British Public Information Film: Searching (1974)

A British Public Information (PIF) film which was broadcast in 1974 and shown during television advertisement breaks. Like many PIFs in the mid-1970s, the film deals with safety issues at home. This film pays attention to the dangers of children playing with matches in a home environment.

The narrative is predominately voiced through sound and the visuals containing horror characteristics. From research and recalling PIFs shown in this period in my own youth, the horror aspect was a very familiar trait in the mid-1970s. It seemed that the more evocative was the more effective. Though whether there is any truth in that fact remains to be seen. The trajectory of the hand-held camera (being the person) stealthily moves through a dilapidated interior. The narrative makes it clear for the viewer that the dweller, a family member, is returning to the devastation. Objects on the kitchen table being  theatrically arranged as the camera scrutinizes the pitiful remains. The audio really does   dominate the visuals, penetrative echoes and cries of the family members provide visceral qualities.

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