Documentary forms and what suits this project

Reading through Bill Nichol’s Introduction to Documentary is a real eye-opener to the different types of storytelling that exist in the form of documentary films, and how each type can work for what sort of content is being presented. Here are some notes that I extrapolated in relation to the my project:

  • Expository form of documentary is deemed the best mode for the purpose of project. It does not rely on rhythmic and formal structure of picture, but rather the importance of what is being said (voice) is the core, yet supported by the images. Therefore, the images can be fashioned together with little or no respect to timing and rhythm, as long as they advance the argument being spoken. Unlike “the hunt” where, although factual information is presented in the voice, the images have a sense of rhythm (poetic form). This dreamy/abstract way of telling the story indulges and engulfs the viewer in the scenes of nature, almost as if they were there.
  • Focus of FPNM is social issue, therefore, we needn’t a central character (boy in pain) to emotionally attach the viewer. The mere fact that there is a problem needing a solution is in itself sufficient to portray an argument around which the story can be told.
  • Film needs to make central the fact that the content is not about my perspective, but rather a depiction of true facts that are being transferred without bias, the only motive is humanitarian. Therefore, the relationship between the viewer and how the world currently exists is the focus.
  • The story here is to strengthen the viewer’s existing curiosity for deeper knowledge and sought of explanations for their presumptions. This is along with the nature of the story are pivotal senses that can be used to grab the attention at first, then convey the message.
  • Speaking of which, although such documentaries work better when there is a question/answer structure, the purpose of this one is to depict the problem how it exists, digging for action from the viewer for example will involve logic and critical thinking, which may divert the emotional invoking sought. If the emotional involvement is prior to the logical portrayal of facts then the latter comes as a result anyway. But the reverse is harder to achieve.
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