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Glimpses of Java and Ceylon (1937)

Approved | | Documentary, Short | 6 March 1937 (USA)
A visit to the island of Java when it was part of the Dutch East Indies, and Sri Lanka when it was still called Ceylon.


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Uncredited cast:
Narrator (voice) (uncredited)


This travelogue begins in Java, the Dutch East Indies. We see a panorama of light and street scenes in Batavia (Jakarta), Java's capital. These are quiet and peaceful people. We watch a restaurant serve rice table, and dancers perform the "nightmare dance." On to Ceylon, the crown jewel of Britain's empire, the crossroads of two hemispheres. We begin in Colombo and its lighthouse. The men are feminine in dress and manner. The women here have an easier time. Buddhism is the main religion: we visit temples. Then, we observe men with their water buffalo and elephants, bathing them often. We end at the shore by Mount Lavinia, the sun setting in the sea. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

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Documentary | Short






Release Date:

6 March 1937 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Glimpses of Java and Ceylon: A FitzPatrick Traveltalk  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA High Fidelity Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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User Reviews

Glimpses of Java and Ceylon was another interesting James FitzPatrick Traveltalks short
23 July 2008 | by See all my reviews

In this James FitzPatrick Traveltalks short, we go to Java-where there's plenty of rice topple with lots of unusual ingredients and a "nightmare" dance with unique music of the time-and Ceylon, Sri Lanka now, where the men wear their hair long and do "feminine" stuff like sewing and cooking and water buffalo tell time by leaving work to go to bathe in the lake. Other stuff that were mentioned by narrator FitzPatrick I can't remember right now but trust me, there were many interesting sights that was captured in perfect color throughout the short. This was another of various films, clips, and opening titles that I found on the TCM site. Many of the shorts featured there are the FitzPatrick Traveltalks color films that were shown before the main feature in various theatres that were owned by M-G-M's parent company Loew's Incorporated. To anyone interested in these vintage series entries, I highly recommend Glimpses of Java and Ceylon.

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