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« Puttin’ the WOW in Powwow | Main | July Fourth – The Seeds of Greatness »

Welcome to Bicknell. Home of the Bicknell International Film Festival – Better Living Through Bad Cinema

By Bennett Owen

Credit: ©

WHAM! BAM! POW! BIFF! Yes, BIFF as in Bicknell International Film Festival, a southern Utah tradition since 1995.

Credit: BIFF

This weekend, Bicknell is in a B-Hive state of mind, embracing bad movies with a capital B. Each year the committee selects three films that best reflect the worst of a genre.  Past themes include:

  • UFOria (1996)
  • Beach Blanket Bicknell (2002)
  • Big Top Bicknell (2006)

And the 10th anniversary edition, ‘The B-er, the Better.’

This year, the festival jury has chosen superheroes…and the merriment gets underway Friday evening with the 1966 Batman movie, starring Adam West … a movie so camp you could park an RV in it. (My mom ruined the TV series for me by pointing out that he had bony knees!) 

Credit: BIFF

On Saturday, festival-goers will get a matinee look at Captain America! No, not the big budget blockbuster making its nationwide bow this weekend … rather the 1990 version, described as a “ridiculous adaptation.” This screening also features ‘audience participation’…

Credit: BIFF

And Saturday evening the festival comes to a close with a gala performance of Flash Gordon, one of the cheesiest movies ever made, complete with soundtrack by Queen.  (Flash saves the world on a treadmill!)


But BIFF is more than just movies. Friday afternoon features the world’s fastest parade, clocking in at 55 miles per hour –

Credit: BIFF

Credit: BIFF

There’s also a Saturday Swap Meet, where people get together to … swap stuff -

And after grand finale, the BIFF “It’s a Wrap Party,” featuring music this year by the Main Street Revelators. 

Credit: BIFF

The festival venue is the 64 year-old Wayne theater, recently restored to its original … hmmm, splendor doesn’t quite seem to fit here. 

The theater holds 306 people. The population of Bicknell is 325. Its owner, Terry Davis, is in charge of BIFF. “Everyone has a superhero in them one way or another,” he observes, and he’s right of course, especially after a trip to your local Italian Deli.

Credit: BIFF

Bicknell, by the way is also the gateway to the fabulous Capitol Reef and Canyonlands National Parks, along with some of the best hiking and biking country in the west. But the film festival is something you have to see to B-lieve.

Bicknell Film Festival, July 22-23 – For more information:

Credit: BIFF

Reader Comments (6)

Haha! love the Post and truly wish I could flash by the Festival on my magical treadmill ;)

July 20, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKatie

Many films to come tried to capture the gripping suspense of the '66 Batman... and failed! Future Films: you better step up the game if you want to get us on the edge of our seats and try scenes like this:

Will Batman survive the shark attack? Will the elf-sidekick (I'm sorry, Robin) come in time to give him the shark repellent? Will the batladder hold? and will Batman need reconstructive surgery after having his entire leg down the throat of the wild beast?

Dear Michael Bay, can any of your movies answer a single one of these questions?

July 20, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterChris Owen

Katie, if your magical treadmill is out of order, I'll gladly lend you my intergalactic elliptical trainer!

July 20, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBennett Owen

You guys are AWESOME...I wish I was close enought to Superhero in me!!!!! strange, but true, I was inducted into THE GOD SQUAD when I was 19 so I embrace doing good things for people who can't do or help themselves....I hope this catches on here in Sarasota, FL. We have a rich film history here and a artys-fartsy Festival w/real 'celecbrities' and then the films that didn't get invited have their own. I nominate THE ALLIGATOR BOY as the cheesest Florida film ever; human/alligator hybrer chases easily firghtened peps into the swamps...awesome...Thnx 4 the cheer....Cheers to you all. Stacey in Venice Beach, FL

July 20, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterStacey Ann Sausville

I'll never be able to look at Robin with seeing his knees first.

July 20, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDonna P.

Hey, Stacey Ann -

ALLIGATOR BOY??? Now that's a title that literally screams B-Movie. Kind of like Elephant Man...Oh wait... :-)

July 20, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBennett Owen

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