You may well remember the video I got so excited about a few weeks ago, ‘Luv’in the Black Country’ by talented and impressive local filmmakers Black Country Cinema. I went on to explore even more of their cannon of work in my post ‘I Love this place with all my heart’.
Last night, I noticed the lads had uploaded a new film to their YouTube Channel ‘Black Country Verse’ – I’ve embedded it above. It’s as lovely as all the others, and it’s so nice to see places I recognise in this way. The Tame Valley Canal is as wonderfully cinematic as ever.
They had this to say about it:
A visual adaptation of an old saying by the American consul to Birmingham Elihu Burritt, he famously said, ‘The Black Country is black by day and red by night’.
The Black Country which is located in the middle of the West Midlands (England) was once the industrial heart of the United Kingdom and was famous for the black smoke produced from the factories that filled the streets in a dark haze. Then as the sun set when the foundry furnaces were opened the sky would light up in crimson red.
This film was shot on one of the many Black Country canal routes, which used to be the primary method of transportation for the factory goods and furnace coal. The Canals are one of the few inanimate parts of the Black Countries industrial identity that still stand. After the lorries and the rejuvenated rail routes became the preferred method of product transportation by local companies, the canals became futile. Like the Black Country’s industrial Identity the canals stand as a shadow of what they used to be. If it was not for it simply being too expensive to remove the canals there would be no reason to keep them, they stand in a state of nostalgic limbo.
I remain impressed by the lack of unnecessary commentary, and use instead of ambient noise. It’s a stunning device I think really works. It gives you space to explore the images and appreciate the unexpected beauty of places we often consider unattractive and everyday.
Black Country Cinema are a collective of four young film-makers: Matthew E. Carter, Andrew J. Walker, Jaspal Singh and Manjeet S. Gill.
Along with the wonderful and poignant Salmon Corporation’s ‘ Walsall: Everything a Pound’, Matthew and the lads are saying some really eloquent stuff about our area. Their work is wonderful and I can’t praise it highly enough.