The North East Film Archive is one of a network of regional film archives established to collect, preserve and show film made in, or about the North East of England. Our collections are non-fiction, and date from the early 1900s to the present day, providing a rich record of life in the region over the 20th century. Many of our films are available to watch, free of charge, on our website.
This film is part of Free
It Happened Thus
A valuable necklace is stolen – but where is the thief?
Amateur film 1937 13 mins
From the collection of:
Fuelled by pulp fiction, a rich woman's imagination goes into overdrive after her brush with a low-life on a Newcastle street. Not surprisingly for the cash-strapped 1930s in the north-east, differences between the haves and have-nots were in sharp relief. Just downriver, hard times on Depression-era Tyneside led to the historic Jarrow March, the year before this short amateur comedy thriller was made.
Produced by members of the Newcastle and District Amateur Cinematographers Association (ACA), this low-budget, small-gauge fiction film taps into the uneasy feel of 30s American crime movies, albeit with an escapist ending. Borrowed cinematic quirks such as coin-flipping gangsters are displaced to the Geordie capital. The interior scenes were filmed at Heaton's art deco Lyric Cinema, opened on 6th January 1936 and now home to the People's Theatre, the largest and oldest amateur theatre company in England. One of the first British cine clubs, Newcastle ACA was formed in 1927 and, against the odds, still operates in the city today.
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Warning: contains images of men wearing nappies!