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MY 8 MM MOVIES - 1967-78

Between 1967 and 1978 I used a Normal 8 camera and later a Super 8 camera to shoot some home movies.
This 8 mm film came in 4 minute reels which had to be edited and manually spliced together.
I'm in the middle of having them digitized. I'll post them here as I finish re-editing them.


This Super 8 mm camera was the best manufactured by Braun (known in North America mainly for its electric razors and coffee makers) in 1972. Braun was famous for its high fidelity receivers, tape decks and other electronic items whose design was far ahead of their time. I bought the camera while stationed in Germany with the Canadian Forces. It cost DM 2,000 (about $800) when my salary as a major was about $16,000. I still have it - don't use it any more of course. :-)



1967 - Expo 67
9 1/2 minutes - from Normal 8 film stock

The first 8 mm film I ever shot. I'm truly sorry for the quality; I made all the mistakes a novice always makes - panning and zooming at the same time and all the time, too few steady shots, not making sure the camera is horizontal, etc... But it's the only record of Expo 67 I have. The soundtrack is composed of songs from the period, which you'll recognize if you were alive at the time. :-)

Expo 67, with 50 million visitors, was the most successful world's fair ever held. It came near the start of the Pearson-Trudeau era, a period of about 20 years when Canada strove for excellence and became, for a time, one of the world's exciting places. Since then, we've allowed ourselves to slide back into complacency and mediocrity, because we've been satisfied with boring leaders with no vision of what Canada can and should be aiming for.

Download Link - MP4

1967 - The East-WeST German Border
6 minutes - from Normal 8 film stock

This was my second attempt at filming, and unfortunately it exhibits the same flaws as the Expo 67 film above, too much panning and zooming. But, it's the only reminder I have of visiting the border between West Germany and the German Democratic Republic (east of Hannover). What's interesteting about this is that I was over there on a military exercise and we went right up to the border in uniform, although NATO troops were forbidden to come closer than 10km of the border in uniform. We did this because we were ordered to by our company commander, who was not the brightest light in the Canadian Army at the time. :-(

Download Link - WMV

1969 - St. Bruno & Ottawa
7 minutes - from Normal 8 film stock

1969, the year before I was posted to the Canadian Forces in Germany. A short visit to St. Bruno, south of Montreal, to visit the parental home and at home in Ottawa, just after the opening of the National Arts Centre, downtown with my sister Anne & her then husband Andy. Actually, the order of clips is reversed, it was spring in Ottawa first and late summer in St. Bruno afterwards, but I think it looks better this way. :-)

Download Link - WMV

The 1969 Moon Landing
8 minutes - from Normal 8 film stock

This 8 mm film is the only one I ever bought.

Download Link - WMV

The McDonalds - The Early Years, 1967-1974
38 minutes - from Normal 8 & Super 8 film stock

A memory trip back to when my godsons' family and I were young. Petawawa, 1967/8, "Man and His World" (Montreal - the successor to Expo 67, 1969), and New Brunswick, 1974 (look out for the cedar waxwing!)

When you look at the footage of "Man and His World" and compare it with what I did to Expo 67, you can see what a little practice will do to improve one's skills. :-)

Download Link - WMV

Springtime in London, 1972
6 minutes 15 seconds -
from Super 8 film stock

Visiting the McDonalds in London at Easter 1972. The weather seems to have been just as bad as it was here in Victoria in April 2011. :-(

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7 minutes - from Super 8 film stock

This is a short record of a major exercise of the Canadian Forces and the German Army in south-east Germany. It was a big deal with fighter jets, helicopters, tanks and lots of smoke and noise. My role in this was counter-intelligence, keeping track of how we were being observed by the Soviet Military Mission (what they did was legal) and how security conscious our troops were. My sergeants and I wore civilian clothes, and in one short scene near the beginning you'll see a soldier coming towards me to check on who I was. So, they were "on the ball".

Download Link - WMV

1972 - Greece
Driving through Greece with Helmut Schmitt (then Lieutenant. German Army)
29 minutes - from Super 8 film stock

In August 1972, while I was stationed in Germany with the Canadian Forces, I took a driving vacation through Greece with a friend I had made in the German Army when I acted as Canadian liaison officer to the historic 1st German Mountain Division based in southern Bavaria in the northern outskirts of the Alps.

We drove my BMW Bavaria from Munich across the Alps, down the east coast of Italy to Brindisi and then by overnight ferry to Patras, Greece. From there, we followed a route that took us to Olympia, Sparta, Mycenae, Corinth, Delphi, Athens and Cape Sounion and back to Brindisi. My one regret is, as you'll see, I ignored modern Greece and aimed my camera almost exclusively at the ancient archaeological remains.

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1974 - Montreal
8 minutes - from Super 8 film stock

I'm just back from my posting with the Canadian Forces in Germany and just itching to use my still pretty new high end Braun camera at home after capturing a fair bit of Europe on film.

This is what Montreal looked like in 1974. There's quite a bit of old Montreal which was then at the height of its period of restoration. At the same time, a lot of tall multi-storey office and apartment buildings were being built, making Montreal one of the most modern, yet historic cities in the country. You can tell from my zooming up quite a few of those buildings, that I was, at the time, impressed by that.

Fortunately, the architectural quality of most of these buildings was high and they've aged well.

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1974 - HURONIA
7 minutes - from Super 8 film stock

Huronia is the region of Ontario approximately 120 km north of Toronto on Georgian Bay. There are two areas of historical interest. First, there is the reconstructed Jesuit Mission to the Hurons (1639-49) and the Martyrs' Shrine at Midland and then, a bit to the west, the Naval & Military Establishment at Penetanguishene which was constructed at the beginning of the 19th century to protect the region from American military attacks, particularly during the War of 1812-14.

Geographically the region is very beautiful and well worth at least a day trip. I filmed this short video during the summer of 1974 while I was stationed in CFB Borden, just before attending the Canadian Forces Command & Staff College in Toronto.

Download Link - WMV
Download Link 2 - MP4

1976 - Cape Breton Island
7 1/2 minutes - from Super 8 film stock

During the summer of 1976, right after Montreal's wildly successful Olympic Games, Jutta Möller came to visit from Germany. We spent the subsequent weeks driving around Quebec and the Maritimes.

This is the first of a number of scenes I filmed during our travels (the rest are yet to be digitized). After spending a day in Baddeck, NS, visiting Alexander Graham Bell's home, we drove around Cape Breton Island following the Cabot Trail up the north-west coast (and visiting every antique shop Jutta could find). After overnighting in Sydney, we went on to the reconstructedFortress of Louisbourg (1713-58), the largest 18th-century French fortified town in North America, built at an original cost of 30 million livres.

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1977/8 - Italy
18 minutes - from Super 8 film stock

This is from near the end of my home movie "career". In 1977/8, I was a young lieutenant-colonel (young for a lieutenant-colonel, that is) on a six month course at the NATO Defence College in Rome, Italy. These scenes are the result of my traipsing around downtown Rome  by myself and visiting Herculaneum and Paestum, near Naples, with other course members and their families.

There were, of course, visits to other places where I only took photos, which still await being scanned and eventually turned into slide shows. After 1978, videotape (Beta for a time) took the place of film.

Download Link - WMV