One of the highlights of this year’s INSIDE OUT FILM FESTIVAL in Toronto is The Beaver Trilogy which screens tonight at 10PM at Cinecycle – 129 Spadina Avenue. Looks like Sean Penn played gay way before Milk:
The Beaver Trilogy, completed in 2001, combines three vignettes filmed at different times: 1979, 1981 and 1985. The first part, entitled The Beaver Kid, features Richard LaVon Griffiths aka ‘Groovin’ Gary,’ a goofy and animated young man that filmmaker, Trent Harris, happens upon while testing his camera for a Utah television station. The filmmaker follows Gary to his hometown of Beaver, Utah, to record a talent show that culminates in Gary’s impassioned rendition of Please Don’t Keep Me Waiting performed by his drag persona, ‘Olivia Newton-Don.’
The second part of the trilogy, The Beaver Kid 2, is a slightly fictionalized, low budget, black-and-white recreation of the first chapter that incorporates some of the original documentation. A boyish-and then unknown-Sean Penn, reenacts the nonfiction footage, this time as ‘Groovin’ Larry.’
Part three presents The Orkly Kid, yet another recreation starring then unknown Crispin Glover, this time with drag persona ‘Olivia Neutron-Bomb.’ Harris adds further context to the story in this big budget dramatization that includes the emotionally fraught aftermath of the Orkly Kid’s gender subversive performance.
After the movie, be sure to put on your best drag and head over to The Beaver at 1192 Queen West for the official B3 after party, including performances by Ina Unt Ina and the one and only Fay Slift, along with her cohorts, M+M.