The Beaver Trilogy (4/20, 7:00pm)

After more than two decades of being out of theatrical circulation, the legendary triptych starring Sean Penn and Crispin Glover is back on the silver screen! Art. Obsession. Olivia Newton-John. For a far-out glimpse into how all these alchemical elements collide, look no further than Beaver Trilogy. In 1979, a chance meeting between eccentric surfer dude-type “Groovin’ Gary” and Trent Harris (who worked for a local Salt Lake City TV station) resulted in The Beaver Kid, a captivating short doc about Gary’s other life as an awkward, yet impassioned Olivia-styled female impersonator. Obsessively driven to the subject matter as much as Gary was driven to “be” Olivia, Harris years later refashioned the story into two separate fiction shorts — with one crudely shot on video starring a young Sean Penn, and the other starring the inimitable Crispin Glover. Viewed as a whole, Beaver Trilogy is an experience so distinct, layered, and brazenly raw that it eludes an appropriate cinematic analogy. As a film, it’s mesmerizing. As an extract of the human psyche, it’s astonishing. Please don’t keep it waiting.
Dir. Trent Harris, 1979/1981/1985, digital presentation, 83 min.

Watch Cinefamily’s original trailer for “The Beaver Trilogy”!