BY DOUG KEELER Taft Midway Driller
In memory of Robin Williams, the Taft Fox Theatre will hold two free screenings of "The Best of Times," the 1986 comedy-drama co-starring Williams that has become something of a Kern County classic, owing to the film's central conflict: a high school football rivalry between Taft and Bakersfield.
The movie will be shown at 5 p.m. Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday. There is no admission, but donations to Alpha House women's shelter or a local food bank are encouraged.
'The Best of Times' screening
When: 5 p.m. Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday
Where: Fox Theatre in Taft, 514 Center St.
Admission: Free, though food donations are encouraged
Williams, 63, was found dead in his Northern California home Monday, the victim of suicide. He was battling depression, his family said.
Shot in Taft in 1985, "The Best of Times" used many Kern County residents as extras. The story follows the friendship of Taft residents Jack Dundee, played by Williams, and quarterback Reno Hightower, played by Kurt Russell. The two have been unable to live down losing the big game against Bakersfield years before, when Williams' character dropped a key pass. The two friends arrange a rematch of the fateful game for a shot at redemption. The movie also stars Pamela Reed as Gigi Hightower and Holly Palance as Elly Dundee.
(For legal reasons, Taft High was changed to Midway High and the Wildcats were changed to the Rockets.)