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Readers’ Poll: The 25 Best Cult Movies of All Time

Midnight and dorm room favorites from ‘Eraserhead’ to ‘The Evil Dead’

the evil dead weekend rock question

Courtesy New Line Cinema

There's no single way to recognize a cult movie other than the simple fact that it's developed a fiercely devoted audience that watches it over and over, preferably at midnight in a theater packed with other die-hards. Few reach the level of The Big Lebowski and The Rocky Horror Picture Show, where fans throw giant conventions and come dressed up like their favorite characters, but all are repeatedly watched on DVD and analyzed endlessly on the internet. In honor of the ten year anniversary of Mean Girls (an extremely unlikely candidate for a cult movie, but one nonetheless) we asked our readers to select their favorite cult movies. Click through to see the results. 

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1. ‘The Rocky Horror Picture Show’

Could any other movie have possibly won this poll? This low budget 1975 film tanked when it came out, but the following year a New York theater started showing it at midnight and within months a fiercely devoted cult started seeing it over and over, dressing up like the characters and singing along to the songs. The tradition continues today, though the movement peaked in the 1980s and 1990s. Like many cult movies, there's a quasi-sequel (Shock Treatment) that fails to live up to the original, or even come close.