The play’s the thing

Cult gems like Point Break and Road House shouldn’t be the only movies brought to the stage

Apocalypse Now

Cult gems like Point Break and Road House shouldn’t be the only movies that get a new lease on life by being brought to the stage. Here’s our list of other movies that would make for a heady night of theater.

Apocalypse Now: Who wouldn’t like to see a napalm explosion in real time? And maybe throw a helicopter or two in there, à la Miss Saigon?

Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom

Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom: What better way to commemorate the most over-the-top of the Indiana Jones adventures than grabbing volunteers to have their hearts ripped out?

Reservoir Dogs

Reservoir Dogs: Here’s a show you could hold in an abandoned warehouse, with the audience moving around with the characters as they cut each other’s ears off.

Repo Man

Repo Man: Who knows if the play would be any good? The real entertainment here would be the concession stand selling food and drinks that read, simply, “food” and “drink.”

Plan 9 From Outer Space

Plan 9 From Outer Space: The worst movie of all time could become, ironically, the best play of all time, with audience members taking turns to come up onstage and deliver the now-famous dialogue. We’ll volunteer to say the line, “One thing’s sure, he’s dead, murdered ... And someone’s responsible.”

Toy Story

Toy Story: Hey, it worked brilliantly for The Lion King—and Toy Story is a better movie. Its colorful palette and empathetic characters would make a musical that could take young viewers to infinity and beyond.


Seven: Beneath the lurid serial-killer theatrics—most of which are off-screen, anyway—Seven is a satisfying drama about the limited responses you have when faced with the moral breakdown of civilization. Plus, the “What’s in the box?” line at the end would bring the house down.

Dr. Strangelove

Dr. Strangelove: If only to watch mad Dr. Strangelove fight with his own arm and General Buck Turgidson fight with the Soviet ambassador in the War Room (that set alone could be worth a ticket).

It's a Wonderful Life

It’s a Wonderful Life: Is anyone still watching this classic at the holidays? For that matter, is anyone still taking the kids to The Nutcracker? Let’s cover them both and place the heroic journey of George Bailey into a Yuletide treat for the family. (Just don’t lose the undercurrent of real despair that makes the movie so good.)


Gerry: In the avant-gardish film, Matt Damon and Casey Affleck mostly walk silently through the desert. Re-created onstage, this would be updated Beckett for a restless generation—instead of waiting for Godot, the characters are trudging after him; very new millennium. Then one strangles the other.


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