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December 20th, 2014

Retro Review: Shock Treatment

Remember The Rocky Horror Picture Show? Of course you do. Everyone knows about this film. Time Warp, Sweet Transvestite. The film is a classic.  It is the most successful midnight movie of all time! Fun trivia fact; The Rocky Horror Picture Show holds the record for longest film in theaters. Since it’s initial release back in 1975, it has still not left theaters because of the midnight showings. It has grossed over $130,ooo,000 at the box office and is still making money. It is truly amazing. I recommend going to a midnight showing of the film if you have not before. It is a whole lot of fun seeing how obsessed fans are with this film. It is truly a sight to behold.

One thing many people do not know about The Rocky Horror Picture Show is that there was a sequel made in 1981. Yes I kid you not. Shock Treatment is one of the worst movie musicals of all time and possible one of the worst movies of all time, but I cannot lie when I say I can sing every song and recite every line from the movie. It is one of my personal favorites.

Synopsis: Brand and Janet Majors hometown of Denton has turned into a giant TV studio known as DTV, in which it’s brainwashed citizens are glued to endless game shows, soap operas and variety acts. Farley Flavors, owner of DTV, is looking for love and finds it when he gets a glimpse at Janet, so he locks up Brad in a mental hospital and makes Janet a sexy new star of her own hit show.

Brad, Janet,  Betty and Ralph Hapschatt  are the only characters from the first film to return in the sequel. Out of the four, Ralph Hapschatt is portrayed by Jeremy Newson, who is the only person who appeared in the original film as the same character as well as in this one. Richard O’Brien (Riff-Raft), Patricia Quinn(Magenta), Nell Campbell (Columbia) and Charles Grey (The Criminologist) all return but as different characters.

Whereas Rocky Horror was a spoof of horror films from the 50’s and 60’s, Shock Treatment is a spoof of television and how obsessed we all are with it, and how becoming famous can ultimately become your fate. One of the many reasons I love Shock Treatment is because in no way can you take seriously. I mean Rocky Horror is no masterpiece but everyone loves it. Everyone either loathes or hates Shock Treatment because it is so different from its predecessor. If you plan on watching it, be prepared to watch it a  few times to fully understand the plot because it makes no sense. But that is the fun of Shock Treatment. It entertains you with such witty, goofy characters and fun filled songs that are just as good as the songs from Rocky Horror. Denton U.S.A., Bitchin In The Kitchen, Me of Me and the title song Shock Treatment are so much fun and beyond catchy that I sometimes have to refrain myself from singing back and being obnoxious.

Shock Treatment is enjoyable and funny in the tradition of Rocky Horror. Yes the films are very different and some might not even consider it a sequel, but I sure as hell think it is a great addition to the musical/comedy/horror genre. I think this is one film a lot of people, young and old can enjoy for many years to come.

4 out of 4 stars

 




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