Orphans Assignment

2005 MIAP Intro Class

Orphans Assignment -- Research Context of Historical news clips: In groups of 3 or 4, you will be given a 4-15 minute VHS clip of nonfiction footage from the late 1920s or early 1930s from the collection of the NewsFilm Library at the University of South Carolina, or you will work on an assigned 1936 work from the Internet Archive. With the NewsFilm, you will also have access to a temporary cataloging record for the clip by searching the catalog of the NewsFilm Library. Your assignment is to research the context of this clip.  All these clips are in the process of being restored, and the restored versions will be screened at the Orphans Film Symposium in early 2006. What you find out about the clip will likely be presented there as well, as was much of last year's student work.  You will need to turn in both a written paper (both the paper and word-processed version) and a Powerpoint presentation (which you will present in class and hand in the file to Alicia).

MVTN 1 353: Ives on Television (1928)  5 mins
Interior: medium shot Doctor Ives, of "Bell Telephone Company", addressing Movietone audience on the future of television and its costs as a tool of communication (two takes). Note: NYC; filmed in studio; talk made for Society of Motion Picture Engineers (SMPTE); more concerned with "videophones" as opposed to broadcasting
(Rick Prelinger will share some paper files he has on this piece)


MVTN 1 598: John Belamy Taylor (1928) 9:29 minutes
Schenectady, New York, United States Interior; day: long shot John Belamy Taylor demonstrating his apparatus for converting beams of light into sound waves. Medium shot - closeup same. Note: physics; emulsion deterioration throughout


MVTN 4 61 (A): Johnsons on Africa Expedition and MVTN 4 61 (B): Johnsons on Africa Expedition   (1929)  3:35 min

MVTN 4 61 (A): Interior: medium long shot Mr. and Mrs. Martin Johnson talk about their upcoming expedition to Africa. Mr. Johnson anticipates clean and quiet nights, and Mrs. (Osa) Johnson immitates animal sounds. Note: emulsion deterioration at tail; edited story used in Metro newsreel 1/210; Congo; filmed in studio; NYC

MVTN 4 61 (B): New York, New York, United States Interior: medium shot Mr. Martin Johnson talks about his upcoming expedition (with his wife Osa) to the African Congo, and of the photographic journal they will provide Movietone News. Note: some emulsion deterioration; used in Metro 1/210; Congo; filmed in studio; NYC


MVTN 1 49: Masks (1928)  2:56 minutes
New York (?), New York (?), United States Exterior; day: closeup tribal masks from various cultures around the world with voice-over narration. Note: American Museum of Natural History;religion; anthropology; archaeology; slight emulsion deterioration throughout


Master Hands (1936) Jam Handy Part I is 5 mins.  http://www.archive.org/details/MasterHa1936
Classic "capitalist realist" drama showing the manufacture of Chevrolets from foundry to finished vehicles. Though ostensibly a tribute to the "master hands" of the assembly line workers, it seems more of a paean to the designers of this impressive mass production system. Filmed in Flint, Michigan, just months before the United Auto Workers won union recognition with their famous sitdown strikes. Released the same year as two other films with which it shares similarities: MODERN TIMES and TRIUMPH OF THE WILL. Selected for the 1999 National Film Registry of "artistically, culturally, and socially significant" films