Great answer!! :D
I say a 'phone or digital camera can make pictures but those pictures aren't really photographs, haven't got the same relationship to subject matter as photographs, and don't deliver a photographic quality viewing experience to me. If I want an authentic photograph, not a virtual one, then nothing touched by data-based technology is worth looking at.
The answer I would give is that film has physical integrity. It is not a lot of numbers waiting for arrangement, but a physical capture of the image. In short it has the here, right now, zen existance.
I might say something like, "Oh, I have many tools at my disposal and film cameras do some things much better than my cell phone. When I am seriously interested in creating images, my choice is film because of its ability to give me the results I find most pleasing. I also enjoy the processes involved in producing my images with a film camera."
a sensor isn't light sensitive, an image isn't drawn with light ?
having a cellphone image light jet printed
through a sophisticated enlarger head
onto light sensitive paper and souped in chemistry
at a mini lab isn't drawn with light ?
its like suggesting slides aren't authentic ...
i don't think authenticity has much to do with it ...
it is just a different technology ... one isn't more authentic or photographic than the other ..
I think we get way too caught up in technicality of producing photographs. Photography happens about 6 inches behind the camera (of any kind)....
Well... 8 inches if you have a big head.
Smile and Nod.
I don't think I have had anyone say they thought film was "pointless", but I certainly have had questions from those who are curious.
My response depends on a number of factors.
In many cases, the question comes from someone who has used film in the past. For those people, I respond by indicating how much I enjoy using film. In addition, I mention that I still do my own black and white darkroom work, that film and processing is (relatively) readily available in my area, and that modern films are really wonderful in comparison to films from even 25 years ago.
Also, if someone notices what I am doing, it is fairly likely that I'll be using medium format equipment. Many former film users still recognise the larger medium format equipment as being in some way "special", and therefore it seems to be easier to explain why I use it.
And for those that have never shot film, I think the combination of the "unusual" equipment I use, my enthusiasm about the subject, and my phrase "I've been using and enjoying film for 40+ years, why should I change now" helps convince them that I have good reasons for the choice.
Tell them that Kodak's film sector increased by 20% last year. And who wouldn't prefer a home cooked meal to McDondalds?