Film: 1925

Places + Locations | 1950 | Sound | B/W

Clip:

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Synopsis:

Title over ship in port of East London, South Africa. Map of South Africa showing Union of South Africa, Cape Province, South Atlantic and Indian Oceans. Close-up on map of sea port of East London.

Shot of approach from sea and the long waterfront can be seen. Cut to steamship arriving at port, where the Buffalo River joins the Indian Ocean. Camera pans waterfront and harbour of the only South African sea port on a river mouth. Two ships are shown quayside by the port's jibs. As exporters of wool and mohair, the camera shows the port's industrial machinery on the quayside. Passing moored vessels the camera pans the port before close-up of bows of a large ship. Long shot of a double-decked iron bridge, used by cars and railway stock, that links the East and West banks of the Buffalo Harbour. Cut to Oxford Street, East London's longest thoroughfare as a bus passes by. Exterior shot of Colosseum Building, with buses passing. Next is the open air fruit and vegetable market. The busy market has a uniform lay-out with trestle tables for displaying produce. A man in a white coat is seen selling produce before a close-up of vegetables on a table. Some young men are shown inspecting the fruit and veg.

Cut to sign denoting 'aquarium'. Shot of people viewing penguins in small pool. Switch to bathing beach where people are shown in the sea as the waves roll in. The camera reverses from the waters of the Indian Ocean to the beach. Close shot of people on beach in swimming costumes under sun umbrellas. Toddlers playing at water's edge. They splash around in the sea and then return to the Orange beach. Long camera shots of sea shore and sandy coves. Isolated shot of lagoon, then small sailing craft on the water. Long shot of Buffalo River and the surrounding hinterland. Shot of small jetty on the river with a few craft moored. High shot of valley and surrounding hillsides. Reservoir shown that is built above the river.

Outside of the port a group of natives are sat on the grass. These are mainly women with children. A number of men are seen walking wearing tribal dress. A group of women follow behind. Another shot of bare chested women carrying large baskets on their heads. Women approach camera dressed in long robes. They all sit down on a mat and face the camera. Close-up of seated young girl with head dress, beaded necklace, and chest covering. Xhosa women shown as a group with some men who are smoking. Close-up of young man with ornate head covering and chest decoration. Another woman in heavy shawl, beaded necklaces, and head bandana. Back to the man and woman both smoking long thin pipes. Young boy in tribal costume, followed by mother carrying a baby inside her shawl. Group of smiling women, one with mud or clay, smeared on her face. Camera pans along line of seated Xhosa, showing the individuals wearing their various forms of tribal dress. The group then get to their feet and begin to dance. A circular, shuffling, kind of dance, involving clapping. The mud huts can be seen in the background. Next a man from the tribe is shown milking a cow. At sunset the young Xhosa boys drive the cattle down to the water's edge.


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