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James Sibley Watson,
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A look at the filmmaking process in the prehistoric era, inside the Stonehenge Film Company. It seems some things haven't changed much. The process begins with the writer dropping off his ... See full summary »
Dr. Raymond Dowidat and his wife Esther have been living in the town of Cologne, Minnesota for about two years. Esther's diary gives her impression of the town, which is located close to many dairy farms. She describes the farming habits typical to the area, the operation of the local flour and feed mill, and other characteristic features of the town. Written by
One of the 50 films in the 4-disk boxed DVD set called "Treasures from American Film Archives (2000)", compiled by the National Film Preservation Foundation from 18 American film archives. This film was preserved by the Minnesota Historical Society. See more »
The three actors are credited during the film by the entries in the diary. See more »
For an amateur movie from the 1930s, this is made with some real skill, and aside from a few tip-offs such as some unpolished inter-titles, it might easily have been made by more experienced film-makers. The content itself is the kind of simple but pleasant Americana that is easy to watch as long as it does not go on too long, and at less than 15 minutes, it's able to hold your attention all the way through.
Created by a doctor and his wife who spent a couple of years in the town of Cologne, Minnesota, it gives an honest yet caring perspective on the type of farming community that must have been (and probably still is) very common in their part of the country. Much of it shows the kinds of scenes you would expect, showing activity at farms, the local feed mill, the blacksmith shop, and the like. It's not without a little humor, as in the brief comment about and shot of the town's significance as a railway stop.
It's edited together quite smoothly, and features a good assortment of camera angles. Although the diary narrative device was already an old one at the time, it is pretty well suited to the material. It's easy to watch, and it's somewhat more interesting than you would expect such a movie to be.
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