13 December 2009

A Film - The City - 1939

I found this old film through James Howard Kunstler's website. The words to the film were apparently written by Lewis Mumford. The first few minutes showing farm life aren't that interesting, but the scenes of the city and the actual living conditions of a city which appears to be Pittsburgh are fascinating, as are the huge traffic jams filmed in the 1930s. These are a pretty interesting demonstration of the way people saw the problem of the American city in the early 20th century.

Clip 1, from bucolic farms complete with basket making and loom weaving to sooty dangerous factories:


Clip 2, The fast city:


Clip 3, cities going crazy, traffic jams and crowds:


Part 4, the planned alternative, the suburbs (with magically no cars):


If you are interested, you can watch these videos overlaid with a running commentary by Jim Kunstler here.

1 comment:

David said...

Great film. Naxos recently re-released it with an updated sound track and refreshed visuals. Fantastic beginning and then it gets kinda boring when they go on about Greenbelt, MD.