Social History | 1930 | Sound | B/W
The start of a bad day. Getting out on the wrong side of the bed ! Man in boarding house or lodging house.
Opening shot of man counting bank notes and silver money. Montage of dissolve of typewriters, pamphlets coming off the press. A body turns under sheets. Light glistens on water. Winter trees with watery sun in background. Tracking shot through woods to silhouettes of chimneys. A maid pulls up the blind. A foot stretches out from under the blanket. Shoes are tossed on the floor. A cup of tea put on a bedside table. A man slowly wakes up. Then sinks back into his pillow. He sleeps. One eye opens. He sleeps again. Pulls back covers and decides to stay in bed. Pulls blankets and sheets over him again. Sound track saying "Get up, Get up, Get up". The man tosses and turns. He wakes with a start. An under the bed shot of his feet gingerly touching the floor. He rubs his knee and yawns. Takes a sip of tea. Ties up his pyjama bottoms, puts on dressing gown. Turns on tap and splashes a tiny bit of water onto floor, intending to wash himself. Walks off. Pokes tongue out in mirror. Burns himself under hot tap. Tries to squeeze toothpaste out of tube, it goes everywhere. Close up of cleaning teeth, rinsing mouth. Back to mirror to poke out tongue. Morning preparations continue including Alka Seltzer drink. Man pulls faces as he drinks. Golden Morn shaving soap. Shaving brush working up lather. He has no new razors. Finds old one in nick-nack tray. Shaves with blunt razor. Cuts himself. Interesting montage of quick edits as he scrabbles around looking for cotton wool. Finds cotton balls and blood drips onto basin. He has nicks all over his face covered with cotton wool. He takes towel upstairs to bathroom. Bathroom is occupied by a whistling man. Our hero returns to his room. Places towel on towel rack which falls over. Bathroom still occupied. Young man comes out apologizing. While our hero's back is turned, the bathroom is occupied again! Feet in close up walking up stairs. Model cow on mantlepiece is animated and shaking its head. Our hero exercises, touching toes, general callisthenics. This is done by montage and arty shots. He opens bedroom door. Bathroom still occupied. He closes door. More exercises. Cow looks puzzled. Close up of crazed cow eyes intercut with man exercising faster and faster. At 50 the cow does a foreleg stand! Our hero lights a cigarette. He gets on the floor to do bicycle kicks. The bathroom is free but it is steamy and flooded. He wipes condensation off window, cleans the filthy ring from around the bath. Gets into bath (naked knees!). He has forgotten his towel. Runs naked (from knees down) to retrieve it. He lies in bath, water splashing out of head end. Washing himself. Drops sponge on floor. Grapples blindly for it. Lathers face and sinks down under water, holding his nose, to rinse naked torso! Makes bubbles and blub blub sounds as he goes under water again and again. This is shot from lots of different angles. At the tap end, his feet sink slowly into water. He relaxes and falls asleep. There is a knock at the door. He has a phone call and must get out of bath. Shot of feet and towel wrapped body as he talks on the telephone. Bare feet running up stairs. He drops towel. Picks it up again. Wrapped in towel, he meets a woman coming down the stairs reading a letter. He hides. In his room, we see (shot from under bed) boxer shorts going on, vest. He dries hair. Money falls out and rolls all over carpet and under chest of drawers. He looks for hair lotion, finds it, combs hair. Close up of hair being combed. Hair being smoothed out with brush. Man does up buttons of shirt looking into mirror. The shirt is dirty. Puts it in laundry basket. All drawers are empty, he has no clean shirts. He takes dirty shirt out. Pan along breakfast table with eggs, toast, tea, plates etc on. Our man puts on his collar. Comes down fully dressed in double breasted suit. This sequence intercuts with breakfast utensils being taken from his place. He makes it to the breakfast table with two knives to spare! Women reading letters, books, newspaper, men reading and drinking tea. Goes to get food off side board. A fried egg in what looks like solid lard! Marmalade passed down table. Removal of coffee pot makes his newspaper fall down. Someone steals the last piece of toast. He cracks egg. Begins eating it. Someone is blowing smoke. He coughs. Strange sequence of spinster type lady speaking, people trying to ignore her, one leaving the room and flowers drooping. Montage of reactions of our hero to this woman's talk. He leaves room. He laughs as boarding house colleague walks into dining room to converse with older woman. Puts on hat and coat. Tracking shot of him running down residential street. Close up of feet. He wears a bowler hat and carries umbrella. Street scene with buses and commuters. Train pulling out of a station which could be Abbey Road. Train goes into darkness of tunnel.
"End" comes up.
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