"Boy Wanted," a short Irish film from the 1940s, is now available to stream for free on the Irish Film Institute's IFI Archive Player.

In "Boy Wanted," two boys wander aimlessly through the streets of Dublin (heading down South King Street towards the old Mercer’s Hospital) when they see a sign outside Traynor’s Grocers shop saying, ‘Boy Wanted’.

The bigger boy barges in and gets the job as a bicycle messenger. He heads off with a box of groceries to the leafy neighbourhood of Grosvenor Square, Rathmines, where he finds an empty house and a tantalisingly unlocked window!

"Boy Wanted" is the only known surviving film made by the Junior Film Society, a branch of the Irish Film Society (est 1936). The IFS was primarily engaged in exhibiting classic and international cinema but also coordinated film production projects for adults and children.

"Boy Wanted" is a short, silent story told with great skill and economy, capturing a crisp black and white snapshot of 1940s Dublin city and suburbs. The camerawork and editing may have been inspired by the classics of European silent cinema.

This film, part of the IFI's Children on Film collection, is recommended for viewers 8 and up.

The Irish Film Institute's Children on Film collection

This substantial new collection of films from the Irish Film Institute provides a vibrant overview of childhood in Ireland from the 1930s to more recent times.

While some of the films have been made by children themselves, most are made about them by adults keen to capture their uncorrupted perspectives as they navigate the world around them. The collection rewards close study as it offers insights into changing expectations of children; their role in family life and their experiences in Irish society over 80 years.

Enjoy films made for educational purposes; animations designed to entertain; short dramas showing real and imagined crises in children’s lives; documentaries capturing reality of young lives and advertisements selling fun stuff.

"Boy Wanted" is published here thanks to the Irish Film Institute (IFI), who IrishCentral has partnered up with to bring you a taste of what their remarkable collection entails. You can find all IrishCentral articles and videos from the IFI here.

To watch more historic Irish footage, visit the IFI Archive Player, the Irish Film Institute’s virtual viewing room that provides audiences around the globe free, instant access to Irish heritage preserved in the IFI Irish Film Archive. Irish Culture from the last century is reflected through documentaries, animation, adverts, amateur footage, feature films, and much more. You can also download the IFI Archive Player App for free on iPhone, Android, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and Roku.

IrishCentral has partnered up with the IFI to bring you a taste of what their remarkable collections entail. You can find all IrishCentral articles and videos from the IFI here.

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