Cat no. 1397

Bobbie Grows Up

Running time10:34 Black & White Silent 1919-1928 Westcliff-on-Sea, Essex

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The early years of Bobbie Woods-Taylor

Genre:

Archive AliveHome Movies

Early scenes from this film use an iris to fade in and fade out the picture. The first shot is of a still of Mr. and Mrs. Woods-Taylor, possibly on their wedding day, in 1919. They are in a garden; Mr. Woods-Taylor is in army uniform and is leaning on a walking stick. This is followed by a still of Bobbie as a newborn baby.The sequences that follow are all live-action. Bobbie enjoys his bath at eight weeks old. This sequence shows a tin bath. At eight months he is filmed propped up on the sofa whilst his mother attracts his attention with a Teddy Bear. Bobbie is wearing a long, lace trimmed robe. There is a close-up shot of him. At twelve months he is filmed in the garden of the family home with his mother. Both are dressed in outdoor clothes. At eighteen months he is filmed in the garden again. This time he is wearing a checked romper suit and can walk. He pushes around a wooden horse on wheels, then sits astride it and it pushed by his mother. He is filmed with his parents on the lawn, sitting on his father's lap. There follows a shot of Mr. and Mrs. Woods-Taylor without Bobbie. When he is a little older, Bobbie is filmed sitting on some steps in the garden with his dog. He is wearing outdoor clothing and wellington boots. There follows a close up shot of Bobbie, aged 4 in a woollen hat and jumper. There is another close up shot.The next sequence introduces Betty, Bobbie's younger sister. Bobbie holds Betty sitting up in bed beside his mother. A few weeks later, the three of them are filmed in the garden and then setting out to go for a walk. Bobbie, in outdoor clothing, sits on the steps holding Betty. He gives her several kisses, which make her scream. Later, Bobbie and Betty are filmed on the backdoor steps with their father. Bobbie rides his tricycle around the garden. At 11 months, Betty is filmed in the garden in her playpen, wearing a summer dress and a sun bonnet. She is pulled across the lawn by Bobbie in a small cart. When their grandparents pay a visit, the extended family poses for shots in the garden.The following sequences do not have captions, but show older children. Bobbie is 7 or 8 years old, Betty aged 3 or 4. They appear to be staging some kind on gangster game. Bobbie pulls out a gun and Betty puts her hands up. There follows a close-up shot of Bobbie and then Betty is filmed putting her doll to bed in a toy pram. The final scenes are different. There are scenes from a wedding, although the couple are not identified. There are also some scenes of musicians in 18th century dress. This is the end of the film. There are off cuts, showing some of the later scenes on the end of the roll.

Background Information:

This is an early example of a home movie. George Woods-Taylor was a press photographer on Fleet Street for many years before joining the Topical Film Company as news editor in 1911. He was an official kinematographer during the first world war and took the first film of British troops arriving in France. After the war he joined Cinechrome Ltd and before 1921 was experimenting in early colour and high speed kinematography. He was the official photographer on the Prince of Wales tour of India in 1922. He was well known in the industry. In December 1918 he was a co-founder of the Kine Cameraman's society and served as its secretary. As a professional, he was able to bring a camera home and record shots of his children growing up on 35 mm film. The style of the film is still that of a home movie, using jump cuts that a professional cameraman wouldn't usually use.The shots of the musicians in 18th century costume may come from a fictional film on which Mr. Woods-Taylor was working

Featured People:

George Woods-Taylor; Mrs. Woods-Taylor; Bobbie Woods-Taylor; Betty Woods-Taylor

George Woods-Taylor

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