Friday, December 12, 2008

My anti-cult cult

I am really sick of the use of "cult" to describe kitsch or obscure. Cult adherents worship. They supplicate. They sacrifice. None of these things are true about the following show biz figures, most of whom are distinctly low-watt. Obit writers: I ask you to use words thoughtfully!

[Bettie] Page, whose popularity underwent a cult-like revival in the last 20 years, had been hospitalized for three weeks with pneumonia and was about to be released Dec. 2 when she suffered a heart attack, said Mr. Roesler, of CMG Worldwide.

[Nina Foch] Despite her obvious capabilities, she became inextricably stuck in B-movies, some of which achieved near cult status. Examples are I Love a Mystery (1945), The Guilt of Janet Ames (1947), The Dark Past (1948) and Johnny Allegro (1949), with George Raft.

[Beverly Garland] She gained cult status for playing gutsy women in low-budget exploitation films such as “The Alligator People” and a number of Roger Corman movies including “Gunslinger,” “It Conquered the World” and “Naked Paradise.”

[Paul Benedict] He was a staple in Christopher Guest's stock company, with roles in "A Mighty Wind," "Waiting for Guffman" and "Spinal Tap." He was also seen in 1970s cult pics such as "Deadhead Miles," "Taking Off" and "Smile."


Duncan said...

Leaving aside the wonderful Beverley Garland, I was taken aback to see references to the late Nina Foch being stuck in 40's B movies. An American in Paris, Scaramouche, the Ten Commandments, Spartacus, Executive Suite - 40s? B movies? !!!

Stephen Miller said...

Yar, shiver me timbers - another "Cult Movie Actress" headlined in NYTimes today.