Get a group of men together and focus a video camera on them and nine times out of 10, a wrestling match breaks out.
“I call it spontaneous wrestling,” said Marlena Wyman, audio/visual archivist at the Provincial Archives of Alberta (PAA). “Whenever you point a camera at men in particular, they start elbowing each other and grabbing each other around the neck and then they start wrestling.”
Scenes like this have been captured on home movies since the mid-’20s and the PAA has compiled all these wrestling gems into a movie for their 25th Annual Film Night.
Full Nelson documents some of the toughest men to ever wear tights and will be airing at Metro Cinema this Friday. From spontaneous wrestling home movies to clips from the 1970s TV program, Super Stars of Wrestling, Full Nelson will have the audience choking with laughter.
The earliest home movie used in Full Nelson was donated in 1978, the most recent in 1993. They range in date from 1928 to 1941.
“A big part of why we put on Film Night is partly so that people become aware that we have films they can come in and view or use in other productions or in other ways,” Wyman said.
“Also, they can donate their films to us.”
The PAA collects these kinds of documents in order to preserve history and make them available to people now and in the future, Wyman said.
“Home videos in particular are a really great way of finding out how people lived their lives,” she said. “These are intimate family events and occurrences. They’re not scripted, they’re not like other types of movies, and they’re very spontaneous.”