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WATCHING HOME MOVIES, L.A., 1959

Watching home movies

When I was growing up in the 60s and 70s it seemed like every family took home movies. My family did – with a super 8 movie camera. I loved the sound of the film turning inside of it. For a couple of years, around the time I was about nine or ten, my parents used it occasionally, until they cast it aside and lost interest in it. Ten or so years ago after not seeing my family’s home movies since I was a kid I had them transferred to video. Ever so eager to see them again, I was more than disappointed to discover that out of an hour and a half of film I was hardly in them at all. Oh well.

The first “home movies” were taken in 1923. They were 16mm and taken by the revolutionary “Cine Kodak” Camera. In 1932, in the middle of the depression, Kodak introduced the new 8mm format. But it wasn’t until the 1950s that masses of moms and dads became home movie makers. Super 8, introduced in 1965, became the next and last popular home movie format. In the 80s we all crossed over to the age of home video and bought a Camcorder. Too bad, film is a much more luxurious medium. If you have old family movies of course I encourage you to get them out, dust off that old projector and have a look at them. Invite the whole family.

For all your home movie film, camera and projector needs I recommend the Echo Park Film Center in Los Angeles. They are located at 1200 N Alvarado St, Los Angeles 90026, echoparkfilmcenter.org , 213-484-8846. Check out their website for the schedule of screenings. It’s a one-stop-shop for all of your home movie needs. The fine folks there will take care of you very nicely. They even have those now hard-to-fine projector bulbs. Make sure to tell them I sent you!

God Bless Americana and Home Movieana!