… a satisfying, highly watchable and didactic experience ….
It’s always nice to have a Cambridge theme in something called the Cambridge Film Festival. “Henry Morris” is a documentary made by young filmmakers from Sawston about the eponymous father of the Cambridgeshire village college movement in the 1930s. Under the direction of Peter Harmer, and with a grant from the National Lottery, the film uses period re-enactment and talking-head interviews to tell the story of a remarkable visionary. Morris not only founded such village colleges as Sawston, Bottisham and Impington, but also was first to espouse ‘cradle to grave’ state education. In what is clearly a fine tribute to the village college ethos, the one-hour documentary stars the current students of Sawston both in front of and behind the camera.
Students’ interviews with educational bigwigs of today are interspersed with a fictional drama following a young trainee teacher doing her thesis on Morris at the time of his death in 1961. Period detail is convincing and the scenes provide us with an interesting counterpoint to the interviews. There is clearly a lot of love in this film and the lucky students must have got so much out of making it. There is a good sense of rhythm and leisurely pace in the film and the whole is a satisfying, highly watchable and didactic experience.
- The First Cambridge Film Festival by David Perilli
- Under Control (Unter Kontrolle) by Edward Frost
- George Kuchar Interview by Rosy Hunt (Editor-in-Chief)