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The Moon & The Sledgehammer
Home > The Moon & The Sledgehammer
Celebrating 50 Years since this was

film about a family of real people: Mr
Page; his two sons, Peter and Jim; and
his two daughters, Kathy and Nancy.
Mrs Page died long ago. Their
ramshackle house is situated in six
acres of woodland, which they own
themselves, in the heart of the
commuter-belt, 20 miles south of
London. The trees cut the Pages off
completely from the outside world, and
isolated in their island-clearing,
they let the 20th Century slowly pass
them by. It is a simple life without
running water, electricity or gas.
Peter and Jim earn what little money
the family needs by doing casual
repairs to tractors and farm-machinery
in the neighbourhood. Machinery is
the permanent obsession of Mr Page and
his sons. The wood is littered with
rusty iron carcasses: parts of old
engines, disembowelled car-bodies: a
pile of gigantic spanners. Most
spectacular are the archaic stem
traction-engines, which the men tinker
with and drive thunderously about the
woodland to no apparent purpose. The
girls, too, have their special
preoccupations: Nancy sits at her
embroidery; Kathy tends her garden and
plays comforting tunes on the
harmonium in the house, or on the
piano rotting away outside. As the
film unfolds each member of the family
spells out their personal fantasies
and philosophies to the camera. For
all their prodigious skills, they seem
at first eccentric, quaint; their
ideas tangential to our won. But in
the end it emerges that they are in
control of their world in a way that
we can never be in control of ours.
As Dilys Powell says, the film is
bizarrely entertaining; quite unlike
anything else, passionately filmed by
Philip Trevelyan, who is now an
organic farmer and tool-maker. Since
the film was made, with the passing of
time, the Page family’s philosophies
are ringing eerily true. Their self-
sufficient frugal lifestyle fits into
that advocated today where global
breakdown is a real issue. In the
end, the film will challenge your
values and leave much to reflect upon.

Large ViewLarge View   
  • Running time 65 minutes
  RRP Ex Tax  Inc Tax   
  £ 16.99  £ 16.99  Add to Basket

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