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Primitive Pitcairn (1936)

Approved | | Documentary, Short | 1 January 1936 (USA)
This visit to Pitcairn Island in the South Pacific Ocean shows that life for the residents has changed little in the years since Fletcher Christian and his fellow mutineers on HMS Bounty, ... See full summary »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Carey Wilson ... Narrator (voice)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Viola Christian Viola Christian ... Herself
Edit

Storyline

This visit to Pitcairn Island in the South Pacific Ocean shows that life for the residents has changed little in the years since Fletcher Christian and his fellow mutineers on HMS Bounty, along with several Tahitian natives, landed here. The island is self-sufficient and has few visitors. Among the islanders we see at work is Fletcher Christian's great-grandson. Written by David Glagovsky <dglagovsky@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Documentary | Short

Certificate:

Approved
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 January 1936 (USA) See more »

Filming Locations:

Pitcairn Island

Company Credits

Production Co:

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Connections

References In the Wake of the Bounty (1933) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Not a Paradise

This ten-minute short was shown on TCM on Saturday, May 16, 2009 as a lead-in to the great 1935 movie "Mutiny on the Bounty" starring Clark Gable and Charles Laughton. Unfortunately, I didn't see the opening credits, but I believe the narrator's voice was Carey Wilson. This documentary was extremely well done and it portrays vividly what life was like as a resident of Pitcairn in the 1930's. The film shows the harsh topography of the islands and how difficult it is for longboats to navigate the surf. The population of the island at that time numbered about 200 people, a number which Wikipedia indicates has shrunk to about 50 people as of 2005. No doubt, the harsh living conditions has contributed to the desire of people to leave the islands. Their economy is explored showing how they prepare native crafts for sale and barter with the occasional passing ship, an occurrence which is rare, often being a year apart. The native wood is inferior and almost useless for building construction, so a popular import from the outside world is lumber for their homes and church. Road construction is shown consisting of the entire populace turning out with picks and shovels for the affair. Obviously, such amenities as paving are non-existent. Food preparation appears to be communal and sharing of the available supplies is freely done among the people. The film ends with the ironic observance that so much of the world only has to visit the nearest 5-and-dime store to obtain the necessities of life while those who live on Pitcairn have to devote almost every waking moment to eke out an existence. An island Paradise, it clearly is not. But this peek into their world is truly fascinating and if you have a chance to see this little film, do not miss it.


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