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The 22nd 9.5mm International Festival 1997
Chester, England, UK

The 22nd 9.5 International Festival was held from Thursday 8th to Sunday 11th May 1997, at the Stafford Hotel, Chester, situated about halfway up England, UK. The event was ably organised by Angus Tilston (now Angus Tilson MBE) a very keen ninefiver and local film historian. He was assisted by his wife Ena, together with Mavis Spence and Jan Livesay.

A major benefit was that the special programme was produced in both English and French! Luckily organiser Angus Tilston, being fluent in French was also able to help with French translations during the various events and the film shows.

Luckily I have just found my programme and film insert sheet, seems I was one of the judges! So can provide full details of all the films and events this time! The report below comes mostly from one written by Roger Spence for the UK Group 9.5 club magazine.

Sixty ninefivers converged on the ancient walled city of Chester from the UK, France, Germany, Holland, Switzerland, Spain, and not to mention the Isle of Man!.

The Events

Visitors were made most welcome at the Festival with the usual British custom of a cup of tea and biscuits! After the Thursday evening dinner Gerald Mee F.A.C.I. Past President of the IAC presented a half-hour of his films, some Ten Best winners. understandable in any language. These included "Daylight On Dal"; "Summer Youth"; "Perpetuum Mobile".

Next was "Best of British Visual Comedy" from the IAC film library. Two hilariously funny films introduced by Will Humphrey, Chairman of the NW Region of the IAC. "One Man and his Dog" and "Dog". Finally, a few amateur films made by a local club, located just 20 Km from Chester, Swan Movie Makers Wirral, introduced by Angus Tilston - "Swings"; "Simon Lends A Hand"; "First Flight"; "Words, Words, Words".

The following afternoon saw a guided sightseeing tour of Chester by open topped bus followed by a boat trip on the River Dee. Lady members whilst enjoying the magic of the movies, also sneaked out for what they classed as a 'magical' shopping trip to Chester's medieval 'Rows'.

On the Saturday was an extra special excursion on a vintage double decker bus (a Guy Arab No.1) to Llangollen, Wales, followed by a steam train journey to Carrog and back.

On Sunday there was an optional excursion by bus to the north Wales seaside holiday resort of Llandudno.

At the gala banquet on Saturday evening Tony Jackman from Sussex proposed his usual toast to Charles Pathé in four different languages - French, Dutch, German and English! Special thanks was given to Angus Tilston for the organisation of a very enjoyable event. Angus had put a great deal of time and effort into the festival for which we were all extremely grateful.

The Films

A total of twenty six 9.5mm amateur films were entered for the competition. There were eleven entries from England, nine entries from France, three from Germany (all from Wolfe Herman Otte), two from Switzerland and one from Scotland (John Ferrari). Plus one international film, a group compilation effort made between Holland, France and England, shown for interest only. Several other films were also screened outside the competition, as they had been shown previously in an International Competition and therefore could not be judged. Seven of the total number of entries qualified to be entered into the special "Five Minute"competition.

Projection was by Roger Spence and Peter Clayton using a converted Eiki, a Ligonie / Heurtier OSM250 and John Cunningham's Sofil, converted from 16mm to 9.5mm with a double-band 16mm magnetic head unit.

The three appointed judges were Mr. H. Bruno from Holland, Mr. M Bigdon from France and our own Grahame Newnham from Southampton.

The entered films in order of showing were:-

Friday 0th May

"International 9.5 Film Festival Royan 1994" - Robert Lartrasse - France - 19 minutes - (not entered in the competion)

1. "United Colours Of 9.5" - Wessex 9.5 Group - England - 11 minutes

2. "Montand De Mon Temps" - Dr Jean-Claude Ditte - France - 14 minutes

3. "Highland Railways" - Don F. Barnes - England - 6 minutes

4. "My Grandpa Said To Me" - Wolfe Hermann Otte - Germany - 10 minutes

(Coffee break)

5. "Edinburgh The Scottish Capital" - John Ferrari - Scotland - 14 minutes

6. "Battage A L'Ancienne" - Jean Sevin - France - 8 minutes

7. "A Tale Of Two Villages" - Mavis Spence - England - 12 minutes

(Snack lunch - afternoon excursion)

"The Ball Film" - International compilation - not entered in the competition)

8. "Long Ferry To London" - Graham Murray - England - 12minutes

9. "Verlockende Gefahr" - Alfred Schmid - Switzerland - 6 minutes

10. "Swanning Round The Lake" - Peter Clayton - England - 11 minutes

11. "Der Schwimmwagen" - Dr Jean-Claude Ditte - France - 12 minutes

12 "Elmers Court School" - Ken Wordsworth - England - 12 minutes

13. "Molli" - Wolf Hermann Otte - Germany - 8 minutes

14. "Femme Noir Femme Nue" - Andre Pailhous - France - 7 minutes

15. "Quand Le Show Est Froid" - Robert Latrasse - France - 14 minutes

Saturday 10th May

"9.5 Festival In York 1993" - Don F. Barnes - England - 5 minutes - (not entered in the competition)

16. "Durch Die Nitte" - Paul Goy - Switzerland - 24 minutes

17. "Danses Balinaises" - Dr Jean-Claude Ditte - France - 7 minutes

18. "Le Blanc Et Le Noir" - Andre Pailhous - France - 15 minutes

(coffee break)

19. "Ballade Pour Olga" - Bernard Trembloy - France - 4.5 minutes

20. "Blackpool Nights" - Angus Tilston - England - 5 minutes

21. "Thunderstorm" - Wolfe Hermann Otte - Germany - 5 minutes

22. "Stone The Crows" - Roger Spence" - England - 5 minutes

23. "Ode To Lilleshall Hill" - John Cunningham - England - 4.5 minutes

24. "Winter Sun" - Angus Tilston - England - 5 minutes

25. "Paris - Tromp-L'Oeil (When The Painted Walls Are Moving)" - Robert Latrasse - France - 5 minutes

(the last seven films were also eligible for the 'Five Minute' Award)

The Results:

The judges' prizes went to - overall best film: "Verlockende Gefahr" by Alfred Schmid from Switzerland - a fiction film.
- Best film in the five minute category: "
Ballade For Olga" by Bernard Trembloy from France - also fiction.
- Best film for sound: "
Edinburgh The Scottish Capital" by John Ferrari from Scotland.
- Editing award: "
Le Blanc Et Le Noir" by Andre Pailhous from France.
- a special award went to "
Molli" by Wolfe Hermann Otte from Germany (which narrowly missed a main award)

The audience award went to "Edinburgh The Scottish Capital" by John Ferrari from Scotland.

Prizes and certificates were presented at the gala banquest by organiser Angus Tilston.

Watch - "United Colours Of 9.5" by the Wessex Group from an idea by Ken Wordsworth


The next year's 9.5mm International Festival will actually start on Ascension Day in 1998. It will be hosted by Cine Club 9.5 de France and will be held in the town of Nantes in Brittany. Why not start a film for the competition right now! There is no time like the present!

(I have precised the article by the late Roger Spence in the Group 9.5 magazine No.90 Summer 1997, with bits from the official festival programme. )

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