Wednesday, March 16, 2022

Rebel Dread

Off to the British Film Institute last night to see Rebel Dread, a documentary about Don Letts that pushed all my nostalgia buttons as, indeed, did the BFI itself.

They still have wall mounted leaflet holders from which you can pick up an A4 sheet telling you what to think about the film. I am old enough to remember when these sheets were mimeographed. (A mimeograph was a duplicating machine that produced copies from a stencil, it was superseded by the photocopier before the photocopier was superseded by the laser printer.)

When I first came to London I was a graduate trainee working for Fluor in Euston, spending a lot of time as I recall with telex messages as they were considered to be legally valid documents. (Telex has since gone the way of the mimeograph.)

On my way home I would get the tube down to Waterloo and then a train back to West London. Very often, if nothing much was happening of an evening I would interrupt my journey to cool my heels a stone's throw from Waterloo at the South Bank which is why I have got so much history at the National Theatre, the BFI and the Festival Hall etc around the mid 80s.

The last time I was at the BFI to see something was a little over ten years ago. The movie was Annie Hall and I can remember the odd film scratch from the old print flashing on the screen. I imagine 35mm cinema projectors have gone the way of the telex and the mimeograph now, and it is all digital 4K.

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