Film: 6372

Places + Locations | 1940 | Sound | B/W

Synopsis:

Flat plains of Spain.
It shows sheep, shepherd's house and family, wheat and barley, threshing with horse drawn method and canal irrigation. Villages and old bridge with ancient houses.

"The heart of the Spanish peninsula consists of a great plateau, the meseta, 2000 to 3000 feet above sea level". A map of Spain is shown, followed by a superimposed white area that covers most of the inland area on the map. The white area in the centre of the map says "Meseta".

The camera pans slowly across the "Meseta". It’s a slow shot of flat plains with patches of wild grass. Another shot of the plateau show a few lonesome telegraph poles stretching across the plain. Far up on one of the gentle slopes is a ploughed field. Close up of long grass and shrubs moving gently in the wind. A longshot flat plains in the foreground, telephone poles to the left and hills in the distance.

A man drives a flock of sheep across the plains. They kick up a lot of dust. The camera pans away from the sheep and we see the back of a small boy who is watching. Two sheep dogs tear across the plain towards t he sheep. A young boy, Pedro, stands next to a sheep. He holds it by a collar of sorts. He wears a white shirt with dungarees. An older boy leads a sheep away as other sheep walk by in the background. Pedro and another young boy watch the sheep go by. A man grabs a sheep and holds it for the camera. A young boy watches.

Sheep are driven across the plateau as lots of dust rises as they walk past. Sheep graze in a stone paddock. Many have a large "G" branded on their sides, after the name of the shepherd Gonzalez who owns them. Most of the sheep are white, few are black.They look freshly shorn. Pedro holds a white sheep by the collar with another young boy who holds it by the wool on its back. A young man walks out of a hut.It’s the family house. Its made out of crude bricks(?) and seems to be finished with mud/clay. The door is wood. Three men, progressively older stand in front of the house, posing for the camera. One wears a white shirt with draw string over his chest, another a black shirt and brown waistcoat. The oldest wears a white shirt buttoned up, a waistcoat, jacket and wide brimmed straw hat. Close up of Gonzalez, the shepherd. He has a face full of deep lines and character. A small piece of wood protrudes from the corner of his mouth, Close up of Perdo's mother Anna. Close up of Perdo's grandfather Antonio, wearing his hat. A shot of Pedro's three brothers-aged roughly 20,13 and 3. Shot of his three sisters-aged roughly 3, 7 and 8). A chicken stands in the front of the door to the house. "Grandma" comes to the door and smiles.

A donkey pulls a man on a flat wooden frame over an area of harvested wheat. This process separates the grain from the chaff, thereby threshing the wheat. A man stands on one wooden frame as he is pulled by two donkeys. An empty wooden frame is pulled next to him. A man sits as a donkey pulls him sitting on a frame. Close up of the soil shows it to be very dry with a few patches of wild grass. Close up of shrubs with two daisy-like flowers, Long shot of the meseta shows a dry part in the foreground and a dark patch of irrigated land. A farmhouse is seen in the distance. A shot of a canal full of water leads to another shot of a smaller canal also full of water.

A small branch with leaves floats down the canal. Water from the canal flows out from under a tree and over parched land. Crops grow in the foreground as the camera pans slowly around a healthy looking field, Flat roofed farmhouses are in the background. Water flows over dry ground. Another shot of crops in a field. A dry foreground leads to a line of trees growing around the canal, attracted there because of the water. Houses from a village huddle together on a hill above a river. The buildings are made from stone and have wooden doors and iron bars on the windows. Barefoot boys of about 5 run around in the dust.Three women in blouses and skirts stand against a brick wall and wooden windows.

A long shot of the mountain range behind the village through the gap between two houses. Roofs are made from wood. Washing hangs outside a window on a washing line. A slow pan shot of the stone houses. An old man and a few chickens make their way between the houses, over the stony ground. A long shot of the dry land away from the village . A shot taken through the window of a car/bus of the long straight dusty road through the meseta.


To request more details on this film, please contact us quoting Film number 6372.