Pornographic body-horror, anyone? Cult film 'Videodrome' heads to midnight madness in Royal Oak

Staff Pick


Queen Deborah Harry, ladies and gents. - UNIVERSAL PICTURES
  • Universal Pictures
  • Queen Deborah Harry, ladies and gents.

Now that Blade Runner is officially set in the past, it’s time to revisit David Cronenberg’s cosmic body-horror film, Videodrome. A pre-#MeToo’d James Woods stars as Max Renn, a president of a sleazy television network. Ratings are low, shit is bad, and Renn discovers Videodrome — a fever dream of a mysterious TV show that basically hacks his brain with images and gratuitous displays of torture, mutilation, murder, and other truly gross body stuff, causing him and anyone who watches it to hallucinate.

The babely Deborah Harry appears as Renn’s girlfriend, Nicki Brand, who is very thirsty for the gnarly shit Videodrome airs and later goes missing when auditioning for the fucked-up programming. If that doesn’t entice you to endure one of the weirdest cult films of all time, an unearthed sample of some of Videodrome’s early test-screening testimonials might do the trick. One viewer called the film “vulgar,” another complained that there was too much “sex,” while others thought it was just downright “gross.” Perhaps the best comment to surface from test screenings is this: “I fail to understand what would be accomplished by releasing such a movie to the public. What sort of person could enjoy it?” Well, sir/ma’am, what sort of self-respecting person could enjoy trash like 90 Day Fiancé? So you can tune in and see what happens for yourself — if you dare.

Screenings begin at midnight on Friday, Jan. 10, and Saturday, Jan. 11, at the Main Art Theatre; 118 N. Main St., Royal Oak; 248-542-5198; Tickets are $7.

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