Home Movies

Lauren & Rock, Labor Day, 1965

Lauren & Rock, Labor Day, 1965, property of soapbxprod on YouTube

February 24, 2014 – I’ve always had a deep and peculiar love for home movies. Even as a child, I actually looked forward to going to one particular aunt and uncle’s house knowing that if I begged long enough, they’d break down and set up the projector and give me some glimpses into the past in glorious and skittery 8mm Kodachrome color. I was enamored of seeing a world I hadn’t been lucky enough to be a part of. As I grew up, I commandeered my parents’ Kodak Brownie spring-wound camera and shot not just home movies, but little monster/vampire featurettes, as well (and if you own the music I used in the web version and object, just let me know and I’ll remove it). I often wonder what my childhood might have produced if I had had an iPhone and iMovie. To this day, I still seek out other people’s vintage home movies because of my fascination (obsession?) with the past. And home movies give you a glimpse of what a particular world really looked like. Not the glamorization and homogenization of period Hollywood fare, but the way real people dressed, moved, interacted…what they drove, what made them laugh, etc. To this day, I wonder if the use of home movies to enhance the storytelling on The Wonder Years was one of the many elements that drew me so powerfully to that show. And now along comes YouTube user soapbxprod, who has unearthed, digitized, and shared an incredible glimpse into another of my favorite worlds: vintage Hollywood. Go here or click on the above image of Rock and Lauren for user 123audrina’s playlist of some truly incredible footage taken by actor Roddy McDowell in the mid-1960s and featuring a who’s who of Tinseltown’s elite. Makes you wonder if the A-listers of contemporary Hollywood still gather for similar casual get-togethers today, and whether or not any of them are immortalizing the occasions in HD for future generations. Stay tuned…

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