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Odd Christmas Party games 1959

I thought that since another Christmas has just passed us and we are now into another year it would be interesting to contrast the Christmas we have just had to ones from the past. This post therefore  features a film which was taken around the year 1959 and shows the sort of  Christmas Party Games that were played then.

The film was shot completely indoors with some powerful lights set up to provide enough light1. This was probably essential because Standard 8mm movie film was pretty slow at about 10 – 32 ASA but the use of the lights have resulted in a colour cast. This is because the Ferrania film used was daylight balanced rather than tungsten light balanced, but I corrected this as much as I could when I cropped and post processed the clip from the scanner.

I don’t know the exact date the film was shot and have estimated 1959 based on the clothes the people are wearing and the furniture in the house.

The film shows a family playing a strange Christmas Party game in their front room. The rules of the game seem to be that you must try to sit and balance on a glass bottle with your legs straight out in front of you and crossed. Whilst doing this you try to light a candle with a cigarette lighter. If you can manage to do it, you get to take a drink from the bottle.

This is a game I’ve never seen before and as a family we never played it at Christmas or any other time – has anyone else ever heard of it? I’d be fascinated to know if you have; please let me know in the comments if so.

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If you see anything in the film which you recognise, or you think gives clues to the location or date, please let me know in the comments below. Also, please share this post with your friends if you think they may be able to help locate a scene in this film.

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A software developer by profession and an amateur photographer by hobby I've been interested in all things photographic since I was a teenager some 40 years ago. Many of my interests centre around vintage film photography and cinematography.

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