An amazing vintage film that illuminates the history of communications, Telephone and Telegraph is a phenomenal historical experience. As the film reveals, telegraph jobs were similar to those in the growing telecommunications field of the 1940s. There is stock footage of a late 19th century Western Union office and a Bell telephone, as well as a lot of great video of analog equipment. Most interestingly, the film also reveals the gender roles of the era when it divides the available telecommunications jobs up by sex, saying that some jobs just weren’t open to "girls." Men were encouraged to get a college degree, which would help them in their careers as engineers, couriers, executives, installers and others. Women, on the other hand, are told that they could work as operators, clerks, or secretaries. This vintage film illuminates the history of telecommunications like no other!
This astonishing historical film educates the audience about the old plantation system in the South, but does so in a revealing way that exposes the racist attitudes and the remnants of slavery in the South. At the beginning of the film, a white family takes one of many available old plantation tours and learns about the layout of the plantation, including the main house, the surrounding fields, and the slave quarters where blacksmiths, carpenters, and field hands worked and lived. The echoes of slavery are ever present, as these were certain slave plantations during black slavery. After viewing the old plantation house, the tourists go around the countryside by car, observing the South in the 1950's. The footage captures images of black tenet farmers working in the cotton fields and at their houses which differ little from the old slave quarters. This demonstrates how southern segregation had hardly ceased. In the end, a group of well-dressed whites are shown at an outdoor party, while the narrator says, “Today, if we visit a social gathering in the South, we'll see some of these things. The gentle manners and courtesy. The separation of society into distinct groups. And the relationship of that society to the land, which supplies its wealth. These are some of the things the plantation system has contributed to Southern life.” This is a fascinating and absorbing film due to its antiquated position on African American slavery and slave plantation homes.
This X-Ray history and education film is informative and engaging for lovers of science. The film begins by touching upon the invention of X-Rays. The discovery of the X-Ray by Wilhelm Conrad Roentgen in 1895 was a unique one that was not fully understood or capitalized on until years later. X-Rays are unique in that the rays can’t be seen but its effects can be made visible. The recording of these X-rays onto film is known as radiography. Spectacular footage of bones moving behind X-rays (without any radiation protection!) are shown in all their glory. This great discovery has led to man advancements in both medicine and industry improving not only the lives of patients and doctors but of businessmen as well, and this film documents it all beautifully.
During World War II the need for welding and other high skill manufacturing was desperately in demand. This vintage vocational training film promoted a crucial vocation that was necessary for the war effort: welding. Methods shown include flat and overhead welding and cutting, electric resistance, arc welding, shielded arc, metal table, and carbon rod. Spot welding and stick welding are also shown. The film explains what types of jobs are out there for welders, and what physical and school requirements are needed. It discusses production jobs, work in the steel or automotive industries, air craft building, and bridge and pipeline work. While oxy-acetylene equipment is now considered obsolete, the methods shown here are not much different from modern ones, and a hobbyist or someone interested in welding as a career will find much of interest in this informative film.
Famous broadcaster Lowell Thomas narrates this deftly informative educational video about oil processing and oil industry history. This Jam Handy production offers a very simple and useful account of oil drilling, transportation, world oil reserves, oil well drilling, oil refinery, oil pumping to the consumer, and oil uses in the average household. Using animated diagrams and real footage of oil wells, refineries, laboratories, and pipelines, the film goes into detail without becoming confusing. Viewers will be well informed about classic petroleum production by the end of More Power to You.
A grab bag of vintage treasures! Harlem Revue from the 1930’s is a captivating gander at African American culture, oppression, music, and history from a turbulent time in the United States. Stupendous performers Bill Powers and the Brown Sisters, as well as several other black musicians, showcase their talents in a sonorous music presentation. But the film begins with dreadful displays of racism: two black men acting foolishly before climbing aboard a stage with insulting drawings of African Americans. But the music is sweet and enjoyable – a vintage vaudeville experience. As a historical relic for black history, it would be hard to top Harlem Revue which practically sums up the essence of the racial conflict in early 20th century America.
In the Beginning contains splendid imagery, including animation and early photomicrography, of all parts of the mammalian reproductive process. At first, the film documents scenes of animal life, including human children, then the film moves into more biologically detailed scenes that include photos and animation of ovulation, fertilization, and cell division. There are several views of biologists dissecting rabbits in order to show the reproductive system, the young in-utero, the placenta, and the umbilical cord. All the while, narration provides clear explanation of the imagery.
This 1940’s vocational film explores the ever important field of nursing. Choosing a nursing school, what qualifications the school requires, state licensing examinations, choosing a specialty, private nursing, and public health nursing are all examined in detail. Many fascinating scenes showing women training in laboratories, practicing on each other, treating patients, and taking tests are shown. The film comments that men can be nurses too, but are generally employed by psychiatric hospitals and heavy industries. Overall, this film illuminates what nursing was like in the 1940s in an engaging manner.
A wonderful vintage movie! Aqua Frolics shows some early underwater footage from the 1940’s, when this technology was brand new. Shots include both humans and sea creatures swimming and playing underwater. Some oddball footage spices things up further: a family enjoys a Thanksgiving meal at the bottom of a pool, playing basketball underwater. But there are also more conventional activities that are still tons of fun: playing water polo, water skiing, and speedboat racing. We also get to watch people cavorting with seals and dolphins. All in all, Aqua Frolics is an ocean’s worth of aquatic recreation.
Don't be fooled by the bland title "Personal Hygiene," this is one of the wackiest old films ever made: the topic of personal hygiene is transformed into a musical production! Produced by the United States Army, this film’s main character is Homer, a GI who doesn’t wash often enough and begins to offend his fellow barrack mates with his smell. In an effort to get him to change his hillbilly ways, they change the lyrics of old folk songs and serenade Homer with such ditties as “Wash Your Socks,” What Are You Going to Do With a Dirty Soldier?” and “Come a fly-yi-yippee-i-ay,” a song about attracting disease-carrying flies. The Army used this film as a way to encourage cleanliness among their GIs so that the men could stay healthy and comfortable.
This 1950s U.S. Army training film deals specifically with the psychological trauma that soldiers who witness mass casualties on the battlefield due to a nuclear attack would experience. Far from adequately prepping military officers for a post-apocalyptic disaster and its emotional scarring aftermath, the film informs its audience that nervousness, confusion, and sadness can all be expected as a normal part of dealing with such a catastrophe. Don't dwell on the destruction of nuclear weapons and atomic bombs, the film claims! A soldier can soon recover from this mental trauma and get back out on the front. Laughably, the only physical effects that are touched upon deal with minor burns. Management of Mass Casualties provides an astonishing examination of military psychology in the 1950s.
As the tumbleweeds drift slowly by their ranch, and the rooster greets the morning sun, an old civil war veteran and his beautiful young niece don’t know they’re besieged by enemies. They don’t know because, in Guns of the Law, their enemies all pretend to be their friends! Fortunately for them, this film stars the Texas Rangers with Dave O’Brien and James Newill who are out to protect honest people. The classic beauty Jennifer Holt is the niece, and she employs the Texas Rangers to help save them from greedy con artists who would swindle them out of their land. And as much as the Rangers prefer diplomacy, this one breaks out into a vicious explosion of gunfire! Guns of the Law is a taut, fast paced Western eruption of action.
Gasoline for Everybody is an ironic film that touts the powers of oil in general, and gasoline in particular. The focus of the film is how gasoline is processed out of crude oil, all the way from oil extraction to paying at the pump. Breathtaking scenes of processing plants are intermingled with informative animation that break down the scientific and technological aspects of gasoline production. But the overarching theme of Gasoline for Everyone is how fuel will propel America to the stratosphere.
Lowell Thomas narrates It's Wanton Murder with his famous sonorous voice about the dangers of driving. Echoing more popular notions during World War 2, Thomas immediately points out that "death does not exist in war alone." Casualties from bad car accidents each year far outnumber the amount of people who died in World War II, the safety video tells us. To best exemplify this statistic, Thomas reads a letter from an army wife who describes worrying about her husband overseas, only to have him returned without injury, but be killed months later by another driver. Featuring high production values and searing dramatic scenes (especially for a highway safety video), It's Wanton Murder is a touchstone safety film. Unusual for the time, brutal footage of actual car accident carnage is included. But the overall message remains uplifting, as prevention, carefulness, and safety are paramount to living a healthy and happy life. These vintage car accident videos in It's Wanton Murder could scare anyone into traffic safety training!
Capturing the essence of big city nightlife in the forties, The Girl from Monterey breaks the hearts of viewers. Loving, fighting, and scheming in nightclubs, boxing gyms, and big time boxing matches are the basis of the film. The rapturous Lita Valdez stars as a worn out cabaret singer who discovers that her little brother has a gift for prizefighting. But Valdez realizes that the current champ that her brother must fight is her lover! Viciousness swirls around Valdez, her brother, her lover, and the opposing camps promoters and handlers, with everyone becoming a backstabber. A dark and powerfully created cinematic experience, The Girl from Monterey exposes the seedy underbelly of a dishonest world.
Driven to Kill, narrated by Lowell Thomas, tells the story of Hal, an upstanding U.S. citizen who changes into a dangerous madman when he gets behind the wheel. With Thomas’ classic dry delivery as a backdrop, the film captures Hal as a real red-blooded American: he hunts and isn't afraid to let his kids play with knives in the kitchen! He’s a different man when he’s driving, though, and his road rage (or aggressive driving) causes him to get in an accident that kills the other driver. Throughout this educational video are beautiful shots of classic cars and vintage automobiles. The ruining of Hal's life in this scare tactics video serves as a stern message about the dangers of reckless driving. Bad drivers at their best, Driven to Kill is an amusing glance at the history of road rage in America, with some important lessons car safety features and safe driving.
"This is not a Hollywood production as can be readily seen." Thus begins one of the most infamous and shocking safety films ever made. Featuring graphic footage of real fatal car accidents, Signal 30 is the notoriously horrific gore-fest that was shown to unsuspecting high schoolers and driver's ed students for decades to "inform" them about teen car accidents. Presented by the Ohio State Highway Patrol, the film promotes automobile safety and safe driving by documenting the carnage of car road traffic accidents. Using sick graphic video clips as scare tactics, the extremely upsetting nature of this film urges drivers to be responsible, as explained by a deadpan and creepy narrator. Most often the victims who are shown are dead or horribly injured, and almost any viewer is scared straight. Signal 30 is a historically significant video that has often been imitated in popular culture. Of all the driver's ed videos, this film is the real thing; and it lives up to its reputation for making a stomach turn.
Party's Over is a fun melodramatic fright video about the importance of seat belts, made in the 1970s. When a group of friends get together for a wild party, everyone is having a good time and not worrying about boring things like "safety." The more important topics at hand are 1970's fashion. One hipster flips on the television to see a commercial, which equates telling someone to buckle up with saying, “I love you.” The stylish party goers laugh this goofiness off. Over the groovy seventies' music, everyone begins explaining why they don't wear seatbelts. Some just don't think anything bad is going to happen. But this carefree attitude gets dampened when two of the guests are late in arriving... .When word gets around that they were killed in a bad car accident, the party goers begin to understand why everyone should wear seatbelts. Party's Over is one of those hokey safety films that is just too much fun. It's much easier to listen to classic lines about seat belt safety and the importance of wearing a seat belt while also learning what to wear to a 70's party. Seatbelt use has never been more entertaining.