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Title:LIFE AT IWERNE MINSTER IN WAR TIME - AUGUST 7TH AND 8TH 1918 [Main Title]
Film Number:IWM 285
Summary: British inspirational propaganda film of the rural community of Iwerne Minster, between Shaftesbury and Blandford Forum in Dorset, during the last summer of the First World War.
Description: The film stresses local personalities (some mentioned by name) and details of local life. At the village pump a notice-board is used for newspapers to spread news of the war. Children play round a maypole at the village school, which is used as a cinema in the evenings. Various thatched cottages in the village. Small-scale farming activities at a local farm, including butter-making, a farm show, and an auction where "heifers" (actually mainly bullocks) and rams are exhibited. More small activities, rabbit keeping, bee keeping, hive manufacture and poultry farming. German prisoners of war, still wearing their uniforms, work on the land with the local farmers, cutting down trees and making hay. The film's message is that "we must all pull together and everyone must do their best, then happiness and prosperity will come to our homes".
Production Details: Ministry of Information (Production sponsor)
Personalities, Units and Organisations:
Keywords: society, British - domestic: [+] (object name)
agriculture, British - animal (object name)
agriculture, British - arable (object name)
propaganda, British - inspirational (object name)
animals, mammals: sheep (object name)
animals, mammals: cow (object name)
Iwerne Minster, Dorset, England, UK (geography)
Physical Characteristics: Colour format: B&W
Sound format: Silent
Soundtrack language: None
Title language: English
Subtitle language: English
Technical Details: Format: 35mm
Number of items/reels/tapes: 1
Footage: 1100 ft; Running time: 19 mins
Notes: Date: the captioning suggests that the film, at least in this version, was released after the war. It has some similarities in message with the final inspirational propaganda films made by the MoI in November and December 1918. NB the last title in the film is misleading as it says "a view of the Hampshire Downs"; Iwerne Minster is, in fact, in Dorset.
Remarks: fascinating social history, using clichés to good effect. The portrayal of England as principally an agricultural country is in accord with the southern rural myth, rather than fact, and this film is a valuable contribution to this myth.