This! Super 8 Film Festival
Review by John Porter. Photos
by John Creson, July 1-3, 2005
Splice This! is in its 8th year and 5th location.
The new location is XPACE, an art gallery in Kensington Market run by
the Ontario College of Art & Design's Student Union. (The first
Toronto Super 8 Film Festival, 1976-'83, was started at the Ontario
College of Art by students.) The room is large with a high enough ceiling
for a large, raised screen and relatively good sight-lines. Seating
& climate (air-conditioned) are comfortable. The cash bar was closed
during screenings. Attendance reached 150 at some screenings.
Inside the entrance every night, CineCycle artist Janet
Bike Girl was selling her custom-stencilled "Splice This!"
and "Super 8" clothing.
Polly Perverse's super 8 projection was good, using the
Images Festival's quiet, bright, Elmo ST-1200HD M with a 150 watt lamp,
and veteran musician/filmmaker/technician Fred Spek doing sound. The
DVD player was slow to start each time. (I don't know why people bother
July 1 & 2
"Remake" - the annual, themed program of commissioned
works made for the screening. Spread over two nights, there were fourteen
super 8 films, and eleven videos shot on super 8. It was a strong program
with a variety of genres including some silent, some abstract and some
very disciplined works.
Friday, July 1
"Fast Wurms" - a two-set spotlight on the veteran Toronto
art duo (Kim Kozzi & Dai Skuze) who made many radical, raw, super
8 sound films with third member Napoleon Brousseau in the early 1980s,
but later switched to video. They began their in-person intro with an
emphatic thankyou to The Funnel (1977-'89) where Monthly Open Screenings
(1977-'81) inspired them to produce.
They showed four old super 8s on video (two of them quite
long), and a 2005 sound video shown while a silent, super 8 copy of
the video was projected simultaneously on a side wall at an oblique
angle - a double projection. The rare video-to-super 8 transfer was
good, with no flicker, and done at Exclusive
Film & Video, a sponsor of Splice This!.
The annual "Print This!" Photo Exhibit
during the festival this year was many large, vertical-strip, paper
banners of Fast Wurms' super 8 frame blow-ups, hanging on one long wall
of the gallery/screening room.
Saturday, July 2
"The Cine Sonnets of Storm de Hirsch" presented
by Pleasure Dome Artists'
Film Exhibition Group. These were super 8 prints and 16mm blow-ups of
short, silent, super 8 diary films made by an obscure woman poet/filmmaker
in New York in the 1970s. The prints were made for The Women's FILM
PRESERVATION FUND of New York Women in Film & Television.
"Soundstripe" - annual program of bands
performing live to their films or videos. Six were super 8 films and
three were videos shot on super 8.