Scotland's Moving Image Archive at National Library of Scotland preserves over 100 years of Scottish filmed history reflecting 20th century social, cultural and industrial heritage. The films capture the lives of ordinary people across the generations and celebrate the achievements of Scottish based film-makers.
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Broxburn Children's Gala Day 1925
The serious business of having fun at Broxburn Gala day 1925; a lovely local topical film with elaborate floats, solemn children in fancy dress, and some curious races.
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Having fun is a serious business at Broxburn Gala day 1925, in this lovely local topical film with elaborate floats, solemn children and wonderful 1920s fashions. Endure the hard stares of disgruntled fairies, nurses and Indians, and laugh at the boys in bunnets who jostle for position in front of the camera. Some curious races take place, including the bandsmen’s race, complete with all their instruments, and a formidable matrons’ race. A fun day for all the family!
Local topical films were made specifically to be shown to local cinema audiences, and were popular from the early days of cinema until the late 1950s. Local cinemas would film popular local events such as gala days, parades, local festivals and holidays, with a remit to get in as many close ups of faces in the crowd as possible. Hence the frequent use of the panning shot, very much the hallmark of the local topical, to maximise the audience who would be enticed into the picture hall a few nights later with the prospect of seeing themselves on the big screen. It would not be unusual for the film to conclude with a shot of the exterior of the cinema, or the event might be filmed with the sponsoring cinema in the background.