I can’t speak for you but I’ve wanted to collect movies since I was a kid. Here I am as an adult with over 12000 titles in my movie room and I’m still adding to that total. Movie posters? Don’t even go there. I’d collect any format, VHS, DVD, bluray, Laserdisc. Even Video Scan Discs and the odd Beta tape. Machines? Have at least one for each of these formats. About the only thing I’ve never really gotten into is actual reel to reel footage.
Until recently that is.
I’ve often wondered if the main reason I’ve wanted to collect actual movies is because of those darned ads in old comic books or monster magazines I’d read as a kid. The ones put out by castle films. Never did get any when I was a tyke through the mail order catalogues but with an eye towards collecting I recently came across something just a little too good to pass up. I went from zero to 34 in less than a heartbeat after my eagle eyed sister who runs an antique shop put me onto a lead and like Bogie’s Marlowe, I took the case and tracked them down. Even if I had to play it coy.
The end result yielded footage a bit different than Bogie was to uncover.
With an 8MM projector to go along with the haul, the next thing I need to do is host a party with a 1970 theme where all my family members and a few choice friends along with yours truly as “The Projectionist” (that’ll be my official title for the shindig) get the popcorn going with a few choice drinks and relive the days before we had movies playing on our handheld devices no matter where or when we choose.
Maybe I should take this to the highways as an “8MM Roadshow.” If I do, here’s what you can expect to see should you buy a ticket.
A night of vampire features led by a pair of Bela Lugosi titles to get the party started.
Could Trog serve as a good intro to a double Apes bill? Maybe we should advertise it as a night with Joan Crawford and Charlton Heston.
A night of space travel and aliens visitors should keep the audience on edge.
No doubt I’d pay to see a pair of Vincent Price thrillers even if they’re condensed down to about 8 minutes apiece and a bonus thriller to boot!
Mad doctors abound on 8MM. Best to stay healthy when they’re on call.
Here’s a winning quartet for the adventurous type. Wasps and insects topped by Ray Harryhausen magic.
Things are bound to get bloody with this foursome including the iconic Christopher in his signature roll.
Godzilla, Mothra and Rodan. Sure to be a sell out.
If we’re talking monster movies then here’s the headliner starring all of our favorites from Universal Studios. Boris, Bela, Lon, Lionel, Elsa, Colin, Dwight and more.
Hopefully I’ve rekindled a memory or two to a time past with this latest find. Any recollections to share? Did your family order any of these movies for all occasions back in the day?
Lucky sod! Did you have to take out a second mortgage to pay for that stash?
Honestly I paid very little for them and even the working machine to boot. If I wasn’t a keeper I could easily turn a healthy profit on these.
I had many of these Castle Films back in the day!
Just something we never had growing up in our house.
Oh, how I wish I still had the Super 8 films of my childhood. The only one I kept was Star Wars… with sound.
We all want to go back and reclaim those lost toys and nostalgia pieces. Star Wars fans would be sure to take that off your hands if you ever want to give it up. Won’t take long to find a buyer.
I remember these…I first saw them at the public library back in the 70s. I so badly wanted to see them but did not have a projector. So I scrimped and saved my allowance for many weeks and bought a used Bell & Howell 8mm projector.
What joy when I ran the small spools of film thru the projector onto the basement wall.
Some time afterwards, saved more $$$ and bought a 16mm Elmo SOUND projector. The library had many the Basil Rathbone Sherlock Holmes in sound and the full feature which meant changing the reels up to 5 times.
I then found a local audio visual company that surprise surprise also sold 16mm condensed features…my first purchase was the approx. 20 min film of The Creature from the Black Lagoon…in 3D!!…the film came with two 3D glasses (cardboard type with the red and blue lenses).
The projector and films were sold soon after the VHS / Beta video explosion…and now I have all of those films I gave away on DVD and Blu-Ray.
Would’ve been very cool and retro to have kept them and bring them out once or twice a year.
Thanks for walk down memory lane.
Thanks for the walk
Sent from my iPad
Great story there and thanks for sharing. The 3D version of Creature must have been pretty cool. Cheers’
Well, you’re now 100% cooler than you were when I started reading your blog, lol. Well, you were already at 100%, so you’re keeping that tradition going. I had a few of these films a long time ago thanks to a friend who just game me a few out of the blue. But I sold them off to some guy who actually had a projector, saw the small collection I had and offered cash on the spot. Of course, who gets a working projector about a month or two later from another friend? Yeah, me, lol… ah, well.
But am I Jeff Bridges as the Dude cool? lol. That’s a hard luck story there.
VERY awesome, Mike! I never had Super 8 films, camera, or a projector as a kid, but my Dad was a schoolteacher, so he’d occasionally bring a 16mm projector home from school with a reel or two of sports highlights…watched the ’75 World Series highlight film that way. Now I own a Revere projector (it sits on top of the Monolith), and I own a few dozen 8mm and Super 8 cameras, but not any actual films like yours…just the home movies I shot myself back in the 1990s. It reached a point where getting a reel developed required shipping it to Sweden; the camera shop only charged me $8 for this service!
And that is quite the haul, I must say…the person who owned those obviously a horror/sci-fi enthusiast. And if I could afford it, I’d definitely buy a ticket to fly out and be a part of your Super 8 Horror Festival!
Schoolteacher for a Dad. Scares the hell out of me. lol. However that is a super cool that he would bring the camera home and run some footage of sports. It’s not something I ever did as a kid with or without the family. Strictly the James Garner one step in our house when it came to photography of any kind. I’ll be expecting you at my first booking.
wow, fabulous. I’m just marvelling at those awesome covers and titles, and as they say, when you have the roadshow “take my money!” I was dying to know what Blood on his Lips was and imdb tells me it’s the movie I blogged about recently, Hideous Sun Demon! so cool. More “haul” posts like these would be great!
I’ll work on it. Currently attempting to land about 80 one sheets from the 70’s and 80’s. If the deal works out……
These covers made the whole purchase worth while. The fact that they work and a projector in the deal a bonus.