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The true story of the British explorer Robert Falcon Scott and his ill-fated expedition to try to be the first man to discover the South Pole - only to find that the murderously cold weather and a rival team of Norwegian explorers conspire against him Written by
Michael Brooke <email@example.com>
The Ealing Studios production `Scott of the Antarctic' is a work of art and an inspiration to human achievement. The film depicts the polar explorers of the Second Scott Antarctic Expedition (1910-1913). They are portrayed first as pygmies against the terrible backdrop of the ice continent, then as dauntless giants within the enclosed spaces of their fragile tents as they await their certain death.
The mood of the film is High Victorian, although strictly speaking the setting is Late Edwardian. Edward Adrian Wilson, the artist, played by Harold Warrender, is the quintessential gentleman naturalist. As the film begins, Wilson is shown in the summery garden of his tranquil country homestead in England, meticulously creating a scientific illustration of a mounted bat. At the end, when Wilson is among the few remaining explorers who face frozen death in their wind-whipped tent, his spirit drifts away to his English home.
The Victorian faith in mechanisms is brought forth by close up shots of distance-measuring wheels that are attached to the backs of clumsy man-drawn sledges, and by the heroic but flawed powered tractors that break down in the awful cold.
The film invites the viewer to arrive at his or her own conclusions about the character of Captain Scott. The film makes no judgments - it merely portrays Scott through the superb acting of John Mills.
`Scott of the Antarctic' is a timeless film about eternal values: human endeavor, achievement and triumph.
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