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Title
Date Archived
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National Film Preservation Foundation
by International Film Foundation
movies

eye 1,057

favorite 11

comment 0

Subtle case study produced for parents, teachers, and mental health professionals on the importance of constructive parenting in overcoming childhood fears. The parents of a healthy five-year-old do not grasp why their child fears entering a cave. The mother tries to be sympathetic, but the father shows impatience. Feeling anger at his father, the child drowns his stuffed bear. After the parents take time to think about their son’s behavior, they resolve to show greater understanding, and...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Jam Handy Organization
movies

eye 579

favorite 7

comment 0

Theatrical cartoon showing the odyssey of a gasoline drop from its entry into a Chevrolet’s fuel tank to its explosive end in the engine cylinder.  Down the Gasoline Trail  uses humor to leaven the technical explanation of how a fuel system works. Note:  Released as part of Chevrolet’s  Direct Mass Selling  series. The cartoon was broadcast from NBC’s New York City experimental television station in October 1939.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Raphael G. Wolff Studios
movies

eye 434

favorite 9

comment 0

Film advocating electrically powered waste-treatment facilities. Produced as part of General Electric’s “More Power to America” campaign encouraging infrastructure investment, Clean Waters demonstrates the health and safety dangers of water pollution and presents electric-powered sewage treatment as a way to clean up America’s waterways. The film includes footage shot in 28 states and the Alaska territory. note: Clean Waters was selected “the world’s best commercially sponsored...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Roland Reed Productions
movies

eye 954

favorite 6

comment 0

Longest of four dealer promotion films in a two-hour series produced to promote Westinghouse home appliances.  Ellis in Freedomland  breaks into two parts. In the first, a store manager has a dream in which talking appliances, speaking with the well-known voices of major film and television stars, offer tips on increasing sales. The second introduces “Freedom Fair,” Westinghouse’s spring sales event, and celebrates through a song-and-dance number how the company’s appliances free...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Educational Film Institute, New York University
movies

eye 725

favorite 6

comment 0

Stark, realistic documentary showing poorly educated “mountain peoples” living in poverty and stricken with disease. Their solace comes in strong family bonds and the prospect of improved educational opportunities. Note:  Shot in Kentucky, the film was made in conjunction with  The Children Must Learn . John Ferno had been a cameraman for Joris Ivens and Henri Storck. Irving Lerner had a lengthy career as a producer, editor, and director; see Thomas J. Brandon, “Irving Lerner: A...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Roland Reed Productions Inc.
movies

eye 445

favorite 4

comment 1

Driving safety film sponsored as a public service by oil companies. Of five drivers who leave home in the morning, only four return, and we wait to learn who the victim is. The film gives considerable discussion to careless driving habits and depicts Angelenos from different walks of life as well as their homes, neighborhoods, streets, and freeways. Note: And Then There Were Four  was shown theatrically in first-run houses before being distributed on the nontheatrical circuit and released in...
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Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Clemson College Extension Service
movies

eye 526

favorite 10

comment 0

Introduction to cockroaches and their extermination sponsored by an insecticide manufacturer.  Good-bye, Mr. Roach  promotes the use of Velsicol’s Chlordane both at home and in larger pest-control projects. In one scene the workers pump the insecticide directly into sewers. Dramatic music accompanies a time-lapse sequence of roaches emerging from eggs. Note:  The film was a companion to  Goodbye, Mrs. Ant . Originally produced in Kodachrome.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Jam Handy Organization
movies

eye 1,177

favorite 7

comment 0

Industrial film detailing the manufacture of automobiles at Chevrolet’s Flint plant.  Master Hands  shows tool and die making, founding, casting, welding, part fabrication, and final assembly. The process concludes with the consumer behind the wheel of his new car. The film is set to a Wagnerian score performed by the Detroit Philharmonic Orchestra and includes only two lines of narration; in  Master Hands  the elemental work of industrial production speaks for itself. Note:  Part of...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Centron Productions
movies

eye 3,477

favorite 12

comment 0

Safety film for heavy equipment operators that was commissioned by the construction equipment manufacturer. Reminding workers to follow procedures and stay alert,  Shake Hands with Danger  features simulated accidents and a memorable title song. Note:  “Herk” Harvey directed the independent horror film  Carnival of Souls .
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
movies

eye 300

favorite 2

comment 0

Film urging the public to save money for major purchases. An ironworker learns that by building up a nest egg in a savings bank, he can eventually buy a comfortable house.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by University of Oklahoma
movies

eye 296

favorite 2

comment 0

Well-crafted film on the health problems caused by emotional stress. The drama follows a white-collar worker with a peptic ulcer through tension-filled scenes at work and at home. Linking emotional stress with physical illness,  Ulcer at Work  espouses the now-discredited theory that ulcers result from a child’s unsatisfied oral gratification needs. Note:  The cast includes real-life doctors.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by New York Daily News
movies

eye 1,333

favorite 4

comment 0

Promotional film demonstrating the importance of newspapers in everyday life. Sponsored by New York’s largest-circulation newspaper,  17 Days  is set during the citywide strike of newspaper delivery truck drivers in the summer of 1945. The film shows how the public literally went the extra mile to get their papers directly from the  Daily News . Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia does his part by reading aloud the  Dick Tracy  comic strip on the radio.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Social Documentary Films
movies

eye 313

favorite 5

comment 0

Documentary sponsored by the Rochester Public Library illustrating the range of community services offered by public libraries.  Not by Books Alone  shows how libraries advance education, provide recrea­tional opportunities, help job seekers, and promote good citizenship. Note:  The film was translated into several languages and shown at UNESCO conferences in Paris and Mexico City. Produced in Kodachrome.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Blaché Screen Service
movies

eye 295

favorite 5

comment 0

Made by San Francisco–based producer Maurice Blaché, the  Buy at Home  series promoted local small town commerce across the western United States during the Great Depression. This example was made in Burlingame, California. It features ads for merchants and various citizens—from firefighters and police officers to students of McKinley Elementary School and members of the Burlingame–San Mateo Lions Club.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Caravel Films
movies

eye 1,066

favorite 9

comment 0

Animated short promoting Bristol-Myers’s Ipana toothpaste. The cartoon uses characters from Gene Byrne’s comic strip,  Reg’lar Fellers . Note:  Produced in Technicolor,  Boy Meets Dog  was said to have been one of the most expensive commercials ever made for theatrical distribution as an “added attraction.” For more about Caravel Films, see Arthur Edwin Krows, “Motion Pictures—Not for Theatres,”  Educational Screen  18 (Dec. 1939): 363.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by March of Time
movies

eye 256

favorite 6

comment 0

Film produced to acquaint minority workers with the sponsor’s services and promote a diverse workplace. In the story a laborer threatens a walkout after his foreman hires an African Ameri­can but learns acceptance after he observes the on-the-job skills of the new hire.  An Equal Chance  also illustrates the process through which the commission resolves bias complaints. Note:  The film was shown in theaters throughout New York State.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Stoney Associates
movies

eye 379

favorite 1

comment 0

Training film for police officers explaining how to recognize and handle the mentally disturbed and developmentally disabled. At the time of the film’s making, the police were generally the first responders in psychiatric emergencies. The film uses dramatized scenes featuring New Orleans police officers and nonprofessional actors to illustrate how to communicate and control anxious, confused, and possibly violent people. Note:  Based on a pamphlet by Lloyd Rowland, director of the Louisiana...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by MPO Productions
movies

eye 3,108

favorite 62

comment 0

Best-known of the films presenting “Motorama,” General Motors’ annual traveling automobile and appliance trade show. This example introduces the 1956 automobile models, Frigidaire’s “Kitchen of Tomorrow,” electronic highways of the future, and GM “dream cars” the Oldsmobile Golden Rocket and the turbine-powered Pontiac Firebird II. An amalgam of styles drawn from industrial stage shows and Hollywood musicals,  Design for Dreaming  has become emblematic of 1950s futuristic...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by John Sutherland Productions
movies

eye 1,024

favorite 23

comment 0

Science film positioning atomic energy as both a peaceful and a warlike force. Sponsored by a corporation involved in the nascent nuclear industry, the film is an animated introduction to atomic energy and designed to be, as a Business Screen reviewer reported, “entertaining but scientifically accurate.” The periodic table, represented as “Element Town,” depicts each element in a distinctive shape suggesting its use by humans. Radium, whose giant head resembles an atomic nucleus, decays...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Jam Handy Organization
movies

eye 481

favorite 5

comment 1

Advertising short for Chevrolet combining live action and animation. The film relates the story of Gilbert Willoughby, who, exasperated by his stubborn boxspring mattress, imprudently wishes for the disappearance of springs. Coily, the animated spring sprite, grants his wish, and Gilbert is bedeviled by once-familar appliances that no longer function. Apolo­gizing to Coily, Gilbert acknowledges the contribution of springs to daily life, especially in the Chevrolet. Note:  From the  Direct...
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Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
movies

eye 300

favorite 2

comment 0

film highlights the history of the telephone, from Alexander Graham Bell’s invention to the linking of New York City and San Francisco by transcontinental voice line on January 25, 1915, with the final connection made at the Nevada-Utah state line. The short details how AT&T departments worked together to achieve long-distance telephony. Note:   A Continent Is Bridged  was intended for both corporate and public screenings and in March 1940 was broadcast from NBC’s experimental TV...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by John Sutherland Productions
movies

eye 3,209

favorite 13

comment 0

Animated critique of New Deal–type liberalism. In a dream “Albert,” a worker in a statist economy, is forced to watch a state-sponsored “free movie” on national planning. On awakening, he is convinced of the failings of excessive government control.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Jam Handy Organization
movies

eye 378

favorite 4

comment 0

Film for the Household Finance Corporation featuring its spokesperson Edgar A. Guest, the popular poet and radio personality. Guest performs without making any explicit reference to the sponsor or its products. Note:  The short was shown under the title  A Heap o’ Livin’  at the 1939–40 New York World’s Fair.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Southern Educational Film Production Service
movies

eye 524

favorite 5

comment 0

Public health film informing African Americans about syphilis and its prevention.  Feeling All Right contextualizes the problem by focusing on a community affected by the disease and the local organizations that are leading the fight against it. The film ends as it begins, with images of home, family, and neighbors. “Its frank and simple appeal is a welcome relief from the histrionics with which producers usually overburden the subject of syphilis,” wrote Raymond Spottiswoode. Note:  The...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Kaleb Film and Television Corp.
movies

eye 676

favorite 16

comment 0

Promotional film for the pioneering American plastics company that surveys the contribution of plastics to everyday life.  Flight to the Future  is structured as a discussion on a transcontinen­tal flight, during which three plastics experts (a manufacturer, an engineer, and a designer) tell the flight attendant about their industry. Over the course of the film, a multitude of plastics products are shown.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Public Affairs Films
movies

eye 253

favorite 5

comment 0

Pro-labor film blasting the greed and cunning of the “big boys” in government and in the National Association of Manufacturers who oppose organized labor.  For the Record  sees strikes as an important way to protect worker interests and explains how collective-bargaining gains were lost through the Taft-Hartley Act.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by John Sutherland Productions
movies

eye 1,242

favorite 15

comment 0

Animated history of the American economic system told from a pro–free enterprise perspective.  Free enterprise, the narrator argues, can be traced to the Bill of Rights, and the Founding  Fathers regarded “political and economic freedom” as “interlocking inseparably.” However, in  contrast to what the film characterizes as the favorable economic climate of colonial America  (where individuals had the “freedom to go into business”), today’s government imposes taxes  and...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Jerry Fairbanks Productions
movies

eye 1,144

favorite 19

comment 0

Glossy musical made to promote color “decorator” telephones. The short tells the story of newlyweds whose honeymoon must be delayed until the husband completes a new song for his client. As the husband struggles with writer’s block, his wife dreams about a remodeled home with color phones in every room, from the bedroom to the kitchen. Fortunately the telephone dial clicks provide the needed musical inspiration for the husband, and the couple jubilantly sing his new song “Castle in the...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
movies

eye 1,383

favorite 23

comment 1

Film promoting television sets and the broadcast of New York’s first regularly scheduled programs. The short shows RCA’s production studios in Rockefeller Center, television demonstrations at the 1939–40 New York World’s Fair, RCA’s Empire State Building transmitter, and remote mobile broadcast units.
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Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Vavin Inc.
movies

eye 2,164

favorite 45

comment 2

Promotional film for Seventeen intended to show how well the magazine knows and serves its teenage audience. The film observes teenage girls at home, in school, at work and play, and alone and with friends, zeroing in on teen concerns about dating, marriage, and adulthood. At one point, high school newspaper editors fire questions at Seventeen editor in chief Enid Haupt. Note: Produced in Eastmancolor. Shot near Philadelphia and at Seventeen ’s New York City office. Mia Farrow is featured in...
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Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Promotional Films Co.
movies

eye 831

favorite 6

comment 0

Documentary about the International Ladies Garment Workers Union. Told in flashbacks, the story recounts the life of a worker about to retire with a union pension. The veteran unionist looks back to the abuses common before unionization, the great organizing drives of the 1930s, and the benefits and stability brought by the union. Note:  Originally planned for showing to ILGWU locals,  With These Hands  opened instead on Broadway and played four weeks as a theatrical feature. Nominated for...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Willard Van Dyke
movies

eye 441

favorite 5

comment 1

Documentary profiling an Appalachian farming family struggling to scrape out a living. Link­ing education and economic development,  The Children Must Learn  suggests that better schooling, especially in agricultural techniques, would bring improvement.
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Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Gerald Productions Inc.
movies

eye 333

favorite 3

comment 0

Medical film sponsored by the Philadelphia-based pharmaceutical firm to illustrate how obesity affects the performance of simple everyday tasks. This unusual short made for physicians shows the struggle of an overweight traveler ascending the stairs at Pennsylvania station and trying to enter a phone booth to make a call. Fed up and exhausted, the man seeks medical advice. Note:   The Ordeal of Thomas Moon  was shot on location and used natural sound. The film contains no direct...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
movies

eye 262

favorite 3

comment 0

Promotional film showing how Monarch Foods, owned by Reid, Murdoch & Co., brings fruits and vegetables to the American consumer. The film centers on harvesting and cannery operations in Oregon, Minnesota, and Michigan and documents the preparation of peaches, strawberries, raspberries, pears, green beans, and peas to be sold under the Monarch label. The process ends with grocery displays of the canned product.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Lee Dick Inc.
movies

eye 526

favorite 8

comment 0

Documentary sponsored by a labor advocacy group to draw attention to the industrial diseases plaguing zinc and lead miners in the tristate region of Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma. Note:  Sheldon Dick initially came to the region to take photographs for a Tri-State Survey Committee report and stayed on to make  Men and Dust . Gerald Markowitz and David Rosner write that the tristate advocacy campaign was pivotal in alerting the public to the industrial health hazards faced by American workers...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by WBTV (Charlotte, NC)
movies

eye 424

favorite 6

comment 0

Documentary showing the challenges faced by North Carolina’s mountain communities in adapting to modern life. According to Elmer Oettinger, North Carolina author Wilma Dykeman found that  The Vanishing Frontier  “explores, reveals, and interprets with cool intelligence and a warm sympathy the paradoxes, problems, and promises of our mountain region.” Note:  The film brought to the screen information from a 1962 Ford Foundation survey. Also known as  The Dying Frontier .
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by March of Time
movies

eye 269

favorite 2

comment 0

Promotional film for two-way radio equipment. Targeting municipal government decision makers,  A Voice Shall Be Heard  follows a Syracuse, New York, family through an atomic attack exercise and shows the role of the portable two-way emergency radio communications system in the coordination of rescue operations in the affected area. Note:  Also known as  And a Voice Shall Be Heard .
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Campus Film Productions
movies

eye 521

favorite 2

comment 1

Training film made for mental health and social workers.  Activity Group Therapy  explores the development of socially maladjusted boys, 10 and 11 years old, over 65 weeks of activity group therapy. Using concealed cameras and microphones, the film records how the subjects act out their disturbances and documents their interactions with a therapist and with other boys. A dense and absorbing record of children’s vernacular speech and body language, this unrehearsed film argues for...
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Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Charles Guggenheim & Associates
movies

eye 802

favorite 7

comment 0

Documentary, with some dramatized sequences, covering the racial integration of St. Louis public schools after the 1954 Brown decision. William J. Sloan wrote, “The film was noteworthy in that it revealed, at least briefly, the fears of Negro parents in having their children attend school with white children.” Note:  The film employed nonprofessional actors and voice-over narration by a local schoolteacher. Nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Short Subject in 1956.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Philip Ragan Associates
movies

eye 825

favorite 9

comment 0

Warning about the threat of nuclear war. Sponsored by atomic scientists,  One World or None  uses animation to explain the development of atomic energy and the devastation that would result if a bomb were dropped on the United States. Atomic weapons were created by an international effort, and the only defense, the narrator argues, is for the world community to come together to seek their control. Note:  The Federation of American Scientists prepared a book by the same title; see Dexter...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Union Films
movies

eye 334

favorite 6

comment 0

Advocacy film sponsored by the leftist labor union to expose the plight of senior citizens shut out of the postwar economic boom.  Industry’s Disinherited  shows the poverty and despair of older Americans forced to rely on inadequate pension and social security payments, and demands increased government benefits for seniors.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by University of Oklahoma
movies

eye 2,062

favorite 43

comment 1

Case study documenting a patient’s treatment for paranoid schizophrenia. Made for health professionals,  Mental Hospital  shows daily life at the state facility, including hydrotherapy and electroconvulsive therapy sessions. The film ends with the patient’s discharge. Note:  Shot at the Central State Hospital in Norman, Oklahoma. Since patients were not legally competent to sign releases, the producer recruited crew and friends for the cast.
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Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Stanley Neal Productions
movies

eye 855

favorite 16

comment 0

Good-grooming film for women that was funded by the meatpacking and consumer products giant to showcase the company’s Dial soap.  The Clean Look  teaches how to apply makeup, bathe, develop proper posture, apply shampoo, and comb one’s hair. Note:  The short was produced in Kodachrome and distributed to schools and women’s groups.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Roland Reed Productions
movies

eye 690

favorite 9

comment 1

Highly praised industrial film showing the production of steel.  Steel: Man’s Servant  was shot in U.S. Steel mines and mills in Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Minnesota, and Pennsylvania and was considered by documentarian Pare Lorentz “the most beautiful color picture ever made” ( Business Screen  1, no. 2). Note:  Produced in 35mm three-strip Technicolor at a cost of $250,000.  Steel: Man’s Servant  was shot in ten weeks and became the company’s major informational film, replacing...
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Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Gentron Productions
movies

eye 607

favorite 4

comment 0

Anti-union film dramatizing a strike staged by the International Association of Machinists in Princeton, Indiana, in 1956–57. Note:  The film was based on a fictionalized pamphlet by Rev. Edward Greenfield, an anti-strike movement leader who worked as a propagandist for a right-to-work organization in California.  And Women Must Weep  was used to counter union organizing campaigns; in 1963, the National Labor Relations Board nullified a union representation election because the film was...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Jam Handy Organization
movies

eye 3,229

favorite 40

comment 0

Promotional film celebrating the 1959 Chevrolet automobile line as an exemplar of American industrial design and styling.  American Look  highlights the contribution of interior, indus­tri­al, product, and automobile designers to the “populuxe” era; the term was coined by writer Thomas Hine to describe the late-1950s stylistic fusion of luxury and mass-produced consumer goods. This wide-screen spectacular showcases an array of contemporary architectural exteriors, interiors, packaging,...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Affiliated Film Producers
movies

eye 645

favorite 5

comment 0

Simple, affecting case study produced for social workers and psychologists and illustrating how counseling can help children come to terms with anger. Young Tommy Randall has been caught stealing money from his teacher’s purse and receives help from a psychiatrist. A psychiatric social worker enables his mother to better understand her relationship with her son. This sensitive documentary is filled with revealing behavioral details. Note:  Shot in the Huron Valley Child Guidance Clinic near...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Dudley Pictures Corp.
movies

eye 546

favorite 5

comment 1

Drama arguing for more sympathetic treatment of troubled adolescents. A social worker reaches out to Jerry, a disturbed youngster in an unhappy home dominated by an uncaring stepmother. During a melodramatic confrontation, Jerry takes out his anger by attacking sofa cushions with a switchblade. Shot like a low-budget Hollywood feature, the film mirrors the period’s growing concern with juvenile delinquency. Note:   Boy with a Knife  was made as a fund-raiser for the Los Angeles Community...
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Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Robert J. Enders Inc.
movies

eye 1,055

favorite 8

comment 1

Civil defense film promoting the well-maintained house as part of America’s line of defense against nuclear attack. Cosponsored by the paint and coating industry’s national trade association and the federal government,  The House in the Middle  uses footage shot at the Nevada Proving Ground (now the Nevada Test Site) to demonstrate how a clean, freshly painted house has the survival edge in the event of a nuclear blast. Note:  Released in 16mm Kodachrome and in black and white. Abridged...
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Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by John Suther­land Productions
movies

eye 1,539

favorite 31

comment 0

Science-fiction-influenced cartoon sponsored by petroleum producers to lionize their industry and promote free enterprise. “Colonel Cosmic,” an astronaut from the totalitarian planet Mars, flies to Earth, where he discovers cheap oil and the market economy. Returning home, he leads a revolution and frees Martian entrepreneurs to begin oil exploration, start small businesses, and lead the planet out of economic stagnation.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Agrafilms Inc.
movies

eye 266

favorite 3

comment 0

Film urging parents to join forces with educators to solve school overcrowding during the 1950s baby boom. In  Crowded Out , a teacher is assigned so many students that she is unable to respond to their individual needs and must resort to rote instruction. Dissatisfied, she plans to resign. The film recommends that parents work through their parent-teacher associations to secure increased school funding. Note:  The credits also acknowledge the involvement of affiliated state education...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Ted Steeg Productions
movies

eye 618

favorite 13

comment 0

Film promoting consumption of coffee in youth-oriented coffee houses. Accompanied by a folk music sound track,  Coffee House Rendezvous  profiles seven coffee houses located near churches and college campuses and illustrates the wholesome activities that occur in these public places. Note:  The film was made as part of the “Think Drink” campaign mounted by the Coffee Information Service, whose objective was to turn 17- to 20-year-olds into coffee drinkers. Produced in Eastmancolor. The...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by RKO-Pathé
movies

eye 1,010

favorite 7

comment 0

A comprehensive, behind-the-scenes tour of NBC’s radio, television, and sound recording studios at Rockefeller Center in New York City. Note:  Distributed theatrically and nontheatrically and broadcast by NBC television stations.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by David Myers
movies

eye 466

favorite 10

comment 0

Exploration of juvenile delinquency in San Francisco featuring interviews with teenagers from different racial and ethnic groups about their neighborhoods and gangs. The documentary offers community projects, such as the “Youth for Service” program, as a constructive way to draw teenagers back into the community.  Ask Me, Don’t Tell Me  is a revealing por­trayal of multicultural San Francisco through the eyes of disenfranchised residents. Note:  Received first prize in the “Film as...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by John Korty
movies

eye 714

favorite 17

comment 0

Pacifist plea sponsored by a Quaker group. To a voice-over commentary describing the arms race,  Language of Faces  presents a montage of human faces and activities that culminates in a silent vigil at the Pentagon. Note:  John Korty also made  The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman . Teiji Ito, husband of Maya Deren, composed the score for Deren’s  Meshes of the Afternoon .
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Ford Motor Co.
movies

eye 563

favorite 4

comment 0

Series of some 20 episodes, some with animation, illustrating news events and Ford-related subjects. This episode shows Buffalo Bill and the 101 Ranch Wild West Show, a celebration of the opening of the Ford Assembly Plant in Oklahoma City, a patriotic parade by Ford employees in Detroit, and President Woodrow Wilson attending a memorial service for Yuan Shikai, president of the Republic of China.  Note:   Film World and A-V News  reported that the series was distributed for virtually no fee...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Ford Motor Co.
movies

eye 304

favorite 5

comment 0

Episode from Ford Educational Weekly , a documentary series showcasing American industries, cities, and tourist destinations.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by MPO Productions
movies

eye 548

favorite 11

comment 0

Historical survey tracing the use of natural fibers from ancient times to the present. Commis­sioned by a synthetic textile manufacturer, the film was praised for its high production values and few references to its sponsor. Note: Fibers and Civilizations  was shown in the U.S. Pavilion at the 1958 Brussels World’s Fair.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Arthur Lodge Productions
movies

eye 332

favorite 4

comment 0

The  Industry on Parade  series portrayed the nation’s industrial sector during the 1950s. The films strove for a broad representation of American enterprises and even included profiles of mom-and-pop operations. This episode touts America as the most hygienic nation. It ranges from the dry-cleaning industry to soap and vacuum cleaner manufacturing. Note:   Industry on Parade  was a key component of a public relations campaign to promote the benefits of free enterprise. The series was...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by New York Central Railroad
movies

eye 2,186

favorite 43

comment 0

Travelogue sponsored by a railroad company serving New York City. Approaching the metropolis by rail, the film covers major tourist destinations such as Coney Island, Times Square, celebrated nightclubs, and Rockefeller Center, where NBC provides an experimental television demonstration. Note:  Produced in Technicolor. Also released in 16mm. Revised in 1948.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Frontier Films
movies

eye 1,659

favorite 9

comment 0

Documentary celebrating the work of the Highlander Folk School, a progressive adult education center founded in 1932 in the mountain community of Monteagle, Tennessee.  People of the Cumberland  demonstrates how education and the labor movement can transform an impoverished mining region and bring hope to its people. Made by activist filmmakers, the movie ends with a call for a “new kind of America.”
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Frank B. Gilbreth
movies

eye 1,411

favorite 7

comment 0

Footage drawn from Frank Gilbreth’s time and motion studies. The anthology includes a clip of his family, who were often used in his work-efficiency experiments. Note:  Also known as  Original Films of Frank and Lillian Gilbreth . The compilation was also issued in a 26-minute version with narration by James S. Perkins. Other films by Gilbreth are held by Purdue University. For more about Gilbreth’s use of films in research, see “Many Inventions,”  The Outlook , Mar. 29, 1913, 736.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Encyclopaedia Britannica Films
movies

eye 446

favorite 5

comment 0

Short detailing how the City of Baltimore overcame lethargy to launch a slum rehabilitation campaign. Note: Received a Freedoms Foundation award in 1953. John Barnes made films for Encyclopaedia Britannica Films, which produced and distributed The Baltimore Plan at the urging of the Fight Blight Fund.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by G. Edward Griffin
movies

eye 3,497

favorite 36

comment 0

Right-wing film arguing that the civil rights movement and urban disturbances of the 1960s were evidence of a worldwide communist revolution and growing dominance at home. The polemic warns that communists may be planning to create an independent African American state. Note: A narchy, U.S.A.  incorporates purchased news footage.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
movies

eye 438

favorite 4

comment 0

Refutation of the National Right to Work Committee’s  And Women Must Weep , an antiunion film dramatizing a strike in Princeton, Indiana, in 1956–57.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Documentary Film Associates
movies

eye 1,239

favorite 8

comment 0

Internationalist film exploring the economic and political importance of Latin America to the United States. A document of the “Good Neighbor Policy” era,  The Bridge  shows the endemic poverty and recent industrialization of Latin America and looks to such postwar advances as air travel, the “bridge” that will eventually link the United States with its neighbors to the south. The  New York Times  quoted Willard Van Dyke as saying, “We cannot expect to do much trade with South...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by MPO Productions
movies

eye 698

favorite 5

comment 0

Produced to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Model T Ford,  The American Road  highlights the role of automobiles, highway construction, and Ford Motor’s leadership in the development of transportation in the United States. The production mixes archival footage with reenactments and has a contemporary ending in color. Note:  Received a Freedoms Foundation award in 1954 and a Golden Reel Award from the American Film Assembly in 1954.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by John Sutherland Productions
movies

eye 968

favorite 12

comment 0

Short sponsored by the United Fruit Company to blunt “communist propaganda claims” in the American and Latin American press. Using animation and live action, the short describes the benefits of the “living circle” of interdependent trade between Central America and the United States. Note:  The companion to  Bananas? Si, Señor! ,  The Living Circle  was reportedly seen by more than 17 million viewers during its first eight months of release. Both films were distributed with Spanish...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Worcester Film Corp.
movies

eye 530

favorite 6

comment 0

Docudrama encouraging immigrants to master English and become successful, assimilated Americans. In the story the poor English-language skills of an Italian immigrant limit his employment possibilities and lead to an on-the-job accident. Learning from his experience, the immigrant puts himself through night school, lands a factory job, advances to foreman, and becomes a community leader. The film includes scenes shot at the Hartford Rubber Works Co. Note:  According to Jan-Christopher Horak, ...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
movies

eye 619

favorite 11

comment 0

Partly animated technical film illustrating how radio works. After tracing the history of communications, from smoke signals to the telephone,  The Wizardry of Wireless  explains the principles of radio transmission and shows the operations of WGY, GE’s pioneering radio station in Schenectady, New York. 
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Raphael G. Wolff Studios
movies

eye 571

favorite 7

comment 0

Film sponsored by the trade association to show how livestock and poultry are raised on farms and ranches and brought to the American dinner table. The film portrays mealtimes across the country and emphasizes the importance of meat protein for human growth.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Wilding Picture Productions
movies

eye 541

favorite 10

comment 1

Insurance company–sponsored safety film targeting teenage drivers. The drama centers on a reckless driver, who together with his girlfriend, takes one risk too many. Like other safety films made for teenagers,  Last Date  implies that death is preferable to disfigurement. The dramatic accident sequence and surprise ending have often been emulated by other films targeting the same audience.
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Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
movies

eye 822

favorite 6

comment 0

Wide-ranging film explaining the role of oil companies in advancing America and securing the nation’s high standard of living. Linking free enterprise with freedom and democracy,  24 Hours of Progress  shows the oil industry at work and Americans using oil-based products.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Wilding Picture Productions
movies

eye 997

favorite 6

comment 0

Self-improvement film funded by a paper company. In the story a dissatisfied factory worker imagines what it would be like to become a company foreman or the company president. The worker comes to learn that every employee, regardless of position, must be productive to succeed. Through this parable,  1104 Sutton Road  argues that improving personal relations and communications in the workplace increases productivity and makes each em­ployee a better person. Note:  Released in Technicolor...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Audio Productions Inc.
movies

eye 5,312

favorite 21

comment 0

First breast-cancer-awareness film released for wide distribution. Promoting self-examination as an early detection technique, the film shows women how to check for breast cancer symptoms. Note:  The ACS reported 1,300 prints in circulation in the first year of release. The film was said to have reached 1 million women over the age of 35. Also distributed in a 16-minute version. Revised version,  Time and Two Women , released in 1958.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by United Productions of America
movies

eye 2,748

favorite 28

comment 0

Animated film speaking out for racial tolerance. Using small green demons to caricature racial prejudice, the cartoon argues that the only real difference among the races is skin color and that underneath, all people are the same. Bosley Crowther wrote that the UAW, seeking to widen labor support in the auto industry, sponsored the film “to counteract a critical race-relations problem among the workers in Detroit.” Note:  Based on the pamphlet  Races of Mankind  by Ruth Benedict and Gene...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Castle Films
movies

eye 467

favorite 4

comment 0

Film about the planning, construction, and operation of the Lincoln Tunnel. Released one year after the structure opened, Conquest of the Hudson shows the tunnel shield, sandhogs in the airlock, and the tunnel service between New York City and New Jersey. Note:  Also released in a silent version.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by United Auto Workers
movies

eye 302

favorite 2

comment 0

Documentary about the 1938–39 Tool and Die Makers strike affecting eight General Motors plants. Told from the point of view of the strikers, the film shows the picket lines and Detroit police and ends with a question to Henry Ford: “Want to know who’s next?” Note:  The UAW called the strike to secure its position after it split from the American Federation of Labor. The Tool and Die Makers were a key group because their work was necessary for the first phase of production. The UAW...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Edison Mfg. Co.
movies

eye 839

favorite 6

comment 1

Early advertising film. Various national symbols—an American Indian, John Bull, Uncle Sam—appear in front of an ADMIRAL CIGARETTE sign. A showgirl leaps out to shower cigarettes on the group and unfolds a banner reading WE ALL SMOKE.
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Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Leopold Steiner
movies

eye 350

favorite 5

comment 0

Documentary about the co-operative movement in the Midwest. The film is structured around the tour of a six-member study group to consumer co-operatives in eight states and concludes with a radio broadcast of the group’s findings.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Wilding Picture Productions
movies

eye 577

favorite 6

comment 0

Film promoting television at a time when the medium was still in limited use. It shows how television works and tours GE’s flagship station, WRGB, in Schenectady, New York.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Palmer Pictures
movies

eye 388

favorite 4

comment 0

Promotional film for the U.S. merchant shipping fleet that emphasizes its importance in war and peace and argues for expanded foreign trade following World War II. The film includes scenes of prewar China. Note:  Produced in Kodachrome.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by MPO Productions Inc.
movies

eye 374

favorite 6

comment 0

Film surveying the role of chemistry in American life and the central role of the people, products, and plants of Monsanto. Intended for nontheatrical use and broadcast,  Decision for Chemistry  is structured around questions asked by a young boy. Note:  Also released in 33-minute nontheatrical and 28-minute television versions. A 16-minute version was shown in 1954 on NBC’s  Omnibus . The film was selected as one of 20 contemporary American documentaries to be shown at New York’s...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Wilding Picture Productions
movies

eye 433

favorite 6

comment 0

Pro–free enterprise parable sponsored by the large meatpacker as part of a widespread “economic education” campaign. In the dramatization, a woman reporter from an iron curtain country and an American newspaperman, a “fellow traveler,” tour a Swift plant and visit workers’ homes. Together they come to realize that capitalism is the system that provides the greatest degree of worker freedom. Note: The cast included an estimated 130 Swift employees. Some 28,000 workers and friends...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Knickerbocker Productions
movies

eye 780

favorite 4

comment 0

Film sponsored by Western Electric (AT&T’s equipment manufacturing division), the builder of the United States Air Force’s White Alice Communications System in Alaska.  Land of White Alice  introduces the people and geography of the new state as well as the Western Electric radio-relay system, which links far-flung military sites, alert stations, and missile-warning facilities. Ralph Caplan praised the film’s “intrinsically dramatic and highly photogenic” portrayal of...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
movies

eye 6,225

favorite 78

comment 1

A whimsical yet serious-minded look into the future sponsored by the appliance and radio manufacturer. In the “1999 House of Tomorrow,” each family member’s activities are enabled by a central computer and revolve around products remarkably similar to those made by the sponsor. Power comes from a self-contained fuel cell, which supports environmental controls, an automatic cooking system, and a computer-assisted “education room.” Note: Produced in Eastmancolor. Renowned interior...
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Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
movies

eye 300

favorite 5

comment 0

Documentary about the Hampton Institute’s philosophy of integrated work and study. The film illustrates the opportunities for African American students in the trades, agriculture, home economics, the arts, education, and business and also shows young men and women in civilian and military training programs. Note:  The documentary premiered at the home of President Franklin D. Roosevelt in Hyde Park. The Amateur Cinema League listed the film as one of the 10 best 16mm pictures of 1941....
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Caravel Films Inc.
movies

eye 346

favorite 7

comment 1

Advertisement for vacuum-packed canned coffee that was produced primarily for screening at the 1939–40 New York World’s Fair. In the narrative a young puppeteer proves to his prospective father-in-law, a coffee packer, that puppeteering is a viable occupation by using marionettes to tell the story of coffee. The young man uses 80 string puppets and deep, dimensional sets to explain how coffee is grown, harvested, roasted, and packed in vacuum cans to retain flavor. Note:  Also distributed...
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Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by On Film Inc.
movies

eye 954

favorite 10

comment 1

Film from the leading American producer of aluminum illustrating the versatility of the material in building and design.  Color and Texture in Aluminum Finishes  was singled out in the trade press for its avant-garde qualities and considered by Howard Thompson as “probably the most strikingly imaginative industrial short subject ever filmed in the United States.” Note:  Although originally targeted at design professionals, the short was also successfully shown to general audiences. On...
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Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Impact Films
movies

eye 475

favorite 1

comment 0

Dissection of the film  Operation Abolition , which was produced by the House Un-American Activities Committee to show communist involvement in the protests sparked by its 1960 hearings held in San Francisco.  Autopsy on Operation Abolition  includes an interview with historian Henry Nash Smith, who attacks  Operation Abolition  as “a deliberate falsification” but is sympathetic to its anticommunist viewpoint. Note:  The Catechetical Guild is a Roman Catholic educational organization.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Sandra W. Bradley
movies

eye 529

favorite 4

comment 0

Short suggesting that the Central American conflicts of the era were an indicator of Soviet-Cuban expansionism and a threat to American interests. The piece warns that Soviet-Cuban influence could spread throughout Central and South America and northward. Appearing are Ronald Reagan, Jeane Kirkpatrick, Henry Kissinger, and Alfonso Robelo, a former Sandinista leader. Note:  Produced for television and for nontheatrical viewing. Updated in 1982.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Wilding Picture Productions
movies

eye 751

favorite 9

comment 1

Narrative promoting the sponsor’s Hotpoint appliance line. The plot involves a wealthy manufacturing heir who elopes with a nightclub singer who can’t cook. When the couple break up, the singer goes to cooking school, learns how to use Hotpoint appliances, and prepares the perfect meal for her estranged husband. They reunite and the accomplished cook earns the respect of her formerly unsupportive in-laws. The film includes scenes of a television program promoting the Hotpoint electric...
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Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Jam Handy Organization
movies

eye 663

favorite 7

comment 0

Film promoting the automobile industry as a pillar of the American economy. By showing the number and range of businesses and industries that produce materials for the modern Chevrolet,  American Harvest  demonstrates the interdependence of industry, commerce, and agriculture and argues that large integrated manufacturing enterprises are ideally suited to satisfy consumer needs. This panoramic survey illuminates national concerns about materials shortages during the Korean War. Note:...
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Lee Dick Inc.
movies

eye 631

favorite 5

comment 0

Portrait of a typical day at the progressive Hessian Hills School in Croton-on-Hudson, New York, with narration by the students. The documentary includes scenes of the children studying and participating in projects.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Film Documents
movies

eye 515

favorite 8

comment 0

Training film for mental health workers that explores the strain of retirement and old age. When a 62-year-old woman is forced to retire, both she and her family find it difficult to cope with the change. The film argues that it’s best to accept old age and learn to adjust. Note:  Helen Levitt became a cameraperson on  The Savage Eye  and a television writer.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Caravel Films
movies

eye 654

favorite 5

comment 1

Film showing the role of AT&T in facilitating network television transmission in the years before communications satellites. The live television broadcast of Tchaikovsky’s  Sleeping Beauty  ballet is sent from New York City to Wisconsin via AT&T’s coaxial cable and microwave relay system. Note:  Also released in 16mm. According to a report in  Business Screen , excerpts from  Stepping Along with Television  were included in the first program sent by AT&T’s relay system...
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Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Harvey Richards
movies

eye 748

favorite 17

comment 0

Advocacy film used by SNCC in its voter registration campaign in the South. Shot in Mis­sissippi, the film includes interviews with black farmers about the harassment and violence experienced when they attempted to register. Among the civil rights leaders featured are Julian Bond and Fannie Lou Hamer. Note: We’ll Never Turn Back is a reedited version of an earlier SNCC film, Freedom Bound .
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Carousel Films
movies

eye 432

favorite 4

comment 0

Travelogue in three sections narrated by Father Bernard Hubbard, known as the “Glacier Priest” for his highly publicized Arctic excursions and lectures, and released by a manufacturer of canning equipment used to pack Alaskan fish. The first segment introduces the regions of Alaska, the second shows the life cycle of the salmon, and the third illustrates salmon netting and canning.
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Harmon Foundation
movies

eye 799

favorite 19

comment 0

Review of the artistic achievements of African Americans. Among the artists profiled are Aaron Douglas, Richmond Barthe, James Allen, and Georgette Seabrook. Also spotlighted is an exhibition of African American art at the Whitney Museum of American Art. Note:  NARA also holds outtakes. 
Topic: sponsored film
National Film Preservation Foundation
by Bill and Cora Baird
movies

eye 1,177

favorite 13

comment 0

One of the Bell Telephone System’s many films instructing the public on proper use of the telephone. Bobby finds his lost dog with the help of the residents of Telezonia, who teach him how to use directory assistance, party lines, and proper phone manners. Note:   Adventure in Telezonia  was the Bairds’ second film for AT&T; “Telezonia” was the name of an instructional package on good telephone habits that was prepared for schools. It contained this film as well as practice...
Topic: sponsored film