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Title:REVIEW OF NEW ZEALAND TROOPS BY SIR WALTER LONG [Main Title]
Film Number:IWM 196
Summary: New Zealand Division on the Western Front, March 1917.
Description: This is the first film devoted to the New Zealand Division. It was taken on 8-15 March 1917. It opens with Major-General Sir Andrew Russell, the divisional commander, with Sir Walter Long, Secretary of State for the Colonies, reviewing the division on 9 March on the Armentières-Bailleul Road. They are accompanied by Lieutenant-General Sir Alexander Godley, GOC II ANZAC Corps. Units of 2 NZ Infantry Brigade march past led by their band. This is followed by an inspection of the NZ Pioneer Battalion, where Long is escorted by the second in command and senior Maori officer in this unit, Major Peter Buck. After this the film becomes increasingly difficult to interpret (see Notes). Trench scenes show a single soldier firing a Lewis machine gun over a parapet, and the firing of rifle grenades. A view of no man's land. A group of unarmed soldiers walk through a deep muddy pool in a shell crater. A party of soldiers coming out of the line is shown walking along a duckboard footpath in single file with snow on the ground. 15th Battery NZ Field Artillery of 18-pounder field guns shown firing from concealed positions in a village, matched with bursting shells throwing up mud in no man's land. The film ends with scenes from a rugby match between the NZ Divisional 'All Blacks' and 38th (Welsh) Division, with a crowd including several officers watching. The match was played on 15 March 1917, the New Zealanders winning 10-3.
Personalities, Units and Organisations: Russell, Andrew Hamilton (person)
Long, Walter Hume (person)
Godley, Alexander John (person)
Buck, Peter (person)
New Zealand Military Forces, New Zealand Div (regiment/service)
Keywords: delegations, New Zealand national - political (object name)
weapons, British - smallarm: Lewis machine gun & [New Zealand] (object name)
weapons, British - projector: rifle grenade & [New Zealand] (object name)
destruction, French military - area (object name)
weapons, British - gun: 15-inch howitzer (?) & [-] (object name)
recreation, New Zealand military - sport: rugby union (object name)
Somme, France (geography)
Technical Details: Format: 35mm
Number of items/reels/tapes: 1
Footage: 963 ft; Running time: 16 mins
Notes: Title: this is taken from the negative.
Intertitles: scratched on negative.
Production: in 1916 the NZ authorities negotiated for British official cameramen to film New Zealand military activities. This arrangement proved unsatisfactory and New Zealand subsequently made its own arrangements - see IWM 157. This is the one film specifically taken by a British official cameraman of the New Zealand Division.
Summary: Russell was conscious that this was the first film the New Zealand public would see of their division in France, and his staff detailed a comprehensive programme for the cameraman showing all aspects of trench life. Much of this programme is included in the resulting film - hence the scenes of mud etc.
Authority: additional detail from Christopher Pugsley, 12/1993.