History Of Documentary
The term documentary was first created by John
Grierson in 1926 and is often considered as the
father of British and Canadian documentary film.
Features of a Documentary
The main features of a documentary are listed below I
will then discuss each feature separately in more
In this feature the camera is often ignored by the
people who are being filmed. This allows the
audience to feel like eye witnesses to the action as
they are watching it unfold. Observation is a
sequence of footage observing people or things and is
used in most documentaries.
Interviews allow the participants to give their opinions
and views on the documentary topic. This is
normally shots of people who are being interviewed
they are normally left or right aligned in the shot and
the background of the interview normally has
something to do with the opinion the interviewee is
This is used to give the audience a sense of drama and
this is often achieved through the use of observation
element. This footage shows the drama of the event
and could use achieve footage. An example of
dramatisation is reconstruction.
The mise-en-scene is carefully chosen and film makers
carefully construct the shots they want by carefully
choosing the setting/location of filmy and the
costumes that the participants are wearing carefully.
This is the line of argument (what the documentary is
trying to say) this is achieved by using all of the
elements above. This is normally anchored with a
voice over which helps confirm the documentaries
purpose and the documentaries arguement.