General Election


Filmed 1945, released 1946.

1946 – The Council Films Department is merged with the Ministry of Information.

Cost of £4.780.0

Made primarily for foreign audiences.

Described as showcasing a ‘completely detached, non-party view-point’ – foreign dubbing was facilitated.

The film is ‘urgently required for foreign distribution as a model of British Electoral Method.’

It is funny to observe the passive aggression of those involved with the production when they become concerned that they are not receiving enough recognition for their contributions. For example – Mary Benedetta’s letter to John Ward complains that she has only been credited as supplying the commentary rather than the script for the whole film. It is quite evident that she feels she is being undervalued in the promotion and discussion of the film.

There was concern from primrose that ‘foreigners’ will not be able to understand many of the words used in the commentary including ‘election address’, ‘constituency’ and ‘agent’.

Criticism also came from Harold Nicholson that the fact British votes are ‘untamperable’ was not hammered home hard enough in the film.

Perhaps a good idea to look for response to the film in the Northamptonshire Evening Telegraph/Kettering Leader.

A large number of the scenes within the film were re-staged from an original occurrence.

There is quite an amusing letter of complaint from Dempsey, the independent Christian candidate, bemoaning a film ‘so evidently biased on behalf of the other two candidates’ in which he is ‘treated as an intruder’.

Many of the businesses approached by Benedetta to form part of the film declined as they did not want to be seen as pledging political allegiance with one particular party, due to ‘confusing politics’.