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How Environmental Documentaries Have Developed from the Ethnographic - Research Paper Example

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In this paper it is going to explore the change of characteristics regarding style and content from ethnographic documentaries of the past such as Nanook Of The North to contemporary environmental documentaries such as The Cove…
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How Environmental Documentaries Have Developed from the Ethnographic
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How Environmental Documentaries Have Developed from the Ethnographic

Download file to see previous pages... Hence, the documentary filmmaker's role has changed as well. He is not simply a storyteller with a camera any longer, but he can become an environmental activist himself. Director Louie Psihoyos is directly involved in the action in The Cove where filmmakers alongside environmental activists plant hidden cameras to reveal the dolphin slaughter committed by the fishermen. Not only does he direct his filmmaking crew, he also leads the group of activists and plays a crucial part in devising the plan how to expose crimes of animal cruelty. The general consensus amongst environmental filmmakers today seems to be that a film alone can't change anything, but the reactions and actions it provokes in an audience can bring upon real change. Captain Paul Watson, co-founder of Greenpeace, remarks in The Cove: “You're either an activist or a non-activist. I decided to be an activist.” The filmmakers' clear intent to motivate the audiences into direct action is summed up by one of the film's marketing punch-lines: ‘The Secret Is Out. Spread the Word’. Unlike feature films that make headlines for a few weeks while they are successful at the box office, documentaries like The Cove have an organic 'after-life' where audiences and fans are kept up to date online by the filmmakers about how the story is developing long after the initial release of the film. Most importantly, the world wide web and social networking media can play an active role in defining the outcome of the story by giving audiences a platform to take direct action. The Cove's website lists many options how one can directly support several organizations who are protecting dolphins in Japan by either donating money or by signing online petitions, joining...
The general consensus amongst environmental filmmakers today seems to be that a film alone can't change anything, but the reactions and actions it provokes in an audience can bring upon real change. Captain Paul Watson, co-founder of Greenpeace, remarks in The Cove: “You're either an activist or a non-activist. I decided to be an activist.” The filmmakers' clear intent to motivate the audiences into direct action is summed up by one of the film's marketing punch-lines: ‘The Secret Is Out. Spread the Word’. Unlike feature films that make headlines for a few weeks while they are successful at the box office, documentaries like The Cove have an organic 'after-life' where audiences and fans are kept up to date online by the filmmakers about how the story is developing long after the initial release of the film. Most importantly, the world wide web and social networking media can play an active role in defining the outcome of the story by giving audiences a platform to take direct action. The Cove's website lists many options how one can directly support several organizations who are protecting dolphins in Japan by either donating money or by signing online petitions, joining facebook groups or by pledging never to buy a ticket for a dolphin show. To sum up, environmental films of today are holistic experiences that give the audiences the opportunity to become interactive and play a crucial part in the overall cause. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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