"The producer must be a chef because he shows the problems of making a Baked Alaska in the best French fashion. He does a very beautiful job of it, right up to the triumphant finish." PSA Journal, Nov. 1956, 45.
"A short travelogue film on the Republic of Cyprus. A narrator warmly introduces viewers to the charms, history and people of Cyprus." Chicago Film Archives.
"Miss Luther has brought forth a delightful yet simple episode involving a little girl, a little boy, and a bouquet of daisies in the hand of each. We watch them as they walk across the meadow, play in the streams, give attention to the small animals and their attention to each other. Grandmother is ready with the kind of reward little children expect" PSA Journal, Oct. 1961, 47.
"Dramatized documentary: Depicts life in the Belgian Congo and French Cameroons." National Archives.
"To make a family film of youngsters that is entertaining to a stranger is quite an achievement, but to make a family picture that is, at the same time, an almost perfect record of the really human qualities of children and parents is a truly notable accomplishment. This is what John Martin has done in his picture, A Day with the Young Martins. His theme is the "from dawn to dusk" story of the Martin family, and he wisely has avoided emphasizing the clock or other obvious methods of holding the picture together. Instead, the story seems to tell itself, and the little episodes that must have been planned, or they could not have been caught with the aid of lighting equipment and camera, have a natural, sincere quality that is very welcome. The picture rates chiefly because of its delightful treatment, but technically it is entirely adequate." Movie Makers, Dec. 1936, 542.
"Dear Boys is a personal motion picture which might have been made in many an American home this past year. Looking about him, C. Manley DeBevoise found his two sons in the Army and his once lovely flower garden changing into a Victory vegetable patch, well tended but mundane. It was from these materials, mixed with imagination and technical competence, that Mr. DeBevoise compiled his film. Mother is discovered (as the picture begins) writing the familiar greeting to her service sons. Her comments during the course of the letter provide the subtitles and the continuity for this attractive record of domestic doings, while Mr. DeBevoise's carefully sequenced scenes tell the story. Dear Boys is simple, sincere and a family film story which any movie maker would be proud to produce — and to own." Movie Makers, Dec. 1943, 477.
"Dear Little Lightbird was entered as an experimental film by Leland Auslender, who also won one of the four top awards in the Class C category. He has a way with color, light and angles, and this talent easily put his film in the Top Ten. It's a story of a little boy born with an incurable disease, and how his three years of life brought into focus all the wonders of nature and this world around us. Perhaps this 18-minute film could be shortened somewhat, but it doesn't seem to matter for the film surrounds you with unusual shots of the simple things most of us miss in the helter-skelter of everyday life" PSA Journal, Oct. 1968, 49.
"Staria Zimmerman, that charming Milwaukee minx who made her big time bow in The Boss Comes to Dinner, a 1944 Ten Best winner, has done it again in The Dizzy Top. As the impish daughter of a winsome but widowed mother, she pulls the strings in this "merryonette" show which maneuver her pretty parent into the arms of a new and handsome husband. The quite willing victim of these arch designs is, in the film, the proprietor of a swank hat shop, and it is in this bright locale that the majority of the action takes place. Patricia and Ryne Zimmerman — the producers and supporting players — have a sharp and genuine sense of farce comedy. Their lighthearted plot dances forward as gaily as the suave settings they have contrived for it. Their incidents are antic in their absurdity, their timing crisp and delicately controlled. These qualities are, to be sure, aided immeasurably by Mistress Staria, who carries off each new comic conceit with impudent but charming assurance. Mr. Zimmerman's technical execution in their latest film leaves little to be desired in competence and imagination. There is, to a heightened degree, the same warmth and brilliance in his lighting which marked The Boss. His camera viewpoints are effective and varied, cutting one into the next with precision and pace. Show pieces of cinematic imagination enrich the production, like sugar plums in a Christmas pudding. The Dizzy Top, the Zimmerman's first 16mm. effort, is a handsome step forward along their chosen course of lighthearted comedy." Movie Makers, Dec. 1946, 486.
"Esta cinta se basaba en una idea de David Celestinos de enviar a diversos equipos de filmación a desarrollar historias sobre lo que ocurre un domingo en la Ciudad de México de manera simultánea. El resultado fue interesante, en la medida en la que muestra la cotidianidad dominguera de diversos personajes que provienen de distintas clases sociales: un borracho llega con su compadre a la casa de la vecindad y es recibido de mala manera por la mujer, un grupo de juniors pasa el día en Cuernavaca, un hombre solitario recorre las calles y parques del centro de la Ciudad de México, un velador se aburre en el edificio que custodia, dos sirvientas pasan el día en Chapultepec, una familia clasemediera que va a misa y a pasar un día de campo... La cinta sigue el planteamiento hecho por el neorrealismo italiano de no convocar actores profesionales para presentar historias sencillas, ligeramente dramatizadas" (Vázquez Mantecón, 2012.
"This film was based in an idea by David Celestinos of sending diverse filming crews to develop stories about what happens simultaneously on a Sunday in Mexico City. The result was interesting since it showed the Sunday everydayness of diverse characters from different social classes: a drunk man arrives at his friend's house in a poor neighborhood and is received in a bad way by a woman, a group of juniors that spend their day in Cuernavaca, a lonely man that goes through the streets and parks of Mexico City, a night watchman that is bored in the building he is in charge of, two maids that spend the day in Chapultepec, a middle class family that goes to mass and to have a picnic... The film follows the idea posed by Italian Neorealism of not using professional actors to present simple stories, slightly staged" (Vázquez Mantecón, 2012).
"Here, in Duck Soup, is the true life blood of amateur movie making — the family film. Since the hobby's very beginning in 1923, and consistently through the years since that time, more persons have bought more amateur movie cameras to take family films than for all other reasons put together. And yet look at the results! Or better still, don't look at them — for they are on the average an incoherent hodgepodge of over and underexposure, unsteady camera handling and wild panning on disconnected mementos of familiar milestones. Duck Soup, for those filmers who are lucky enough to see it, should change all that. For here is a well planned and crisply executed family film which has a beginning, a middle and an end. It has also precise camera work, fluid sequencing, and lighting on the children which will delight the heart of all home filmers. Do not, however, let these disciplined excellencies mislead you. For, above all else, Duck Soup is no stodgy exercise in family record keeping. These people had fun! Look . . . Duck Soup is a rollicking, rambunctious saga of what happens in a household when Pop, charging recklessly that the trials of homekeeping are "duck soup," is deserted for a few days by his deserving wife. What happens, as Pop gets the works from a quintet of utterly engaging youngsters, shouldn't happen (as they say) to a dog. There is stolid, well-meaning Tim, who, returning from the corner store, mangles a loaf of bread beyond all human use; there is demure and lovely Ellen, who plays the bride with Mom's best lace tablecloth; there are Greg and Kevin, impish and angelic twins, who roughhouse their way through the afternoon nap, bathing, haircuts and countless other high-spirited adventures. And there is, finally, Gary, the baby, who bawls like a foghorn and is Pop's particular problem-of-the-day. Duck Soup, in recounting these hilarious misadventures, is not a "great" film in the majestic sense of the word. (Majesty would be impossible in the face of that Lawler brood!) But it is family filming of the finest sort. It is warm, winning and alive with good spirits. Duck Soup is the best of the Ten Best for 1952 — and it richly deserves the Maxim Memorial Award which it has won." Movie Makers, 1952, 323-324.
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