Film: 5429

Industry + Work | 1950 | Sound | Colour


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Tea and how it is manufactured 1960's

A map of India is shown on the screen and the voice over gives statistics. Close up to a little piece of the map, while voice over still gives statistics.
Next picture shows mountains in the background, three women standing in a field with baskets on their backs.
Next picture shows bushes and trees. Indian music is played.
A big house is shown from the garden view. Two people (man & woman) step out of it and walk towards camera, behind a third person (coloured) who is probably a servant (because walks behind them). All walk towards a table with chairs on lawn, where one person is sitting .
Different flowers are shown.
Next scene shows village & people in their daily life. Houses are build from stone and have a proper roof. A man is shown going to the well to fetch water (he's called Rhamu) and is coming out of the house to go to work. He's having his hands folded together and starts praying, while behind him two females are visible. His wife is shown by grinding corn. She turns a wheel on top of one another with the help of a handle.
Next picture shows green plants, some of them are bushes others are trees. Close up to one of the plants , which shows brown fruits. A woman is sitting (halfway) in front of one of these plants and is picking something up from the ground with both hands. She is putting whatever she picked up into a basket next to her. More women are shown doing this in alley way of plants (trees).
Close up to trees again and bushes (small ones are shown) in a field with people & baskets in the far background. Women are shown again, which pick something up from the ground and put it in their baskets. One of the young women is shown in close up and she's having a black painted line through the middle of her face (from forehead down to her chin).
Another close up on young woman's hand with brown fruits in them, which look similar to hazelnuts. The young women leave and with them two little girls , who carry two babies in a kind of towel around their backs.
Next scene shows a group of elderly women sorting through the fruits lying in front of them on the ground. Then close up to two women sitting on two wooden blocks opposite each other and holding a wood board with holes in it. A man stands in the middle and takes the fruits out onto the board with holes. Women start shaking it and some of the fruits fall through the holes and others stay on the board.
The brown fruits are then put into another basket, which is on top of a weight scale. Then fruits gets poured into a trough and after the water calms down it is visible that some of the fruits stayed on the bottom of the trough and the others are floating on top of the water.
Next cut shows an elderly man with lots of the fruits and he sticks them into the ground. He's in a darker space which looks like a hole made into the ground (a quite deep one).
Close up to woman's hands who show the brown fruits again, which are now split open and therefore must possibly come from the place before in the scene.
Cut to two women who are surrounded by two rows of little trees parallel to each other. They are kneeling behind a wooden board with a pattern of holes in it. They put the brown fruit in the ground and cover them. So presumably they must be seeds. Afterwards a man covers the ground with straw.
A path is shown surrounded from a kind of jungle.
Next scene shows a group of workers on a field with small teaplants around them. They are taking the young plants out of the ground by making a deep hole around the stem with a narrow spate. They carefully lift the plant out of the ground. A man is drinking water from a tea leaf, because he is working under full sunshine with not much or no shade around him. Many of the young plants are then put into wooden boxes and lifted onto a hanger with a tractor in front of it.
The tractor is leaving, loaded full, and a man is standing on the back to make sure that the boxes stay in position.
Next scene shows the path like seen before, but this time not surrounded from jungle any more. The boxes are unloaded from the hanger and the plants are planted into deep holes. They all have the same distance and are also planted in regular rows. Picture shows the workers planting all the tea plants firmly.
Scene changes to Rhamu's house , where he is leaving for work. His wife comes after him and speaks to him. He lets his tools fall down and runs back inside the house. He comes out with their daughter on his arms. They look unhappy and leave. It shows them walking trough the fields with the tea plants.
Change of scene shows a sign saying: "DHULIE ESTATE HOSPITAL
The same probably stands underneath the English one in another language as well.
A group of people is sitting in a circle in front of a white building. Four people step out of the building dressed in white. They must be nurses and doctors. Rhamu arrives with his child and wife and goes towards a doctor and a nurse. The doctor uses his stethoscope and the child is then carried from a nurse into the hospital. Rhamu and his wife are looking very sad and leave the hospital.
Next scene shows workers on field full with tea plants. Close up shows the women picking leaves from the plants and putting them in baskets. Another close up shows hand picking leaves. The women pick only the top leaves of the bushes (= two leaves and a bud). The women are leaving the field with the baskets on their heads.
Buildings are shown from a distance and lots of women with their baskets in front of these buildings. They all stand in a very long queue patiently. It looks like as if most of the workers are waiting there, but they actually only show women waiting there.
Next scene shows two men sitting at a table and the queue of women is coming from the right. Two more men are standing on the left of the table and a third man is standing opposite the table with a weight scale in front of him. One of the baskets is on the weight scale.
Close up on the whole scene shows how women's baskets get weighed and how they pick up money from a table. It must be therefore pay day.
Next scene shows a group of children sitting on sand and a fence around them. It must be a Kindergarten provided from the owner of everything. The mother's can leave there children the whole day with the well trained nurses and don't have to worry about them.
The hospital is shown again where Rhamu and his wife are to pick up their daughter because she is healthy again. They look overjoyed when they are reunited with her and walk home. They step inside the house, but a moment later Rhamu leaves the house again and walks away.
Scene shows an open air market with lots of people who are there to sell goods or buy them. And also it is a feast day and all Hindus give pray to the god Kali, whose image is shown. The market is shown again and this time a close up on the different things people can buy.
Next scene shows close up onto factory buildings. A sing is shown which says:
The building is shown from the inside where they show all the leaves lying on boards to dry. It takes 16-20 hours to take 35% moisture out of them. The leaves are being brushed from two men into a basket. The basket gets weighed again to see how much moisture went out of the leaves. The leaves are then poured down a squared hole.
Next scene shows a machine below the squared hole, which gets all the dried leaves. The machines (there are many in a row) turn around themselves. After this process is finished the leaves go into another machine, where it is made sure that they aren't in lumps any more. The leaves then have to go and dry again.
Cut to a wooden machine where the leaves are sorted out into the many grades available. Four elderly women are shown who sort out the same leaves again to make sure that no wrong leaves are in the mixture. The tea goes then into big storage bins and is only taken out if there is enough tea to make a confinement for shipping.
The tea is shown ho men put into a machine again to dry it before they can pack it into wooden chests, which are able to take 100 lb tea each.
Next scene shows that even the baskets, in which the women put the tea leaves, are produced on the tea estates.
Next scene shows countryside and how the camera is going over the countryside until it stops at a river. The chests of tea are loaded into a steamer. The men who carry the chests get them onto the steamer and before they leave the one boat they get a stick put into their right hands. They go down a wooden plank where another man takes the sticks away from them. Opposite the one man sits another one with a list in front of him. This is their counting and tells them at the end exactly how many boxes they put onto the steamer.
Next scene goes back to the tea estate where the tea plants get pruned to waist height, so that when they are in bloom it's easier for the women to pick them up. Rhamu, his wife and child are waving good-bye to the camera.
A busy road is shown in a town or more city (Calcutta) and the camera shows some things from the town. A river is shown with many steps leading down to it. Some men are standing in the water and wash themselves in it.
The port of Calcutta is shown, where the steamer arrived in the meantime as well and men are shown unloading it. The boxes go into a warehouse where they are auctioned and then led to a packing firm.
A room is shown , which has many tea cups in a long row on a table. Tea is weighed and put into the cups and hot water is poured into the cups. Then a lid is put on top of the cups. Two men are shown which taste the teas by taking a spoonful into their mouths and then spitting it into a bowl next to them. They also take a look at the colour of the leaves itself.
A tea packing machine is shown and the way how the tea is packed. Larger packets are packed by hand. Then a group of chests is shown with different names on them. Some of the names are Dublin, Boston, London, Manchester, San Francisco, etc. The boxes are driven into the harbour again, where they get loaded onto a ship which brings them over the ocean to their final destination.

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