EPSOM MOVIE MAKERS

EPSOM MOVIE MAKERS

formerly EPSOM CINE & VIDEO SOCIETY

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SUMMER MONTHS

It has always been difficult for the committee to come up with subjects that could engage our membership during what we laughingly call our summer months. We can never be sure what the attendance might be, as many of us go off and disappear to all sorts of exotic places during that time. It has long been a tradition to try do something practical such as film a sketch or small story. These projects have met with varying amounts of success and generally, I would say, lack that little bit of extra polish that we would prefer. Nonetheless they are fun to do and sometimes can get surprisingly good reactions from outside audiences.

THE OLD ROPE ROAD SHOW

THE OLD ROPE ROAD SHOW

THE OLD ROPE ROAD SHOW
Take for instance “The Old Rope Road Show” as Jack reported at a PROBUS showing recently. Apparently it seemed to go down quite well, getting laughs in all the right places. The idea for this came from Bernie Dennison who put together the basic script in 2000. It was a parody of that dear old favourite “The Antiques Road Show.” The advantage of this was that we could use everyone in the hall to take an acting roll, be an extra or a helping hand in the filming. A few other ideas were put forward and helped to top up the gag quota. As I remember it took two evenings to complete. Another idea, which engaged the members in a similar way, was a script called “The Committee”.
This was shot in 2003and revolved around a supposed Cine club committee meeting taking place on a wet and miserable evening. The object was to discuss what was going to be the subject of the next club film. If you like it was the kind of thing you might see in “The Vicar of Dibley”, but actually the idea was thought up many years before. The result was a complete disaster as our band of inexperienced actors were unable to spit out their lines in a convincing way despite having them laid out on the table in front of them. All was not lost though as John Gannaway engaged himself recording the whole fiasco and later edited the material together. His film “Shooting the Committee” turned out better than the club effort and is an amusing and candid record of the evening.

SHOOTING THE COMMITTEE

SHOOTING THE COMMITTEE

This last example is a good reason why there is no excuse for members to complain about having nothing to do on such an evening. A good many of these summer projects have been given over to experimenting with Chromakey. This involves acting out scenes against a blue background that can be keyed out and replaced with scenery, which in normal circumstances would not be available at the time. “Free Flight,” made in 1998 was our first attempt at this and was performed in real time with an analogue video mixer. It was a pure experiment with no plot as such. It involved Ken’s daughter, Sarah-Jane, dressed as a skydiver laid out flat on her stomach on a raised and blue covered Diaz and background. It was made to appear that she was flying over the countryside and coast.

FREE FLIGHT

 

LAST NIGHT OF THE TITAINIA

LAST NIGHT OF THE TITAINIA

The Club Advert, made in1999 incorporated several scenes where it appeared some of us where on some far off sun drenched beach or swimming under the sea around a coral reef. A more ambitious effort intended for the summer meetings was “Last Night of the Titainia”, made in 2001. The plot was a tongue in cheek view of the Stiff Upper Lipped reactions of two toffs who learn that their luxury cruise liner had hit an iceberg and was about to go down. This had very complicated background insertions and lasted seven minutes. In the end though, it was thought too complicated for the limited time available at summer meetings and was set-up as a project on its own, but that is another story. That year, it turned out that there was a bare minimum of members attending the evening when we shot “Not on the Menu.”
No Chromakey here, but we engaged Sarah-Jane again to play an irate waitress who is insulted when one of her customers, played by Ken, is unable to pronounce “quiche” correctly and appears to make a suggestive remark when ordering a meal. Back to Chromakey again in 2002 when we filmed “Court Shorts.” This contained three jokes based around a law court scene. A fair amount of work went into this when John Ellis had to construct a blue unit which could be disguised as a courtroom dock and some blue boarding to cover the back of the upright piano in the hall and made to appear as a judge's bench. I thought the end result looked quite convincing in a humorous way with Ken as the Judge and Tony Whitworth as Clerk of the Court, both dressed up in gowns and wigs.
NOT ON THE MENU

The three miscreants who appeared were Jack Ligertwood, John Gollop and Diggy Mottram. “After Fred,” “Brief Extracts,” “The Bargain,” all humorous shorties were made in 2004 and directed by Diggy. In “After Fred” Chromakey was adopted to give an impression of a domestic sitting room, “The Bargain” a roadside setting including a Porsche, and “Brief Extracts”, a kind of oak panelling effect. Other experiments which took place wherewith real-time editing, utilising an analogue video mixer and multi camera set-ups. Although these projects were very short, it stretched our patience to the limit, as even the technicians had to be well rehearsed to get their timing right. It gave us some insight into how hectic it might be, trying to send out a live show from a television studio.

AFTER FRED

AFTER FRED

NO CHANGE!

NO CHANGE!

The first of these, produced in 1997 was “No Change” when a pensioner goes to a post office to draw his pension. I can remember seeing some very convincing fake fivers and sheets of first-class stamps being used in this one. Another one was “Did I Say?” made in 1998. It featured a doctors surgery and a gent who was very proud of his great age and even more so of his father’s!

We ran into the problem of remembering lines here again and poor old Ian Golding had to give in and handed the roll over to Diggy. Eve Mottram played the part of the incredulous doctor. This took ages to do but once again an onlooker, Albert Robinson recorded the proceedings and produced, as I remember, “We Make a Film”. Here I would like to say to our newer members, is a very neglected aspect of filmmaking and also a challenge. So next time we have a summer meeting don’t leave that camcorder at home in its case and get those productive juices flowing.

Norman Bull

DID I SAY?

DID I SAY?

SECOND TAKE April 2007

PROGRAMME REVIEW
NONSUCH REVIVAL
THE MAKING OF SACRED AND PROFANE
A DAY TRIP TO CHICHESTER
SUCCESS ON A PLATE
BIAFF 2006 - A MEMBER'S VIEW
THE SURREY FILM & VIDEO FESTIVAL 2005
THE FUTURE IS RED
COURT SHORTS
TIME OUT
We came, We shot, We chomped
BOB'S BASIC EDITING GUIDE
My Introduction to the Wonder ful World of DV!
Grandeur of the Granada
FILMS ARE LIKE ELEPHANTS
How 305 Sqaudron was made
THE BIG FIVE "O"
MUSIC COPYRIGHT
NORTH V SOUTH 2008
HOT CHESTNUTS
WIDER AND WIDER
FALLEN ANGELS
EARLY CINE RAMBLINGS
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