Shock Treatment Reviews
I'd definitely suggest giving it a rental, just to see what's up, maybe you'll surprise yourself (like I did) and get into it in spite of yourself.
Here's something you ain't NEVER seen before, a SEQUEL, (or if you will, "equal" to The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975))!! This time, it's set in a TV studio, and has Brad and Janet (this time played by Cliff De Young and Jessica Harper), being tra...(read more) pped in a nightmarish game-show-come-reality-TV show, run by doctors Cosmo and Nation McKinley (Richard O'Brien and Patricia Quinn), and blind Austrian game show host Bert Schnick (Barry Humphries!!) Visually, it looks brilliant, the songs are top notch too. But, it's ABSOLUTELY BONKERS!! Half the time, you don't even know what on earth's going on, it's a satire on American culture, punctuated by 80's pop numbers with an American country-western flavour. God knows what Ritz O'Brien was on when he thought this one up, but don't let it put you off!! Oh, and there's a young Rik Mayall in it!! ;)
The themes presented in ST are truly ahead of their time. In this film we see prophetic vision of reality tv and the public's almost disturbing desire to hang onto every little action even though it's blatantly being manipulated by the higher-ups for the sake of good ratings and lurid overindulgence.
The film takes place in an almost dreamlike world where the mass populace eat up our every action and allow themselves to be consumed by the glamour of TV personalities and in the end they willingly commit themselves to the madness.
All of this heavy satire is conveyed with broad caricatures and macabre performances by RHPS veterans and some new faces as well. Their performances are over the top but hint at the idea that they are putting it on for the audience. All of which is punctuated by a new array of songs by Richard O'Brien that truly require no comparison to RHPS as they are definitive in their own respect. The songs do a wonderful job conveying a story of discontent, vulnerability, seduction, deception, and ultimately reconciliation.
So to call Shock Treatment the TRON of musicals I mean that like TRON here was a film that was decades ahead of its time, which tackled things which would not be truly relevant until now and I hope that like TRON, one day the public will embrace it on its own terms.