The term "found footage" has been grossly devalued. We hear the term nowadays and automatically think of low-budget horror movies made to look as if they were shot on shaky camcorders, surveillance cameras or cellphones. In another frequent storyline, the footage was left behind by filmmakers who already have fallen prey to evil. Either way, the found-footage movie genre has been worked to death by the creators of Paranormal Activity and that ilk, so much so that the conventions have been parodied not once but twice in recent months by flicks so bad that, if we're lucky, they finally will put the kabosh on the trend. But, of course, we won't be so lucky.

Maybe Aurora Picture Show can rescue the term. Aurora will host the Found Footage Festival Monday night, and there are no horror movies in sight - no spooks in the attic, no ghostly visitors at night. These actually are videos that the curators found at thrift stores, garage sales and dumpsters across America. Included will be home movies, funny exercise tapes, strange industrial training videos and such curiosities as a clip on how to care for your pet ferret. The curators, Nick Prueher and Joe Pickett, will be there to crack wise on what you're viewing, so there is a live comedy component as well.

Both from Wisconsin, Pickett is a writer/director who has written for The Onion. Prueher used to do research for the Late Show with David Letterman. Their show, which we're advised "contains mature content," starts at 7:30 p.m Monday. Get info on the Aurora Picture Show website.

 

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