LOS ANGELES – The sound of 35mm celluloid film passing through a projector may not be familiar to most moviegoers these days, but until 2010, that’s what movies were made on and how. they were presented to the public in movie theaters. Many still love the format, including The Secret Movie Club founder Craig Hammill.
Hammill graduated from film school and decided to create “The Secret Movie Club” to create a space for moviegoers who love the 35mm analog format and lack that sense of community that gets lost watching content on personal devices.
Hammill said a lot of his film school buddies told him, “If you want to make a movie, you should learn the exhibit that’s part of it. – concert time. “
The Secret Movie Club recently presented the first three films of the Indiana Jones saga, all on a beautiful 35mm film. Unlike digital formats, film is shipped on reels and assembled by highly trained projectionists. For many, the texture and feel of the light shining through celluloid is truly cinematic and an experience to be preserved in our digital age.
“I love cinema and I love showing on film,” Hammill said. “And I don’t want someone to say you can’t do it.”
But, the film can be delicate, and it often requires conservation and restoration. The Secret Movie Club screenings raise awareness and help reconnect people with the fading format.
“It’s a tool,” Hammill said. “[Not keeping 35mm alive] would be like telling a painter that you can’t use oil. It would be like telling a writer that you can’t write on a typewriter or by hand. “
J Angel Sierra was in the running for “Raiders of the Lost Ark,” which was the very first movie The Secret Movie Club screened when it launched in 2016. Sierra has said he loves seeing movies shot on film. , presented the way the filmmakers had planned it. .
“[The Secret Movie Club] keeps 35mm alive at a time when it’s a rare privilege afforded to modern filmmakers, ”Sierra said. “That’s why, honestly, I’m staying in LA. It’s the only place I can get it and see a lot of things that I missed growing up. “
The Secret Movie Club shows films at several venues, including DTLA’s historic Million Dollar Theater. In addition to Hollywood cuisine in English, The Million Dollar was historically a hub for Spanish-language cinema and live artists from Mexico. Secret Movie clubs often show classics in Spanish and other international classics like Federico Fellini and Ingmar Bergman and more recent American classics like “The Incredibles”.
For those looking to broaden their film experience, the club is almost like a mini film school, and as people start to venture out again, Hammill said he hopes audiences will come back to support the experience again. theatrical.
“When you feel comfortable, go back and have that experience,” Hammill said. “Because cinemas, there is nothing like it! “