Oi Polloi

Worth a Watch: Potentially Lifesaving Public Information Films

Published: Mon Sep 22 2014

Life is full of tough questions. Should I hide in that old fridge I found in the rubbish heap? Will that rotten old tree branch hold my weight? Can I pitch my tent under these overhead powerlines? Luckily for those who lack common sense, Public Information films provide all the right answers. Ranging from the ridiculously dull to downright terrifying, these films are a startling reminder that you’re never one daft mistake from a grisly death.

Here’s a few classics that could save your life.

The Spirit of Dark and Lonely Water is perhaps the Lord of the Rings of the Public Information world. It’s got a powerful narrative, some high class special effects and even some celebrity vocal talents (a particularly unpleasant Donald Pleasence). If this doesn’t get you in the mood for a paddle in that murky old pond near the tip, we don’t know what will.

There’s no messing about with this one. Three people, two deaths and one orange football.

This one is pretty much exactly the same as the last one, but with a frisbee instead of a football. Great acting too — for a minute I almost thought this was a documentary.

Now for a bit of light humour. What could be funnier than a grown man being mown down in traffic?

Yet more children getting electrocuted in inventive ways. I won’t ruin the end for you but it’s the kids with the boat who get zapped.

This last one is a bit less depressing as it’s about stolen bikes instead of dead children. Still worth a watch though. I wonder what was in Big Hat’s saddle bag?