Before there were selfies and Go Pro cameras, Carl Boenish, the father of the extreme sport known as BASE jumping, was obsessed with chronicling “what one saw from starting way up and shooting straight down.” Now DOCUTAH@TheELECTRIC brings Sunshine Superman, the heart-racing documentary portrait of Boenish, (at times described as a California nerd), whose early passion for skydiving led him to ever more spectacular -and dangerous- feats of foot-launched human flight, to the Electric Theater in St. George on March 31st and the Bumbleberry Theater on April 1, both at 7 P.M. A qualified electrical engineer, Boenish drifted from his career after he was given the opportunity to direct aerial photography on The Gypsy Moths, a 1969 Burt Lancaster skydiving movie (yes, it exists). This kindled a new passion and soon Boenish would be doing everything with an unwieldy 16mm camera strapped to his helmet, decades before anyone thought of a Go Pro. Both screenings will be hosted by Director and Writer, Marah Strauch.
Viewers will experience his jaw-dropping journey in life and love, to the pinnacle of his achievements when he and wife Jean broke the BASE jumping Guinness World Record in 1984 on the Norwegian ‘Troll Wall’ mountain range. Told through a stunning mix of Carl’s 16mm archive footage, well-crafted re-enactments and state-of-the-art aerial photography, Sunshine Superman will leave you breathless and inspired.
According to the interview in The Guardian, Strauch was only able to make her movie because of Boenish’s obsession with filming every jump he made. When she found some of Boenish’s footage among the belongings of her late uncle, himself a skydiver, she was instantly fascinated. “I hadn’t seen any other footage like this,” she says. “I was a visual artist transitioning into making films, and Carl’s footage was really different to what I had seen before. This was beautiful 16mm footage, and these people wanted to show a point of view that other people don’t see. I loved the poetry of what Carl Boenish was showing. It was romantic.”
“Films such as Sunshine Superman demonstrate to audiences that real-life adventure is much more heart pounding, much more exciting than fictional adventure films or video games,” said Phil Tuckett, Executive Director of the DOCUTAH International Documentary Film Festival and DOCUTAH@TheELECTRIC. “The lineup for the remainder of the year through August touches on subjects both foreign and domestic but all of which reveal common human conditions and emotions. So far the reception we have received in this second season of DOCUTAH@TheELECTRIC, which leads up to the DOCUTAH International Documentary Film Festival each year in September lets us know that our audience agrees.”
Reservations are required because of limited space at each theater and may be reserved online at http://docutah.com/sunshine-superman/.
DOCUTAH International Documentary Film Festival
The 2017 DOCUTAH International Documentary Film Festival is held at Dixie State University in Saint George, Utah. Submissions for the 2017 festival are now open. The 2017 Festival runs from September 4-9 and includes filmmaker chats and gala events, all within the beautiful scenery of Southern Utah’s red rock country.
DOCUTAH celebrates the art of documentary filmmaking, connecting Dixie State University and our community to the world. DOCUTAH offers a unique, entertaining International Documentary Film Festival and year-round programs including DOCUTAH@TheELECTRIC providing creative, cultural, and educational engagement.