Every Saturday night for the past 35 years, Chelsea Clearview Cinemas has done its famed midnight showings of The Rocky Horror Picture Show. 20 year old GofG intern Alison Krawczyk had no idea what to expect when she headed over last weeekend. But she caught on pretty quickly...
My friend Lo and I had never experienced the Saturday night viewing of the Rocky Horror Picture Show. Here's what we found when we got there:
1. People will dress up: Lo and I wore our sweatshirts and Ugg boots while the rest of the crowd wore their most creative outfits. One attendee with neon pink hair was wearing a silk party dress, while another man wore a suit and fedora.
2. Prepare your best dance moves: For the first ten minutes before the movie starts there is an intense dance party in the front of the theater. Everything from "Hey Mickey" to "Gay Bar" was played. And, the attendees really bring their A-game.
3. Buy the toilet paper: Or at least bring some rice. The audience interaction may be a little frightening at first, but as the movie progresses you'll come to expect people throwing toilet paper and rice over your head.
4, If you're shy, you're not a virgin: 10 RHPS "virgins" were chosen from the audience, and, according to the MC, "if you watched it on VH1 or on DVD, that's just masturbation and doesn't count." The virgins are brought to the front of the room, and are automatically entered into an orgasm contest. Each contestant performs their best-fake- orgasm into the microphone. If this sounds like you're idea of hell, best not raise your hand.
5. Don't be shocked when people do cartwheels in the aisles: During the opening song "Science Fiction/Double Feature" a young woman lip-syncs the song while doing cart-wheels in the aisles. She eventually ends up in her underwear, and flirting with the crowd.
6.Don't sit in an aisle seat if you don't want to be touched: Throughout the film the actors encourage audience participation and have no reservations about sitting on your lap and singing directly to you.
7.Google "Rocky Horror Picture Show alternate script" before hand: This way you'll be ready when the entire crowd screams "Slut!" or "Sex, Sex, Sex!" at (what seems like) random moments.
8. Clear your schedule for the night: The movie begins at midnight, but doesn't actually start until closer to 1 am and it won't finish until close to 3 am.
9. Be open and ready to make some new friends: It was very obvious that the same crowd attends each week, and knows one another pretty well. Although Lo and I clearly had no idea what was going on, everyone was kind enough to invite us to join the festivities. And it is a lot more fun when you join in.
10. Prepare to go more than once: This is not just any movie experience. After attending once, you'll want to go back when you can understand what is going on. You'll want to bring your friends, throw rice, and scream "Slut!" at Susan Sarandon.
[Photos via Flickr]