Man With a Plan

The fine art of making fun of terrible films was perfected by the groundbreaking series Mystery Science Theater 3000. When that show ended, in 1999, fans had to make fun of movies on their own until 2006, when show writer and star Michael J. Nelson revitalized the concept with RiffTrax. Where MST3K was limited to bottom-of-the-barrel, Z-grade drek, RiffTrax has broadened the horizons by adding such high-class drek as Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace and Twilight to the mix. It has also experimented with live performances, an experiment that’s going nationwide tonight with RiffTrax Live: Plan 9 From Outer Space.

Joining Nelson in the endeavor are Kevin Murphy (formerly Tom Servo) and Bill Corbett (aka Crow T. Robot). From a stage in Nashville, the trio will simulcast their hilarious riffs to hundreds of theaters around the country. And the three of them will need every bit of funny in their bodies to make it through the legendarily bad Plan 9. A muddled, poorly told tale of alien invasion, walking dead and future horrors, Plan 9 is bad-movie auteur Ed Wood’s crowning dis-achievement, a film widely considered to be one of the worst ever made — in other words, perfect fodder for the RiffTrax crew. And for extra fun, the print will be colorized, allowing you to enjoy Wood’s disasterpiece in vibrant, living color for the first time.

The show, with special musical guest Jonathan Coulton, starts at 6 p.m. tonight at nearly a dozen area theaters, including the Pavilions 15 at 500 16th Street. Tickets are $12.50; for a complete list of theaters, visit or
Thu., Aug. 20, 6 p.m., 2009


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