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Movie genre: Documentary


Movie lovers know that there are different genres that available to suit different tastes and preferences. Some of these genres are as old as the cinema industry itself while others are more modern and have been introduced at a later stage. In this article we talk about a specific genre that has its own dedicated fans. That is the documentary movies genre. Free documentaries online areavailable to watch on the computer, on TV and on cinema screens. They could be short or long and they have their own fans, contests and awards.

What is a documentary film?


It is mainly a non-fictional motion picture. The purpose is to document and provide a recorded proof of a certain historical event, some form of education, or instructions. Documentaries could be talking about a certain person, country or culture and are made worldwide by amateurs and professionals with certain cinema institutes and colleges that offer specific studies related to this particular genre. These motion pictures were originally shot on film stock, but as the time and technologies have evolved you can always find video and digital documentaries productions that will be released to video, featured on TV or on cinema screens. There are no boundaries to the documentaries s as they are subject to the creativity of the makers with a lot of free online documentaries available for cinema lovers.

How did the documentary genre start?


Bolesław Matuszewski is a Polish filmmaker and writer who mentioned the importance of the cinema industry in two texts he published in French in 1898 after he managed to capture some surgical procedures on camera. He was also one of the earliest people who suggested that visual material should be saved and archived for historical purposes. He was one of the earliest people in the industry who identified other important aspects related to the cinema industry that were not related to pure entertainment but involved also the benefits of education and recording. Some of these early movies can be found on special websites if you want to watch documentaries online for free.

When was the term of documentary films first introduced?


Today you can easily watch documentaries free online thanks to the people who brought this genre to life. John Greirson, the Scottish film maker was probably the first person who suggested the name “documentary” to describe this genre. He explained that the original actors and scenes were better at observing and portraying life than the fictional counterparts. This meant that films were an artistic and creative treatment of reality that would feature the real world in a creative way. He explained that the films would capture life while it is raw, real and unaware. One of the earliest motion pictures that feature this genre is Nanook of the North, a silent American motion picture that was produced in 1922. It was directed by Robert J. Flaherty. It featured the struggling life of an Inuk man and his family who live in the Canadian Arctic. It talks about the family’s journey looking for food, trading with others and looking for shelter in the brutal conditions of the Arctic. Flaherty got the idea for the motion picturewhen he was assigned a post as an explorer in 1910. He later decided to bring a camera to document life in the region. It was criticized because the creator added some staged scenes in order to make the movie more appealing. Unfortunately such early attempts are not available if you want to watch documentaries online free. But some of their remains are still preserved for study. Moana, a picture produced in 1926, is another film produced by Robert J. Flaherty. It was shot in Samoa and follows the life of the male lead character Moana. Flaherty had to spend one year with his family in Samoa in order to finish the project. He was planning to capture some shots in colors but the camera malfunctioned. Just like the first movie he produced, the director staged some scenes to better portrait the essence of the culture he is trying to capture on camera, partially by recreating rituals and events that probably went obsolete by the time this film was shot. There are a lot of good documentaries to watch if you are interested in the cinema industry of this era.

How did the documentary movies evolve?


By the 1940s documentaries were produced to guide the audience in a certain direction or to favor a certain idea. One of the most important ones was “Triumph of the Will” which was produced and promoted to celebrate the Nazi Party Congress in Nuremberg. “The Plow that Broke the Plains” is another American movie that talks about the Great Plains of the US and the effect of uncontrolled agricultural farming. The film was first sponsored by the government that wanted to raise awareness against the misuse of land. Dedicated fans will be able to find such documentary films online to watch. Over the next following decades the cinema industry became more successful due to the social and political changes that changed the face of the world after World War2, with a lot of documentaries talking about the different post war effects and the changes in the new world. Most of thepictures produced in the 1960s and 1970s were produced to act as a political weapon against the different conflicts that changed the face of the world in the second half of the 20th century. As the years went by, directors and producers became more daring in the topics they chose to include in their movies addressing different social and environmental issues. With the introduction of documentaries to TV, the topics became more diverse with special channels that are specialized in showing documentaries all the time like National Geographic and Animal Planet. Some of these films would consider employing the elements of drama with documentation. Some of them are also available if you want to find free documentary movies online.

Documentaries in other countries:


Documentaries started as early as the other genres in other countries where the cinema industry was important and many are available if you want to watch free documentaries online. In France, it was usual to see documentaries that talked about social events. One of the most important ones is “1848” that was produced in 1949. It talks about the French revolution and is supported by pictures drawn by contemporary artists. In other countries like Germany, the cinema industry changed dramatically to reflect the changes in the political system of the country before and after the destruction of the Berlin Wall. One of the most comprehensive documentaries is “The Rise and the Fall of the Berlin Wall”.

Other movie genres:


Other movie genres are available for cinema lovers who are interested in the interesting world of cinema. A legal drama genre is very popular in the American cinema industry that usually features the real life events or fictional events of different lawsuits. One of the most important films is “A few good men” that involves the courtroom events that take place after two marines kill a fellow marine on their unit. If you are interested in musical watch online, then one of the best ones would be the legendary” Sound of Music” that starred Julie Andrews. There are a lot of interesting historical films to watch online that talk about different eras and historical events including projects like “Alexander” and “Kingdom of Heaven”. Some of these pictures would feature only real events while others would combine reality with fictional events. Interesting biography movies that talk about the real events of the lives of famous people like “Picasso” are hugely favored by fans who like to know about celebrities or people who changed the world. These different genres explain how the industry can be used to record and tell history, events, ideas and facts in a real or fictional account according to different ways of perception.
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