Flicker #23, February 24, 1999
here's what we screened:
Cybelle McFadden "Playing in
16mm 7 min
Dave Ellsworth "Monkey Doll"
super 8 2 min
Jennifer Hutz "Untitled (Angel)"
16mm 2 min
Bob Taylor/Mary Campion "Hide
super 8 3 min
Hugh Burris, Patrick Gregory
et al. "The Toothbrush"
16mm 10 min
Killing my Lobster "Space Chocolate"
16mm 6 min
Mike Conner "Gaze"
16mm 8 min
Jeremy Gross "Mr. Fix It"
16mm 3 min
Brad Boll "Brad Boll's 8 1/2"
16mm 3 1/2 minutes
Tom Laney/Mel Maxwell "It Feels
super 8 3 min
Roger Beebe "A Fragmentary History
of the 21st Century" 16mm 18 min
16mm 18 min
If Flicker's appearance on the WB's Dawson's Creek wasn't enough to make you appreciate this swell thing we have going here, our prehistory appeared in December's Independent Film & Video Monthly. Apparently we owe a tip of the hat to Mr. Michael Stipe and Athens avant-gardist(e) Jim Herbert for getting the Flicker movement off the ground. Who knew? But, as the article continues, we discover the debt of gratitude owed to "film buff" Norwood Cheek for this scion of Flicker. The point of this somewhat meandering intro is this: while I'm certainly happy to acknowledge a huge debt of gratitude to all of these folks for getting this thing going, I think it's more important to recognize how important you as audience and filmmakers are to keeping this thing alive. Those people have come & gone (although the ghost of Mr. Cheek still looms large), but Flicker continues because of your continued interest & support. (This, of course, at the risk of sounding sappy.) So a big ol' thanks for coming & showing that we're not complete idiots for spending hundreds of dollars & hours making these films. (I think, perhaps, [insidiously] I am trying to butter you up so you'll give my film a warm reception when it makes its world premiere later this evening.)
All that out of the way, I'll
just say happy viewing & retreat into the dark. Yours,
paean & call to action for super 8
Seems like the kids these days are moving away from super8. Flicker programs are increasingly filled with 16mm films & while I definitely am happy to pretend that this means that we've all stepped up to the next level, I hate to see super 8 neglected & left behind. It's also a little scary in that it seems like it makes that first step into filmmaking a little bit more prohibitive both psychologically and financially.
I think there are two things that we can do to resist this inexorable movement toward larger format filmmaking. First, those of us who have super8 equipment should let everyone else (especially first-time filmmakers) borrow our gear so that the financial issue is even less of a barrier. If anyone wants to shoot something on super 8, let me know & I will let you borrow a camera & editing equipment so that you'll only have to pay for the film & processing. (Anyone who has stuff that they're willing to loan out should let me know & I'll try to coordinate this whole effort.) Second, I think that those of us who have been shooting 16mm lately should return to super8 & see what happens. I think it might actually be pretty liberating to know that instead of $100/minute, we're only spending $10/minute or so. It might also give us that opportunity to do a bunch of those things that we always wanted to try, but didn't dare in 16mm. I'm going to try to set a (good?) example by shooting something on super 8 for Flicker #24 or 25 & I hope some of the rest of you fancy-pants 16mm filmmakers will think about doing so too.
I'll step down off the soapbox now, but I AM SERIOUS. If we don't shoot super 8, then no one will. Now get to it.