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South India

A journey through the temples of Tamil Nadu via Kerala to spectacular ceremonies and processions in Mysuru and Hyderabad.

In Tamil Nadu we watch Chennai’s remarkable temple car festival in 1932, see an extraordinary early colour film shot near Puducherry in 1914 and explore the temple architecture of Madurai. There’s colour footage of dancers in Thiruvananthapuram, a visit to the Jewish quarter of Kochi before heading north to watch spectacular processions in Mysuru, Bengaluru and Hyderabad.

The collection includes films from Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh.

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South India

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View Villenour
Villenour
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Villenour 1914

Gorgeously dreamlike colour images of (then) French India – present-day Puducherry

5 mins France

View Uti 1925
Uti 1925
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Uti 1925 1925

Snapshots of colonial life around Tamil Nadu, plus a visit to the Toda tribe

United Kingdom

View Madras & Ceylon
Madras & Ceylon
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Madras & Ceylon 1947

Rare amateur footage of Tamil Nadu and Sri Lanka

12 mins Great Britain

View Houseboating in Waltair
Houseboating in Waltair
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Houseboating in Waltair 1926

The Uzielli family takes to the water in Visakhapatnam, southern India

10 mins United Kingdom

View Dancers at Trivandrum Gopinath
Dancers at Trivandrum Gopinath
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Dancers at Trivandrum Gopinath 1946

Kathakali performance featuring the great Indian dancer Guru Gopinath, filmed in remarkable colour by ‘envoy of the Raj’ Clarmont Skrine

United Kingdom

View Cochin and Malabar
Cochin and Malabar
Watch for free 17 mins

Cochin and Malabar 1930

Amateur film capturing life and buildings in and around Kochi, in Kerala, south-west India.

17 mins United Kingdom

BROWSE THE COLLECTIONS

View Street Scenes in India
Street Scenes in India
Watch for free 7 mins

Street Scenes in India 1935

From the arrival of a new viceroy to street markets, this amateur film captures the diversity of life in colonial India

7 mins India

View Through Fires of Persecution
Through Fires of Persecution
Watch for free 15 mins

Through Fires of Persecution 1935

A highly unusual docudrama, set in Tiruchirappalli, South India and filmed by a Methodist minister.

15 mins United Kingdom

View Temples of India
Temples of India
Watch for free 11 mins

Temples of India 1938

Technicolor temple tour shot by the great Jack Cardiff

11 mins United Kingdom Director. Hans M. Nieter

View Mettur Dam
Mettur Dam
Watch for free 8 mins

Mettur Dam 1931

The monumental task of building Tamil Nadu's Mettur Dam (or Stanley Dam)

8 mins United Kingdom

View An Indian Scrapbook
An Indian Scrapbook
Watch for free 11 mins

An Indian Scrapbook 1941

Film star Sabu fronts this novelty travelogue.

11 mins United Kingdom

View Temples of South India
Temples of South India
Watch for free 7 mins

Temples of South India 1944

A visitor’s eye view of Tamil Nadu, its religious buildings, towns and landscapes.

7 mins United Kingdom

View Chief Guide at Hyderabad Rally
Chief Guide at Hyderabad Rally
Watch for free 2 mins

Chief Guide at Hyderabad Rally 1937

Girl guides on parade at a rally in southern India attended by Olave Baden-Powell

2 mins United Kingdom

View Madras: The Grange, Adyar
Madras: The Grange, Adyar
Watch for free 12 mins

Madras: The Grange, Adyar 1929

Amateur film of colonial Madras (now Chennai)

12 mins United Kingdom

View Our Greatest Ambassador
Our Greatest Ambassador
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Our Greatest Ambassador 1922

Richly detailed record of the Prince of Wales' Indian tour, 1921-22.

30 mins United Kingdom

View Rafai Fakirs, Hyderabad - No.1
Rafai Fakirs, Hyderabad - No.1
Watch for free 3 mins

Rafai Fakirs, Hyderabad - No.1 1929

Graphic images of the Muslim sect’s self-mutilation practices, filmed in late-1920s India.

3 mins United Kingdom

View Rafai Fakirs, Hyderabad - No.2
Rafai Fakirs, Hyderabad - No.2
Watch for free 3 mins

Rafai Fakirs, Hyderabad - No.2 1929

More glimpses of the Muslim sect’s self-mutilation practices, filmed in late-1920s India

3 mins United Kingdom

View Rafai Fakirs, Hyderabad - No.3
Rafai Fakirs, Hyderabad - No.3
Watch for free 2 mins

Rafai Fakirs, Hyderabad - No.3 1930

Further scenes of the Muslim sect’s self-mutilation practices, filmed in late-1920s India

2 mins United Kingdom

View Rafai Fakirs, Hyderabad - No.4
Rafai Fakirs, Hyderabad - No.4
Watch for free 3 mins

Rafai Fakirs, Hyderabad - No.4 1930

Last of a series of films graphically depicting the Muslim sect’s self-mutilation practices in late-1920s India

3 mins United Kingdom

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