"In An Apple a Day, F. Radford Crawley has epitomized, in color, the story of a Canadian apple orchard. He shows, in perfectly exposed Kodachrome scenes, how the trees are grafted and pruned, how the orchard is mulched with straw and how the trees are sprayed. He shows the apple pickers at work in attractively chosen angle shots and, without interrupting the flow of action, he introduces the different varieties of apples grown in Canada. Horse drawn carts carry the apples to the packers, and there follows a tightly edited sequence of the ring pack method, culminating in a brilliant closeup of the top of an open basket of apples. In an epilogue, the basket is opened in a home, and children bob for apples at a Halloween party. Ingeniously managed upward angles show the children's faces bobbing for apples floating in the water above the camera. (The method of producing these shots was described in The month of plenty, by Mr. Crawley in the October, 1938, Movie Makers. The execution of the plan is perfect in the film.) Brilliant close shots of beautifully colored fruit stud this film like jewels, and especially satisfying are the subtitles, made by double exposing white lettering on a scene of an arched branch of an apple tree, filmed against a dark, late afternoon sky." Movie Makers, Dec. 1939, 634.
"Mexican Silhouette, conceived as a gamble, has grown up to glory. After but a few years of average movie making experience, Clement K. Chase — as with so many — felt an irresistible urge to attempt, in one film, a concentration of all his accumulated skill and experience. He turned to a subject he knew with intimacy and affection, and Mexican Silhouette was the result. It is a splendid educational and general interest study, divided flexibly into three main sections — Mexico, D. F., Mexican Agriculture and Mexican Cities. To these subjects, Mr. Chase has brought a mature photographic skill, marked by tripod steadiness, stimulating compositions and a dramatic feeling for the use of filters. Well titled in the original silent version, the film is now being distributed commercially in both sound and silent editions." Movie Makers, Dec. 1939, 633.
"Charles A. Ferrie, jr., an urban movie maker, has gone back to the land for the beauty and charm of Mother Earth. Here, in carefully filtered and unfailingly well composed shots, he has caught the moist freshness of newly turned soil, the delicate loveliness of waving grain, the quiet dignity of men going about the homely tasks of the farm. His method of subject matter treatment has been to study these things from the outside, as a sensitive spectator, rather than to involve them (and the spectator) in a story told against such backgrounds. Mr. Ferrie's photography is consistently good and often striking, while his sequencing adds much of interest and inspiration to an essentially pastoral subject." Movie Makers, Dec. 1938, 620.
"Well known for its attainments in the commercial film field, the T. W. Willard Motion Picture Company sets a new high in its publicity productions with Follow the Plow. To technical excellence they have added sound sequencing; into a record of vocational education, they have instilled beauty and human interest. The subject matter concerns the training given to selected city boys in the fundamentals of farming at the Bowdoin Farm, operated by the Children's Aid Society of New York City. Tracing the course of these boys from the sidewalks and streets to the fields, at New Hamburg, N. Y., the location of the farm, the film expands with the glorious color of the autumn country and becomes a living essay of the pleasures of farm life. Constantly changing angles and intelligent titling lend pace to the production. Despite the limited interest in the specific subject of plows and cows, the appeal is made universal through magnificent color scenes and competent treatment." Movie Makers, Dec. 1938, 618.
"The Making of Canadian Homespun, by Duncan Mac D. Little, ACL, is a distinctly novel cinematographic achievement because it is an al fresco industrial film depicting a process of manufacture that normally is largely performed indoors. In addition, it is a uniquely valuable contribution to folk way records, listing, as it does, in a lovingly made film inventory, the steps involved in the production of homespun cloth by a geographically sequestered population which maintains one of the last stands of homely folk craft on the North American continent. Mr. Little's picture was made in summer in a region lacking facilities for indoor lighting. It compresses seasonal activities into the space of a few days, showing sheep shearing, preparation of the wool and its spinning and weaving. For this purpose, a spinning wheel and loom were set up in the open by the country people of the locality, who cooperated happily with Mr. Little. Not only is this ancient process preserved in an exceptional film record but, at the same time, there are offered many character studies of exceedingly individual French Canadians." Movie Makers, Dec. 1935, 551, 553.
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