Any article about a 4 day concert with over 100 musical acts, especially the upcoming Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival-- the West Coast's biggest and boldest concert event-- would be the work of a national Music Examiner. Well, this Pittsburgh Indie Movie Examiner is about to turn the tables (or should I say turntables) and let you in on the answer to the question I posed above. An eye-opening answer that is a very cool and is to many a little known secret.
Besides all the great music happening this weekend in the wilds of Tennessee, there is also a pretty good Film fest taking place, as well. Bonnaroo has a Cinema tent (with air conditioning) and they show over 25 films during the fest. A fest that features a bumper crop of Classics, Comedies, Documentaries, Animation, Shorts and even the NBA finals appear on the big screen.
Bonnaroo also has premieres (some before they arrive in local theaters) like David Wain's "They Came Together". Amy Poehler and Paul Rudd star as a couple that get together, break up and then come together again or that's what the title would suggest in this satirical parody of Rom-Com pictures. Similar to what Wain did for summer camp movies in "Wet American Summer" (which also is playing this weekend).
Other premieres are "Dear White People", an insightful and humorous exploration of modern racial issues, and 80's throwback "Ping Pong Summer" (also available on VOD). A touching underdog tale of one teen finding his way and persevering despite what seems like to him insurmountable odds. Throw in a new wave soundtrack of old MTV hits and you have one winning return.
What would any good Film fest (pardon me, I mean Music fest) be without having a strong Documentary series, too. Highlights include "DamNation", a telling real life study of why removing damns are actually revitalizing nature with both fish and fowl flourishing in man-made tributaries, and the environmentally conscious movie, "The Human Experiment". An examination into how chemicals are not only becoming more prevalent in our society but, inside our own bodies.
Don't forget the musical aspect of Bonnaroo '14 because there is quite a few new flicks on worthwhile artists such as African music legend Fela Kuti, the other guitarist in the Grateful Dead, the one and only Bob Weir, plus a film about the ever blossoming Nashville music scene. Also playing is Charlie Chaplin's "The Kid", accompanied by a live performance by composer Marc Ribot. Ribot has helped write songs for esteemed artists such as Tom Waits, John Zorn and Elton John (who headlines Sunday night, June 15th in his first American festival appearance).
And that's not all! In addition, Cult classics are on display. Take for example a Farrelly Brothers' career retrospective with them personally introducing the 20th year anniversary edition of "Dumb & Dumber" (the Sequel to the Trailer has already gone viral), a tribute to Director Harold Ramis (who recently passed away) with a showing of the one and only "Ghostbusters" and a late night screening of the original "Friday the 13th" on that terrifying date under a full moon.
All that and there is still more (and that's not even counting the music you might hear)! So check out the full lineup or the schedule times here and (if you are attending, tickets are still available) have fun seeing visually stimulating Movies at one of the best Musical festivals in the country.