Entertainment Magazine

Documentary of the Day – Man with a Movie Camera

Posted on the 06 February 2012 by Plotdevice39 @PlotDevices

This will be a short post today, not because of the Super Bowl or anything, but mainly because the Puppy Bowl will be on TV.  I am kidding obviously…maybe.  Actually the reason for the short post today is because of the subject matter in today’s selection.  Man with a Movie Camera is documentary that has no specific narrative, no objective to tell a story, is a silent film made in 1929 and is the one most technically diverse documentaries out there.  All the technical camerawork that we see in movies like fast/slow motion, jump cuts, freeze frames, dutch angles and even tracking shots all owe some bit of reverence to this surrealist documentary made by Dziga Vertov.

Documentary of the Day – Man with a Movie Camera

Man with a Movie Camera is an exercise in skill, showing how the film medium and can transcend the norms of standard filmmaking.  It is a documentary that is able to push the use of camera work to create beautiful art and capture real life in an artistic way.  The documentary doesn’t have a “straight-forward” narrative, rather Vertov follows the lives of people in Odessa, from morning to night.  It shows the citizens taking part in the everyday development of society, either through work or interactions with one another.  It is a story about development of modern society and the people that makes up the whole in life, but done in the most artful way possible.

While I mentioned that the film includes a lot of technical camera that we are familiar with today, it didn’t outright invent them.  The film is most known for including such dynamic camera techniques and making it work within the contexts of the documentary.  It is amazing to see such techniques utilized in this movie almost 75 years ago.  I mean I am familiar with the techniques in a lot of modern films, but it is almost surreal watching them used in a documentary made in 1929.

Documentary of the Day – Man with a Movie Camera

If you are wanting to check out this film, by all means please see it.  Even for a documentary with some social context, it’s fascinating to watch this silent film using all the familiar camera techniques we see in modern film.  It’s just an absolute marvel to see the development of filmmaking at its early stages and being enraptured with the visuals.  There are several different versions of the film out there, while the documentary visuals is the same, it is the different soundtracks used to temp the film with.  So some cuts are better than the other, just depends on what you want to listen to while viewing the film.  Definitely an amazing experience and one of the most unique documentaries out there.  It managed to take the normal drums of urban life and create something visually unique with inventive camera work.

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog

These articles might interest you :

  • Spoilerrific Movie Review: Iron Man 3

    Spoilerrific Movie Review: Iron

    WARNING: This review is loaded with spoilers. If you have not seen Iron Man 3 yet, do not read it. Seriously, you don't wanna read this. I had the movie... Read more

    The 07 May 2013 by   Joshuatheanarchist
  • Movie Review: ‘Man of Steel’

    Movie Review: ‘Man Steel’

    What is it about Superman that gives the project a stigma of being impossible to translate into the modernized era of filmmaking? Read more

    The 15 June 2013 by   House Of Geekery
  • Movie Review: 'Man of Steel'

    Movie Review: 'Man Steel'

    I am going to come right out and say this and I am sure there are other people out there that share my feelings, but aside from the 1978 Richard Donner... Read more

    The 16 June 2013 by   Plotdevice39
  • Documentary of the Day – Senna

    Documentary Senna

    Well in honor of my start to a month long documentary post, I want to pick a documentary that is on something I have no clue about.  The wonderful thing about... Read more

    The 02 February 2012 by   Plotdevice39
  • Documentary of the Day – The Atomic Cafe

    Documentary Atomic Cafe

    I kind of wish that the media and defense departments of the US would go back to making these old style public service announcements. Read more

    The 03 February 2012 by   Plotdevice39
  • Documentary of the Day – Woodstock

    Documentary Woodstock

    If I am going to do a month long documentary writing spree, I can’t ignore the often overlooked concert documentaries. Now in the past I have talked about... Read more

    The 04 February 2012 by   Plotdevice39
  • Documentary of the Day – Cave of Forgotten Dreams

    Documentary Cave Forgotten Dreams

    The beautiful thing about documentaries is the use of the medium to transport the viewer into a world we didn’t know existed. Sometimes the documentary is... Read more

    The 05 February 2012 by   Plotdevice39

Add a comment