THE PLEASURE GARDEN
A film by James Broughton
Filmed among the ruins of The Crystal Palace Terraces, The Pleasure Garden is a playful and poetic ode to desire, and winner of the Prix de Fantaisie PoÃ©tique at Cannes in 1954. Made by the American poet James Broughton, the film features Hattie Jacques and Lindsay Anderson, with John Le Mesurier as the bureaucrat determined to stamp on any form of free expression.
Lovers of the history of Crystal Palace will find much to treasure in this 1950s time capsule of a film, which shows the Crystal Colonnade and he bandstand (both later demolished), the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve Memorial, and much of the statuary which was to be auctioned off in 1957.
The history of The Crystal Palace also comes alive in The Phoenix Tower, presented here as an extra. This rare 1957 film, about the building of the BBC Transmission Tower, was one of the number of short subject colour films to be shown on BBC2 as a ‘test trade transmission’, and has become something of a ‘lost’ film since.
The Phoenix Tower (1957, 39 mins), a short documentary charting the construction of the BBC’s Crystal Palace Television Tower
Fully illustrated booklet with film notes, an original review and a history of the Crystal Palace
Fully uncompressed PCM mono audio
UK | 1957 | black & white | English language with optional hard-of-hearing subtitles | 37 minutes + 39 minutes | DVD-5 | Original aspect ratio 1.33:1 | Region 2 DVD