Cult Films Within A Particular Culture
Occasionally, a film can become the object of a cult following within a particular region or culture if it has some unusual significance to that region or culture. An example is the cult status of British comedic actor Norman Wisdom's films in Albania. Wisdom's films, in which he usually played a family man worker who outsmarts his boss, were some of the few Western films considered acceptable by the country's communist rulers, thus Albanians grew familiar and attached to Wisdom. Curiously, he and his films are now acquiring nostalgic cult status in Britain. Another example is the place of The Wizard of Oz (1939) in American and British gay culture, although a widely viewed and historically important film in greater American culture. Some gay men refer to themselves as "friends of Dorothy". Singin' in the Rain is another film adopted by American gay culture which used to regularly be shown during the 1980s and early 1990s for extended runs. Slaves of New York, Can't Stop the Music, and A Night in Heaven have also found a cult audience in the gay community.
In the world of anime, the MTV spoof series Ultracity 6060 created by Beavis and Butt-head animator Mike Judge has become a hard-to-acquire cult classic among American anime fans. Judge's gory send-up When Animated Animals Attack is also a cult hit among animation festival fans in North America, as are the works of Don Hertzfeldt (Billy's Balloon, Rejected, The Meaning of Life) and Robert Smigel.
The 1938 anti-marijuana propaganda film Reefer Madness has become a cult film within the stoner subculture due to its humorously sensationalized, outdated, and inaccurate descriptions of the effects of marijuana. 20th Century Fox and Legend Films released a colorized version of the film on DVD on April 20, 2004, a reference to its ironic appeal (see 420 (cannabis culture)). The World War II-era Department of Agriculture film Hemp for Victory, encouraging the growing of hemp for war uses, has achieved a similar cult status. Entry-level IT workers and white-collar American workers alike have given Mike Judge's 1999 comedy film Office Space a cult following because of its heroic portrayal of ordinary office employees who become fed up with their jobs. Belgian cult films Man Bites Dog with Benoit Poelvoorde and Camping Cosmos starring cult figures like Lolo Ferrari, Noël Godin, and Arno Hintjens, are an element of the Belgian visual landscape.
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Famous quotes containing the words cult, films and/or culture:
“A cult is a religion with no political power.”
—Tom Wolfe (b. 1931)
“If you want to know all about Andy Warhol, just look at the surface: of my paintings and films and me, and there I am. Theres nothing behind it.”
—Andy Warhol (c. 19281987)
“The fact remains that the human being in early childhood learns to consider one or the other aspect of bodily function as evil, shameful, or unsafe. There is not a culture which does not use a combination of these devils to develop, by way of counterpoint, its own style of faith, pride, certainty, and initiative.”
—Erik H. Erikson (19041994)