on 23 June 2014
When I picked up a video camera some years ago I wanted to read all I could that would give me direction for film making. I got a few 'how to..' books on making documentaries and read them avidly but without feeling particularly inspired until I read through this book. I soon realised that I had taken the wrong approach. Forget books that try to teach you how to shoot film, how to light, how to edit a script or what camera angle to take. Better still, this book showed me the different approaches to documentary film making that have evolved over the past century, or so. It went on to give titles of particular films that illustrated these different styles. So, I then watched as many of these as I could find and learnt for myself what it was that made each individual film a 'classic' of its genre. If anyone reads this and is interested to make documentary films then I would highly recommend this book, and this book only. No 'teach yourself' book will ever teach you how to find your style. One learns by practical work and emulation of those one admires.
on 7 March 2015
This book is very much about the idea of documentary film making, and less a history of what is done, although several good examples are mentioned, and some even given a broader analysis. Typical a reference book for studies, which certainly broadens the understanding of the issue of documentary film making.