fbpx

SOUTH

Director: FRANK HURLEY

UK • 1914 • B&W • 80 MIN


ALTHOUGH THE RACE TO THE POLE WAS WON BY AMUNDSEN’S NORWEGIAN TEAM IN 1911, SIR ERNEST SHACKLETON PLANNED TO BE THE FIRST MAN TO CROSS ANTARCTICA VIA THE POLE. SOUTH IS THE FILM RECORD OF HIS ILL-FATED, YET HEROIC ATTEMPT TO DO SO IN 1914-16.
Experienced Australian cameraman Frank Hurley was hired to record the expedition. A superb and courageous photographer, Hurley’s film chronicles what happened to Shackleton and his team of twenty-seven men when their ship ‘Endurance’ was crushed by heavy ice, leaving them stranded for almost two years, exposing the team to conditions that made survival seem impossible. Shackleton gave the order to abandon as much gear as possible, including all of Hurley’s films and bulky photographic glass plates. Hurley faced the heartbreaking task of smashing around 400 of those plates to lighten his load, but took the remaining 150, together with his precious rolls of cine film. It took four rescue attempts before Shackleton was able to defeat the pack ice and to save his men. In 1919 Shackleton published his written account of the expedition, and lectured with Hurley’s film as accompaniment. He returned south on his fourth expedition in 1921, but died of a heart attack on South Georgia, where he was buried. He was just 47, and with his passing the heroic age of polar exploration came to an end. This restored version of the film has been treated with tinting and toning to match the original prints by the British Film Institute, producing a handsome and richly coloured testament to a remarkable episode in the history of exploration.

Book Tickets

}