November 14, 2007

Rocky Risley Horror

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This weekend, red-lipstick wearing, feather boa bearing, experimental film enthusiasts united at Risley to celebrate the glory that is The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Huddled on the floor of Risley’s Great Hall, the students observed all of the traditions associated with this cult classic, with the aid of hosts Chris Macklin and Jasmine Haboubi ’08. For this weekend’s presentation of the show, students certainly dressed for the occasion, some in as little as lingerie, fishnets and high-heels. Others took the more traditional route, and dressed to emulate one of the stars of the show, yet this still did not entail much more in the way of body coverage. This costume-party atmosphere contributed greatly to the overall experience of the show.
Upon our arrival, the “virgins” were instructed to recite an oath: “I, virgin scum, do hereby admit, in front of all of these people, that I am a Rocky Horror virgin. I wish to lose all of my morals and accept decadence in my heart.” And as a sort of initiation, the virgins participated in various contests, some of which involved bananas and condoms, or faking an orgasm. The games were commenced, of course, on the count of 69.
The two usherettes opened the show, with a scintillating, choreographed routine to the opening credits, and the song, “Science Fiction-Double Feature.” While the iconic red lips mouthed the words on the screen set up behind the actors, audience members sang their own version, which complimented the original lyrics of the song. After this, the cast emerged in front of the screen, to reenact the events of the movie as they occurred.
For all of you virgins out there, The Rocky Horror Picture Show follows the newly-engaged couple, Brad Majors (Matt Taylor ’10) and Janet Weiss (Michele Batista ’10), as they attempt a visit to their friend, Dr. Everett von Scott (Scott Mooney ’11). When they get a flat tire along the way, they are left with no choice but to ask for help at the residence of Dr. Frank-N-Furter (Ethan Samuels ’10), a transsexual mad scientist. Formerly very straight-edge, the pair soon learns to embrace the self-indulgent lifestyle of Franky and his gang of eccentric Transylvanians.
The audience participated vociferously at several points throughout the show. We waved our arms back and forth for the windshield wiper scene, held lighters up for the song, “Over at the Frankenstein Place,” and stood to dance the steps to the “Time Warp.” We applauded uproariously when Franky appeared on screen, and threw toast when he held up his flute of champagne during the dinner party scene and suggested “Let’s have a toast.” One member of the audience ran up just in time to give the appearance of having been hit by the lightning bolt that cracked on the screen. Several people also ran up to the screen at the end of the film, to make it look like they were spinning the projected image with their hands.
People yelled taunts and lewd comments at the screen, some of which were personalized to Cornell (i.e. comparing the wacky transsexual Transylvanians to the Cornell Football team). Overall, the show was a vastly entertaining experience, and I would recommend it to any of you Rocky Horror virgins out there.