Saturday Night Fever

It's Saturday night, and I have a small fever. Well, actually it's Saturday night and Sunday morning, but that's a different film. But seeing as the John Travolta film was shown a few hours ago, and is sitting on my hard disk, and I am a bit ill...yes.

Most of today was spent trying to transfer a VHS recording to DVD for the RESPECT 'Italian Night'. It ought to be simple, but as always, problems crop up - the VHS turns out to be severely degraded so we manage to get hold of another copy, Nero and Roxio both refuse to either compress or divide the MPEG2 file, and the cables to connect the projector to the DVD player go mysteriously missing.

However, with half an hour to spare, the DVD was ready. About 35 people turned up, paid their £10, ate 3 rather good courses and watched the result of my day's labours.

Rome, Open City. Made in 1945, directed by Roberto Rossolini, in Italian and German. Acted and filmed by amateurs, in bad light on a mish-mash of substandard films. Then degraded by time, transferred to videotape and played on my battererd VCR into a capture card.

The result ought to be unwatchable, but the film shone through it's technical imperfections. It's the story of resistors to nazi occupation. The catholic priest who conspires with people who would ordinarily shun, simply because it's the right thing to do, even if it costs his own life. The communist who can't be broken under torture, making his interrogators doubt the superiority of their german blood. And the children, deadly serious freedom fighters in their shorts and torn shirts.
Back to the full colour world of monochrome. Dr Who, Farscape, Open Your Eyes, Cat Ballou, and that John Travolta film encoding overnight. The Henry Ford school of media - you can have any flavour you like, as long as it's saccharine.

I have a song to finish. Tomorrow.

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