On the Run From Johnny Law: Off to Hillsboro To Save a Motel and Watch Bottle Rocket
|Bob Musgrave at the "Bottle Rocket motel" last night, signing Criterion Collection DVDs for the faithful|
|Valentin and the Alamo's Tim League|
Below were, oh, 200, 250 complete strangers wandering the lawn -- setting up seats, swimming, drinking beer bought from the 'cross-the-parking-lot 7-Eleven, buying movie posters, waiting for it to get dark. Some had never seen the film; others were out in the field, recreating scenes and posing for photos. "Amazing." Valentin said. "Just ... amazing."
Most nights, the motel's empty save for a few stragglers who'd pulled off the highway. Tonight, more than 60 rooms had been sold. "And there are four people staying in most of them," said the girl working behind the counter when she wasn't directing folks to the pool area. "It's crazy. And so cool."
The crowd convinced him otherwise: They asked him to pose for pictures and sign their DVDs and posters and share some stories, and he was happy to oblige. "Must be weird to be back," they would say. "Yup," he would say. But truth be told, Bob only spent one night at the motel during the two weeks the cast and crew camped out in Hillsboro; he spent most of the movie's shoot holed up in the Stoneleigh.
Tim League of the Alamo Drafthouse, who set up the movie screen and had the posters made and turned Valentin and Durbin's little thing into a Rather Big Deal, asked Bob to say a few words before the screening. "This is a very cool thing Andy and Chris have done," said Bob. "And this is a very hip thing the Alamo Drafthouse is doing, showing movies in spots that are significant to cult, milestone films." He said some other kind, warm things: Wes, Owen, Luke and he, said Bob, made the film at a time when they were just "innocent buddies." When he finished, someone shouted: "Idiocracy rules!"
League, sporting a piece of white tape across the bridge of his nose (exactly), called it "hands-down [my] favorite comedy of all time ... It was, in fact, the only movie in the history of movies that caused me physical pain from laughter. So cheers to Bottle Rocket."
During the screening, Bob heckled the screen, himself. When his character tells Owen's that "I think there's a real air of mystery about me," Bob grinned and said to himself -- and the couple sitting next to him -- "No there's not." He called the experience "bittersweet"; he was glad he went. We stayed for an hour, then headed back to Dallas -- Bob needs to finish his screenplay, after all. Still, one question remains: How does an asshole like Bob get such a great kitchen?