This very short documentary from the Canada Vignettes series provides a short history of the Bluenose schooner, a celebrated racing ship and hard-working fishing vessel that became a provincial icon for Nova Scotia and an important Canadian symbol in the 1930s.
These vignettes from 1954 cover various aspects of life in Canada and were shown in theatres across the country. Subjects included here are: Veteran Steamer Ends Record Service: On the mountain-circled Arrow Lakes of British Columbia, the Minto, an old stern-wheeler whose service dates back to the 1890's gold rush, makes her last round of calls. Inside Story of a Lady's Mink Coat: From raw pelts to fur auction, to dressing plant to fashion designer, we follow the several stages in the manufacture of a beautiful, luxurious mink coat.
This short film from 1944 depicts the swift development of the Canadian northwest for wartime strategy as well as post-war planning. The Alaska Highway was only one result of wartime prosperity in the northern region, and this film looks at some of the others, including air routes to Europe and Asia.
This film recreates the true story of Tom Sukanen, an eccentric Finnish immigrant who homesteaded in Saskatchewan in the 1920s and 1930s. Sukanen spent ten years building and moving overland a huge iron ship that was to carry him back to his native Finland. The ship never reached water.
This short documentary from the Canada Carries On series celebrates the contribution of Canada’s railroads to the war effort. The film includes a sequence from Buster Keaton's 1926 silent comedy The General, as well as a re-enactment of Lord Strathcona driving the final spike into the Canadian Pacific Railway Line.
This feature-length fiction, originally produced as a television miniseries and based on the novel Nuages sur les brûlés by Hervé Biron, explores the colonization of northern Quebec during the Depression-era 1930s. These historical dramas relive the toil, hardship and unexpected rewards of the pioneer. Folk singer Félix Leclerc appears in each episode. Part I: Encounters with the inhospitable wilderness while clearing a townsite. Part II: Struggles for leadership; log cabins are built and the women arrive. Part III: The dangers of frontier life: forest fire, accident, anxiety about bankruptcy, lack of tools, hard labour. Part IV: Big steps forward: the curé brings in teachers and is in turn presented with a new, though rough-hewn, church.
The amazing success story of the Laser, a thirteen-foot sailboat built by Ian Bruce of Pointe Claire, Québec, and of Performance Sailcraft, the company he formed to produce and market it. Simply designed, durably built of fiberglass, it is a pleasure craft that has brought summer sailing within everyone's reach on coastal and inland waters around the world.
This feature documentary profiles the brave Canadians who fought in the Spanish Civil War between 1936 and 1939. To save Spain's constitutionally elected government from the threat of a fascist dictatorship (which eventually prevailed), over 40,000 volunteers from around the world fought in Spain, and 1200 of those were the Canadians of the Mackenzie-Papineau Battalion. More than half of them never returned. This respectful, emotional and historically rich film is committed to the memory of those who truly believed in the cause of the Spanish Republic.
This short documentary is an overview of the events that marked Canada between 1918 and 1927. Beginning with the Armistice of 1918, the film ends at the height of the great economic boom of the late 1920s. In between, the film shows the manners, morals and customs of the period, and evidence of Canada's growing nationalism.
The Depression era. A small town in Saskatchewan, Dominion Day, 1935. A Royal Canadian Mounted Police sergeant runs up against a group of desperate people who plan to join the Trekkers on their march to Ottawa in protest against the daily wage of twenty cents a day paid by the government to the unemployed in federal labour camps. Kid, the hero, has wrangled a truck and is planning to transport people and food to the Regina meeting place. Because of its illegal nature, their mission is thwarted by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. But only briefly. Humour, suspense and music enliven this short historical drama.
This documentary examines some of the important events in Canada during the Depression years: the Moose River mine disaster, the great drought on the prairies and the introduction of a transatlantic air service between Canada and Europe. The film also looks at the major world events that influenced Canada: the abdication of the king of England; civil war in Spain; Hitler's rise to power and Canada's declaration of war on Germany. Part of the Between Two Wars series.
In this short documentary, massive ships harking from all four corners of the world majestically glide by on the St. Lawrence River as riverside residents watch. But they know nothing of the secrets hidden in these floating leviathans laden with colourful containers - except for a select few who get to briefly join their voyage when they guide the ocean-crossing ships safely into harbour.
Nadine Beaudet's World of Passage captures poetic fragments of life on board as sailors perform their endless tasks.
This film is part of the The first edition. of the 5 Shorts Project, created by the National Film Board of Canada and produced in conjunction with Spirafilm, a Quebec cooperative dedicated to independent cinema.
The second edition can be found here.
The third edition can be found here.