Its user’s-view of various Super 8 cameras, wind-up 16mm Bolexes and optical printing techniques may have little-to-no application in this digital age but the laid-back, know-your-tools-and-do-some-stuff aesthetic seems as relevant to me now as it ever was.
(UPDATE: There’s been, so I’m told, something of a recent upsurge of interest in Super 8 as a production medium for its purely aesthetic qualities, and Lipton’s book – along with its companion piece The Super 8 Book – continues to be recommended as a user’s vade mecum.)
More so, if anything. I’m in the midst of a screener-viewing frenzy as this year’s BAFTA voting deadline approaches, and there’s a low-budget Irish musical shot on the streets of Dublin with a handheld DV camera that’s outclassing all the Hollywood blockbusters for heart and originality. It’s called Once. I heard somewhere that the budget was £150,000, or it might even have been Euros. Which, in mogul-speak, is “chump change”.
Lenny Lipton, of course, was also the co-author of PUFF, THE MAGIC DRAGON.