My esteemed colleague No Good Boyo has issued the challenge, which I feel it my bounden duty to take up, to nominate 12 films to inflict upon my friends. Lacking Boyo's years of watching bizarre horror films, my choices may be a lot less interesting and verge on the pathetically mainstream at times, but here goes:
First Night - The Blues Brothers
OK, too popular to be genuine cult material, but if you have any friends who still haven't seen it, ask yourself two questions: Is it not your bounden duty to subject them to the entire DVD, with your own running commentary that goes "This is a brillant bit!" and joining in with all the funny lines? And secondly, how come they're your friend?
Second Night - Metropolis
OK, so again a predictably arty choice; but this is the evil robot mother of all subsequent sci-fi and has been referenced so many times by so many directors that it should rank as compulsory viewing. I first watched this on video many years ago in a chemically-enhanced state with my mad friend Gregory, when he and I caused consternation to the only female in the room when we started screaming and waving our legs in the air at the 'robot Maria' bits. Any straight bloke who has watched the film will know why.
Third Night - Dark Star
Possibly the weirdest, cheapest movie ever made; yet essential cult viewing. Strange, disturbing, and hilariously funny in turns. The liftshaft sequence with the malign alien pet - which is clearly a painted beachball on string - is a comic masterpiece.
Fourth Night - Animal Crackers
I have long adored the Marx Brothers. I considered the obvious hard-core Marxist choice of Duck Soup, yet plumped in the end for this early gem - the four Marxes in the high summer of their early success. Groucho's rendition of "Hello - I must be going" and Harpo's knife-dropping at the end are career highlights by anyone's standards.