BFIHistory & NostalgiaNewsreel & DocumentariesA Day in the Life
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Four outstanding British documentaries by John Krish. ‘The Elephant Will Never Forget’ (1953) is a farewell to London’s trams while ‘Our School’ (1962), looks at 1960s education. ‘They Took Us to the Sea’ (1961), records a seaside outing for disadvantaged children and ‘I Think They Call Him John’ (1964) is a deeply moving account of an elderly widower.
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John Krish is one of British cinema’s best-kept secrets: a master of post-war documentary filmmaking who repeatedly turned his works for sponsors as diverse at the Central Office of Information (COI) and the NSPCC into not just effective non-fiction films, but truly stirring cinema to rank alongside the world’s greatest directors. A Day in the Life collects together four of his most cherished films: The Elephant Will Never Forget (1953), a farewell to London’s trams Our School (1962), charting the beliefs of educators, and the aspirations of the decade’s young school-leavers They Took Us to the Sea (1961), a poignant record of a seaside outing for disadvantaged children I Think They Call Him John (1964), a deeply moving account of an elderly widower. In each of these films – richly textured with the details of everyday post-war life – Krish combines a deep belief in humanity with a compulsive desire to push the documentary form forward. This essential and critically acclaimed collection is supplemented by an interview with Krish, as well as Krish’s rarely seen films I Want to Go to School (1959) and Mr Marsh Comes to School (1961).
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