This film is part of Free

Coves & Caves

Eden before the Project: a magical, whimsical travelogue of Cornish beauty spots.

Travelogue 1920 12 mins Silent


This magical and whimsical travelogue of north Cornwall beauty spots is presented as a series of scenic picture postcards. There are exquisite views of Padstow and Boscastle harbours. Quaint, poetry-peppered intertitles add a folkloric atmosphere: the film's explorations of sea caves and forests in search of mermaids evoke Cornish legend. This is Eden before the Project.

There's a smattering of experimental camera work here too: look out for the extreme wide-screen view of Wadebridge, the aerial shot of Trevose Head, as well as the artful vignettes and fades. The film is one of a series of 'Beauty of Britain' travelogues made by Claude Friese-Greene (son of cinema pioneer William). Friese-Greene would go on to garner major plaudits for a subsequent travelogue project, The Open Road (1925), which documents a journey from Land's End to John O'Groats and was shot with an experimental colour system.