IT WAS A MYSTERIOUS time: The internet had recently sprouted its legs not as the savior of our generation, but instead as a novel way to slay the hours spent dwelling in cubicles. The dawn of YouTube was truly a revolutionary era for those of us that ticked off the hours with a glowing screen, as we basked in the humiliation of the Star Wars kid, LOLed at a cat playing piano, and tried to comprehend what was so likeable about "Chocolate Rain."
YouTube should also have signaled the end of the Found Footage Festival. After all, both enterprises share a similar goal—to mine the world's forgotten videos, and unearth an endless array of entertaining footage. But while YouTube has had more success, the site has ultimately made the Found Footage Festival look even better in comparison: Think of the FFF as YouTube, but with only the good videos. In this traveling roadshow, two unassuming guys play lost film clips, make fun of said clips, and repeat the process until you physically ache from fits of laughter. The Found Footage Festival has cemented the legacy of founders Joe Pickett and Nick Prueher as a pair of brave historians of the murky underworld of thrift store VHS tapes—a pair of fearless explorers who troll the depths of castaway training videos, odd exercise tapes, and home movies, searching for that elusive, brilliant, long-lost gem of footage.
Volume number three of the FFF features a very un-sexy montage of sexual harassment videos, some cringe-worthy glimpses of flaccid male nudity, an amazing skit that will have you referencing "Talkin' Beards" for days on end, and far too many clips to mention here. Instead of being trumped by technology, the ridiculous premise of the Found Film Footage is now defended by it—and proves that the best ideas are birthed from the most basic of concepts. Now, time for me to erase all those embarrassing home movies, before they fall into the wrong hands.