Greensboro welcomes Found Footage Festival’s International Tour

by Mark Burger

Heavy Metal Parking Lot.

This summer, like so many others, will see a deluge of bigscreen blockbusters proliferating at the neighborhood multiplex. But for cinematic entertainment of a very different, very outrageous stripe, the Found Footage Festival’s 2011 tour is scheduled to hit Greensboro on Saturday, June 11 at the Idiot Box (348 S. Elm St., Greensboro).

It’s safe to say you’ve probably not seen moviemaking like this before!

The Greensboro show is only one stop in a massive, 75city tour that will see the Found Footage Festival screening throughout the US, the United Kingdom and Canada. The festival is devoted to showing videos found at random at garage sales and thrift sales — and even the garbage — throughout the country. The festival curators, Joe Pickett (a veteran of The Onion and Entertainment Weekly) and Nick Prueher (who has appeared on “The Late Show with David Letterman” and “The Colbert Report”), host each screening together and offer their own humorous commentary on these video “treasures.”

This year’s Found Footage Festival will include self-hypnosis videos detailing how to be a better businessman, lover and bowler; a home video from the 1980s taken during a wild weekend getaway in Florida; a collection of ventriloquism “how-to” videos; a selection of exercise videos, featuring such luminaries as Cher (she won an Academy

Award during the 1980s, for those who don’t remember); the “American Gladiators” (remember that show?); and even the late Lyle Alzado, for whom exercise didn’t help much at the end; and much more.

The festival was founded in New York in 2004 and became an instant sensation, selling out hundreds of shows throughout the US and Canada, including the HBO Comedy Festival at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas and the “Just for Laughs Festival” in Montreal, Canada. Highlights from past Found Film Festivals can be seen regularly on the Onion AV Club’s ongoing web series, and will be covered in a forthcoming non-fiction book to be published by Running Press.

The event will be preceded by a special 25 th anniversary screening of the legendary music documentary Heavy Metal Parking Lot, an ’80s-era exploration of the heavymetal rock ‘n’ roll phenomenon, showcasing young music fans (replete with eye-catching ’80s hair and dress) as they prepare themselves for a Judas Priest concert in Maryland.

For years, this bootleg treasure provided endless laughs for movie (and music) mavens. Where Spinal Tap left off, Heavy Metal Parking Lot picks up!

The Found Footage Festival’s stopover in the Piedmont Triad is sponsored locally by the Mixed Tape Film Series and WUAG 103.1 FM radio.

Showtime is 9:45 p.m. Tickets are $10.

For advance tickets or more information, see