I work for Ally Initiatives, which hosts a documentary film series every year–and thus, I’ve been thinking a lot about documentaries right now.
I’ve come to the conclusion that documentary-style films are the “original” digital humanities format. Film is an odd format though–you only see what the director wants you to see. Viewers can’t look outside of the frame, or around a corner, or anywhere other than were you are directed. Documentaries can be the most truthful or the most contrived version of events–it’s all about what the director wants you to see.
Last week we watched Waiting for “Superman”–which was a disturbingly biased documentary, and fell into that more contrived set of ideas. I’m now completely sucked into documentary viewing, and hoping to find options that are more “real”–after all, isn’t that what we think of documentaries–movies that are “real”?