The 10 Best 35mm Films
This wiki has been updated 10 times since it was first published in July of 2018. Although everyone snaps pictures on their phones nowadays, there is still plenty of artistic value in old-fashioned, analog photography. Whether you're a serious shutterbug with a darkroom setup or just a hobbyist nostalgic for the 1990s, this list offers a range of 35mm color and black-and-white films suitable for different camera settings, lighting situations and processing methods. When users buy our independently chosen editorial recommendations, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
September 06, 2019:
Selecting a film for your 35mm camera largely comes down to what you plan to shoot. Because of this, shooting with film often requires more forethought than would shooting with a digital camera. That's because once you've loaded in a roll of film, you're pretty much bound by its constraints (if you opt to remove it, you likely won't be able to reuse it).
Some of the factors to consider when choosing a roll are how it will be processed, whether you want color or black-and-white photos, the environment's lighting and how much movement there will be in the shots.
For, say, shooting daytime sporting events you'll want a high-speed film that lets you freeze a moment while retaining sharp detail. To do that you'll want something like the Lomography 800 ISO, which will let you use a high shutter speed without your photos turning out too dark. Because high speed films, such as this one, are more sensitive to light than lower ISO films, they are also what you'd want to choose for low-light situations.
When it comes to portraits, especially those in well-lit areas, it's hard to go wrong with the Kodak Portra 160, which will deliver exceptionally accurate skin tones. Those on a budget can still develop beautiful portraits using the Fujicolor Pro 400H.
A couple of housekeeping clarifications: Sometimes you'll see ASA in place of ISO to express film speed. ASA is just a more antiquated name for the film speed scale and the two abbreviations are interchangeable. You'll also sometimes see 35mm film referred to as 135 film; again the two are interchangeable.