About halfway through the Second World War in Britain, people started envisaging a brave new postwar world. "The Way We Live", made shortly after the war, taps into this idealism.
This movie reminds me of my school days, when we were ushered into a darkened room and treated a film on some instructive subject such as atomic power, fluoride or sugar production. In this case the topic was town planning, and the town in question was Plymouth. Using some slender fictional devices - a writer investigating postwar reconstruction, and a "typical" family suffering from overcrowding - "The Way We Live" sets out to inform rather than entertain. There isn't much drama, and no plot to speak of. It borrows a lot of footage from contemporary newsreels. In the end we don't even get to see the rebuilt city of Plymouth, because in 1946 the city was still awaiting reconstruction.
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