of brilliant midnight movies you wouldn’t want to miss.
5 Great Midnight Movies to Watch
5. Freaks (1932)
This 1932 horror movie is a masterpiece and regarded as one of the most important B-films in history. It has all the elements a real cult movie should have: a gang of outcasts, a woman with a malicious motive, and lots of violence.
4. Night of the Living Dead (1968)
Like Freaks, Night of the Living Dead isn’t just one of the best midnight movies of all time, it also happens to be the forefather of all modern-day zombie films. On top of that, director George A. Romero made a powerful political statement by hiring an African American lead to star in a film where the rest of the cast were white actors. The story line is simple and is no way at par with the scales of the zombie movies you see today. But the grotesque graphics, which were considered to be extreme at that time, really revolutionized the horror genre and solidified Night of the Living Dead as a staple midnight movie.
Upon its initial release, Night of the Living Dead was considered controversial and received mostly negative response from critics and audiences. Luckily, years later, it was rediscovered and selected for preservation in the National Film Registry for being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant.”
3. El Topo (1970)
With an eccentric story line and bizarre characters, it is safe to say that El Tropo is one of the most popular midnight movies out there. In fact, the Western film was introduced to midnight audiences prior to being released in the United States. It was none other than Allen Klein, manager of legendary band The Beatles, who is credited for helping the film reach mainstream status. To this day, it’s still screened on Manhattan’s IFC Center.
2. Pink Flamingos (1972)
This film by acclaimed visual artist John Walters was controversial for many reasons. It featured “nasty” scenes depicting rape, incest, cannibalism, sodomy, and exhibitionism. What’s interesting about the film is that it was actually made on a mere $10,000 budget. Nonetheless, it still rose to become one of the most iconic midnight movies of all time and fans of the genre still flock to see it during screenings.
1. Eraserhead (1977)
Eraserhead may not seem like it’s destined for midnight movie viewing, but it has completely changed the style of many filmmakers we know today. The movie’s dark and nightmarish premise complemented its simple narrative. If one is to really analyze the true nature of the film, it puts the fear of fatherhood at the center by projecting images that range from terrifying to melancholic.