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Running, Jumping and Standing Still Film, The (1960)


Warning: screenonline full synopses contain 'spoilers' which give away key plot points. Don't read on if you don't want to know the ending!

A man in a top hat looks through a telescope and sees an old woman on her hands and knees scrubbing a field. A hiker arrives and erects a tent. A photographer cautiously approaches, sets up his camera and fires a gun. When the hiker looks out of the tent, his photograph is taken.

The photographer begins to wash his film in a stream. A hunter, carrying a gun and dressed in tweed, a snorkel and flippers, approaches and takes hold of the film. The photographer stands up and hands over his business card. The hunter tears it up and continues on his way.

The photographer hears music. A man is playing the violin while looking through a telescope. He stops playing, gets on a bicycle, cycles over to a music stand, turns over the sheet music, cycles back to his original position, and recommences playing. He looks through the telescope and sees five men approaching carrying a box kite adorned with Union Jacks. After their photograph is taken, one of the men stands in the centre of the kite, while the other four run away while holding a guy rope. When it becomes taught the kite falls apart.

The four men run past a sportsman doing exercises. An artist, accompanied by a model in a crinoline dress and lace bonnet, sets up his easel in front of the sportsman. As the latter performs press-ups, the model sits on his back and the artist begins to paint her.

The hunter walks past the artist and continues towards a man leaning on a fence. The man pulls out a gramophone record and places it on a tree stump. While holding a gramophone horn/stylus mechanism on the record, the man runs around the tree stump to produce music from the disc.

A man and a veiled woman are being positioned near the hiker's tent by the photographer, the latter using the woman and her veil as if looking through a camera. Having positioned the man so he is looking away, the photographer begins to kiss the woman. The man begins to chase the photographer; others join the pursuit.

The sportsman throws a ball and chain, which the hunter shoots. The two begin to argue. The gramophone man arrives and hands the sportsman a large curved dagger. The sportsman and the hunter walk away from each other as if to fight a duel. The hunter fires and the gramophone man falls to the ground.

A man is visible on the horizon. A hand appears in the foreground and beckons him to approach. The figure slowly approaches, encouraged by further gestures. It is the kite man, who on reaching the camera is punched by a gloved hand. The boxing glove is worn by the man in the top hat. He goes through a door into a room, lies on a bed and switches off a bedside lamp.