What is it with the 1970s? - gone are the breathless do-or-die film commentaries of the 1950s & 1960s - replaced by such dreary monotone it is like cinematic valium. This film may have the most shoddy maps, charts and graphics in the history of documentary cinema. Upper Clyde is lightened only by the singing of the late, great Matt McGinn here and there on the soundtrack and the fact that tucked away in here is the explanation of why there is still shipbuilding on the Clyde - the work-in in the Upper Clyde yards in 1972.
credits (0.35) tracking shot of River Clyde (0.51) map of Europe zooming in on Glasgow (1.01) shots of Clyde estuary (1.37) panorama sketch painting of Broomielaw (2.04) aerial shot of quays (2.14) silhouette of docks (2.23) gvs ships in Clyde (2.43) River Kelvin, White and Black Cart and Leven join Clyde (3.10) aerial shot of Dumbarton (3.18) various shots of Clyde estuary (4.13) bucket dredging hopper barges in operation to clear away silt (5.12) grab crane dredger in operation (5.37) hopper barge (5.55) sludge boat in open Firth dumping silt (6.29) Erskine steam ferry (7.00) Renfrew chain ferry (7.05) Clyde River Purification Board motor launch (7.50) Victorian photograph of Clyde (8.11) tracking shot under bridges from river (8.25) shots of Kingston bridge (8.58) tracking shot through Whiteinch tunnel (9.12) ext. Port Authority tower (9.21) int. tower (9.42) pan shot Erskine bridge (9.53) CCTV screens intercut with filmed footage (10.31) iron ore ship entering General Terminus Quay (11.34) Meadowside granary terminus (12.43) cattle at Merkland animal lairage passing scrutiny of vetinary surgeon (13.36) King George VI docks and general loading and unloading by dockers including 220 tonne grain retort (16.10) pan shot of shipyards (16.35) shots of abandoned shipyards (17.10) Clydeholm industrial estate (17.20) dry docks (17.50) Thai frigate launch from Yarrow shipbuilders covered shed (18.27) Cart joining main river at John Brown’s yard and shots of ‘Queens of the seas’ (19.30) brief shot of jumbo jet over yards and shots of Upper Clyde Shipbuilders building all purpose cargo ships and standardised bulk carriers (21.09) Glasgow Herald headlines ‘U.C.S. in liquidation’ (21.12) tracking shot of cranes (21.30) newspaper headlines (21.35) shots of men leaving yard (21.45) foundation of Govan shipbuilders and construction of oil rigs at Clydebank (21.55) gvs Clyde (22.19) ecs (22.59)