The Railway Man

“The Railway Man” is a new feature film starring Colin Firth and Nicole Kidman. It follows the true story of Eric Lomax, a POW forced to build the Thai/Burma railway during WW2. British Pathé has coverage of that railway and of other events from the life of Firth’s character.

There is a film from 1945 of the railway itself, known as the “Railway of Death”, which was not used in any newsreels, and is sadly silent, but is nevertheless interesting to watch (the film can be viewed here). Lomax was forced to build the railway after leaving Changi Prison, for which there is also footage in the archive. The reel, from the liberation of the prison in 1945, can be found in this collection.

Also included is coverage of the war in Singapore during 1942, for it was after that country’s surrender that Lomax was captured by the Japanese.

“The Railway Man”, based on Lomax’s autobiographical account, is released in the UK today.

Click here for British Pathé’s collection of films related to “The Railway Man”.

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www.britishpathe.com

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Nicole Kidman to play Princess Grace in new film

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We learnt today from Ben Child’s film column in the Guardian that Nicole Kidman will be playing Grace Kelly in a new Hollywood blockbuster. The film will be directed by Olivier Dahan whose biopic of Edith Piaf was received well by the critics and saw that Marion Cottilard won Best Actress at the Oscars in 2008.

The British Pathe archive has a wealth of great Grace Kelly newsreels and archive video footage, including some quite intimate ones when Pathe were given access to her private family life in Monaco.

You can see some of the best Grace Kelly reels here:

GRACE KELLY VIDEO ARCHIVE

Also, on our YouTube channel VintageFashions you can watch this great clip of Grace Kelly modelling as a student in this video 1940s Evening Fashions:

 

Do you think Nicole Kidman will be good in the role as Grace? The Australian actress certainly knows how to flick between between partygirl and austere – as we saw in Moulin Rouge, and Nicole Kidman has strawberry blonde hair like Grace.

Finally – we wonder if the new film will make use of some archive footage? We hope so!