Bicknell film festival moves to the musical
The hills around Utah's Capitol Reef will be alive with the sound of bad musicals next weekend, as the 19th annual Bicknell International Film Festival celebrates B-movie musicals.
The three movies chosen for this year's festival, held at the Wayne Theatre in the south-central Utah town of Bicknell, are not the family-friendly fare you'd associate with Julie Andrews, though.
• The opening-night film, to be screened Friday night at 6:30 p.m., is "Cannibal! The Musical." This 1993 low-budget musical centers on Alferd Packer, a mountain guide who got his pioneer party lost in the mountains and was accused of eating his companions to survive. The movie was the student film of Trey Parker and Matt Stone, the Colorado filmmaking team who went on to create the animated series "South Park" and the Tony-winning musical "Book of Mormon." They first screened the movie, guerrilla-style, in a hotel room in Park City during the 1994 Sundance Film Festival which inspired the creation of the Slamdance Film Festival the following year.
• Saturday's matinee movie, at 2 p.m., is "Little Shop of Horrors," director Frank Oz's 1986 musical remake of Roger Corman's 1960 cult classic about a nerdy florist-shop employee (Rick Moranis) who becomes famous by raising a plant that feeds on human flesh. The songs were written by lyricist Howard Ashman and composer Alan Menken, who later wrote the lyrics for Disney's "The Little Mermaid" and "Beauty and the Beast."
• Saturday night's closing-night film, starting at 6:30 p.m., is "The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas," starring Dolly Parton as the madam of the famous Chicken Ranch, Burt Reynolds as the town sheriff who loves her, and Charles Durning as the oily politician who turns the brothel's existence into a campaign issue. The movie (adapted from the 1979 Broadway musical) includes Parton's song "I Will Always Love You," which was later immortalized by Whitney Houston in "The Bodyguard."
The festival kicks off Friday at 5:30 p.m. at the Red Cliff Restaurant in nearby Torrey, with the formation of what is billed as "the world's fastest parade," traveling from Torrey to Bicknell on State Road 24 at speeds of 55 mph.
A party follows Friday night's screening at the Rim Rock Patio, featuring live music. Another party, after Saturday night's film, takes place at the Wayne Theatre.
Other events around Bicknell that weekend: A lunch and "Music Mania Challenge" starting at noon Saturday at Bicknell Park; and the Farmers' Market in Torrey on Saturday from 4 to 6 p.m.
An adult "FastPass," good for all events (and including a raffle ticket) is $60, and for $75 you can get an "I Want It All FastPass" that also includes a commemorative T-shirt and poster.
For more information, go the festival's website, thebiff.org.
The 19th annual Bicknell International Film Festival celebrates B-movies and this year the theme is "Singin' in the Red Rocks."
Where • The Wayne Theatre, Bicknell, Utah (about 8 miles west of Capitol Reef National Park's west entrance).
When • Friday and Saturday, July 19-20.
Information • Go to thebiff.org.