Social Issues and the Economy

National Film Board documentaries reflect upon incidents from Canada’s past and show political history as it happens.


The Back-breaking Leaf

The Back-breaking Leaf 1

Billy Crane Moves Away

Billy Crane Moves Away 1

Billy Crane Moves Away 2

Camera On Labour no. 4

Camera On Labour no. 4 1

Citizen Discussions

Citizen Discussions 1

Home Front

Home Front 1

Home Front 2

Newfoundland Sentinel of the Atlantic

Newfoundland Sentinel of the Atlantic 1

Strike in Town

Strike in Town 1

The Back-breaking Leaf

1962, Director: Terence Macartney-Filgate

      1 min 29 s


Questions 1. The excerpt begins with a young boy riding off on his horse. Why has the film editor placed that scene before the introduction of the pickers?

2. How does the camera technique contribute to the film's treatment of transient labour and the hard work of tobacco picking?

About This Film

Short Description

A graphic picture of the tobacco harvest in southwestern Ontario, from the points of view of the field workers who move in when the leaves are ripe, and of the farmers who depend on the crop.

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