The 100 Greatest Cult Films

by elias_michelg | created - 21 Mar 2011 | updated - 21 Mar 2011 | Public
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1. A Clockwork Orange (1971)

R | 136 min | Crime, Drama, Sci-Fi

80 Metascore

In the future, a sadistic gang leader is imprisoned and volunteers for a conduct-aversion experiment, but it doesn't go as planned.

Director: Stanley Kubrick | Stars: Malcolm McDowell, Patrick Magee, Michael Bates, Warren Clarke

Votes: 671,850

2. Pulp Fiction (1994)

R | 154 min | Crime, Drama

94 Metascore

The lives of two mob hitmen, a boxer, a gangster's wife, and a pair of diner bandits intertwine in four tales of violence and redemption.

Director: Quentin Tarantino | Stars: John Travolta, Uma Thurman, Samuel L. Jackson, Bruce Willis

Votes: 1,594,541 | Gross: $107.93M

3. Fight Club (1999)

R | 139 min | Drama

66 Metascore

An insomniac office worker and a devil-may-care soapmaker form an underground fight club that evolves into something much, much more.

Director: David Fincher | Stars: Brad Pitt, Edward Norton, Meat Loaf, Zach Grenier

Votes: 1,633,565 | Gross: $37.03M

4. Kill Bill: Vol. 1 (2003)

R | 111 min | Action, Crime, Thriller

69 Metascore

After awakening from a four-year coma, a former assassin wreaks vengeance on the team of assassins who betrayed her.

Director: Quentin Tarantino | Stars: Uma Thurman, David Carradine, Daryl Hannah, Michael Madsen

Votes: 882,651 | Gross: $70.10M

5. Reservoir Dogs (1992)

R | 99 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

79 Metascore

When a simple jewelry heist goes horribly wrong, the surviving criminals begin to suspect that one of them is a police informant.

Director: Quentin Tarantino | Stars: Harvey Keitel, Tim Roth, Michael Madsen, Chris Penn

Votes: 801,811 | Gross: $2.83M

6. Donnie Darko (2001)

R | 113 min | Drama, Sci-Fi, Thriller

88 Metascore

A troubled teenager is plagued by visions of a man in a large rabbit suit who manipulates him to commit a series of crimes, after he narrowly escapes a bizarre accident.

Director: Richard Kelly | Stars: Jake Gyllenhaal, Jena Malone, Mary McDonnell, Holmes Osborne

Votes: 685,194 | Gross: $1.48M

7. Scarface (1983)

R | 170 min | Crime, Drama

65 Metascore

In Miami in 1980, a determined Cuban immigrant takes over a drug cartel and succumbs to greed.

Director: Brian De Palma | Stars: Al Pacino, Michelle Pfeiffer, Steven Bauer, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio

Votes: 647,988 | Gross: $45.60M

8. The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)

PG | 76 min | Animation, Family, Fantasy

82 Metascore

Jack Skellington, king of Halloween Town, discovers Christmas Town, but his attempts to bring Christmas to his home causes confusion.

Director: Henry Selick | Stars: Danny Elfman, Chris Sarandon, Catherine O'Hara, William Hickey

Votes: 264,099 | Gross: $75.08M

9. Blade Runner (1982)

R | 117 min | Sci-Fi, Thriller

89 Metascore

A blade runner must pursue and terminate four replicants who stole a ship in space, and have returned to Earth to find their creator.

Director: Ridley Scott | Stars: Harrison Ford, Rutger Hauer, Sean Young, Edward James Olmos

Votes: 612,778 | Gross: $27.00M

10. Twelve Monkeys (1995)

R | 129 min | Mystery, Sci-Fi, Thriller

74 Metascore

In a future world devastated by disease, a convict is sent back in time to gather information about the man-made virus that wiped out most of the human population on the planet.

Director: Terry Gilliam | Stars: Bruce Willis, Madeleine Stowe, Brad Pitt, Joseph Melito

Votes: 532,546 | Gross: $57.14M

11. The Big Lebowski (1998)

R | 117 min | Comedy, Crime

71 Metascore

Jeff "The Dude" Lebowski, mistaken for a millionaire of the same name, seeks restitution for his ruined rug and enlists his bowling buddies to help get it.

Directors: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen | Stars: Jeff Bridges, John Goodman, Julianne Moore, Steve Buscemi

Votes: 646,790 | Gross: $17.50M

12. Pink Floyd: The Wall (1982)

R | 95 min | Animation, Drama, Fantasy

47 Metascore

A confined but troubled rock star descends into madness in the midst of his physical and social isolation from everyone.

Director: Alan Parker | Stars: Bob Geldof, Christine Hargreaves, James Laurenson, Eleanor David

Votes: 69,030 | Gross: $22.24M

13. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998)

R | 118 min | Adventure, Comedy, Drama

41 Metascore

An oddball journalist and his psychopathic lawyer travel to Las Vegas for a series of psychedelic escapades.

Director: Terry Gilliam | Stars: Johnny Depp, Benicio Del Toro, Tobey Maguire, Michael Lee Gogin

Votes: 238,662 | Gross: $10.68M

14. The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975)

R | 100 min | Comedy, Musical

58 Metascore

A newly engaged couple have a breakdown in an isolated area and must pay a call to the bizarre residence of Dr. Frank-N-Furter.

Director: Jim Sharman | Stars: Tim Curry, Susan Sarandon, Barry Bostwick, Richard O'Brien

Votes: 119,861 | Gross: $139.88M

15. The Elephant Man (1980)

PG | 124 min | Biography, Drama

77 Metascore

A Victorian surgeon rescues a heavily disfigured man who is mistreated while scraping a living as a side-show freak. Behind his monstrous façade, there is revealed a person of intelligence and sensitivity.

Director: David Lynch | Stars: Anthony Hopkins, John Hurt, Anne Bancroft, John Gielgud

Votes: 196,456

16. Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)

PG | 91 min | Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy

93 Metascore

King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table embark on a surreal, low-budget search for the Holy Grail, encountering many, very silly obstacles.

Directors: Terry Gilliam, Terry Jones | Stars: Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Eric Idle, Terry Gilliam

Votes: 450,815 | Gross: $1.23M

17. The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974)

R | 83 min | Horror

75 Metascore

Two siblings and three of their friends en route to visit their grandfather's grave in Texas end up falling victim to a family of cannibalistic psychopaths.

Director: Tobe Hooper | Stars: Marilyn Burns, Edwin Neal, Allen Danziger, Paul A. Partain

Votes: 117,753 | Gross: $30.86M

18. Night of the Living Dead (1968)

Not Rated | 96 min | Horror

89 Metascore

There is panic throughout the nation as the dead suddenly come back to life. The film follows a group of characters who barricade themselves in an old farmhouse in an attempt to remain safe from these bloodthirsty, flesh-eating monsters.

Director: George A. Romero | Stars: Duane Jones, Judith O'Dea, Karl Hardman, Marilyn Eastman

Votes: 103,024 | Gross: $0.09M

19. Being John Malkovich (1999)

R | 113 min | Comedy, Drama, Fantasy

90 Metascore

A puppeteer discovers a portal that leads literally into the head of movie star John Malkovich.

Director: Spike Jonze | Stars: John Cusack, Cameron Diaz, Catherine Keener, John Malkovich

Votes: 284,734 | Gross: $22.86M

20. Labyrinth (1986)

PG | 101 min | Adventure, Family, Fantasy

50 Metascore

A 16-year-old girl is given 13 hours to solve a labyrinth and rescue her baby brother when her wish for him to be taken away is granted by the Goblin King.

Director: Jim Henson | Stars: David Bowie, Jennifer Connelly, Toby Froud, Shelley Thompson

Votes: 110,644 | Gross: $12.73M

21. Clerks (1994)

R | 92 min | Comedy

70 Metascore

A day in the lives of two convenience clerks named Dante and Randal as they annoy customers, discuss movies, and play hockey on the store roof.

Director: Kevin Smith | Stars: Brian O'Halloran, Jeff Anderson, Marilyn Ghigliotti, Lisa Spoonauer

Votes: 198,894 | Gross: $3.15M

22. The Gods Must Be Crazy (1980)

PG | 109 min | Comedy

73 Metascore

A comic allegory about a traveling Bushman who encounters modern civilization and its stranger aspects, including a clumsy scientist and a band of revolutionaries.

Director: Jamie Uys | Stars: N!xau, Marius Weyers, Sandra Prinsloo, Louw Verwey

Votes: 48,469 | Gross: $30.03M

23. Army of Darkness (1992)

R | 81 min | Comedy, Horror

57 Metascore

A man is accidentally transported to 1300 A.D., where he must battle an army of the dead and retrieve the Necronomicon so he can return home.

Director: Sam Raimi | Stars: Bruce Campbell, Embeth Davidtz, Marcus Gilbert, Ian Abercrombie

Votes: 148,645 | Gross: $11.50M

24. The Breakfast Club (1985)

R | 97 min | Comedy, Drama

62 Metascore

Five high school students meet in Saturday detention and discover how they have a lot more in common than they thought.

Director: John Hughes | Stars: Emilio Estevez, Judd Nelson, Molly Ringwald, Ally Sheedy

Votes: 311,097 | Gross: $45.88M

25. Easy Rider (1969)

R | 95 min | Adventure, Drama

86 Metascore

Through the open country and desert lands, two bikers head from L.A to New Orleans, and along the way, meet a man who bridges a counter-culture gap they are unaware of.

Director: Dennis Hopper | Stars: Peter Fonda, Dennis Hopper, Jack Nicholson, Antonio Mendoza

Votes: 86,549 | Gross: $41.73M

26. The Princess Bride (1987)

PG | 98 min | Adventure, Family, Fantasy

77 Metascore

While home sick in bed, a young boy's grandfather reads him the story of a farmboy-turned-pirate who encounters numerous obstacles, enemies and allies in his quest to be reunited with his true love.

Director: Rob Reiner | Stars: Cary Elwes, Mandy Patinkin, Robin Wright, Chris Sarandon

Votes: 350,134 | Gross: $30.86M

27. The Lost Boys (1987)

R | 97 min | Comedy, Horror

63 Metascore

After moving to a new town, two brothers discover that the area is a haven for vampires.

Director: Joel Schumacher | Stars: Jason Patric, Corey Haim, Dianne Wiest, Barnard Hughes

Votes: 109,016 | Gross: $32.22M

28. Quadrophenia (1979)

R | 120 min | Drama, Music

79 Metascore

Jimmy loathes his job and parents. He seeks solace with his mod clique, scooter riding and drugs, only to be disappointed.

Director: Franc Roddam | Stars: Phil Daniels, Leslie Ash, Phil Davis, Mark Wingett

Votes: 15,186

29. Dead Man (1995)

R | 121 min | Drama, Fantasy, Western

62 Metascore

On the run after murdering a man, accountant William Blake encounters a strange North American man named Nobody who prepares him for his journey into the spiritual world.

Director: Jim Jarmusch | Stars: Johnny Depp, Gary Farmer, Crispin Glover, Lance Henriksen

Votes: 82,267 | Gross: $1.04M

30. Eraserhead (1977)

Not Rated | 89 min | Horror

87 Metascore

Henry Spencer tries to survive his industrial environment, his angry girlfriend, and the unbearable screams of his newly born mutant child.

Director: David Lynch | Stars: Jack Nance, Charlotte Stewart, Allen Joseph, Jeanne Bates

Votes: 87,902 | Gross: $7.00M

31. Pink Flamingos (1972)

NC-17 | 93 min | Comedy, Crime

47 Metascore

Notorious Baltimore criminal and underground figure Divine goes up against a sleazy married couple who make a passionate attempt to humiliate her and seize her tabloid-given title as "The Filthiest Person Alive".

Director: John Waters | Stars: Divine, David Lochary, Mary Vivian Pearce, Mink Stole

Votes: 19,616 | Gross: $0.18M

32. El Topo (1970)

Not Rated | 125 min | Drama, Western

A mysterious black-clad gunfighter wanders a mystical Western landscape encountering multiple bizarre characters.

Director: Alejandro Jodorowsky | Stars: Alejandro Jodorowsky, Brontis Jodorowsky, José Legarreta, Alfonso Arau

Votes: 22,295

33. Freaks (1932)

Not Rated | 64 min | Drama, Horror

A circus' beautiful trapeze artist agrees to marry the leader of side-show performers, but his deformed friends discover she is only marrying him for his inheritance.

Director: Tod Browning | Stars: Wallace Ford, Leila Hyams, Olga Baclanova, Roscoe Ates

Votes: 37,540

34. Attack of the Killer Tomatoes! (1978)

PG | 83 min | Adventure, Comedy, Horror

9 Metascore

A group of scientists band together to save the world from mutated killer tomatoes.

Director: John De Bello | Stars: David Miller, George Wilson, Sharon Taylor, J. Stephen Peace

Votes: 11,228

35. Brazil (1985)

R | 132 min | Drama, Sci-Fi

88 Metascore

A bureaucrat, in a retro-future world, tries to correct an administrative error and becomes an enemy of the state.

Director: Terry Gilliam | Stars: Jonathan Pryce, Kim Greist, Robert De Niro, Katherine Helmond

Votes: 172,391 | Gross: $9.93M

36. Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971)

G | 100 min | Family, Fantasy, Musical

67 Metascore

A poor but hopeful boy seeks one of the five coveted golden tickets that will send him on a tour of Willy Wonka's mysterious chocolate factory.

Director: Mel Stuart | Stars: Gene Wilder, Jack Albertson, Peter Ostrum, Roy Kinnear

Votes: 156,487 | Gross: $4.00M

37. Dawn of the Dead (1978)

Unrated | 127 min | Horror, Thriller

71 Metascore

Following an ever-growing epidemic of zombies that have risen from the dead, two Philadelphia S.W.A.T. team members, a traffic reporter, and his television executive girlfriend seek refuge in a secluded shopping mall.

Director: George A. Romero | Stars: David Emge, Ken Foree, Scott H. Reiniger, Gaylen Ross

Votes: 101,834 | Gross: $5.10M

38. Raising Arizona (1987)

PG-13 | 94 min | Comedy, Crime

68 Metascore

When a childless couple of an ex-con and an ex-cop decide to help themselves to one of another family's quintuplets, their lives become more complicated than they anticipated.

Directors: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen | Stars: Nicolas Cage, Holly Hunter, Trey Wilson, John Goodman

Votes: 114,518 | Gross: $22.85M

39. Napoleon Dynamite (2004)

PG | 96 min | Comedy

64 Metascore

A listless and alienated teenager decides to help his new friend win the class presidency in their small western high school, while he must deal with his bizarre family life back home.

Director: Jared Hess | Stars: Jon Heder, Efren Ramirez, Jon Gries, Aaron Ruell

Votes: 181,149 | Gross: $44.54M

40. The Boondock Saints (1999)

R | 108 min | Action, Crime, Thriller

44 Metascore

Two Irish Catholic brothers become vigilantes and wipe out Boston's criminal underworld in the name of God.

Director: Troy Duffy | Stars: Willem Dafoe, Sean Patrick Flanery, Norman Reedus, David Della Rocco

Votes: 214,762 | Gross: $0.03M

41. Heavy Metal (1981)

R | 86 min | Animation, Adventure, Fantasy

51 Metascore

A glowing green orb - which embodies ultimate evil - terrorizes a young girl with an anthology of bizarre and fantastic stories of dark fantasy, eroticism and horror.

Directors: Gerald Potterton, John Bruno, John Halas, Julian Harris, Jimmy T. Murakami, Barrie Nelson, Paul Sabella, Jack Stokes, Pino Van Lamsweerde, Harold Whitaker | Stars: Richard Romanus, John Candy, Joe Flaherty, Don Francks

Votes: 27,659

42. The Holy Mountain (1973)

R | 114 min | Adventure, Drama, Fantasy

In a corrupt, greed-fueled world, a powerful alchemist leads a Christ-like character and seven materialistic figures to the Holy Mountain, where they hope to achieve enlightenment.

Director: Alejandro Jodorowsky | Stars: Alejandro Jodorowsky, Horacio Salinas, Zamira Saunders, Juan Ferrara

Votes: 30,462 | Gross: $0.06M

43. The Wild One (1953)

Not Rated | 79 min | Drama

Two rival motorcycle gangs terrorize a small town after one of their leaders is thrown in jail.

Director: Laslo Benedek | Stars: Marlon Brando, Mary Murphy, Robert Keith, Lee Marvin

Votes: 13,037

44. The Toxic Avenger (1984)

R | 82 min | Action, Comedy, Horror

42 Metascore

Tromaville has a monstrous new hero. The Toxic Avenger is born when meek mop boy Melvin falls into a vat of toxic waste. Now evildoers will have a lot to lose.

Directors: Michael Herz, Lloyd Kaufman | Stars: Andree Maranda, Mitch Cohen, Jennifer Babtist, Cindy Manion

Votes: 22,191

45. Joe's Apartment (1996)

PG-13 | 80 min | Comedy, Fantasy, Musical

A nice guy has just moved to New York and discovers that he must share his run-down apartment with a couple thousand singing, dancing cockroaches.

Director: John Payson | Stars: Jerry O'Connell, Megan Ward, Billy West, Reginald Hudlin

Votes: 11,687 | Gross: $4.61M

46. The Adventures of Baron Munchausen (1988)

PG | 126 min | Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy

69 Metascore

An account of Baron Munchausen's supposed travels and fantastical experiences with his band of misfits.

Director: Terry Gilliam | Stars: John Neville, Eric Idle, Sarah Polley, Oliver Reed

Votes: 46,560 | Gross: $8.08M

47. Flash Gordon (1980)

PG | 111 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

58 Metascore

A football player and his friends travel to the planet Mongo and find themselves fighting the tyranny of Ming the Merciless to save Earth.

Director: Mike Hodges | Stars: Sam J. Jones, Melody Anderson, Max von Sydow, Topol

Votes: 44,705