You might call it a delayed classic, that oddity of a fantasy-adventure musical in which a bratty Jennifer Connelly fights her way through a maze of goblins to rescue her baby brother from an enchanting, but sinister David Bowie.
“Labyrinth” comes to the Charleston Music Hall for a special screening Wednesday.
It was 1986, and George Lucas was the crowned king of Hollywood at the time, following the beginnings of his successes with the now-iconic film series’ “Star Wars” and “Indiana Jones.”
With the famed Jim Henson (“The Muppets,” “Fraggle Rock,” “Dinosaurs”) directing and Monty Python’s Terry Jones (“Life of Brian,” “Monty Python and the Holy Grail” “Erik the Viking”) writing, Lucas could have produced anything he wanted at the time.
So he chose a story that he hoped would connect with the era’s growing pop culture interest in all things strange. Babysitting, glam rock and folklore would form the center of that vision, as Henson and Lucas looked to capitalize on a children’s film and television market that was increasingly comfortable embracing mythological epics.
Fantasy illustrator Brian Froud conceptualized the story of “Labyrinth” following a series of illustrations based upon his conversations with Henson, from which Jones wrote the script.
Jim Henson’s Creature Shop produced the film’s puppets, which comprise the majority of the film’s cast. Bowie recorded five songs for its soundtrack and put out a soundtrack album with the film’s composer, Trevor Jones, that same year.
Reviews were mixed, however, with most critics stating that the film was a work of unbridled creativity but lacked enough reality to anchor its imagination to any type of actual consequence or resolve.
The film was hit hard at the box office, too, going up against “The Karate Kid II,” “Top Gun,” and “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” all in its opening weeks, earning back just over half of its overall cost.
The response sent Henson into one of his lowest states of morale his son and collaborator, Brian, said he’d ever witnessed.
While it was the last film Henson would direct before his untimely death at age 53 four years later, “Labyrinth” ultimately found new life through fans of both Bowie’s music and fantasy culture, both nostalgically and at the time of the film’s release, and has stayed alive ever since. Today it is regarded as a cult classic among rock musical diehards a la “Rocky Horror Picture Show.”
“Labyrinth” will be shown at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at the Charleston Music Hall, 37 John St. Doors open at 6:30 p.m.
Tickets are $10 for general admission, $8 for students with ID.
Special dinner and film packages are available for $42 (price does not include tax and gratuity). The package includes one movie ticket and a prix fixe dinner menu at neighboring Italian restaurant Vincent Chicco’s. Dinner reservations can be made by calling Vincent Chicco’s at 843-203-3002 or visiting www.HolyCityHospitality.com/Vincent-Chiccos.
Tickets are available for purchase at the Charleston Music Hall box office, online at www.CharlestonMusicHall.com or by phone at 1-800-514-3849.
Go to the website or call the Charleston Music Hall box office at 843-853-2252 for more information.
Bringing to the stage the hits of the Judds, Reba McEntire, Patsy Cline, Garth Brooks, Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton, Charleston Performing Arts Center (CPAC) is going country for its latest musical revue.
The show features a local and regional cast of song-and-dance professionals performing 90 minutes of country and gospel classics, with original choreography to bring a show tunes spirit to the evening.
The theater’s Table Tootsies will also be on hand to serve beverages and desserts tableside.
The show will run at 8 p.m. every Thursday, Friday and Saturday through July 22 at the CPAC, 873 Folly Road, James Island.
Ticket prices range from $18-$45 and are available at the door 30 minutes prior to show time, online at www.CharlestonPerformingArts.org or by calling 843-991- 5582.