Highlighting the title’s appropriacy, this is probably the closest a musical’s been to being a show put on film. This is a piece of cabaret, and a very horny piece of cabaret at that. Shameless in its omnisexuality during a time when homosexuality had narrowly been legalised and sex itself was only just being ‘casualised’, creator Richard O’Brien took his original play and made it a stab at the growing break in prior filmmaking formality. Like Monty Python and the Holy Grail of the same year, Rocky pushed the how fluidly a film could be structured: three sections of the film spend a good ten to fifteen minutes in the same room, showing that O’Brien isn’t afraid to move away from scenes if he doesn’t need to.
Of course, I’m just prevaricating from the sheer surrealism of it. Led by the beautiful Tim Curry’s career-defining performance, you’ll either quickly settle with the film’s care-free, promiscuous tone or you never will. An absurd bombastic burlesque, whilst touching on dying ideals such as monogamy – encompassed by engaged couple Brad and Janet starting the night leaving a wedding and ending up both pleasured by Frank N. Furter.
Forty-years later, Rocky remains a statement of modern times.