Documentary filmmaking   history, genre & subgenre
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Documentary filmmaking history, genre & subgenre

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  • 1. Documentary Filmmaking History, Genre & Subgenres
  • 2. Purpose of This Lesson • Explore the early history of the documentary film. • Explore the genres, subgenres, and modes of documentary films.
  • 3. Essential Questions • What is the early history of the documentary? • What is genre? • What are the sub-genres within documentary film? • Why is it sometimes difficult to place a film in a genre or subgenre? • What are the modes of the documentary?
  • 4. The First “Documentaries” Early French film pioneers Auguste (left) and Louis (right) Lumière dubbed their films “actualités”. These short films were single scene documentaries and mostly consisted of scenes of of everyday life. http://www.institut-lumiere.org
  • 5. The Movies Begin Louis and Auguste Lumière projected 10 short films to a paying audience on December 28, 1895 at the Grand Cafe in Paris . http://www.institut-lumiere.org
  • 6. The First Movie Projected to the Public La Sortie des usines Lumière à Lyon (1895) “Workers Leaving the Lumière Factory”
  • 7. The First Feature Length Documentary Nanook of the North (1922) Directed by Robert J. Flaherty, this film chronicles one year in the life of an Inuit and his By Robert J. Flaherty [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
  • 8. Term Documentary In his 1926 review of Robert J. Flaherty’s Moana, John Grierson, (under the pseudonym The Moviegoer) refers to the the film having “documentary” value and has been credited with coining the term.
  • 9. Term Documentary In his 1926 review of Robert J. Flaherty’s Moana, John Grierson, (under the pseudonym The Moviegoer) refers to the the film having “documentary” value and has been credited with coining the term.
  • 10. Genre Originating from French, genre simply means kind or type. In regards to film it refers to how the film is categorized, i.e. drama, comedy, documentary, etc.
  • 11. Subgenres The genre of documentary can be further broken into subgenres.
  • 12. Sub-genres of Documentary Film • Historical - event centered • Biographic & Autobiographic - person centered • Nature & Science - observation centered • Ethnographic - people centered • Advocacy - issue centered
  • 13. The Non-Documentary Mockumentary is a movie that mimics documentary style for comedic or satirical purposes. Examples include: • Zelig (1983) • This is Spinal Tap (1984) • Forgotten Silver (1995) • Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan (2006)
  • 14. Difficulties with Genre & Subgenre • Can you think of other genres & subgenres of films? • Where do you think “propaganda” films fit? • Why are films often difficult to categorize?