If War Should Come: GPO Film Unit Vol. 3 (BFI) in July
BFI have announced the UK Region 2 DVD release of If War Should Come: The GPO Film Unit Collection Volume Three on 6th July 2009 priced at £24.99 RRP. The third and final volume of BFI deluxe double-disc box sets presenting all the key films of the GPO Film Unit on DVD for the first time contains 18 films which provide a fascinating and poignant insight into a nation on the cusp of war and its transition to the brutal realities of life in the Blitz.
This final volume of three sets covers 1939-1941, the last years of the GPO Film Unit before it evolved into the Crown Film Unit. This period saw it at its most technically sophisticated, with directors such as Humphrey Jennings, Harry Watt and Alberto Cavalcanti leading the way in the use of documentary cinema in support of the war effort. Among the films in this collection are Jennings’ poetic masterpiece Spare Time and the rousing classics London Can Take It! and Christmas Under Fire.
The discs are presented in a deluxe box with a 68-page bound book containing introductory essays, film notes and selected biographies.
The City (Ralph Elton, 1939)
The Islanders (Maurice Harvey, 1939)
Spare Time (Humphrey Jennings, 1939)
A Midsummer Day’s Work (Alberto Cavalcanti (uncredited), 1939)
If War Should Come (uncredited, 1939)
The First Days (Harry Watt, Humphrey Jennings, Pat Jackson, 1939)
SS Ionian (Humphrey Jennings, 1939)
War Library Items 1, 2, and 3 (uncredited, 1940)
Squadron 992 (Harry Watt, 1940)
La Cause Commune (Alberto Cavalcanti, uncredited, 1940)
French Communiqué (Alberto Cavalcanti, 1940)
The Front Line (Harry Watt (uncredited), 1940)
Men of the Lightship (David MacDonald, 1940)
London Can Take It! (Harry Watt, Humphrey Jennings (both uncredited), 1940)
Spring Offensive (Humphrey Jennings, 1940)
The Story of an Air Communiqué (Ralph Eton, uncredited, 1940)
War and Order (Charles Hasse, 1940)
Christmas Under Fire (Harry Watt, 1941)
Britain Can Take It! (1940) Slightly shorter version of London Can Take It! which was made for British audiences
Interview with director Pat Jackson (2007)