Friday, September 10, 2010

Ban The Buff

"In the early 1980s, Mayor Koch, enraged about graffiti, began buffing the city’s colorful, painted trains. In the end, he may have succeeded, but not before Tony Silver and Henry Chalfant captured the magnificent tidal wave of graffiti in their pioneering documentary, Style Wars. The film is seen around the world as an important footnote in hip hop culture and New York City history. Today, that history, too, is threatened. The original footage is damaged and fading. A new kind of buffing is taking place — a "celluloid buff" — that threatens to eradicate the record of the first brave and indomitable writers who took the world by storm.

Public Art Films is currently on a fund-raising mission to restore the original print, and to create a new high definition master which will preserve the record of the first painted trains to its original vivid colors. We’re inviting you to take part in this historic enterprise.

Twenty five years after its initial release there is still a strong, global demand for the film. In an effort to keep up with this demand we must be able to offer the film in the the most up-to-date formats. We are embarking on a project to restore Style Wars and bring it up to the highest technical standards available today in order to create a High Definition edition of the film. We will be transferring the original 16mm negative into full HD 1080p while cleaning and restoring the film during the process. The HD master will be better, sharper and more brilliant than the original. From it we can strike new prints, author new DVDs and participate in the digital economy.

We have looked at the original negative and discovered that it was damaged during the many years it has been in storage. Fortunately, it will be possible to repair it, using digital technology, painstakingly working on each damaged frame. The restored film will have unprecedented sharpness and clarity and the vibrant colors of the painted trains will be revealed in their original intensity." [taken from the Style Wars official website]

Buy: Style Wars (original DVD)


Karate Boogaloo said...

Great film!

Mr. Lee said...

Indeed... It changed my life!

Karate Boogaloo said...

Really? In what way?

Mr. Lee said...

Well, graffiti was a major part my life (some would argue it WAS my life), and the subculture still remains dear to my heart on certain levels... Watching 'Style Wars' on PBS as a kid really helped cement my need to be seriously involved with the graf subculture on all levels, all else be damned. (If you click the 'street-art' label on this blog you can get a few inklings of my interest/involvement.)