Analysis & Reflection #4 – Q4

The week 6,7,10 reading ‘The Art Of Documentary’ was quite intriguing to me. The whole idea that a documentary film documents a version of reality, a manipulated reality, has always interested me. The very beginning of this reading discusses the way in which documentary filmmakers are ‘not the surveillance cameras in the supermarkets’  – That even though they are trying to capture an authentic as possibly piece, manipulation has to occur. Even before the camera starts rolling, the aesthetic decisions to do with mis-en-scene, lighting, focal length, etc, all play a role in steering the footage away from reality, with these decisions creating a version of the reality that the camera is trying to capture. From viewing participatory, to observational, to poetic documentaries, it is sometimes difficult to distinguish between what is real and what is not. The audience can be deceived into believing a reality, when the truth is, the filmmaker is going to shoot and edit their documentary in the way that they want to tell the story. This again brings it away from true reality.