Film and Event Review: THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW (The Ford)

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by Lawrence Lucero on October 31, 2023

in Concerts / Events,Film,Theater-Los Angeles


“IT’S ASTOUNDING” that a close to fifty-year-old movie about a transvestite from a planet Transexual in a galaxy Transylvania, replete with elbow sex, a dance called the “Time Warp,” and an act of cannibalism, should draw a full house in an outdoor venue on a chilly autumn night in Hollywood, with a full moon, no less. But that is exactly what took place at The Ford this past Saturday, October 28.


Dressed in everything from operating gowns and black fright wigs to fishnet stockings and pasties, audience members sat down with their prop bags (supplied by the venue), popcorn, and bottles of wine, to participate in this fun Street Food Cinema co-sponsored screening event with live traditional performances from the Nuart Theatre in West LA.

After a very funny introduction/warm-up act by a young lady(?), consisting of a list of rules, irreverent one-liners like “White people don’t have heritage, they have shame,” and the hosting of the Virgin Daddy’s Name Orgasm Contest, a voluptuous theatre usherette entered the stage as the film began … only without sound. Several hilarious shouts of “YOU SUCK” from the audience and several minutes later, the sound was restored, and the usherette re-entered to do her very sexy strip to the opening “Science Fiction/ Double Feature” and we were off.


The film, with its high-camp humor, energetic musical score, and outlandish costuming and make-up was very entertaining, audience shouted one-liners and all. A couple of my favorites were “TAKE THAT BUTT OFF YOUR CHIN!” whenever the Narrator would appear with his cleft chin, and “WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE LIONEL RITCHIE SONG?” before Riffraff answered the door saying “Hello.” The sound did go out several more times with shouts of “YOU STILL SUCK!” which added an unfortunate stop/start element to the experience, but despite the circumstances, the audience sang the missing parts and fun was still had.

Back in the day when Rocky Horror Picture Show first came on the scene it was looked at as tasteless, trashy, and shocking. Now, it is stylish, theatrical, and surprisingly current. Retrospectively, artists and a sector of the public craving for the avant-garde took notice and happily thus, the cult classic has had a tremendous influence on pop art and fashion, gender fluidity and sexual expression. Not bad for a movie that begins with a narrator saying, “I would like, if I may, to take you on a strange journey.”

photographs taken by ​Elizabeth Asher at The Ford, provided courtesy of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association

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