Documentary Terminology

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A list of terminology used in the production of documentaries

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Documentary Terminology

  1. 1. Documentary Terminology Emma McAlpine 5103
  2. 2. Cinema Vérité French for " true film ," applied to documentaries in which there is a truthful live encounter between the filmmaker and the film's subject
  3. 3. Commentary A narrative voice in the documentary that articulates an explicit argument
  4. 4. Demonstrative Proof Emphasis on making evidence persuasive, albeit not necessarily accurate
  5. 5. Masked Interview An interview in which the filmmaker is both off-camera and unheard
  6. 6. Observational Mode Emphasizing the filmmaker's engagement in observing and documenting a subject’s daily life and circumstances with an unobtrusive camera
  7. 7. Participatory Mode Documentary film in which the emphasis on the interaction between the filmmaker and the film's subject
  8. 8. Performative Mode In documentary filmmaking, where the emphasis is on the filmmaker’s subjective attitude or personal engagement with a subject, shown to evoke audience reaction
  9. 9. Poetic Mode The formal structural organization that emphasizes visual associations and impressionistic descriptive passages, tonal and rhythmic qualities in a documentary film, and de-emphasizes strictly linear or logical sequencing
  10. 10. Perspective In documentary filmmaking, the selection and arrangement of sounds and images to tacitly convey or imply the filmmaker’s point of view about a subject
  11. 11. Realism Where the documentary film's emphasis is on the subject's state of mind and psychological outlook
  12. 12. Voice of Authority Someone whom we hear whose narrative voice represents the film.

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