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Title:LA GUERRE ANGLAISE : grand film documentaire en 4 parts - les tanks anglais a la bataille de la Scarpe [Main Title]
Film Number:IWM 233
Other titles:SONS OF OUR EMPIRE (export version) [Alternative Title]
Summary: British propaganda film, almost entirely stock or fake material, purporting to show their involvement in the Battle of Arras, Western Front, April 1917.
Description: Mostly taken, scene-for-scene and caption-for-caption, from the series IWM 130 SONS OF OUR EMPIRE, which itself purported to show the last stages of the Somme offensive of 1916. British troops disembark at a French port and the various arms, Artillery, Cavalry and Infantry, prepare for battle. The role of the tanks is stressed, and several Mk I and Mk IV types are shown. The preliminary bombardment runs from 18-pounder field guns to 12-inch railway guns. Two FE2b aircraft fly a patrol. The attack takes place and the troops reassemble afterwards.
Production Details: War Office Cinema Committee (Production sponsor)
Personalities, Units and Organisations: British Army (regiment/service)
Keywords: combat [simulated], British (object name)
operations, British military (object name)
Arras, Pas-de-Calais, France (geography)
propaganda, British & [+] (concept)
Physical Characteristics: Colour format: B&W
Sound format: Silent
Soundtrack language: None
Title language: French
Subtitle language: French
Technical Details: Format: 35mm
Number of items/reels/tapes: 4
Footage: 3683 ft; Running time: 62 mins
Notes: Intertitles: some are French, some German, and some in parallel texts of both languages.
Summary: see also the series IWM 130. This film appears to have been intended to be shown as a complete performance with breaks, rather than episodes in a series. The use of both French and German subtitles suggests that this version was intended for Switzerland.
Remarks: valueless as a historical record of the fighting on the Scarpe, but a good record of British propaganda techniques aimed at neutral Europe at this date. The film shows the classic 'big battle' structure of the British films of 1916 and early 1917.
IWM 130-01+2 (SONS OF OUR EMPIRE EPISODE 1 : Winter on the Western Front [Main Title])
IWM 130-03+4 (SONS OF OUR EMPIRE EPISODE 2 : Glimpses of the British Navy in war time [Main Title])
IWM 130-05+6 (SONS OF OUR EMPIRE EPISODE 3 : the King's message to his troops [Main Title])
IWM 130-07+8 (SONS OF OUR EMPIRE EPISODE 4 : Preparations for the Great Offensive [Main Title])
IWM 130-09+10 (SONS OF OUR EMPIRE EPISODE 5 : Attacking hard [Main Title])