"Garden Closeups, by W. T. McCarthy, ACL, demonstrates its right to be placed among the ten best films because of the painstaking care and time expended in its preparation and because of the exceptional results achieved. The film covers a subject which is almost entirely in miniature, but which, in its motion picture interpretation, reveals a whole new world which only the eye of a discriminating filmer and a nature lover could catch. Here are excellent closeups of the common varieties of garden flower, pictured so skillfully that the technique used is forgotten and the actual, living flower seems revealed on the screen, sometimes swaying gently in the breeze, sometimes rifled by a gigantic bumblebee pictured in alarming closeup. Another sequence will show the honeycombed intricacies of a wasp's nest, a time condensation technique showing its gradual cessation of activity as the winter comes on. An outstanding achievement in closeup technique showed the praying mantis in the very unprayerful act of devouring its victim. The film was made almost entirely with the aid of a telephoto lens with special extension, which enabled the patient cameraman to capture his flower and insect subjects from a moderate distance. Focus and exposure alike show the result of painstaking care in Garden Closeups." Movie Makers, Dec. 1932, 560.
"Harrison and Harrison's offer of the firm's color meter in leather case, with six 1 1/4 -inch meter-matched filters in leather filter fold, was awarded Eugene L. Ritzmann of Berkeley, Cal., for his 'Garden Life.' The entrant has been making amateur movies for nine years, and his skilled work in putting on the screen in color by means of controlled timing the blooming of flowers demonstrated that his period of apprenticeship has long since expired. If a word of suggestion and distinctly not of criticism might be offered it would be the film would have greater value for the uninformed if titles should be inserted identifying the various flowers. The subject caused some tough eggs of the male persuasion to sit up and take notice. What it will do to the world of womankind it is not hard to imagine." American Cinematographer, Jan. 1938, 28.
"To impart life and interest to a film about growing alfalfa requires more than ordinary patience and perseverance. Mildred J. Caldwell has supplied these in her picture, Green Gold. Filmed throughout the year, it shows the plowing, seeding, mowing, bundling and threshing, to create a story with depth and perspective. There were times when the movie maker had to climb on stacks of baled alfalfa or ride on a lumbering machine while it performed some vital operation in the culture of alfalfa. Hemet Valley, in California, was the setting, providing pleasant scenic backgrounds for the different operations." Movie Makers, Dec. 1947, 537-538.
"Item is a film of a trip to Hawaii taken by Dr. Willinsky and his wife, Sadie. In the form of a travelogue, footage of Hawaii's landscape, vegetation, landmarks and local population is interspersed with captions that were added in by Dr. Willinsky to provide information about the country's culture. Footage includes shots of sites around Honolulu and Waikiki, surfers, Hawaiian flowers, churches and temples, sugar cane farming and singers performing outside a hotel. Sadie is occassionally spotted exploring the sites and interacting with locals."
"From Capetown, South Africa, comes Help Yourselves, Boys!, by Lewis Lewis, a charming record of two handsome youngsters and their father engaged in planting, growing and harvesting zinnias. Using many effective angles and double exposed titles, Mr. Lewis relates a plausible tale of his boys raiding the grape arbor, being caught, and finally having their exuberance turned toward flower growing. Since the newly hatched garden is situated close to the ocean, the scenic backgrounds are startling as well as pleasant. Rich, black earth and flaming orange zinnias provide an attractive setting for an engaging family movie." Movie Makers, Dec. 1947, 538.
"How Pine Trees Reproduce has some exciting scenes and some little known information on a subject few of us know much about. It could be a dull film, but Dr. Harlow's skill with camera and scissors has produced a most informative result" PSA Journal, Sept. 1964, 51.
"Dr. William M. Harlow is professor of Wood Technology at the State University of New York, College of Forestry. His film records the unparalleled spectacle of live insects being trapped by the pitcher plant, the sundew and Venus flytrap. Expert close-up photography and effective time lapse sequences employing home made equipment includes material never before recorded on film. A top flight nature film with suspense and drama, carrying a powerful appeal to any audience." PSA Journal, Dec. 1955, 35.
"As an openly avowed disciple of Herman Bartel, one of the old masters of nature filming, Martin E. Drayson has been an ably and imaginative pupil. Seldom have individual scenes of such delicate beauty as his poured across the screen of personal movies. Interlude in Sunlight, like Mr. Bartel's work in Awakening or Pathetique, is essentially an effort to interpret, in cinematic imagery, compositions of music. As such, it is divided into three sections or movements, comprised pictorially of bees, flowing water and flowers. The musical scores which these interpret are Paganini's Moto Perpetuo, Massenet's Meditation from Thais, and Johann Strauss's Wiener Blut waltzes. Preceding these pieces (during the lead title assembly) and between the several sections, Mr. Drayson has elected the use of complete silence." Movie Makers, Dec. 1945, 496.
"Henry E. Hird offers the framework of a timely continuity plan for a scientific record in A Letter. A naturalist father writes a film letter to his sailor son who shares the father's scientific interest in bird and insect life, as well as in floral beauty. We see the father writing and the son reading a letter, the information in which is brought to life in film. Mr. Hird is a very capable observer and movie maker, and the combination of these abilities has enabled him to offer, in this informal style, a wealth of information. Extraordinary sequences of nesting birds are included." Movie Makers, Dec. 1943, 477.
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