Politics and History

From its beginnings, the National Film Board has tackled social and economic issues. Excerpts in this theme show how documentary film can play a part in social action.

Excerpts


Front of Steel

Front of Steel 1


"I Just Didn't Want to Die": The 1914 Newfoundland Sealing Disaster

"I Just Didn't Want to Die": The 1914 Newfoundland Sealing Disaster 1


"Just One Big Mess": The Halifax Explosion, 1917

"Just One Big Mess": The Halifax Explosion, 1917 1


Land For Pioneers

Land For Pioneers 1


On Strike: The Winnipeg General Strike, 1919

On Strike: The Winnipeg General Strike, 1919 1


Rush for Gold - The Klondike Gold Rush, 1897

Rush for Gold - The Klondike Gold Rush, 1897 1


"They Didn't Starve Us Out": Industrial Cape Breton in the 1920s

"They Didn't Starve Us Out": Industrial Cape Breton in the 1920s 1


Trans-Canada Express

Trans-Canada Express 1


Voice of Action

Voice of Action 1


When Asia Speaks

When Asia Speaks 1

Front of Steel

1940, Director: John McDougall

      1 min 39 s


    


 

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Questions 1. This excerpt from the wartime movie delivers three messages: Canadian workers are skilled; Canada's contribution to the war effort is important to the Allied cause; and industry is cooperating for the war effort. What does the film show and say to reinforce these three messages?

2. How does the repeated use of numbers make the arguments convincing?

3. This movie could have been a passionless depiction of assembly lines. How has the filmmaker made it more emotionally effective?


About This Film

Short Description

The modern warfare of World War II needed steel and steel workers. In Canada, Bren guns, ambulances, transport trucks and submarine chasers were manufactured to meet military needs.


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