This film is part of Free


While Britain celebrates... A caustic reminder of conditions for London's East End underclass in George V's jubilee year.

Documentary 1935 10 mins Silent


The slums and unemployment lines of London's East End contrast sharply with Silver jubilee celebrations for George V in this lively and angry short film. Shot by amateur filmmakers without sound, it uses simple, effective juxtaposition techniques to portray the jubilee celebrations as bread and circuses - distracting public attention from social deprivation and reactionary policies (including rearmament).

Filmmakers like the Green brothers (both teachers, incidentally) were the ancestors of today's web-video activists taking their cameras to the streets. A shot of newsreel cameramen filming jubilee celebrations positions their own film as an expose of mainstream media as a tool of the status quo. After making the film, the brothers took it to the socialist film grouping the Workers Film and Photo League (which included some professional filmmakers) who recut it and added extra footage before making it available, for showing at political meetings, in the form seen here.