Subscribe to watch - 14-day free trial, then £4.99 a month

Dawson City: Frozen Time

Acclaimed filmmaker Bill Morrison (Decasia) details the incredible story of the rediscovery of over 500 nitrate film prints dating from the early 1900s, preserved in the Yukon permafrost for over 70 years.

Documentary 2016 121 mins Not rated

Director: Bill Morrison



American history is resurrected through American movies by Bill Morrison (Decasia). A master artist when it comes to the reconstruction of archive footage, he reveals a magical dance of the dead in layers of decaying nitrate stock. The North American Gold Rush of 1896 established Dawson City on the Klondike and Yukon Rivers in Canada, displacing a First Nation hunting ground. In 1903, the movies arrived as the town developed out of its whoring, drinking and gambling origins. It was so remote, the studios wouldn’t pay for the film prints to be returned so they lay buried in the permafrost until rediscovered in 1978. With the original score composed by Alex Somers, the material is astounding – reanimating lost silent movie stars, the perils of prospecting, newsreel of baseball scandals and the expulsion of socialists after the Russian Revolution. Look out for key information on the origins of Donald Trump’s wealth!