Home movies — boring rehash of Christmas morning or insightful look at our shared cultural heritage?
To Nadia Ghasedi, head of the Visual Media Research Lab at Washington University Libraries, the answer is clear.
“A lot of people will say, ‘Oh, who cares,’ but home movies tell us so much about our own family history as well as the history we share,” Ghasedi said. “Take Christmas morning — you can see everything from trends in toys to the traditions of various regions and periods. You get a real sense of what was important to people.”
Washington University Libraries invites St. Louisans to celebrate the home movie at Home Movie Day Saturday, Oct. 26, at the Central Library, Creative Experience Room, 1301 Olive St. Participants are invited to bring their old 8mm, Super 8mm, 16mm, VHS and DVD home movies. Participants also will learn how to preserve their home movies.
Ghasedi will screen some home movies from the university’s collection, including the only known footage of early 20th-century novelist Ford Madox Ford, the home movies of famed illustrator Al Parker and Safari Coffee commercials from the Dana Brown Collection.
The St. Louis event is one of about 70 Home Movie Day screenings taking place across the globe. Debuting in 2002, Home Movie Day is championed by some our greatest filmmakers. Director John Waters claims, “There is no such thing as a bad home movie.
“These mini-underground opuses are revealing, scary, joyous, always flawed, filled with accidental art, and shout out from attics and closets all over the world to be seen again,” Waters said. “Home Movie Day is an orgy of self-discovery, a chance for family memories to suddenly become show business. If you’ve got one, whip it out and show it now.”
Home Movie Day
When: 1-3 p.m. Oct. 26
Where: Central Library, Creative Experience Room, 1301 Olive St.
How much: Free
More info: on.fb.me/16n1UB1