What Made Her Do It? and film preservation

Bernardi-Buralli dburall1
Sun Sep 28 23:25:51 EDT 2008

In case it hasn't been mentioned already, Kinokuniya has released an  
English language DVD of Suzuki Shigeyoshi's 1929 WHAT MADE HER DO IT?  
(Nani ga kanojo o so saseta ka), which is available on amazon.co.jp.  
I wasn't sure if the copy listed was subtitled since there's no info  
about that on the webpage at the moment, but I've confirmed that this  
DVD is the subtitled version. There are a few typos in the subtitles  
(done for the Pordenone film festival when the film screened there, I  
think in 2001?) but it is a beautiful image with wonderful original  
musical accompaniment by Gunther Buchwold. The reconstruction is by  
Ota Yoneo (Osaka University of Arts). The link:


I should also mention for people interested in film preservation  
activity in Japan that for 3-4 years now Professor Ota has been  
offering summer preservation workshops (as I understand it, there is  
a hands-on lab component) at the Osaka University of Arts. It's  
already been mentioned on the list, but he is also the director of  
the Toy Film Project, involving the restoration of "toy  
films" (shorts that were commercially available to be viewed on a  
home projector that was often fairly cheaply made (at least one  
version needed only a bicycle light, hence the "toy"). (The project  
webpage:  http://toyfilm.jp/)

On a different note, anyone interested in film preservation activity  
in Japan might like to check out the Film Preservation Society at  
http://www.filmpres.org/. Right now the site is only up in Japanese.  
It's usually bilingual, but there's currently a notice up that the  
English language pages are temporarily unavailable. This is also  
where you'll find news on Home Movie Day events in Japan. (This  
year's HMD is on 10/18). You can read about the 2007 Home Movie Day  
events in Japan, and Japanese participation in HMD in general, here  
(HMD Japan Mega-Report): http://www.homemovieday.com/news/2007/10/04/ 

Some home movies from previous HMDs in Japan are included on the  
Center for Home Movies DVD, "Living Room CInema" (http:// 
www.homemovieday.com/livingroomcinema/). If you're new to Home Movie  
Day, there is a PSA on YouTube (that is fun to watch even if you  
don't think you're interested): http://www.youtube.com/watch? 
The gentleman featured is Robbins Barstow, whose collection of home  
movies was just deposited in the Library of Congress. A number of his  
films are available on the Internet Archive http://www.archive.org/ 
search.php?query=robbins%20barstow . I know I'm now straying wildly  
from the subject of the list, but I can't resist recommending in  
particular "Tarzan and the Rocky Gorge" (Barstow made it in 1936 when  
he was 16, and a member of the Amateur CInema League), or "Disneyland  
Dream" (1956, the Barstow family wins a trip to Disneyland in a  
contest sponsored by scotch tape).

Joanne Bernardi

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