THERE'S NO SHORTAGE of funny, terrible, cheesy videos from decades past. The internet is glutted with 'em—you've probably already snuck in a few today on your work computer. Nick Prueher and Joe Pickett have made it their life's work to sift through Goodwill bins and yard sales for terrible VHS tapes, searching for just a few golden moments of video hijinks. Over the years, they've gotten really good at finding them.
Prueher and Pickett's Found Footage Festival makes its way to the Laurelhurst for two shows on Saturday, and this current crop is among the best they've compiled. There are bizarre clips from public access shows, exercise videos, hunting videos—they've even culled some truly WTF moments from an instructional series on ventriloquism. Prueher and Pickett edit their strange finds down to a no-fat presentation of really quick highlights—sitting through one of their shows is a bombardment of hilarity that builds and builds. Perhaps the most extraordinary find in this batch is a 1986 video called Rent-a-Friend, which consists entirely of a (possibly deranged) man talking into a camera as if he is having a pleasant conversation with you, the viewer. Over the course of the video, he goes on to reveal a little too much about himself.
There's more: "We're opening the shows with a rare theatrical screening of Heavy Metal Parking Lot to commemorate its 25th anniversary," Prueher says, referring to the hilarious documentary shot in a parking lot before a 1986 Judas Priest concert. "It's from the source tape and it's really fun on the big screen. Oh, and we tracked down and met Rent-a-Friend and will be playing an interview we shot with him at the shows as well." If you've ever spent an evening with friends only to wind up with everyone huddled around the computer watching YouTubes—and be honest, this has happened more times than you care to admit—you know where you need to be.