(Sadly many of the earlier 9.5mm
International Festivals were poorly, or even not reported at all,
in the UK Group 9.5 club magazine. It seems if someone won a
prize, then they made sure to do a write-up! Lists of all the
film entries are often omitted and for technical reasons there
was a dearth of photos. Only if one had an original programme
would the details be fully known. In the earlier days I was
really busy still at work, so was generally unable to attend. So
hence this somewhat abbreviated report of the 1991 event, based
on an article by the late Ken Wordsworth in the UK Group 9.5 club
magazine '9.5' number 66 dated Summer 1991)
The 16th 9.5 International Festival, hosted by the Cine Club 9.5 of France, was held from Wednesday 8th to Saturday 11th May 1991, at Bergues, a small town about 5 kilometres from Dunkirk, Northern France.
Attendees were from France, the Nederlands, Germany, Switzerland and the UK. The UK group included Hugh Hale, John Ferrari, Tony Jackman, Angus Tilston and Roger and Mavis Spence.
During the Festival, a number of visits were arranged. On the arrival day, Wednesday afternoon there was a champagne reception hosted by the Mayor. Next day, there was a visit to Bruges for the Processioon of the Holy Blood. Legend has it that a Crusader brought the blood of Christ in a casket.
In addition there was a visit to a windmill and a guided tour around Dunkirk Docks.
The films were shown on a ten foot screen in a large room of the Mayorie. Three impressive looking machines were lined up for projection. These were the French Ligonie Albi (a 350w xenon conversion of the Europ, with a Heurtier sound base), an SEF Eiki conversion (with 24 volt 250 watt Halogen lamp) and a xenon conversion of a 16mm Elmo projector by M. Rothe of the French club. Unfortumately both the Europ and Elmo projectors developed jinxes, and on the second evening the Elmo was replaced by a Heurtier brought by the Dutch club fitted with a mercury sodium lamp.
The 9.5mm competition films were to be projected on the first three nights, with the prize giving and projection of the winning films on the forth. Altogether 34 film were entered for the competition, with seven from the UK, two from Switzerland and the remainder from France.
The UK did exeedingly well with their film entries. John Ferrari gaining two awards. One for first prize and the other, the audience award, both for his film "Secret Of The Blue Bottle". An impressive story film with a Faust theme, "The Devil To Pay" gained fourth prize for the Bognor Club, and was well received by the audience, especially when the alternative French language sound track was shown. Mavis Spence received commendation in ninth place for her cartoon "Oliver Twisty". The other UK entries were two films from Angus Tilston. His "Victorian Llandudno" and "Cameo", this being a short story set in Liverpool's Dockland. Roger Spence entered "Steam Safari", a record of a journey on a steam presevation railway in South Africa across the Veldt, with some fine animal shots. Ken Wordsworth's entry was a film on a special school for junior children with asthma, where he had once worked.
The second prize was deservedly won by Paul Bigou and the Albi club for "Neuf Et Demi", depicting ninefive being used by a family generation. Third prize went to Claude Balloy's film of General De Gaulle's visit to Bergues in 1945, and was monochrome.
Paul Bigou entered a short film of autumn colours to extol the virtues of the new Fuji Velvia film. This and another Albi film "Poco Andagio" which was a dance interpretation of a movement from Mahler's 4th Symphony. Two of the most beautiful films photographically speaking, showing the excellent results obtainable from this new emulsion.
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