Cinema: Colonial Film Database

Film is a powerful medium to document world events and everyday life. I find it interesting that with the attack on arts funding around the world, that governments have routinely used arts and culture to control thinking and behavior. However, that’s a conversation for another time. I came across The Colonial Film Database courtesy of Bombastic Element and I wanted to share it. Welcome to Colonial Film: Moving Images of the British Empire. This website holds detailed information on over 6000 films showing images of life in the British colonies. Over 150 films are available for viewing online. You can search or browse for films by country, date, topic, or keyword. Over 350 of the most important films in the catalogue are presented with extensive critical notes written by our academic research team.

The Colonial Film project united universities (Birkbeck and University College London) and archives (British Film Institute, Imperial War Museum and the British Empire and Commonwealth Museum) to create a new catalogue of films relating to the British Empire. The ambition of this website is to allow both colonizers and colonized to understand better the truths of Empire. ( from the website). I came across this from the Central African Film Unit that gives an idea on what the collection holds. It’s called BIRCH COLLECTION: 6: FREETOWN AND YENGEMA, SIERRA LEONE. It’s a collection of scenes of life in parts of Sierra Leone.

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