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Home movie

During the earliest years of film, it was mainly professional filmmakers who did the shooting. Film cameras and film stock were simply not available on the private market, and the equipment was expensive and cumbersome. But soon manufacturers began experimenting with smaller film formats, the so-called ciné film formats that fit in smaller cameras.

The breakthrough of 16mm film

In particular, 16mm film emerged in the 1920s as an ideal format for amateurs: soon enough, you could pick up 16mm film and equipment from the local photography shop. From that time onwards, hobbyist filmmakers increasingly picked up the camera.

Dead serious

These amateurs took their film hobby very seriously. Around 1930, they began to unite in private clubs such as the Nederlandse Smalfilmliga, similar to the Filmliga, and they even had their own monthly magazine (‘Het Veerwerk’) that featured news about technical innovations and practical advice. Ciné film flourished in the 1930s.

Still uit een amateurfilm
Still uit een amateurfilm

Holidays and Christmas on super8

After the Second World War, this film-club culture continued, but in the 1960s a new kind of film amateur appeared, with the introduction of the Super-8 film. This turned film into a consumer product and the Super-8 camera became a medium to capture family life, much as the photo camera had done in the decades before. Many of these domestic filmmakers were mainly attracted to a product that was easy to use, and they quickly exchanged their Super-8 cameras when video and digital devices came to the market.

Home movies at Eye

The Eye collection is very strongly represented when it comes to pre-war amateur film, particularly amateur films from the Dutch East Indies and by filmmakers such as Theo Regout and Alphons Hustinx, who made long travel reportages about ​​their expeditions through Africa and Asia.