10 October 2006

Super 8 mm: "The rumors of my death have been greatly exaggerated"

I was watching the telly the other night and was informed that Super 8 mm film is all gone in Europe. Really? When I checked this out a bit more, it all came down that Kodachrome is not processed anymore in Switzerland. From now on you need to send the Kodachrome film to the US.
So the Super-8 is not dead after all: To be more precise: The amateur film has gone professional. The special look is highly sought by commercial makers but also by directors that strive to evoke a period or to give a different look to scenes.
I was brought up with 8 mm films and when I heard the sound of the projector, I knew there was some quality time ahead, three minutes
of fun (that's one cartridge of film). That was before the two-hour video films replaced the well directed three-minute stories. Today, I use a digital video camera to cover some of the family events. Despite the digital convenience, I bring out the Super 8 camera and capture some events once in a while. Because that special atmosphere it captures is something I want to pass on to the next generation in my family. Kodachrome may be gone but the Big Yellow has more on the shelf.
film stills: abeku


Exposed Material said...

I was born in a world without 8 mm film. But I remember, in 2003, going to an exhibition by Ulf Rollof, in which he had turned his father's 8 mm movies into elaborate, meditative and contemplative art movies. It was Pure Magic.

You'll find more info atbout it here.

J. S-g.

Exposed Material said...

My brother-in-law was a dedicated Super 8 photographer on an amateur level. He even transmitted many of the films to VHS-format (you lost a bit of the feeling of course)
He passed away a couple of years ago but the films are there to cherish.
I love looking at them, I mean seeing
myself skating as a 10 year old kid, seeing my parents etc. - well it is special.
So the news you bring us is encouraging. Super 8 is hot!

Exposed Material said...

Well Anders,
nostalgia is an interesting feeling, and it really goes to your gut.

I wonder. My friends' daughter is 15 years now. What will arouse her nostalgic feeling? Isn't the modern equivalent the low-quality camera movies uploaded to the site YouTube? :)


Exposed Material said...

I've spent some time on YouTube catching up with some bands from the 80's, like Indochine. You can really tell it's 20 years ago, the haircut, the dance steps etc. So even if the quality is good, the scene itself will reveal it's age.
It will be fun in twenty years time to look back at the digital files, that remain the same in quality despite age (not aging like the old color prints from the 60's). I recently bought a book about Germany and the WWII, filled with color photos: Suddenly the war got very close to you in time and presence.
- Abeku