This film is held by the BFI (ID: 60095).


Interest. Settlers in Palestine search for water and having done so, find prosperity.

Credits (146). Pair of legs walk along a railway track and along a dirt track through rocks and desert land; dust is blown up around him and he fords streams and climbs hills (284). The walker sits down, takes shoes off and bathes feet in water (323). Shot of Union Jack flying with PALESTINE as s.i.t. (336). Shot of British border point where the walker arrives and is allowed through (361). Shot of full length of walker as he beams looking around him (407). The landscape (415). MLS buildings of a small town, shots of cacti and palm trees (463), the walker throws his cap in the air (471) and continues walking, shots now show the upper half of his body as he goes along a path (488) through rocky ground (503) and through an ancient gateway (514) along a roadway with other pedestrians and some people riding on donkeys (544). Landscape (550). Walker passes a lake (560) where goats are grazing (570). The goats are herded by a man on a donkey who grins at the camera (585). A well (609). Wheat harvest using sickles (635), a camel powers a watermill (670). Another camel is used to hoist water from a deep well (710). A man washes his feet at the well (716). A camel drinking (723). Water is poured out. A caravan of camels loaded with water jars (744) is lead out over the desert (764). The walker is now at work with a mallet, shots of various skilled work, planing wood and carpentry (797). Shot of a group of tents with men at work constructing a building (816). Ploughs at work (905), a rake is drawn over the soil (923). CU of woman working (927). Women sow seeds (938). Weeding and working on the land (950). Children tend plants (986). Horse and foal (996). Cart in field where workers have left their cups and plates having eaten (1008). Shots of men waiting around (1039). Landscape with tents and a wooden hut (1073). A horse-drawn water carrier (1090) with a queue of men waiting with different containers to draw off what they need to drink, give to animals or wash (1128). Water carrier continues on its way (1147). Fade s.i.t. "Road-building in Tel-Aviv" (1155). A caterpillared earth mover in action on site (1211). Shot of a town viewed in the distance through the legs of a camel (1218). MCU camel (1220). Huts and camel being used in construction (1240). CU of camel being made to sit and its paniers loaded with sand (1290). Various CU shots of waiting camels (1333) before they are lead off in caravan (1355). Men collecting tarmacadam in handcarts (1367) which is tipped out and raked over the surface (1390). Mixing ballast with tar (1410). Raking (1417). Steam roller (1429). Breaking ballast with a mallet (1438). Shovelling rock for foundations (1447) and spreading on road (1464). Mixing concrete (1519).

Rl.2 Water is hosed down a channel (3). Shots of various men drinking from the hose (9). Concrete is carried in handcarts and spread on the road (24) levelling off by hand in sections (36). Laying of steel reinforcement (69). More concrete is laid with mechanised levelling (127). Shot from a van/bus driving along a new road (155). Shot of the town (158). Donkeys walk in front of the van (165). Map of Palestine shows the growth of the city of Tel Aviv between 1909 and 1935 (215). Shot of bus travelling through town road and out in country (253). Children travel on a horse drawn truck for the maize harvest (266). Shots of the crop (271). Children are helped off the truck (280). Machine harvester fells the plants (300), children strip the corncobs (317). Workers and the harvester pans to half-stripped field (329). Children pull cobs from the plant (352). Child eats from cob (365). The truck is loaded with the harvested plants and the children (398). Going home (420). Cuts to scene of brick-making (498). Bricks are tossed to a builder on site who stacks them (512). CU of bricklaying (527). A large slab of concrete is carried (539). Mixing concrete in a trough (546). Bricks are carried on a man's back (559). The concrete slab is carried to the upper floor (571). Star of David is erected on the roof frame (575). CU of same (583). Gap (587). Horse drawn water tank on the road (622). Two men work on a crank to draw water, a pipe is sunk and the men use a lever device to drill (900). In vain (909). The men rest after their hard work (926). Pipes are lined up along the ground (939). Shot of the site and a man shifting larger pipes (964) and walks about (983). He seals up the well-opening with planks and leaves (1014). Shots of boarded well, pipes and pumping piece (1041). Shot of parched earth (1063). Horse drawn water carrier continues (1085). The workers strike camp and load their belongings onto a horse drawn cart (1162) and drive away over fields (1201). Gap (1204). A door opens and men walk in (1214). CU of faces around a table eating and relaxing (1243). A man reads from a book(Hebrew?) CU of those listening (1323). Fade (1329). A new attempt is made. An engine is started up and shots of machinery at work (1381). A man at the controls (1401). Shot of the drill (1409). Controller at work (1417). Drill (1424). Winch ropes (1433). Man (1442). Continued alternating shots (1471). A pipe is sunk (1485). Another sequence of men and the machinery (1683). Water is found (1698). Pumps at work (1712). Shot of man at the controls (1721). The pipe is drawn out again and rock collected in it are examined and classified (1819). The horse drawn water carrier continues (1847).

Rl.3 The drilling continues (87), and finally a pump is installed (249). A pipe is connected up (257), a drill-rod is sunk (273). A weight is attached (282), and motor started (288), the pistons in action (336). Water rises in the shaft and gushes out whilst one of the workers strikes the bell in celebration (352). Other families come rushing out to see (412). Shot of water gushing out of pipe into a tank (421) and overflowing (425), a woman drinks the water (444). Grapes are handed out (448). Pump working alternates with shots of a man bouncing in the air and general celebration (472). More celebrations including children dancing and a man playing a mouth organ (505). Children (513). Adults dance (526) and water gushes from the pipe (537). More gushing water (543). CU of dry earth as water flows along it forming a stream (580). Irrigation of fields as water is channelled through (682). A worker in a field of young plants (701). A wider channel (709). A flood gate is opened (711). Shots of gushing water (799). CU of tomatoes, aubergines, marrows and a gourd in a wheelbarrow pushed by a cheerful young woman (808). CU peaches on a tree (810). Vegetables again (812). Grapes on a vine (816). Sorting and packing grapes by hand (818). Pears on a tree (821). Water flows down a concrete-lined channel (823). CU sunflower (824). Cows go through a dip (837). Cows on the open road (843). Shepherd with sheep (847). He drinks from a standpipe (850). Sheep drinking (854). CU of ram (857). He pumps water into a trough for the sheep (868). Sheep in a flock (874). Wheat fields (882). A harvester (979). Raking the cut wheat on the thresher (1085). Young workers march towards and past the camera (1089). Shots of legs (1107) and faces (1116). Star of David on a flag (1122). End.



  • AVODAH (Alternative)
  • TOIL (Alternative)

Technical Data

Running Time:
50 minutes
Film Gauge (Format):
35mm Film
4488 ft

Production Credits

LERSKI, Helmar