Part 2: "Working for Change": The evolution of the documentary genre through social documentary films from 1929 through 1941. Part 3: "The Strategy of Truth": Film clips explore the use of documentary (propaganda) film during World War II.
A young American man in Paris spots a beautiful woman in a crowd and is instantly smitten, but soon loses sight of her. Later, as he and several friends are sitting at a table at an outdoor... See full summary »
This documentary short film looks at the devastating and costly problems, including seasonal flooding and erosion of precious topsoil, associated with the Mississippi River system and promotes more Federal projects to remedy the situation.
This TravelTalks short film visits the North Holland province of Netherlands and looks at its culture and customs with a focus on its well-known industry of cultivating tulips and other bulbous plants.
This Oscar-winning short documentary follows the exploits of Donald Campbell on Lake Mead, Nevada in his boat Bluebird as he attempts to be the first to successfully set a water speed record in excess of 200 mph.
This Pete Smith Specialty tells the story of the discovery of radium and how it is used in medicine. The difficulty of obtaining the element is also demonstrated. Several tons of ore yield only minute amounts of the element. At the time of filming, the entire world's supply of radium was 1-3/4 pounds. Written by
David Glagovsky <email@example.com>
Nothing funny or romantic about this serious Pete Smith specialty...
I prefer my Pete Smith Specialties to be on the light side, so it's unusual to find such a relentlessly grim short subject on the subject of radium--with very little in the way of romance, which makes the title questionable.
The accidental study of radium gets off to a start with one man's discovery of stones exposed to the rays of sunlight and then informing the Curies of his experiment. They were so excited by the prospect of looking further into the matter that they began their famous exploration of radium.
Over the years, other discoveries reveal that the substance has a curative power, dangerous as it is--and the narrator refers to the Jekyll/Hyde nature of radium which has to be carefully handled and controlled when scientists are working on it.
The narration ends with the fact that over the decades radium has been beneficial in saving numerous human lives.
A low-key episode from Pete Smith of moderate interest.
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