Film: 9578

Places + Locations | 1970 | Sound | Colour


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New York USA and London UK - two modern cities in the 1970's

Pan left across London skyline. Number 26 red Routemaster bus to North Finchley as it travels along in traffic. Vegetable market stalls as people buy vegetables. Facade of theatre lit up at night. Soldiers wearing red jackets and bearskin hats marching outside Buckingham Palace. Horseguards as they ride outside Buckingham Palace. Police Constable in uniform, wearing pith helmet talking to lady. Black London Underground employee in uniform, collecting tickets.
Voice-over of various people saying why they like London. Children pushing box in playground. Small girl pushing small boy on trolley. Child rocking on see-saw. Children playing in sandpit. London Underground sign. Baker Street station. Man selling newspapers on stall outside tube station. Red Routemaster bus as it travels around corner.

New York. Zoom out from the top of the Empire State Building. Voice-over is now an American voice rather than the English voice commenting on London. View of Brooklyn Bridge from Manhattan and across to New Jersey. Manhattan skyscrapers. Traffic travelling along three lane freeway, in both directions. Lots of shots of cars on the freeway, all tightly packed together. People rushing across street. Middle aged woman runs along sidewalk towards camera. Her legs seen running through other people's legs. People crossing street as another woman is running. People pushing onto subway carriage. Subway train F as it leaves station. Graffiti can be seen on the wall as the train leaves. Track right along street in poor-looking neighbourhood. Rubbish in gutter and on sidewalk. Rubbish bags and bins overflowing. Track right along clean street with cars parked and restaurant in background. Commentary states that New York is a city of contrasts. Two boys throw small white ball against concrete wall covered with graffiti. Children run under fire hydrant spraying water in the street as cars pass. Two girls run across tyres on ground as part of organised game. Girl in costume dressed as fairy, possibly as Disney's Tinkerbell from Peter Pan, as she sits on the mast of a ship as it passes through the street in presumably a parade. Young black women dressed in tribal African print dresses dance in circle onstage in front of standing crowd. Chinese protest banner across street in Chinatown. Young Chinese people walk along street in Chinatown. Banner for 'Pizza'. Stall with large pizza on metal platters. Kebabs on barbecue. People walking amongst those foodstalls. Catholic procession with float covered in flowers and metal bust of the pope. Zoom out from man on top of building roof to view of skyscrapers and rooftops.

London: American commentary. London traffic along street, including a red double decker bus. American bus, blue, single deck as it travels through traffic full of yellow cabs in New York. Commentary states that this is a tale of two cities. London and traffic warden directs people across zebra crossing at Sloane Square. Red bus and the department store, Peter Jones, can be seen in background. New York and large crowd of people passing each other on sidewalk. London and Horseguards on parade outside Buckingham Palace. New York and pirate ship float, looking like Captain Hook's ship and the Peter Pan characters travels down crowded street in a parade. Zoom out from Queen Victoria Memorial statue outside Buckingham Palace across rooftops. Pan left across rooftops of the City with the dome of St Paul's cathedral visible. New York and zoom out from bridge to reveal tall, square skyscrapers. Large red brick buildings cluttered together.
Interview with city planner, an Englishman who regularly works in the two cities. He is interviewed seated at his desk with large leather-bound books on bookshelf in background. He says that Londoners have, for 800 years expected God, The Church and the Government to shape their city but in New York the emphasis is on the individual. In London the government has curbed the growth of the city but New York is still growing. Pictures of rows of identical high rise buildings under construction in New York. Red crane amongst building materials. London skyline with very few skyscrapers and factories as commentary says these are being moved out of the city. London and pan right over lots of 1960's- looking blocks of flats. The planner says that in London families moving into public housing will probably stay there for life. Public housing in New York, red brick built apartment blocks are where families stay before they can afford somewhere better. New York. Mrs Lopez, a public housing tenant walks down street in orange coat and trousers. Voice-over as she walks down street describing where she used to live. Children playing. Woman and child turn skipping rope as Mrs Lopez walks towards building in background. She walks in through building door. Finger presses button in lift. Lift door opens. Interior of Mrs Lopez's apartment and shot of door covered in locks and anti-burglary devices as sound of her opening the door is heard. Mrs Lopez coming into the flat. Here she feels safe. She says it is not the most beautiful building in the apartment (sic)but it is her apartment. Shot of kitchen with gas stove orange cupboards and 1970's large flowery wallpaper in orange. Mrs Lopez walks into the kitchen and works over the sink. She likes this room as it is where a woman spends most of her time. She peels a potato with a very large knife. She stands at the window to watch her children playing. She waves. People on the concrete area below. Girl hauls herself up onto climbing frame. Small boy in anorak with furry collar. Young girl in brown checked coat climbs through large concrete tube. Girl running and jumping. Zoom in up building to Mrs Lopez leaning out of window. Mrs Lopez loves New York and commentary says that her husband drives a school bus and that public housing is intended for people at their income level.
London. View of housing estates. The commentary also calls them Lansbury Estates in E14 - The East End - and says that they are public housing in which the tenants are usually dockers or factory workers. Two lines of houses with identical back gardens facing each other. Zoom in to washing line with clothes on it in one back garden.
Interview with Bernard Perkins (unseen) who is in charge of public housing. Mothers and children outside a school. Old people sitting on benches outside houses. Street with houses all the same and high rise blocks in the background. Perkins' commentary says that they attempt to recreate communities. Three men, one of whom is Mr Perkins, stand talking on tarmac playground area near the houses. Mr Perkins, in dark suit and pink swirly tie, discusses with man the need for fencing. Perkins thanks the man for his views. Boom microphone seen in shot. The man also thanks the camera crew. Perkins and another man point to areas. Pan right across houses. Perkins and man walk past houses in background with large flowering bush in garden in foreground. Woman in red dress crouched by flowerbed using trowel. She attends to border full of marigolds in her front garden. She has never had a garden before, said in voice-over and the rent is £31 or $76 a month. Woman and husband sitting on black leather-look sofa in very 1970's room. Wallpaper has large brown diamond shapes on it. They drink cups of tea whilst their son lies on the floor watching television. An older-looking boy, teenager, sits in another chair.

Young boy comes down slide in playground. Children playing in what looks like school playground. Small boy pulls trolley containing two more small boys. Two small girls walk hand in hand. Children playing in sandpit supervised by an adult. Three teenage boys kick football around concrete area with houses behind. Boy shoots ball at goal marked in white paint on side of wall. Sign reading Lansbury Lodge as two elderly ladies sit in sunshine in front of house and talk. More people talking. Elderly people siting around large table. Old man smoking. Two old women winding wool. Woman comes out of house and, holding little boy's hand, walks down road. She stops to talk to a woman gardening. Little girl holding doll. Market stall on Lansbury estate. Man selling vegetables. Women buying vegetables. Men selling cauliflowers. Women shoppers browsing. Voice-overs from female shopper and market stall owner. Women looking at baby and children's clothes on stall . Women buying goods. Uniformed police constable walking along street through market stalls. Stops to speak to woman on haberdashery stall. Male voice-over says that Constable Leigh has been around for years and knows everyone by name. Constable walks back down the street. His voice-over says in the seven years he has been o n the force he has never had to draw his truncheon out. He stops to speak to another woman on a stall. More of the constable walking down the market street. Voice-over of constable Leigh talks about guns and the police force. They are not needed in his opinion in London. Stops to speak to man with beard and typically 1970's haircut. More shots of constable as voice-over says the people respect the police.

New York: two police officers get into a blue and white panda car. Voice-over says that in New York now the police are not popular. Police car cruises street. Inside police car and officer with moustache driving. Voice-over of the officer. Black police officer also in car, partner, as they drive around. Stop at a hardware store where shopkeeper shows damage to lock where someone tried to break in. The two police officers listen. City of New York police badge on door of police car as they drive away. Rear of police car as it travels down street. Tracking shot past people on street. Police car stops by abandoned car and the officers investigate. Black officer speaks into a very large hand-held radio. View of officer driving police car through streets with siren on. Two passers-by watch as the car goes past. View over dashboard as police car passes through traffic with siren on. Car stops and as officer gets out of car, he pulls out his gun. Both officers, now armed, run towards building. Siren light revolving. New York street and "Don't Walk" sign as people rush past. People walking down steps into the subway. View from the crowded platform as subway train pulls into station. Subway train rushing past. People coming off carriage. People pushing onto carriages. Door of subway carriage with graffiti. Voice-over of woman saying the subway is dangerous. Graffiti on subway carriages. Graffiti on bus. Woman's legs running. More legs running.. Crowds move along sidewalk. Traffic along street. View from inside yellow cab. Driver behind plastic screen. Voice-over from driver. Taxi driver. Cabs and traffic in Times Square ?

London. Man hails black cab on pretty looking London street. Looks much more affluent than New York. Silver Jaguar E-type car parked across road. He asks to go to Waterloo station. Cab driver is very polite, asks him which platform he needs, opens the door for him and calls him sir. Cab driver turns off "For hire" sign . Whilst driving cab, the driver gives an interview on his job. Great interview on safety of cab driving and walking in London as opposed to in the USA. Pelican crossing with orange light on top of black and white striped pole (Belisha Beacon). People crossing. W.H.Smith's in background. Lots of traffic. Traffic wardens stopping traffic to allow pedestrians to cross road at Sloane Square. View from car as other cars pass. People walking into Sloane Square tube station. Large underground sign. Tube station platform as tube train pulls in. View from inside the tube as people get off. Nice shot taken from going down the escalator of people coming up on the escalator. Voice-over says that the London Underground is safe to use. Royal Court Theatre façade, on Sloane Square. Man dressed in cream leather coat with furry collar, reading script outside Royal Court Theatre entrance. Voice-over is of an actor, the man described, who says London is the centre of the film, television and theatre world. Actor as he turns the leaves of the script. Actor looking at posters outside the Adelphi Theatre. Theatres on Shaftesbury Avenue and night all with neon signs. Various theatres at night, including the Apollo, the Piccadilly Theatre and the Adelphi Theatre. People getting off coach. Women in fur coats walking in theatre entrance of the Adelphi for Show Boat. People into theatre. Man and woman out of car and into theatre.

New York: Woman wearing large Afghan-style coat walks down street. Voice-over is of an actress, the woman described. She stops at a news stand and buys a copy of "Variety". She eats a doughnut whilst circling pieces in the paper. Large fountain outside the Metropolitan Opera House, I think. People in evening wear in foyer. Large hot-air balloon of dog in parade. Windmill float in parade. Father Christmas and sleigh float. Children looking at Christmas window display of automated Santa and Christmas scene. Balloons at market. Pizza stall. Catholic parade with float o pope. Huge hot-air balloon of Snoopy as it travels down street past tall buildings. Lots of people on streets. Scenes of crowded streets. Very quick cuts that appear as flashes of board with 'Police Line… Do Not Cross' lying on discarded tyre. Homeless man lying on cardboard in the street. Graffiti covered wall as children throw ball against it. Police light on top of car. Police out of car and draw guns. Police badge on side of car. Woman hanging washing on fire escape. Rubbish in gutter. Young boys play on wasteland covered in tyres and rubbish. Woman in blue skating dress pirouetting on icerink. Zoom out to show other skaters and then the whole icerink in Central Park. View of the park with the buildings in the distance. Manhattan skyline with Chrysler building.
Zoom out from Queen Victoria Memorial Statue outside Buckingham Palace, London. View of skyscrapers in New Yorker. Views over the London rooftops. Soldiers at Buckingham Palace. Zoom in to man talking to Mr Perkins. Mrs Lopez walking down street in New York. London and policeman talks to shopkeeper. New York, police car down street. London as woman and small boy leave house. Mrs Lopez in New York coming into her apartment. New York cab driver, actor outside theatre in London, actress looking through variety magazine in New York. Pan right across industrial looking area of London.

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