The PhotoFlex MX-35 is kind of terrible, but of course that’s what makes it kind of great!
If you’re interested in owning one of the most unreliable cameras ever made (maybe a slight exaggeration) then I’d start searching your local thrift shops for a PhotoFlex MX-35. This camera has many strange qualities that are as endearing as they are annoying. The first and most important of which is that the film winds backwards – this is mostly annoying. Instead of threading over the roller and advancing clockwise it threads under and counterclockwise. This makes rewinding the film quite a chore.
The second bit of strangeness, and maybe this only applies to my particular camera, is that the film counter stops working when it gets to 20. This isn’t such a big deal, except when you couple it with weird activity #3, which is that sometimes the camera will double expose a frame. When winding forward, sometimes you can take a shot and then wind forward only slightly more and take another shot. So far I have yet to determine why this happens only sometimes…
Now all of these things can certainly be seen as faults, but I prefer to view them as quirky pluses. You never know from one roll to the next whether you’ll be getting exactly what you thought you shot or if it will be a lot of surprise doubles! it’s actually very adventurous to use this little guy. Plus i have a real weakness for plastic cameras that try to masquerade as fancy 35mm’s. So I say, don’t spend your next $4 on a roll of film, head to the thrift store instead and find a PhotoFlex.