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The Photograph

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Catalogue Number:  MPE007
Producer:  Motion Pictures Enterprises Inc.
Subject:  American History, Canadian History, Canadian Social Studies, History, Language Arts, Media and Communications, Social Studies, Women's Studies
Language:  English
Grade Level:  9 - 12, Post Secondary
Country Of Origin:  Canada
Copyright Year:  2017
Running Time:  6:54


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A family photograph taken in 1901 reveals its secrets when 100-year-old Victoria Covey tells stories of the people portrayed. As Victoria weaves tales of life, death, migration, and adventure, her stories connect to history through archival footage and images that are brought to life through animation. “The Photograph” is about memory, connections, and how history is perceived through the lens of family lore.

Filmmaker’s Statement:

“The Photograph” shows how our own stories intersect with history’s cavalcade of events. We are all descendants of people whose lives were touched by the tides of history. One hundred-year-old Victoria Covey of Nova Scotia, Canada, shares her family’s oral history tradition through storytelling that brings a human touch to history’s stark facts. She wields an impeccable memory and, depending on the topic, conveys a tone of gravitas or a dry sense of humour. I used the titular photograph to launch Victoria’s stories, then combined her interview with archival footage and images to extend the personal stories to their historic events and contexts. I would like the audience to enjoy this film knowing that their own family narratives are woven into history and that this connects them to the broader human experience.


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