Michigan native Edd Benda is bringing his debut independent feature film “SUPERIOR” to nine cities in his home state as part of the “Official SUPERIOR Roadshow,” and he is starting the tour with two showings at Lake Superior State University’s Arts Center.
The movie from Beyond the Porch Productions was filmed entirely in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula and premiered on June 5 at the world famous Mann’s Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, Calif., as a selection in of the Dances with Films festival. It will be shown at LSSU at 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 6.
Tickets, $7 for general admission and $5 for seniors and kids 17-under, are available online at lssu.edu/artscenter and will be available at the door. Director, writer, and producer Benda will be in attendance at both screenings, where he will be hosting an open question-and-answer session after each showing.
Inspired by a true story, “SUPERIOR” takes place in the summer of 1969, where Derek Suntila is weeks away from the Vietnam War and Charlie Eskola is weeks away from his first days at Michigan Technological University. Before the two best friends go their separate ways, they leave their small U.P. hometown on one final adventure: a two-week, 1,300 mile bike ride around Lake Superior.
SUPERIOR was filmed in summer 2014. The production team included 11 young filmmakers who traveled more than 7,000 miles round-trip in a truck and three sedans from Los Angeles to the most remote regions of the Keweenaw Peninsula to tell a story true to its origins. Inspired by the real journey taken by Karl Benda and Dan “Dudza” Junttila more than 40 years ago, SUPERIOR is a snapshot of America in 1969 when futures were uncertain, and yet the most outlandish adventures remained possible.
The movie has enjoyed lively and enthusiastic audiences in its limited public showings, and the roadshow will give Michigan audiences an opportunity to be among the first to see the film that comes highly recommended.
Danny Miller from Cinephiled says, “You should run, not walk, to see Edd Benda’s poignant film ‘SUPERIOR.’ I’d put this film up against any independent film I’ve seen by much better-known film makers.”