Title ID 2835Collection ID348
Title[Visit to China and Korea]
CollectionWistrand Family
Genre/TypeAmateurIndependent AmateurNon-fiction
KeywordsBridges Buildings Ethnic Groups Religious Buildings Roads Street Trading Travel Tourism
LocalBeijing Seoul Chengde
NationalChina South Korea Asia
ProductionTor H. Wistrand
CameraTor H. Wistrand
FormatColour Silent
Duration28 min. 15 sec.
Copyright & AccessCopyright restrictions apply, contact Screen Archive South East for details


Footage of pre-Second World War Japan and Korea filmed by Swedish diplomat Tor H. Wistrand. He films temples and palaces, street scenes and The Great Wall of China. The film has intertitles and contains the only known pre-Second World War colour footage of Korea.


The film opens with a visit to The Forbidden City where the film-maker films the buildings and statues that stand inside the city walls. The city is mostly devoid of any other visitors. Images of The Summer Palace and The Temple of Heaven follow. The Avenue of Animals leads to The Ming Tombs. The film-maker stops to film portraits of the rural population. People go about their business in the streets of the Chinese Quarter, using camels, donkeys and rickshaws for transport. A small funeral procession passes whilst traders sell their wares at the street market. A constant flow of people, camels, oxen and carts traverse The Marco Polo Bridge. A section of The Great Wall of China is filmed at a distance from a moving boat. The palaces and temples of Jehol are filmed before the traveller moves onto Seoul. In Seoul, the film-maker films temples, street scenes and the children who play outside their houses.


A still from [Visit to China and Korea] (1938?) showing a Chinese manA still from [Visit to China and Korea] (1938?) showing men at a street marketA still from [Visit to China and Korea] (1938?) showing a temple building