Doco Rant

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Kung-fu Hillbilly
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Doco Rant

Post by Kung-fu Hillbilly » Sat Jul 05, 2014 5:36 pm

I enjoy watching documentary films, or at least I did.

So many doco's these days are filled with overly dramatic voice overs, overused CGI, repeated information, excessive B Roll shots that could have been taken for completely different subject matter and films churned out with the same hollywood-like vaneer and little substance.

What happened to real investigation on the ground as apposed to writing predictable, well used scripts for a narrator to blast through in an afternoon studio session, capturing unique and original images instead of going into a digital library and pulling shots or engaging/knowlegable interviewers/hosts who have a a history involved with the subject matter. Where's the grittiness?

Apart from independents who often don't have the resources and the BBC, the rest is tosh. Nat Geo should be ashamed of what it has become.

Long shall I mourn the passing of David Attenborough.

End of rant.
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Re: Doco Rant

Post by StroppyChops » Sat Jul 05, 2014 8:46 pm

It beats those new shows that are entirely based on YouTube clips. Barely.
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Re: Doco Rant

Post by Kung-fu Hillbilly » Sun Jul 06, 2014 12:07 am

We've become a world of instant access fast hit info - damn the content.
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Re: Doco Rant

Post by Soi Dog » Sun Jul 06, 2014 12:32 am

In Nat. Geo's defense, how many times can you come up with an new angle to document the lives of wild animals? Haven't we all seen every aspect of African lion or elephant survival a thousand times?

Or the History Channel? Is it possible to show a "new" history of WWII? There have been so many documentaries on that subject from all points of view already? Can anyone really add anything new and insightful? Hasn't all the actual war footage been seen again an again?

Please come up with some new ideas for documentaries and post them here. I will find you multiple existing ones on that exact topic.
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Re: Doco Rant

Post by Kung-fu Hillbilly » Sun Jul 06, 2014 12:50 am

The BBC seem to be able to find new and interesting behavioral habits of animals and capture those in equally interesting often cutting edge ways to give the viewer different perspectives of those traits. They spend time in the field, engage experts with a lifetime's experience on the subject matter and don't rely on gimmicky tricks and forced drama for the great results they get.

If I had to defend Nat Geo I'd only say with a shit load of programming now having to be filled with their many channels, they can't possibly give the time and provide resources required.
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Re: Doco Rant

Post by JBTrain » Sun Jul 06, 2014 12:56 am

Soi Dog wrote:In Nat. Geo's defense, how many times can you come up with an new angle to document the lives of wild animals? Haven't we all seen every aspect of African lion or elephant survival a thousand times?

Or the History Channel? Is it possible to show a "new" history of WWII? There have been so many documentaries on that subject from all points of view already? Can anyone really add anything new and insightful? Hasn't all the actual war footage been seen again an again?

Please come up with some new ideas for documentaries and post them here. I will find you multiple existing ones on that exact topic.
Perhaps, but occasionally some undiscovered footage does show up. This was an extraordinary series because we'd never seen color footage like it.

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Re: Doco Rant

Post by Soi Dog » Sun Jul 06, 2014 12:58 am

Vice TV is doing some interesting stuff in the short format.

The American PBS series Frontline is also good.
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Re: Doco Rant

Post by Milord » Sun Jul 06, 2014 8:45 am

Soi Dog wrote:Vice TV is doing some interesting stuff in the short format.

The American PBS series Frontline is also good.
Thanks. I was going to suggest Vice TV too.
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Re: Doco Rant

Post by ali baba » Mon Jul 07, 2014 5:06 am

Critique- The bit where they interrupt the narrator mid sentence so as to mimic a cliff hanger before the adverts come on. Then the narrator provides a summary of the programme after the ads for the benefit of latecomers. Even if you edit the ads out the show is still disjointed and messy.

There is some good content being produced, mostly by state owned media such as BBC and The Australia Network. Aussie Network is the only channel I regularly enjoy watching nowadays. I will miss it when it gets pulled next month. I also enjoy Engineering Programmes. Nat Geo was gracious enough not to stretch China's rail developments into a 10 part series. Big, Bigger, Biggest was a great series.

I'd recommend Foreign Correspondent for current affairs programming.

Re new perspectives: Taboos are constantly being eroded and there are many ways to spin a story. I like it when someone examines a theme rather than a time or place.
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