No Respect for Analogue

Honeywell Elmo Super 8 camera 

Last weekend, I received a surprise addition to the arsenal of old-school equipment stored at the Secret MICRO-FILM Headquarters.


Honeywell Elmo Super 8 camera

A neighbor savvy enough to dumpster-dive in this college town, where students and townies regularly toss quality undesirables, found this orphaned Honeywell Elmo Super 8 movie camera in an alley a few blocks away. It even came with a roll of undeveloped Kodak film.


Honeywell Elmo Super 8 camera

The camera itself seems to be in pretty good shape, even though its instruction booklet has a bit of water damage and the leather case smells like it was yanked out of a smokestack. At the least, I have a neat prop for an upcoming issue of MICRO-FILM, if not another tool with which to make a film. But the mind boggles as to why its previous owner felt the camera was not worth anything more than a back-door exodus. The timing of this Super 8 rescue comes right on the heels of the recent closings of two Champaign-Urbana film-oriented stores, Film Processing Ltd. and Bates Camera.

Is film truly teetering on the brink of death like everyone says it is?

– Jason Pankoke


Photo illustrations by JaPan

2 Responses to No Respect for Analogue

  1. Kevin :

    Wow, that’s quality. I’m afraid for film – but at the same time, I just heard that Kodak is opening up a new Super 8 film making place thingie here in the states because the recent demand has really been incredible. Maybe people are finally realizing that there is no one or the other, but one with the other, both for unique tasks and goals?

  2. Administrator :

    Kevin – Who knows what the future holds for “old” formats. There just seems to be this peculiar “cult of personality” that has been developing around Super 8 over the past decade or so. If you read the trades and Webzines carefuly, many indie filmmakers still use 16mm and 35mm if their budget allows. One wonders if a reverse trend may erupt, where the use of film stock brings a little more sheen and prestige to a production and becomes more preferable over the “anybody can use it” rep of Digital Video. I think you are right, though, in that a combination of formats could help a film if one gets past the tired “one or the other” stigma. – JP