The recently launched CriticalPast.com
offers an extensive collection of royalty-free photos and video footage, most
of which hasn’t been online previously. With video of everything from Coney
Island in the 1890s to World War II to news reports on 1994’s Whitewater
scandal, the site has things covered.
All footage can be previewed for free – and downloading
a rights-free copy runs anywhere from $1.97 (for low resolution versions) to $180
for high-def clips. (Most professional clips run from $30 to $180.) All
totaled, the site claims to have over 57,000 video clips available and more than
7 million still images.
It’s an interesting way for history buffs to waste time –
but for filmmakers who are trying to establish the feel of a period, it could
be a low cost way to incorporate that time into their product.