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Rice and Farmer

Date produced: 1967

Filmmaker(s):

Masakazu Ueda

Description:

"Rice and Farmer depicts the life and toil of the Japanese who raise rice for a living. Ueda, who made the film, has a keen eye for composition. Few filmers today pause long enough to look for a pleasing view through the lens before pressing the trigger, but this is one of Ueda's strong points, and his film is a joy to see for this one aspect alone" PSA Journal, Aug. 1967, 37.


Stones of Eden, The

Date produced: 1965

Filmmaker(s):

William A. Furman

Description:

"The Stones of Eden is a documentary on the modern day life of a common wheat farmer in Afghanistan. Today he ekes out his living about the same as he did 2000 years ago. We see him fasten the yoke to his oxen and till the hard dry soil with a primitive plow. Five times a day he stops to kneel in prayer, no matter where he is. We see the grinding of wheat and the baking of bread. At the village the farmer exchanges his wheat for a few necessities, then leaves the village, his only contact with the 20th Century, for his fortified walls of stone to keep out wild animals, human enemies, and other fears. The film won the MPD Student Film Award" PSA Journal, Sept. 1965, 50.


Staff of Life

Date produced: 1934

Filmmaker(s):

Frank H. Demarest

Description:

"This story of a loaf of bread begins with the plowing of the ground. It continues thru discing and harrowing. Then come fields of waving wheat; the harvest and the threshing; the journey to the grain elevator and the flour mills. Scenes in a modern bakery follow and from there the bread is sent to the retail store. Children eating bread and jam are representative of the 'ultimate consumer'." Educational Film Catalog, 1937 edition, 80.


Fresh Milk Line, The

Date produced: 1951

Filmmaker(s):

Roy M. Fulmer

Description:

"The Southwestern and Centerville Railroad boasts a roadbed of less than two miles and runs only on Saturdays — and then to "nowhere." But it undoubtedly provides the favorite ride of all the kids (as well as their equally enthusiastic parents) from the surrounding countryside. In The Fresh Milk Line, Roy Fulmer, jr., records the operation of this narrow gauge railroad on a dairy farm in New Jersey, run as a hobby by the owner of the farm. Closeups of the working of the Diesel engine, the switches and signals add technical interest; while the sequence of laying a new piece of track by presumably adult employees on the farm makes it apparent that the men enjoy "working on the railroad" as much as would any youngster. Here is one film whose interest would have been heightened by a musical accompaniment with sound effects." Movie Makers, Dec. 1951, 412.


Tambo

Date produced: 1933

Filmmaker(s):

Fred C. Ells

Description:

"Documentary: On the life of rural rice farm families in Japan." National Archives.


Early Summer

Date produced: 1932

Filmmaker(s):

Tatsuichi Okamoto

Description:

"Eastman Kodak Company prize for the finest example of photography in any out-of-door picture whether it wins a cash prize or not was awarded to Tatsuichi Okamoto, Maysuyama, Japan, for 'Early Summer,' 1 reel. This is a different subject than the one which won him second prize." American Cinematographer, Jan. 1933, 25.


Story of Matsela, The

Date produced: 1949

Filmmaker(s):

Lewis Lewis

Description:

"Through the eyes and experiences of Matsela, a statuesque native of Basutoland, South Africa, Lewis Lewis reveals a stirring story of the triumph of modern agricultural science over the warring elements of nature. The account of how Matsela and his people all but perish in the dust bowl created by malevolent storms and drought, how he studies under a government program of soil reclamation and triumphantly puts his new training to work, provides an absorbing drama and an enlightening document on one of the world's grave problems. Although dealing with literal facts, Mr. Lewis dramatizes the incidents in his story with telling skill. Superb camera work and an attractive variety of viewpoints aid the dramatic effect, while a fascinating score of native songs further enhances the presentation. Save as a scientific record, the film is somewhat overlong, with the second of three 900 foot reels regrettably slow paced after the swift excitement of the opening chapter." Movie Makers, Dec. 1949, 455.


Nation Builders

Date produced: 1937

Filmmaker(s):

James A. Sherlock

Description:

"The subject of 'Nation Builders'—the history of Australia—is without doubt the most ambitious ever undertaken by any amateur filmer. The fact that the project was successful is in itself a tribute to Sherlock's skill. Granted that in connection with the 150th anniversary of his nation's founding there were pageants re-enacting historic events and an opportunity for an alter filmster to photograph them: but how many times have not other amateurs scored dismal failures trying the same thing? Filming such a pageant, it is all too easy to capture only the impression of history actually happening. The twentieth century background which must so often have been just beyond the camera-lines was never permitted to intrude upon his eighteenth and nineteenth century action." American Cinematographer, Feb. 1939, 61.


Rice

Date produced: 1932

Filmmaker(s):

Fred C. Ells

Ruth Ells

Description:

"Documentary: On peasant farm life in Korea, the rice crop and family labor." National Archives.

"'Rice,' a three reel subject in the educational class entered by F. C. Ells of Yokohama, Japan, demonstrated a fine appreciation of production and photographic values as well as how to combine it so as to make entertainment. Many were of the opinion that this picture, if it were in 35mm, would be worthy of professional theatre presentation." American Cinematographer, Dec. 1933, 321.


Rogge

Date produced: 1948

Filmmaker(s):

G. J. Gast

Description:

"In Rogge (meaning "rye"), G. J. Gast, jr., of Almelo, Holland, set out to make merely a record film of farm life in a community still committed to primitive farming methods. An ardent realist, he lived with his subject family for nearly a year before shooting his film, which was another full year in the making. An artistic cinematographer. he came up with something more than a record film. Exquisitely framed filter shots emphasize the contrasting values of light and shadow, giving the film a richly rewarding old-master quality. He achieved this by an understanding exploitation of the black and white medium. Unfortunately, his overzealous realism caused some of the interiors in Rogge to be very poorly lighted, detracting from the overall excellence of the film." Movie Makers, Dec. 1948, 495.


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