Summary

Footage Information

Archive Films by Getty Images
SAUDI ARABIA
MWD-13 Beta SP
Color
Home Movie
1956
Aerials
Color 1956 The home movie travelogues of Foster Mac Edward, from a journey to Saudi Arabia and probably somewhere in North Africa (Ethiopia?), that he made while working for ARAMCO (which is emblazoned on the sides of most of the airplanes in the film). Some Very good footage of Middle East desert landscapes, dromedary camels and Arab nomadic Bedouin people (wearing traditional clothing - robes, chadoors burquas, turbans). Bulk of the footage focuses on a desert base camp and its American crew of men who drive bright red cars and trucks across the desert sands. Possible readings are "lost in desert," exploration, disappearing exotic culture, etc. Mac's films are by and large very well filmed with a steadily held CAM and frequently explode in beautiful color. 00:54:01:00 Color 1956 An oil well fire in the desert, VS: roaring flames and thick black smoke rise from the well head, a small group of firemen and other personnel watch it and in a few shots try to extinguish it with water from firehoses to no effect. [Industrial accident]. 00:59:45:00 Color 1956 Airstrip runway and buildings of small air base in desert, POV AV VS. 01:00:07:00 Color 1956 Small passenger airplane lands and taxis to a stop on airstrip runway in desert. 01:01:25:00 Color 1956 Arab man wearing red turban stares at CAM, MS. 01:01:34:00 Color 1956 Airport maintenance man cleans nose propeller of airplane. 01:02:16:00 Color 1956 Drilling for oil in the desert: TU oil derrick of exploratory oil well VS the working drill shaft rising and falling inside the derrick VS the workmen operating the drill shaft. Good shots. 01:04:30:00 Color 1956 Well-built man wearing nothing but a pair of shorts playing golf in the desert, VS, funny leisure wacky sports, macho. 01:04:57:00 Color 1956 Two men putting golf balls in desert, poor shots. 01:05:13:00 Color 1956 Desert, POV AV, VS. 01:07:09:00 Color 1956 Group of men standing around and talking in desert, large sand dunes and cloudless blue sky in BG. 01:07:41:00 Color 1956 Sporty red pickup truck drives around desert, up and down sand dunes, VS. 01:10:17:00 Color 1956 Light airplane takes off from desert airstrip, sand dunes in BG, PAN. 01:10:54:00 Color 1956 Shadow cast by light airplane moves across desert, POV AV, VS good shots at 0:24:43, another brief shot of this. 01:12:17:00 Color 1956 WS lonely silhouette of solitary man walking across desert sand beneath blue sky, beautiful good shot. 01:12:23:00 Color 1956 Wind sweeps over desert sands and dunes, clouds of silky dust blow over the desert floor, VS, excellent and very beautiful desert landscape shots, almost abstract. [Sandstorm, dust storm, maybe passage of time]. 01:14:35:00 Color 1956 Dirty oil well workers operate mine shaft of exploratory well, VS. 01:16:14:00 Color 1956 Oil well worker climbing up oil derrick, LA. 01:16:48:00 Color 1956 Two surveyors in the desert, VS, surveyor with theodolite signals with flag to surveyor holding a post in the sand, poor shots. 01:17:34:00 Color 1956 Light airplane lands in desert. 01:17:47:00 Color 1956 Light airplane parked in desert, its spinning propeller slows down and stops. 01:19:02:00 Color 1956 Low-flying light airplane over desert, PAN, VS. 01:19:30:00 Color 1956 Wind whips up dust from crest of sand dune. [Desert landscape, dust-storm sand-storm]. 01:19:46:00 Color 1956 Distant, lonely figure of person standing on top of desert sand dune, iconic. 01:19:58:00 Color 1956 Wind blows sand dust over the furrowed surface of the desert. 01:20:11:00 Color 1956 Two Arab men wearing turbans sit on the sand in the desert, facing each other, and play some sort of game with sticks and lines drawn in the sand, VS. 01:20:51:00 Color 1956 Cloud of smoke from an explosion, rising up from desert, POV AV. 01:22:19:00 Color 1956 Man outside portable toilet outhouse packs a porcelain toilet into a shipping crate. [Scatological humor]. 01:24:49:00 Color 1956 Middle Eastern desert airport scenes: Arab men carry and load suitcases into cargo bay of parked passenger airplane, VS Arab men and women on sand tarmac, moving to and fro, VS Arab girls wearing fancy robes large group of Arab men on tarmac, VS, all wear turbans and flowing white robes Arab women wearing burqua body veils cross tarmac, VS etc. [Airplane trip departure]. 01:28:11:00 Color 1956 Small African city (in Ethiopia?), street scenes: black woman with cornrows hairdo crossing the street people crossing street (mostly black Africans), car traffic, VS. 01:28:32:00 Color 1956 CU PAN shots of a group of smiling black African girls and boys, they stare CAM, some boys hold hands to their heads in a pretend-salute, one girl with unusual traditional hairdo wears a garland. Excellent children shots. 01:28:55:00 Color 1956 African city (Ethiopia?) and village street scenes: horse-drawn rickshaws black women wearing traditional clothing woman with baby in sling on her back peasant woman carries load of firewood on her back people carrying yokes burdened donkeys children play with ramshackle go-cart on road goats shepherd boy with oxen etc. 01:31:48:00 Color 1956 African men and their herd of camels walk down road, silhouetted against blue sky, VS. 01:33:06:00 Color 1956 Black African children, VS, poor shots. 01:33:15:00 Color 1956 Black African woman on street, Volkswagen advertisement in BG. 01:33:18:00 Color 1956 African people riding on horse-drawn rickshaw, brief shot. 01:33:50:00 Color 1956 Bird hunting expedition: group of hunters walks slowly across grass meadow with their guns raised and ready, VS hunting dog walks through grass, VS the hunters aim their rifles and fire shots, shoot low-flying birds, VS hunting dog with shot bird in its mouth, hunter retrieves it from him. 01:40:57:00 Color 1956 Arab boy wearing skullcap sits on his tricycle Arab girl wearing kerchief pulls the boy on his tricycle. Good shots, children playing. 01:41:04:00 Color 1956 Two shaggy black goats outside of house. 01:41:10:00 Color 1956 Arab tailor cuts patterns of cloth in his outdoor market bazaar stall. 01:41:20:00 Color 1956 A goat. 01:41:25:00 Color 1956 Small Middle East city street scenes, pedestrians, a few cars, many men wearing turbans, an incongruous storefront sign for a travel agency, etc. 01:42:01:00 Color 1956 Small movie production unit on desert hillside films a scene of Arab men at cliff ledges, VS, director at work, movie camera, light reflectors, etc. [Behind the scenes] 01:42:41:00 Color 1956 MS Arab man wearing turban speaks to Arab boy wearing turban, good shot. 01:42:47:00 Color 1956 VS Arab men and camels in the late evening desert, silhouetted against dark blue sky, underexposed very dark. 01:43:35:00 Color 1956 Helicopter lands in desert men on ground near the helicopter, its spinning rotor blades gradually slow down. 01:43:30:00 Color 1956 A crashed passenger airplane in the desert, only slightly damaged, VS. 01:45:15:00 Color 1956 VS Arab man wearing turban in the desert with his team of camels, VS he tells sitting camel to stand up, it does camels drink at watering hole, VS WS the man and his camels walking toward the horizon in the desert. Excellent shots.
}