Documentary film

A documentary film is a nonfictional motion picture intended to document some aspect of reality, primarily for the purposes of instruction or maintaining a historical record. Such films were originally shot on film stock—the only medium available—but now include video and digital productions that can be either direct-to-video, made into a TV show or released for screening in cinemas. "Documentary" has been described as a "filmmaking practice, a cinematic tradition, and mode of audience reception" that is continually evolving and is without clear boundaries.

Defining documentary

In popular myth, the word documentary was coined by Scottish documentarian John Grierson in his review of Robert Flaherty's film Moana (1926), published in the New York Sun on 8 February 1926, written by "The Moviegoer" (a pen name for Grierson).

Grierson's principles of documentary were that cinema's potential for observing life could be exploited in a new art form; that the "original" actor and "original" scene are better guides than their fiction counterparts to interpreting the modern world; and that materials "thus taken from the raw" can be more real than the acted article. In this regard, Grierson's definition of documentary as "creative treatment of actuality" has gained some acceptance, with this position at variance with Soviet film-maker Dziga Vertov's provocation to present "life as it is" (that is, life filmed surreptitiously) and "life caught unawares" (life provoked or surprised by the camera).

Latest News for: Political documentaries


‘Elementary’: Cannes Review

Screen Daily 21 May 2024
Claire Simon profiles daily life in a French elementary school in this charming documentary. This is not the first fly-on-the-wall documentary to capture the daily dynamics and playground politics of a school, nor is it likely to be the last ... a documentary specialist distributor....

‘Lula’ Review: Oliver Stone Chronicles the Dramatic Rise, Fall and Rise Again of Brazil’s Current President

The Hollywood Reporter 21 May 2024
And later on he made a handful of documentaries about Latin American leaders, two of them featuring Fidel Castro and another one including such leftist figureheads as Hugo Chávez and Evo Morales ... Bush was a better president to deal with than Barack Obama, even if he didn’t agree with the former’s politics.)....

Non-aligned movement featured at South East European Film Festival

People's World 21 May 2024
portal for documentaries, features, shorts, animation, etc., from mostly former so-called “Iron Curtain” nations ... Scenes from the Labudović Reels contains a film-within-a-film-within-a-film-within-a-film, and is one of the most brilliant political documentaries this film historian/critic has ever seen....

Was Shahana Goswami the best dressed desi actor at Cannes Film Festival? Check out her pics

Hindustan Times 21 May 2024
Actor Shahana Goswami, renowned for her powerful and moving performances, made a stunning appearance at the 77th Cannes Film Festival in an exquisite creation by designers Abu Jani and Sandeep Khosla ... (Also read ... She represented her upcoming political drama Santosh at the Festival. It is directed by acclaimed documentary filmmaker Sandhya Suri ... .......

WATER WARS Wins Top Prize at Dallas International Film Festival

Focus Daily News 20 May 2024
WATER WARS is a feature-length documentary directed by Mario Mattei that had its world premiere at DIFF ... The documentary takes an in-depth look at the colorful characters and political maneuvering that led to the 2007 Texas Supreme Court case Guitar Holding v ... OCE has produced over ten narrative and documentary films that have won numerous awards....

‘Lula’ Review: Oliver Stone’s Portrait of Brazil’s President Captures a Remarkable Story

The Wrap 19 May 2024
Making a documentary about this upheaval of politics in Brazil, how it was that we got here and what it means for the future of the country as well as the world writ large, is a worthwhile pursuit ... This short opening speech proved to be as good an encapsulation of the documentary as any....

Hollywood and the 'We the People' experiment | Cronin and Loevy

Colorado Springs Gazette 19 May 2024
There is no one “Great American Political Film.” Yet there are dozens of provocative films and documentaries that help us understand the American Experiment. They tell of our successes and our failings and how long it has taken us to .......

TV tonight: Outlander’s Richard Rankin is the new Rebus

The Observer 19 May 2024
Rebus ... Hollie RichardsonDoctor Who ... With its homegrown, anti-government perpetrator, the Oklahoma City bombing of 1995, which killed 168 people, now feels like a precursor to the kind of dangerous radicalism routinely seen on the fringes of US politics. This documentary examines the investigation and ponders the lasting implications of the attack ... ....

University Encampments and the Freedom Flotilla: Fighting Back Against Historical Racist Genocide

GlobalResearch 18 May 2024
Feel free to repost and share widely Global Research articles ... In our first half hour, we will speak with return guest, journalist and documentary film-maker Robert Inlakesh about the pro-Palestine encampments across universities everywhere ... Robert Inlakesh is a political analyst, journalist and documentary filmmaker currently based in London, UK....

Diagnosing NUMC's fiscal health

Newsday 17 May 2024
Daily Point ... From our Editorial Board, get inside the local, city and state political scenes. Sign up ... John Roca ... The challenging questions of how we prioritize and fund necessary infrastructure changes, regulate the insurance industry and fortify our coastline explored in our documentary will be pressing governmental and political issues ... .......

The True Story Behind The Big Cigar

Time 17 May 2024
Newton and Bobby Seale founded the political organization known as the Black Panther Party in Oakland, California, in 1966 ... In 1975, Schneider appeared onstage to accept an Academy Award for his documentary Hearts and Minds about the Vietnam War, which he saw as vindication that political topics could be moneymakers....

The 20 hottest shows to watch On Demand this weekend -...

The Daily Mail 17 May 2024
It was an almost unbelievable achievement, made all the more incredible - as this three-part documentary reveals - by the internal divisions, dressing room politics and media meltdowns that peppered their season ... This three-part documentary series looks at the site's history, meets many of its users and even some of their partners....