“Reservoir Dogs” wasn’t exactly a box office smash when it was first released in 1992. Despite wowing critics at Sundance and Cannes, it only made a fraction of its $1.5 million budget at the box office. But thankfully, the film’s gritty dialogue, iconic soundtrack, and Tarantino’s unique style eventually earned it a cult following.
And let’s face it, who doesn’t love a good heist movie with many guys in matching suits? Nowadays, “Reservoir Dogs” is considered a classic, and it’s hard to imagine a world without Mr. Blonde’s infamous dance scene or the ear-slicing scene that still manages to make us cringe.
David Lynch's "Dune" was a risky move. The movie was based on Frank Herbert's complex sci-fi novel, and Lynch was determined to stay true to it, even if that meant alienating newcomers. That's why the movie tanked at the theaters, only making $30.9 million domestically against a $40 million budget.
But as the sands of time passed, "Dune" has become a cult classic, thanks to its epic world-building and Lynch's unique vision. The special effects may not have aged well, but the movie still offers plenty of fun for Lynch fans, especially as it marked the director's first collaboration with Kyle MacLachlan. Many agree that Denis Villeneuve's recent remake is a far superior version.
This movie made us all want to take a baseball bat to a printer. Unfortunately, 1999's "Office Space" had a dismal performance at the box office, barely earning back its $10 million budget. But once it hit home video, it became a cult classic, beloved by college kids and office workers alike. Who knew that a movie about TPS reports, flair, and a red stapler would resonate so profoundly with the 9-to-5 crowd?
"Office Space" is now considered a masterpiece of workplace satire, inspiring many to "jump to conclusions" and "have a case of the Mondays." So if you're stuck in a job you hate, remember: at least you're not working at Initech.
It's a Wonderful Life
The ultimate Christmas classic, "It's a Wonderful Life" was anything but wonderful at the box office. Despite a solid budget of $3.7 million, it only managed to scrape together $3.3 million in domestic gross, causing RKO Pictures to lose over half a million dollars. In fact, the film was such a flop that it almost bankrupted the studio.
But fast forward to today, and it's a beloved holiday movie that gets more airtime than Santa's sleigh. And really, isn't that the ultimate comeback story? If George Bailey can bounce back from financial ruin, then surely there's hope for your own failed project, right?
Directed by Paul Thomas Anderson, "The Master" is a 2012 film about a guy who really, really loves Scientology. Starring Joaquin Phoenix and the late Philip Seymour Hoffman, the film made a grand total of $28 million at the box office, which is about as much as Tom Cruise makes in a week.
But despite its lackluster performance, "The Master" has since become a cult classic. It turns out that people really love watching Joaquin Phoenix yell and twitch for two hours straight. And since then, Phoenix’s career has only reached crazier heights, especially after winning Best Actor for his role as the Joker.