A Documentary Feel

A Documentary Feel's icon

Created by greenhorg.

Favorited 1 time, disliked 0 times, added to 1 watchlist.

Movies that feature acting and direction that evoke an organic, documentary-like realism. Some of the elements that characterize this style include:

Handheld cameras
Visual drabness (muted colors, grainy film-stock, etc)
Lack of flashy techniques (visual effects, narration, pop soundtrack, etc)
Nonprofessional actors in key or tertiary roles. Related: actors with looks or speech atypical in films (obesity, "low class" accents, etc)
Improvised or prosaic dialogue and natural conversation rhythms (interruptions, stammering, "ums," etc)
Silence: scenes with little or no dialogue
Ambient noises in place of musical score (traffic, fluorescent lights, birds, etc)
Stillness: scenes with little or no action
A realistic plot; often with difficult ("gritty") subject matter and a lower socio-economic setting.

This mostly unclassified documentary-like style (Sometimes ridiculously labeled "Neo-neorealism") has antecedents in Italian Neorealism, French New Wave, and New Hollywood. It shares elements with (but is not equivalent to) Dogme 95 and Mumblecore, and is mostly a post-2000 phenomenon (kickstarted and most heavily influenced by the 90s films of the Dardenne brothers). International hotspots include France, America, Romania, and Iran.

Please leave suggestions! I will add more. Keep in mind that "Mockumentary" films like Borat, Man Bites Dog, Blair Witch, Spinal Tap, etc, are a different animal and do not qualify.

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Last updated on Nov 29, 2020;