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LGM Film Club, Part 30: Colorful North Carolina

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This MGM-produced travel film from 1942 focuses on the ways and life of western North Carolina.

It’s an interesting view into what might appeal to travelers at a time when few did travel, especially to a place like western North Carolina. After making Asheville look dead boring with a stupid southern belle festival, it goes to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, which has the advantage of natural beauty. But this film is really interested in is the “backwards” ways of the residents–Cherokee and white. The Cherokee parts are pretty racist of course, very much including the music, but it is interesting enough to see some visual evidence of how the Cherokee were building an economy of appealing to white tourists. “And then onto the white race” to only slightly paraphrase the film’s transition to the mountain peoples, who are quaint and old-timey.

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