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City of Gold

City of Gold

(Capitale de l'or)

Year: 1957
Language: English
Format: 16mm Black & White
Runtime: 22 min
Director: Wolf Koenig, Colin Low
Producer: Tom Daly
Writer: Pierre Berton, Robert Choquette, Roman Kroitor
Cinematographer: Douglas Roberts, Wolf Koenig, Colin Low
Editor: Tom Daly
Sound: George Croll
Music: Eldon Rathburn
Narration: Pierre Berton
Production Company: National Film Board of Canada

A vivid recollection of the Klondike gold rush at its frenzied height, City of Gold compares the boom town of the gold rush in 1897-98 with the more tranquil Dawson City of the fifties. Pierre Berton, a Dawson City native, recounts the agonizing months during which would-be prospectors struggled through steep passes and wintry trails to reach the fabled gold fields thirty-two thousand kilometres north of civilization.

A classic example of the work done by the National Film Board’s acclaimed Unit B under Tom Daly, this engaging documentary by Wolf Koenig and Colin Low remains one of the NFB’s most popular and honoured films. Distinguished by its brilliant use of glass-plate, still photographs (the film’s innovative panning technique creates the impression that the still pictures are actually moving), its evocative music score and telling commentary, City of Gold won over twenty awards and was nominated for an Academy Award for best short subject.