This film is part of Free

Feeding the Germans

A rare glimpse of the WWI enemy at rest for British audiences

Non-Fiction 1914 1 mins Silent


These images from occupied Belgium gave British audiences a rare glimpse of the enemy at rest in the early days of WWI. The newsreels were kept far from the fighting, but Topical Budget had three cameramen in Belgium, and their dispatches helped to feed a British audience hungry for news of the conflict. It's striking how far these images from a very patriotic newsreel serve to humanise the enemy.

An article in the Bioscope in August 1914 observed "For days it was death to venture in the streets of Brussels with a camera" - if you weren't set upon by the mob you could be arrested by the military. So it's hard not to wonder at the courage with which a British Topical Budget cameraman obtained these pictures.