British Universities Film & Video Council

moving image and sound, knowledge and access

This Working Life: Tales from the Shipyard

Synopsis
This 2-disc box set, the second release in the BFI’s This Working Life series, features 23 films made between 1898 and 1974. The collection contains over five hours of material that portrays our nation’s shipbuilding past through acclaimed documentaries, little-known cinematic gems and emotive actuality films, made at the great shipyards of Belfast, Clydeside, Tyne and Wear and elsewhere. It draws together films from the BFI National Archive and two brand new restorations from the Scottish Screen Archive at the National Library of Scotland.

Beginning with three Mitchell & Kenyon films and scenes of jubilant workers celebrating spectacular launches in the early 1900s, further highlights include King George V and Queen Mary’s morale-boosting trip to Northern England’s shipyards at the tail end of the Great War; rare footage of the stunning SS Olympic (1910) showing the building and launch of the Titanic’s sister ship; beautiful colour film of the iconic Queen Mary in RMS Queen Mary Leaves the Clyde (1936); Sean Connery’s perspective on Glasgow’s industrial relations in The Bowler and the Bunnet (1967) - the only film Connery ever directed - and lyrical documentaries in celebration of industrial might such as Shipyard (Paul Rotha, 1935) and the Oscar-winning Seawards the Great Ships (Hilary Harris, 1960).

DVD extras include a previously unseen archival interview with Sir Sean Connery from 1967 in which the actor discusses his views on labour relations, after making The Bowler and the Bunnet; Illustrated booklet with new essays and detailed notes on all of the films, with contributions from BFI curators, Sir Sean Connery, and others.

Full title list: Disc one
The Launch of HMS Albion at Blackwall (1898) Employees Leaving Messrs Vickers and Maxim’s in Barrow (1901) Workforce of Scott & Co. Shipyard, Greenock (1901) The Launch of HMS Dominion (1903) King Edward VII Launches HMS Dreadnought from Portsmouth Dockyard (1906) SS Olympic (1910) The Launch of HMS Lowestoft (1913) Visit of Their Majesties the King and Queen to the North-East Coast Shipbuilding and Engineering Works on the Wear (1917) RMS Queen Mary Leaves the Clyde (1936) Shipyard (1935) Chains (1939) Tyneside (1941) Steel Goes to Sea (1941) The Little Ships of England (1943) ‘Shipyard for Colliers’ from Mining Review 2nd Year No.3 (1948) Berth 24 (1950)

Disc two
We’ve Come a Long Way (1951) The Sea Shall Test Her (1954) Seawards the Great Ships (1960) A Great Ship (1962) The Bowler and the Bunnet (1967) UCS 1 (1971) Launch (1974)
Series
This Working Life, Series
Language
English
Country
Great Britain
Year of release
2011
Subjects
Engineering; Film studies; History
Keywords
archive films; industrial archaeology; shipbuilding industries

Distribution Formats

Type
DVD
Format
Region 2 PAL
Price
£24.99
Availability
Sale
Duration/Size
314 minutes
Year
2011

Distributor

Name

BFI Video

Email
video.films@bfi.org.uk
Web
http://www.bfi.org.uk External site opens in new window
Phone
020 7957 8957
Fax
020 7957 8968
Address
21 Stephen Street
London
W1T 1LN
 

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