"The industry directs it," says Lindenmeyer. "Because there are no new motion-picture cameras, whereas there are a multitude of video cameras. You're always learning."
"I've got every piece of film equipment I ever bought," adds Walt Gilmore. "I have my original black-and-white TV camera, which is about seven times bigger than the camcorder I use now, and can do so much more. I think a lot of the stuff you're talking about, going back to the old ways of doing things, is people with a lack of ideas reviving old techniques rather than using their brain to create something new. You can use the old techniques and apply it to the new equipment. But that's different from using a 1912 hand-cranked 35mm camera to make a movie."
In a sense, the amateur film clubs are like the Friars Club or other service-oriented organizations of the receding past: They possess a body of knowledge, would like nothing better than to pass that knowledge on to the next generation, yet they face the possibility of imminent extinction.
"The object, as far as we're concerned, is to get new members," says Lindenmeyer. "We have an auditorium, a projector and good refreshments. We achieved our peak some time ago, and now we're on our way back up."
Sid Laverents'Multiple Sidosis will screen at UCLA's James Bridges Theater on Friday, August 9, at 7:30 p.m., as part of the Film and Television Archive's ongoing Festival of Preservation, with the filmmaker in attendance.