Cult Curios
A mixed bunch of cult-classic films


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La Jetée
D: Chris Marker (1963) 29m


Post-holocaust tale told mostly in black & white stills. A group of survivors look into time travel as a means of getting some food and supplies, as well as preventing a nuclear war. The hero gets the nod for the trip because of a fading childhood memory of a murder he witnessed on a jetty. Frequently shares the bill with Alphaville.





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Alphaville
D: Jean-Luc Goddard (1965) 100m


Surreal film festival favourite has popular French private eye Lemmy Caution taking a car through 'intersidereal' space to the futuristic Paris-like city of Alphaville. He faces off against the city's Alpha-60 mega-computer in order to rescue a scientist. Like most arthouse films of its ilk - audiences tend to either love it or hate it.





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Night Of the Living Dead
D: George A Romero (1968) 96m


A low-budget film of dubious genre credentials that critic John Clute explains is "SF in the guise of horror". Zombies ostensibly reanimated by radiation from Venus go on a rampage while setting up a few moral dilemmas in the process. Full of delectable irony and shattered expectations, but not for the squeamish.





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Young Frankenstein
D: Mel Brooks (1974) 106m


Director Mel Brooks takes aim at the early Frankenstein movies and manages to produce one of the funniest films ever made. Gene Wilder stars in the title role, recreating his father's experiments using the 'How I Did It' book he left behind. Sets from the original flicks add authenticity while a host of top flight comedians strut their stuff.





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Stalker
D: Andrei Tarkovsky (1979) 161m


Russian film loosely based on the Strugatsky brothers novel Roadside Picnic (1972). A mysterious forbidden Zone appears in an unnamed country. The Stalker of the title is a guide who escorts a writer and a scientist inside the Zone and through the Room. Reality goes haywire. Brilliant and complex - watch it time and time again.





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Tron
D: Steven Lisberger (1982) 96m


Computer whiz Kevin Flynn (Jeff Bridges) has his work stolen, allowing the thief to rise to the top of the software world and develop the Master Control Program. MCP sucks Flynn into cyberspace where he plays a dangerous game for his reputation. Groundbreaking sci-fi flick well ahead of its time - made by the Disney studios!





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Videodrome
D: David Cronenberg (1983) 88m


A bizarre and somewhat disturbing commentary on the effects of mass media immersion. James Woods plays a cable-TV station operator who falls under the spell of a pirate transmission showing live torture and killing. Joining the head-trip is Deborah Harry as his masochistic girlfriend. Some may find this hard to stomach.





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Brazil
D: Terry Gilliam (1985) 142m


Surrealistic science fantasy with healthy doses of biting social satire and dark humour. Director Gilliam pushed for the more Orwellian title of 1984½ for this tale of a bleak future society dominated by a typically incompetent and brutally authoritarian bureaucracy. A records clerk meets the woman of his dreams through a fatal mix-up.


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