Kent Film Festival 2011 Results

Kent Film Festival 2011 Results

by Mike Turner


As Chairman of the Kent Film Festival, I was delighted that so many OVFM members attended this event and I would like to thank you for your support especially if you also entered a film

We always try to show as many films as possible and this year we projected 70% of all entries. It could have been a few more but my co-presenter, who shall be nameless, hit the wrong item on the computer screen resulting in the large silver screen disappearing into the ceiling of the theatre. Fortunately, order was quickly restored and the audience appeared to be highly entertained by this unexpected event.

The trophy for the best film in the festival was won by Spring Park Film Makers with their film “Unfounded Rumours” about the development and demise of the Dunton Green to Westerham Railway. OVFM also had winners as follows:-


Best One Minute Film: Garden Tips by Colin Jones

Best Documentary: Finnish Foibles by Reg Lancaster

Best Editing: Engine Turning by Barbara Darby

Best “Other”: Dungeness by Mike Coad

Best Kent Subject: The New Romney Story by Gwen and Alan Whippy

Commended Certificate: Connoisseur by Barbara Walker.


Congratulations to all the winners!


Why not join us for Kent Film Festival 2012 for a fun day and you may even win a trophy!!


More information is available on the Kent Film Festival website HERE


Mike Turner

OVFM Club Meeting Tuesday September 27th 2011

Last month our chairman Chris Coulson announced the latest club project “Something I’ve Always Wanted To Do”. If you need a reminder of that then click HERE.

This week we see the fruits of your labours as we host the screening of your films sharing your secret ambitions. I just hope there is nothing to incriminating. As we saw a few months back with the “My Other Hobby” project that club members have a variety of interests away from film making (well, mostly painting and tyre spotting) so one has to wonder if there are some equally diverse hidden desires to be revealed.

If you could be so kind as to reply to this post below to let us know whether you are bringing a film or not that would be appreciated.

See you then!

Blitz And Bananas Part 3

An Epic Tale of an Epic Tale


Anna Littler

(click on images to see them full size)

PART 2 – The Bickley shoot

At our latest big shoot in Bickley we had about 50 people involved during the course of the day, including c 25 extras and actors (aged 2 to c 87) including a number of ladies who were treated like royalty in the beautiful 1930s cars!

Due to some of the main actors only being available in the morning, we had to film a lot of the footage out of sequence and do lots of the cutaways in the afternoon. Scheduling and planning for all these clips was quite taxing and despite a huge amount of preparation, we still missed filming a number of shots. We have since had to return to get these cutaways, without which the finale would not have made sense!

Another problem with having to film the cutaways (or half a conversation) later in the day was the fact that the weather kept changing from overcast to bright sunshine to rain!

Come rain...
...or shine!

Continuity can be a big headache! People’s hairstyles can change throughout the day, or they forget to put their gloves on or which hand they had their handbag in! (Or, like me, they wear their 1930’s hat the wrong way round!).

On some days we’ve been good at doing continuity photos – getting quick snaps of actors, props and sets – by using a simple digital camera which stores the photos for easy reference later on. At other times we’ve failed to get the photo we needed and we’ve had to hope for the best! But this can make editing much harder! (So if you join me for any of our remaining little shoots (for ‘pick ups’) and no one is snapping away (other than the professional Photographer Simon), please ask where my digital camera is – please!! I cannot stress the importance of such photos – it’s one of the most useful lessons I’ve learned! N.B. If you’ve a day between shoots, you can print photos from the film footage.

Lots of Simon’s fab photos can now be seen on:

Part 1 of the Blitz And Bananas story can be found HERE

Part 2 can be found HERE

Part 4 can be found HERE

Thanks again for everything! Anna


My Favourite Films – Derek Allen



The films that made the most impression on me would probably not have the same effect if I saw them to-day, as they are all from the Golden Age of Hollywood (1930 – 1940).

My parents took me to see THE JAZZ SINGER, the first full-length movie with synchronised sound, but I was too young to appreciate the significance, so my top ten come from the time that I was allowed to go to the  ‘pictures’ on my own.

I went to the ‘Splendid’  cinema in Bromley Road, Downham. It held about 2,000 people yet there were always long queus to get in.  Childrens tickets were three pence and if it was an  ‘A’  film we asked an adult (any adult) to take us in.  Once past the huge foyer with two pay kiosks, we were left to find our own seats.

Being on the edge of the Downham Council Estate during a real depression when many children suffered with malnutrition and inadequate clothing, they could not raise even three pence, so some boys would climb in through the lavatory window.  Looking back, I think that the attendants probably knew, but felt sorry for them. Otherwise they could have locked the windows!.

Now for the films (in no particular order):


1. Way Out West (Dir. James W. Horne 1937)

I always thought that Laurel & Hardy were the greatest. As soon as their theme music was heard, even before the film started, the audience were laughing.


2. King Kong (Dir. Meriem C. Cooper & Ernest B. Schoedsack 1933)

As a schoolboy I had never heard of special effects and I wondered how they had created such a large monster, taller than the Empire State Building.


3. Gone With The Wind (Dir. Victor Fleming 1939)

I was not concerned with any of the technical side of film making. I just enjoyed the story.


4. The Lady Vanishes (Dir. Alfred Hitchcock 1938)

This was a true mystery. I enjoyed the tension and the way that the story developed.


5. The Cat & The Canary (Dir. Elliott Nugent 1939)

A really scary film with some humour as well. There had to be with Bob Hope as the leading character.


6. Stagecoach (Dir. John Ford 1939)

An adventure film that was really absorbing. Olive and I saw it at a cinema showing old films whilst we were on honeymoon. It was so good that we both forgot that we were on honeymoon (and that takes a bit of doing!)


7. Mutiny on the Bounty (Dir. Frank Lloyd 1935)

An exciting story, not knowing how it would end when they were cast adrift in an open boat.


8. Everything Happens At Night (Dir. Irving Cummins 1939)

I just had a teenage crush on Sonja Henie, regardless of what sort of film it was – I could have watched her all night.


9. The Wizard of Oz (Dir. Victor Fleming 1939)

I was intrigued with the special effects and found all the characters interesting.


10. The Elephant Boy (Dir. Robert J. Flaherty & Zoltan Korda 1937)   

In the film Sabu was about my age, so I could imagine sharing all his adventures. I also found it interesting because I had been in the Cubs and we were given names from the ‘Jungle Book’ on which this film was based. Some of my very old friends still call me by my Jungle Book name. It was used by some friends in the Royal Marines and other friends in the R.A.F. Volunteer Reserve, so it stuck with me right through my life.


These reasons do not seem adequate, but I am remembering films that made an impression on me at the time and I just enjoyed them.

There were so many classic made during that period that I could easily reel off another ten just as good. And for our three pence we got a second feature film, a newsreel, Mickey Mouse or the Three Stooges and adverts for next week’s films. If we were rich and paid sixpence at the Lewisham Gaumont we would get an organ recital as well.

After leaving school at 14 I became more interested in the theatre, but that’s another story.


So there you have it – agree or disagree as is your wont. Thanks for reading and don’t forget to check out the lists from other OVFM members!! Click HERE to return to the menu page!

Blitz And Bananas – Part 2

An Epic Tale of an Epic Tale


Anna Littler

(click on images to see them full size)

PART 2 – TV actors ~ Brian Murphy and Linda Regan

It’s been such a pleasure and great fun to work with TV actors, Brian and Linda on Blitz and Bananas. They’ve been so generous with their time and skills. Even a couple of weeks before filming, when I met up with them to have a script chat, they had already taken time to get to know their characters well and they were so enthusiastic about the project. We had such a laugh as they tried on their costumes that I felt confident that we would have fun working with them! I’m so grateful that they kindly took time out from their very busy schedules to take part in the film.

It has also been a privilege for us to work with such experienced professionals, as I’m sure we all learned a lot from working with them.  On set they also entertained us greatly with their repartee in between takes!  (Much of it captured on film of course!)

The Farnborough shoot with Brian and Linda was probably our slickest operation! As always much planning helped, but having only 2 actors to film in 1 location made things considerably easier! Also having actors who remembered their lines and who did the same actions at the same time on each take showed they were pros!

Amanda, a University student, has helped me twice a week during August which has also made a huge difference, as it meant she was clued up before each shoot and could deal with the production side, so I could focus more on directing.  We had swift scene changes with props all ready waiting on trays. People timing scenes also helped us to stick to schedule. (I’ll write about this useful tip another time.)

We could have easily been deterred by the wasps, bright sunlight or other setbacks, but the team was so united that we found ways to deal with the obstacles, we kept focussed and even finished early enough to whizz over to Derek’s to film a scene outside his house. We ended the day with chocolate cake to celebrate Amanda’s 21st!

Lots of Simon’s fab photos can now be seen on:

Part 1 of the Blitz And Bananas story can be found HERE

Part 3 can be found HERE

Part 4 can be found HERE



Blitz And Bananas – Part 1

An Epic Tale of an Epic Tale


Anna Littler

(click on images to see them full size)

PART 1 – Background to Blitz and Bananas ~ How it all began!

First of all a huge thank you to everyone who’s been involved in my epic – Blitz and Bananas! For those of you who are new to OVFM, I started work on this project more than a year ago!  2010 was the 70th Anniversary of the Blitz which inspired me to start gathering stories from people in the SE London/Bromley area who remembered the Blitz, WW2 or who had been evacuated.  I then used these amazing memoirs along with my own ideas to create the script.   I was already working only part time to enable me to do some script writing and filmmaking courses and I was keen to put into practice what I’d learned.

A few years ago I was fortunate enough to get the opportunity to spend 2 days behind the scenes on Coronation Street. It was inspiring and educational – and an invaluable learning experience – the kind of experience you can’t get from attending a course! Since then I’ve found it very difficult to get onto other TV / film sets so I decided the best way to learn was to set about making a film myself…and at the same lots of other people could learn about filmmaking too! I wanted a big challenge and so somehow Blitz and Bananas became a feature film!

Props & People!

I then had a great excuse for going to auctions and doing the rounds of charity shops in search of props, costumes and vintage furniture! I started inviting friends and advertising locally with the result that many friends, members of OVFM, amateur dramatics friends, 1940s Society members, school and university students all got involved. In addition, more people from the local area and OVFM offered to help out too, some providing us with air raid shelters, vintage cars, props, costumes and period houses.

Community Project

I’m amazed and thrilled that this has become a real community project with people of all abilities and ages involved – from 1 month to 91 years.  People have simply got stuck in! If they weren’t given a specific role, they spotted something that needed doing and simply did it!  Many people have learned online casino pokies new skills, shared their expertise and taught others, worked fabulously as a team, developed their creative skills, taken photos, dressed up in costume as an Extra or as a Stand-in (leg model/hand model!), driven vintage cars and done various essential behind the scenes jobs (clapper, boom mic, camera, lighting, reflectors, continuity, script supervision, set dressing, wardrobe, hair, props, refreshments, luggers and even ‘Shadowmakers’! etc.).  Some people who helped on many shoots got the chance to try out lots of different roles and I think many found their niche (or two!).  The best thing is that we’ve not only made a film but we’ve had lots of fun, we’ve learned a great deal and we’ve made lots of new friends!

There’s been such a great and supportive atmosphere even when things were stressful and/or when time was short. I can’t thank you all enough!  It’s been a pleasure working with such a great team of people. I hope it also inspires us all to stretch ourselves more in the future!

Lots of Simon’s fab photos can now be seen on:

Click on LIKE to get updates re. future photos/clips.

We’ve still a few pick ups to film and the odd cutaway (so volunteers are still welcome) but the bulk is now fortunately filmed and captured.  There’s a huge amount of editing to do of course and we’re also focusing on organising the Premiere (details to come soon).  If you’d still like to get involved – and if helping with post production or the Premiere event is up your street – I’d love to hear from you!

Thanks again for everything!


Part 2 can be found HERE

Part 3 can be found HERE

Part 4 can be found HERE

OVFM Members’ Favourite Films!!


Here at OVFM not only do we enjoy making films but we enjoy watching them too. No doubt the very reason most of us were inspired to pick up a camera was from sitting in front of the big (or little) screen captivated and enamoured by the moving images before us and wondering if we could do that ourselves.

But what are the films that either inspired us to make our own films or have a special place in our hearts? What are the films that speak to us, relate to us or just make us laugh or cry? Well, follow the links below and you’ll find out just what cinematic opuses have left their indelible marks on the members of this humble film making club as we bring you the OVFM members’ Top 10 favourite films.

Remember there is not right or wrong here, just personal opinion. There is no room for snobbery here, we want to see what films YOU like no matter how obscure or well known they may be. Maybe you agree with some choices, maybe you’ll discover something new or be reminded of a long forgotten gem; with the wide age range of club members the lists are sure to be an eclectic and interesting read.

If you wish to participate then please E-mail me your list (please indicate if it is definitive order) along with a small paragraph explaining your choice (you don’t need to be the late, great Barry Norman in your writing) or as a Word document and it will be posted on the site here.

Click the member’s name to see their lists:




















The annual OVFM Top 10 Competition  is now under way with the eventual winner to be announced at the Oscars ceremony in 2012! To learn more about the Top 10 click HERE.

Meanwhile here are the results of the individual rounds. Be sure to check back as the competition progresses.


ROUND ONE RESULTS (held June 7th 2011)

1st – “Engine Turning” by Barbara Darby    53.89

2nd – “The Miracle” by Lee Relph     51.45

3rd – “To Italy by Gondola” by Andy Watson   50.36

4th – “Iguazu Falls” by Brian Pfieffer    46.68


ROUND TWO RESULTS (held July 19th 2011)

1st – “Connoisseur” by Barbara Walker    54.19

2nd – “Survivor’s Leave” by Simon Earwicker    50.30

3rd – “Three Boys In The Blitz” by Derek Allen   44.54


ROUND THREE RESULTS (held August 16th 2011)

1st – “Picture, picture on the wall” By Mike Shaw  58.26

2nd – “Switzerland” by Bob Wyeth  47.39

3rd – “Pearl on the Med” by John Ransley  37.82


ROUND FOUR RESULTS (held September 13th 2011)

1st – “Why are Icebergs Blue” by David Laker   54.66

2nd – “Out of the Darkness”  by Jane Oliver  48.34

3rd –  “Conversation with Diana Springall ”  by Jim Morton-Robertson     48.21

4th –  “Lago di Garda”  by Alan Smith   43.03

5th –  “Floriade” by Richard Pugh  36.68

(This may have been his first entry into a club competition.)


ROUND FIVE RESULTS (held October 11th 2011)

1st  – Chatsworth” by Susan Ward  51.78

2nd  – “The Garden Shed” by John Bunce  50.67

3rd  –  “Bells Down” by Harold Tril  49.02

4th  –  “Percy Pitcher remembered” by Hugh Darrington  48.20

5th  –  “Year Zero” by Mike Coad   47.92

6th  –  “Finding Granny’s Granny” by Anna Littler  47.72

7th  –  “Teego’s travels” by Chris Coulson  47.05

8th  – “1759” by Mike Turner  42.78

9th  –  “One of my other hobbies” by Roger Wheatley  40.13


With the qualifying rounds now complete the Top Ten finalists have been notified and have until January 3rd 2012 to make any necessary adjustments or revisions to their films based on the feedback given during the screenings and the winner will be announced at the Oscars.

Thanks to all who entered a film and good luck to all the finalists!!