So goodbye, 2013

So how was it for you, 2013?

Good, bad, ugly? Maybe for some of you it’s been My Favourite Year?

We had a bumpy start to the year, continuing sporadically through most of the next few months – sudden cancellations, carefully built up plans breaking down, events beyond our control (remember that line from “Dangerous Liaisons”? we were using that quite a lot!) But we have had some fun, once again worked with some good people and places, and shown some great films.

Highlights include:

Alien” in January in a cold concrete bunker with no heating and a fuzzy picture, after tripping the electrics with too many radiators! And of course Jen’s magnificent blood-spattered alien cake for Alison’s birthday.

Viridiana” at Heeley Institute – candlelight, music, film, fabulous food, Spanish super 8s, silly games, lovely atmosphere and conversation.

“Jaws” outdoors at the wonderful waterside, on one of the hottest days of the year. An undisputed highlight of our whole time as a cinema club, and we owe it all to the Boatyard boys. (Thank you, Richard, Simon and co!) Sipping a bespoke “Jaws” craft beer as the sun went down and a shark’s fin rippled through the canal waters, watching the film through a shark’s jawbone frame around the screen and everybody reciting the classic lines together – so many things came together just right and made for a magical night.

The black and white menace in “Les Diaboliques” and “Dracula” (in 16mm) both worked a treat upstairs at the Great Gatsby, one of our favourite venues this year. Plus it is always lovely to hear that whirring projector and the flicker of celluloid as the reel comes to an end, courtesy of Mr Christopher Wibberley.

We enjoyed a few low-key screenings in some interesting places including Film Pool and the Audacious Art Experiment, showed “South Pacific” to a group of Blind Veterans, and tested out our new projector (thank you Co-op Bank Community Fund) watching live coverage of Le Tour round at Alison’s.

On the other end of the scale, Mel and Alison were lucky enough to see some cinematic spectaculars – “2001” with the Birmingham Philharmonic, “Napoleon” at the South Bank, “Metropolis” with live soundtracking in Glasgow and “The Lodger” in the US. (And Jen went back to the Kinema in the Woods and saw “Despicable Me 2”!)

It’s not been an easy year in terms of our capacity as we juggle other work, families and the ins and outs of film licensing, and we end 2013 having run slightly out of steam and needing a little breather. But thanks to Sheffield Town Trust we’ve been awarded funding to cover a year’s worth of licence fees, and we’re having the first meeting of our newly appointed advisory board in January, so we’ll
be back in the early Spring with a brand new programme and renewed energy and enthusiasm!

To all the people who’ve supported Magic Lantern over the past year, and to all our members, volunteers, colleagues and collaborators – THANK YOU. Please keep your views and suggestions coming, we really want to know what you want from the film club. And now that we know we can cover licence costs, there’ll be more possibility of showing the films you really want to see.

So happy New Year everybody! Here comes the end of the reel for 2013 but there’s always more film on its way and we look forward to a splendid new instalment. See you again soon!

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