Archive Film as Social Object


I got a bit overexcited last week when Sarah from Time/Image showed me a whole new bunch of British Council films that have been digitised from the archive.  I love them.  I'm still as excited seeing new ones as I was when Al and I looked through the archive in the first place.

This batch is not ready to go online yet, but lots will be, soon, I'm promised, there's going to be an official launch thingy and everything.  However, I've been threatening to take some of these out on the road for a while to  show to people offline, in someone's front room, or a church hall or something.  In particular I'm keen to take movies back and show them in the communities in which they were filmed.  And while they'll be up on YouTube and everyone will be able to watch them on their own, I'd really like to see how they play to  a larger audience, especially when that audience is encouraged to talk about the films together afterwards.

So I wrote a list of what I want to do in showing these films and it came out like this:
  • reconnect people with something they've lost;
  • get people involved in documenting them;
  • share my addiction, get people as excited about seeing and sharing the films as I am;
  • get people thinking about what they have now, what they keep, what they digitise;
  • get people thinking a out what culture means and how copyright works or doesn't work for us
which is a lot more than I thought there was when I started writing the list, it seems quite worthwhile…

Take a look at the Time/Image Wiki to see the range of films in the archive and find links to those that are already online.  Have a look.  Let me know if you're up for a guerilla screening where you live.

Photo Credit: Still from 'London 1942' – Taken from 'Films of Britain 1946'

Originally posted on Lloyd’s posterous