SF89: San Francisco Before The Internet
Like many before them, 1980s youth arrived in San Francisco seeking good times and an unconventional life. Thirty years later, this "last analog generation" fondly recalls their young lives in the city before the tech boom and grapples with change, both personal and societal.
Inclusion StatementSan Francisco's wide diversity is reflected in our cast and crew. People of different races, sexes, orientations, genders, ages, abilities and incomes are both behind and in front of the camera. In key development and production roles are women, LGBT folks, Latinos, and Asian-Americans.
About The Project
“Soon, all will be new, bright, shiny, and soulless — and the legends will be gone forever, ground to dust by the relentless jackhammers.” –Herb Caen, One Man’s San Francisco (1976)
There is nothing new about change or how people react to it, especially in San Francisco. Just as the city's unofficial biogapher, Herb Caen expressed his worries in 1976, many had lamented the disappearance of the Sutro Baths and the horse-drawn streetcar before him. The hippies have since bemoaned the end of the Summer of Love and the gays have expessed the unimaginable tragedy of a paradise decimated by the AIDS epidemic.
Finally, it is time for my own generation to join the chorus. Ours is the generation time forgot; they called us "X" and "Slackers" and predicted we'd have no impact on the culture. Sandwiched between the Boomers and Millenials, our so-called moment came and went in the blink of an eye. We may not appear in the history books so we'll have to tell our own stories. This film is a vehicle for that and a time capsule for future generations.
San Francisco has seen tremendous change over the past twenty-five years due in great part to the Silicon Valley tech boom. Its population, cultural life and physical landscape would be nearly unrecognizable to mid-century eyes. For many, the San Francisco they love has become a totally different place, still more have experienced the indignity of being nudged out of town; priced out from rising rents. Particularly hard hit have been artists and folks identifying as “counter-culture”. For those who arrived in the 80s and 90s there exist today strong memories of a city and a world that has all but disappeared.
In their own words, the film’s subjects take us back to a time of youth and wonder. Never-before-seen photographs and video footage cast light on a tough and trashy, colorful and fascinating city once referred to as Babylon by the Bay; a sanctuary for West coast artists and non-conformists.
Present and future generations are informed and enriched by knowledge and understanding of what came before them. For many 80s teenagers, the 1960s held a fascination and 1970s were at both mocked and celebrated in the 90s. The stories told in this film add to an ever-growing history of the city and the culture. Through the telling and hearing of these stories, we build a bridge of respect and understanding between the generations.
“If my generation is remembered for anything, it will be as the last one that remembers the world before the Internet.” –Lev Grossman, author The Magician’s Land (2014)
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About This Team
Peter Paul Jacques - Producer / Director
Peter moved to San Francisco in 1989 and this very personal film features life-long friends and formative experiences. He began envisioning and researching this project in late 2013. He has been creating films and video content since the 1980s, including feature-length Super-8 production Wake Up & Die! His films have been screened at Red Vic Movie House and Artist Television Access. He is an artist, actor and improviser and has worked on several video projects with French Press Films in Oakland, CA.
Leslie Valentino - Executive Producer
Leslie, a native-born San Franciscan, has worked in film production for thirty years, first editing and then producing at SF companies The Orphanage and Heist, then as a freelance producer. As a teen in the early 80’s Leslie jumped in with both feet to the wacky SF music and nightlife scenes. Her long-term experience as a creative San Franciscan and her extensive contacts immeasurably enrich this project. She collaborates on this project about her native city as a labor of love.
Chris Walters - Producer
Chris is a filmmaker starting out as an editor, then co-founding French Press Films, a production company in Oakland, CA in 2009 where he is now CEO and oversees a growing and successful business that produces videos for corporate clients such as Gap Inc., Ubisoft, and Samsung as well as music videos (Sister Crayon, Foxtails Brigade) documentary shorts (Montaño) and narrative features (Stepsister, Falling Uphill).
Andrew Juncker - Producer
Andrew is a Bay Area filmmaker, co-founder and Executive Creative Director at French Press Films in Oakland, CA. He studied experimental cinema, animation, and new media at The Evergreen State College in Olympia, WA, and is a graduate of The Meisner Technique Studio in San Francisco where he studied acting. For 9 years Andrew was a juror for the Poppy Jasper Film Festival in Morgan Hill, CA, and has shown his films at many festivals, including Mill Valley and Cannes. He always strives to find new ways to tell stories, and to push film as a medium and art form.
Jenny Klowden - Associate Producer
A life-long cinephile and student of film history, Jenny has lived in San Francisco since 1989. a former co-owner of SF Mission boutique Candystore and has been an event and special projects producer for Citizen Cake and Blue Bottle Coffee. Her experiences in the SF music scene plus her analytical and storytelling skills are essential for telling this story.
Austin Cook - Camera
A graduate of SFSU with a BA in Broadcast and Electronic Communication Arts, Austin's past work includes shooting and editing online news videos for Brentwood Press and Publishing Corp. and content creation for United Educators for Affordable Housing, Speech Skills, Musician Tim Carr, and Mashery.
Shirley Wen - Editor
Shirley Wen is the lead editor at French Press Films. Shirley graduated from UC Santa Cruz with a major in Film and a concentration in Production. Credits include feature documentary Life After Life (assistant editor), comedy special Criminally Posehn (assistant editor) and a multitude of commercials and creative content as lead editor.