City Of Temples

1952 - 1953 , Bangkok, Thailand (Other)

A holiday in Thailand.

Laurie Day sits in her sitting room writing a letter. Her husband enters and gives her an air-mail letter from the person in Bangkok who had arranged their itinerary on a recent holiday, informing them that some parcels are in the post as a memento of their visit. They have also been sent a copy of 'Life' magazine, which contains a feature on the city. Stuart Day puts this on the table to show his wife. She looks at it and writes a letter expressing thanks for the magazine. The article prompts shots of their holiday in Bangkok. The film returns to the present where Stuart Day hands over the expected parcel which contains a silk tie for him and a length of material for Laurie Day. She continues to express her thanks in the letter praising the city. Sequences in Thailand include: shots of temples in Bangkok; visits north of Bangkok to the King’s Summer Palace, the ruins of the old capital Ayutthaya and the plains of central Thailand; the Khlongs [canals and waterways in Bangkok]; street in scenes in central Bangkok; a visit to the snake farm; a visit to the Arts Museum to watch a performance of the Temple dancers accompanied by a Gamelan Orchestra. The commentary provided by Laurie Day provides a brief description of the features and a legend associated with the Buddha of the Temple of the Emerald Green Buddha, highlighting the architectural detail of curved serpents’ heads traditional to Thai architecture; a noviciate’s entry to the Buddhist priesthood, Buddhist beliefs and the objectives of priesthood; Wat Pho, including its exterior pottery decoration, its mosaic tiles and the attraction of building shrines for the wealthy; the need for constant repair; the fight against opium smoking, the government monopoly over the opium trade including its licensing of opium dens, the lessening of the drug’s strength before enforcing a complete ban on the drug, the existence of large-scale smuggling; a brief history of the fall of Ayutthaya and the expulsion of the occupying Burmese army; the importance of washing water buffalo; harvest and logs sent by river to Bangkok; lives spent on boats by many of the population; the existence of floating markets; life on the canals and waterways [khlongs]; the Buddhist belief in reincarnation; the interest in cock fighting (‘a national pastime’); the development of Bangkok; the changes in sights in the modern centre of Bangkok, with the replacement of hand-pulled rickshaws with pedal tricycles; the milking of snakes venom, including a description of how the venom is used to develop a serum to treat snake bites and its other beneficial use as a treatment for haemophilia; how the venom is obtained and the snake is fed with milk after; why cobras spread their hoods, and the danger posed to the assistants in this public show; the use of other deadlier snakes (banded kraits) and the King Cobra; the slow movement and control of hands of the Temple Dancers to convey the meaning of the dance. Authoritative in tone throughout much of the film, Laurie Day adopts a humorous tone in one sequence at Wat Pho for an imagined chatter between statues. The commentary is broken up by sequences of music, including a recording of a Gamelan orchestra.

Featured Buildings

The home of Laurie and Stuart Day, Trentham, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire Giant Demon, Temple of the Emerald Buddha [Wat Phra Kaew], Bangkok Marble Temple [Wat Benchamabophit], Bangkok Temple of the Reclining Buddha [Wat Pho] (western entrance), Bangkok King’s Summer Palace [Bang Pa-In] Aisawan Thiphaya-Art Pavilion, King’s Summer Palace [Bang Pa-In] Ayutthaya [Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya] Seated Buddha, Royal Chapel, Ayutthaya Khlongs, Bangkok Snake Farm, [possibly old, now demolished Simaseng building] Bangkok Courtyard of the Arts Museum, Bangkok

Featured Events

Milking of snakes by Superintendent of Clinic

Keywords

Foreign travel; Holidays; Bangkok; Temples; Buddha;

Other Places

Trentham, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire

Manifestations

City Of Temples

  • Barcode
    INV367303
    Canonical Title
    Unknown
    Carrier Type
    DV digital
    Dimension
    Duration
    0:35:30
    Modification Date
    15/04/2015
    Parts
    Reference
    737645
  • Barcode
    INV326945
    Canonical Title
    Unknown
    Carrier Type
    wav digital
    Dimension
    Duration
    0:36:46
    Modification Date
    14/04/2015
    Parts
    Reference
    737621
  • Barcode
    INV381066
    Canonical Title
    Unknown
    Carrier Type
    MP4 H264 digital
    Dimension
    Duration
    0:35:28
    Modification Date
    26/09/2011
    Parts
    Reference
    728858
  • Barcode
    INV395061
    Canonical Title
    Unknown
    Carrier Type
    MP4 H264 digital
    Dimension
    Duration
    0:35:28
    Modification Date
    31/08/2011
    Parts
    Reference
    724752
  • Barcode
    INV380421
    Canonical Title
    Unknown
    Carrier Type
    MP4 H264 digital
    Dimension
    Duration
    0:35:28
    Modification Date
    31/08/2011
    Parts
    Reference
    723950
  • Activities
    Barcode
    INV389679
    Canonical Title
    Unknown
    Carrier Type
    DV digital
    Dimension
    Duration
    0:22:42
    Modification Date
    10/05/2011
    Parts
    Reference
    711187
  • Activities
    Barcode
    INV293051
    Canonical Title
    Unknown
    Carrier Type
    master digital
    Dimension
    Duration
    0:22:46
    Modification Date
    10/09/2010
    Parts
    Reference
    691405
  • Activities
    Barcode
    INV243475
    Canonical Identifier
    2006/51
    Canonical Title
    Unknown
    Carrier Details
    Carrier Type
    16mm film
    Colour System
    Kodachrome
    Colour Type
    colour
    Dimension
    Duration
    0:33:20
    Has Image
    Y
    Has Sound
    Y
    Identifier
    Image Polarity
    pos
    Modification Date
    27/07/2010
    Parts
    Reference
    684906
    Sound
    sound
  • Activities
    Barcode
    INV280832
    Canonical Identifier
    2010/9
    Canonical Title
    Unknown
    Carrier Details
    Carrier Type
    16mm film
    Colour System
    colour
    Colour Type
    colour
    Has Image
    Y
    Has Sound
    N
    Identifier
    Image Polarity
    pos
    Modification Date
    17/06/2010
    Parts
    Reference
    682206
    Sound
    silent
  • Activities
    Barcode
    INV279902
    Canonical Identifier
    2010/9
    Canonical Title
    Unknown
    Carrier Details
    Carrier Type
    16mm film
    Colour System
    colour
    Colour Type
    colour
    Has Image
    Y
    Has Sound
    Y
    Identifier
    Image Polarity
    pos
    Modification Date
    17/06/2010
    Parts
    Reference
    682202
    Sound
    sound
    Sound System
    mag stripe
  • Activities
    Barcode
    INV229284
    Canonical Identifier
    2010/9
    Canonical Title
    Unknown
    Carrier Details
    Carrier Type
    audiospool tape
    Has Sound
    Y
    Identifier
    Modification Date
    17/06/2010
    Parts
    Reference
    682200
    Sound
    sound
    Sound System
    mag full width
  • Award:
    • Group 1:
      • Note: Awards (data migration 25/06/2021): Institute of Amateur Cinematographers’ Amateur Film Competition, Daily Mail Trophy, 1953; Institute of Amateur Cinematographers’ Amateur Film Competition, Bassett Lowke Trophy, 1953; Institute of Amateur Cinematographers’ Amateur Film Competition, Sound Film Challenge Trophy [IAC Trophy for Creative Use of Sound, aka the Twyford Cup, in its early years], 1953.

Copyright restrictions apply.

Please see our terms of use. Films on this website are provided for personal viewing. Should you wish to use the films in any other way please contact eafa@uea.ac.uk

terms of use

The data for this page was generated on 12/08/2022 01:57:40+00:00. Click to regenerate this page .