A depiction of life in wartime England during the Second World War. Director Humphrey Jennings visits many aspects of civilian life and of the turmoil and privation caused by the war, all without narration. —IMDb
Humphrey Jennings was born in Walberswick, Suffolk on 19 August 1907 and became not only a filmmaker but a photographer, literary critic, theatrical designer, poet, painter and theorist of modern art. While studying English at Cambridge, he designed the first British productions of Stravinsky’s A Soldier’s Tale and Honegger’s King David, and founded and edited Experiment with William Empson and Jacob Bronowski. By 1936 he was a leading Modernist and organised the International Surrealist Exhibition in London, along with Herbert Read, Roland Penrose and André Breton.
Jennings joined the GPO Film Unit in 1934. His early films, like those of Alberto Cavalcanti (with whom he often collaborated), were criticised by the documentary movement’s realists for their experimental qualities, and Geoffrey Nowell-Smith has argued that Jennings’ work is better situated in the context of experimental film and the European avant-garde than within the documentary movement.
In 1937 Jennings… read more
Stewart McAllister was born in Wishaw, Lanarkshire, Scotland, the only son and second surviving child of Hugh and Jeanie McAllister. He and his three sisters had a comfortable childhood. Stewart and his father were members of the local photographic club, which sowed the seeds of his interest in experimenting with film. (Stewart liked to experiment: later in life he decided to build a television from scratch. After the explosion, he was found unconscious on the floor.)
He attended Wishaw High School before going on to study painting at Glasgow School of Art.
Stewart graduated from Glasgow School of Art in 1936, the winner of that year’s Dame Laura Knight travelling scholarship for his portrait painting. Though the political situation was becoming difficult, he toured all the major capitals, going as far east as Hungary, with letters of introduction for each country. Because he had a photographic memory, these visits were the reason why he was later used by MI6 as an interpreter… read more
A symphony of time and place ... To portray an era in such an impressionistic way with no narration just sound, music and visuals is in itself a great feet.
Probably the most influential documentary maker of WW2 and his films are not available on Mubi, plenty of rubbish from people you have never heard of though, I guess that about sums Mubi up.