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Title:CHRISTMAS PREPARATIONS IN NORTHERN BURMA [Allocated Title]
Film Number:FUB 26
Other titles:BRITISH ARMY OPERATIONS IN SOUTH EAST ASIA DURING THE SECOND WORLD WAR [Allocated Series Title]
Summary: Film apparently taken in northern Burma showing preparations for Christmas in December 1944, by men of 36th Division.
Description: View over a supply dump in northern Burma with tents and stacked crates. Men unpacking wooden crates; one box is marked 'Lime Juice Cordial'. Packing bottles into a crate with straw for padding. Close-up bottles of Frontenac Blue Label lager with crown design. One soldier passes bottles to another who packs them; crates are marked 'handle with care'. Hands picking up bottles. Close-up crate 'Glass - Handle with care'. Crate of bottles of 'Three Feathers Blended Whiskey'. Close-up of a bottle. Light 6x4 lorry carrying alcohol; troops sit on top and wave bottles as it drives away. Unloading livestock from an aircraft; they are thrown out into the back of a lorry. Close-up sheep. Ducks paddling about in a fenced-off pool. Indian cooks mixing (cake dough?) by hand. Removing cake tins from the oven. Tins awaiting 'turning out'. Sheep grazing. Lorry reversing to a pile of discarded baskets. Baskets carrying live ducks are opened. Various shots of ducks and geese. Men carry a large basket on a pole; it is opened to release a small pig. Pigs in a pen. Unloading crates. Close-up of small items, including 'Xmas Plum Cake', 'Carr and Co.'s Biscuits' and a bottle. Another close-up with cigars, Crystal Court gin, Three Feathers whiskey, a bottle of honey and some toffee.
Technical Details: Format: 35mm
Number of items/reels/tapes: 1
Footage: 400 ft; Running time: 5 mins
Notes: No dopesheet for this film, but insignia identify 36th Division and the date is consistent with other material shot in this region.
An interesting film in its emphasis on the provision of food and comforts at Christmas. Troop morale in the far east was a precious commodity, made fragile by the distance from home and the difficulty (if not impossibility) of supplying fresh food to forward troops. Beer was particularly scarce and therefore precious, with the beer seen here being a product of the Canadian Frontenac Brewing Company. Three Feathers Blended Whiskey was apparently an American product that used potato spirit to offset the wartime shortage of grain for distilling.
For other film of Christmas festivities in Burma, see related items.
JFU 228 (CHRISTMAS ON THE INDO-BURMA BORDER [Allocated Title])
JFU 229 (CHRISTMAS FESTIVITIES AT YAZAGYO [Allocated Title])
FUB 27 (CHRISTMAS CHURCH SERVICE IN BURMA [Allocated Title])
FUB 28 (CHRISTMAS FESTIVITIES IN THE ARAKAN [Allocated Title])
FUB 34 (CHRISTMAS CHURCH SERVICE IN NORTHERN BURMA [Allocated Title])
FUB 36 (CHRISTMAS FOR TROOPS IN NORTHERN BURMA [Allocated Title])
FUB 40 (WELSH CHRISTMAS DINNER IN NORTHERN BURMA [Allocated Title])
MWY 220 (CHRISTMAS FIELD CHURCH SERVICE IN THE ARAKAN (AMERICAN CAMERAMAN) [Allocated Title])