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Pearls and Savages
Description: A 1921 documentary from filmmaker Frank Hurley about the people of Papua New Guinea and Torres Strait.
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Clip #: TFA-388
Length: 1:18:18
Year: 1921
Color: B/W
Sound: Silent
Library: TFA Network
Decade: 1920s
Filmmaker: Frank Hurley
Region: South Asia
Country: New Guinea
Subject: Explorers
Original: 16mm
1920s, historical documentaries, travelogues, travel films, Oceania, Melanesia, Papua New Guinea, Torres Strait, indigenous people, Papuans, Melanesians, Torres Strait Islanders, traditional culture, native life, indigenous men paddling canoes down swamp, indigenous adults and children wearing traditional attire such as headdresses, jewelry, bone piercings, grass dresses, Frank Hurley spinning globe and pointing to Torres Strait region, harbor, pearl hunting, pearl diver putting diving suit on and going underwater, diver retrieving basket of large oysters and opening oyster to reveal pearl, indigenous people performing traditional dances, spinning tops, cat’s cradle, model boat race, food being prepared and eaten, fishing with nets, underwater views, coral reefs, marine life, sea urchins, brittle stars, school of small fish, indigenous people flipping turtles onto their backs on beach, indigenous man digging up eggs buried in sand, eggs stacked in design of “160”, turtle trying to escape from tent, indigenous men paddling outrigger canoes, outrigger canoes, indigenous man holding spears, indigenous people adorned in jewelry and headdresses, traditional dancing, Allan McCulloch (?) putting necklace on indigenous man and conversing with indigenous people, hut roofs being thatched, pipe and rolled cigarettes being smoked, chewing tobacco, facial tattooing, tattoos, heavily adorned women with nose piercings, child holding puppies, hair removal, children making and wearing grass skirts, bare-chested women and children wearing grass skirts, women and children making pottery, palm trees being chopped down and stripped of bark, sap being removed from tree, canoes and sailing boats being constructed, Hurley’s seaplane being unloaded off ship and brought to shore assisted by people in canoes, huts on stilts, children playing cricket, indigenous people wearing headdresses and grass skirts, traditional dancing, drummers, indigenous people helping Hurley with his plane, indigenous man holding model seaplane, seaplane taxiing on water, aerials of village, mountains, coastline, clouds, water, view from seaplane landing on water, men standing and paddling canoes, flock of birds in flight, boat pov traveling on waterway, headhunters, Hurley and indigenous men exploring headhunter village, Hurley and Allan McCulloch looking at skulls, swamp, arrows, nose bone piercings, headdresses, traditional dancing, people in canoes helping Hurley with his seaplane after landing, decorative skulls, decorative shields, dancing in full-length body masks, seaplane taking off and flying into distance

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