Title ID 1122Collection ID46
TitleThe Fatal Shot
Date[ca. 1933]
CollectionBarnes Brothers
Genre/TypeAmateurIndependent Artist/Film-makerFictionChase
KeywordsBeaches Children Social Problems
LocalKingsgate Bay
NationalEngland United Kingdom
ProductionA Barnes Brothers Production
CameraJohn Barnes
DirectorBill Barnes; John Barnes
ProducerBill Barnes; John Barnes
CastWilliam Barnes; Pamela Barnes; Garlick Barnes; Trevor Jones; John Simon
FormatBlack & White Silent
Duration4 min. 15 sec.
Copyright & AccessCopyright restrictions apply, contact Screen Archive South East for details


An amateur fiction film in which smugglers kidnap a young girl and shoot her dead when she tries to escape from their seafront cave.


This Barnes Brothers film starts with a trio of young bandits, with false beards, drinking in a chalk cliff cave and sharpening knives. One of them emerges from the lair onto the beach where he sees a lone child whose mother has gone to fetch a book. After knocking the child out, he carries her back to the cave. On waking the child escapes but the gang chase after her firing their guns. The girl is shot and her body is put into a sack. The bandits dig a hole in the sand and bury their victim.


A still from The Fatal Shot (1933)

Contextual information

Filmed among the chalk cliffs and caves of Kingsgate Bay, Kent, twin brothers John and William Barnes' youthful and gruesome production was made when the boys were in their very early teens. Their sister, Garlick, played the victim while friends of the twins played the bandits.