Jiggawatts of family fun at the Ute | PostIndependent.com

Jiggawatts of family fun at the Ute

Jerimie Richardson
Citizen Telegram Contributor

The New Ute Theater Society hosted a revival of “Back to the Future” at the Ute Theater and Events Center as part of the Ute’s Family Movie Night series. Admission to the screening was $5 per person or two moviegoers admitted free with a dinner receipt from a Rifle area restaurant, while children 3 and younger were also admitted for free.

Back in 1985, Randy Goolsby of Rifle was 24, already married, and living with his young family in Basalt. Goolsby, now 54, brought his 8-year-old grandson Gavin Nash to the screening. Gavin’s mother, Marsha, was just 2 when her parents first went to see “Back to the Future” together on a date night.

“I saw the flyer, figured the price was right, figured hey, I’ll take Gavin. I’m having a really hard time not telling him what’s going to happen,” Goolsby gushed.

“Back to the Future” is an old fashioned film with old-fashioned special effects, made for about one-tenth of the budget of a typical Marvel blockbuster movie — IMDb places the production budget for “Back to the Future” at around $19 million, while “Avengers: Age of Ultron” cost about $280 million.

In that spirit, the Thursday night crowd at the Ute had an old fashioned response to the comedy-adventure directed by Robert Zemeckis. The multi-generational gang of film fans laughed together; cheered when the villainous cretin Biff — played by talented character actor Thomas Wilson — gets punched out by the meek and tormented nerd George McFly; then stood up together and applauded when the end credits rolled.

Anna Kaiser of the New Ute Theater Society was only 5 when “Back to the Future” hit theaters. Kaiser thinks she remembers first seeing the film on VHS.

She admitted that turnout for “Back to the Future” wasn’t quite as robust as it had been for the Ute’s April screening of the 2014 kiddie blockbuster, “Lego Movie.” Still, Kaiser said the May Family Movie Night was an “absolute success,” attributing the drop-off in attendance to “Lego Movie” being more contemporary and kid friendly.

Family Movie Night at the Ute Theater will be taking a hiatus over the summer months. The next Family Movie Night will feature “Ghostbusters” on Oct. 3.


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