Jill Craigie -yes her after whom the Plymouth University lecture theatre is named -made a profoundly eye-opening documentary about the rebuilding of Plymouth after the Blitz.
As part of the Blitz 75 commemorations in the city her film The Way We Live will get a special screening at the Plymouth City Council. On its original release, the film broke box office records in Plymouth, despite a mixed reaction in other parts of the country.
Here’s what the BFI’s Screen Online says about the The Way We Live: ‘The film reflects the optimism of post-war Britain; like Kay Mander’s Homes for the People (1945), it places the future in the hands of the people as well as the bureaucrats and politicians. In this and her later film, Blue Scar (1949), Craigie combined the orthodox documentary style with a dramatic narrative and cast local people in the main roles. She refused to compromise her feminist and political ideals -both films espouse socialist viewpoints and examine their issues from a female perspective.’
The screening is presented by Plymouth Arts Centre, here’s what they say: ‘Made in 1946, the film shows the conception of the Watson-Abercrombie plan for the rebuilding of Plymouth after the terrible devastation of the blitz, seen through the eyes of one family.
‘The plan hoped to bring social improvement and modern amenities and in the light of the recent city centre developments here it is a remarkable record of how our city has been shaped and continues to evolve.’
The special screening of Jill Craigie’s the Way We Live is on April 13. For times and bookings, pop over to the Plymouth Arts Centre site.