The Man Who Shot the Great War

There have been a selection of exceptional photographs discovered which have been described as “the photographic discovery of the century”, the photographs themselves are of Western Front taken during the First World War. This film sets about examining these photos and tries to uncover the story of the Belfast soldier who captured them in 1915. This remarkable story reveals hows this soldiers experiences were to have an incredibly unexpected outcome years later.

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  • Morten Andreassen

    Disturbing as hell. Since being , ahem, awarded a disability allowance from the govt for the honour of PTSD I have apparently chosen to resume history studies, and sometimes I wonder if the avoidance of brain atrophy is in fact a good reason for watching this torture. Especially when most people don’t give a fuck. Or, worse, they spend their time viewing Bruce Willis or (good grief) The Rock in some inane action flick.

  • Carlos Pineda

    Amazing documentary, and amazing subject. I have one comment about the surprised expressed by Mr Scott and the lady from the Ulster Museum, at how two photos could have been taken during combat, given the many dangers of setting up the camera under battle conditions. I believe that the battle in that sector had finished when the pictures were taken. In the documentary it is said that the fusiliers started their attack at 7:40 am, on the 1st of july at the Somme. But as we can see in the pictures of a far off bombardment which appears at 26:44 and repeats at 27:11 and at 27:27, the shadows porjected by irregularities in the terrain as well as two poles resting on the ground, appear directly beneath both the irregularities and the poles. This sort of projection of shadows can only be done around noon time, especially in july when the sun is so close to the mid summer equinox. If this was so, by noon time, the battle would have finished and the irish fusiliers gains would have been consolidated in the sector. This option seems to be supported by the two pictures which accompany the one of the farr off bombardment. The two photos of the german prisoners which are interpreted in the documentary as surrendering, are probably pictures of german prisoners being deployed from their trenches much after their surrender and once the consolidation of the irish fusiliers positions had taken, a full 4 and a half hours after their initial attack. This would have been around noon time, according to the shadows. Undoubtedly, it must have been dangerous to take those three pictures standing in the middle of the somme’s battle field, but they seem to have been taken in easier conditions than those one could expect during a full fledged push into no man’s land.