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Introductory Analysis of TV documentaries Examples and features of existing documentaries

Good to Smack (Channel 4)


Mise-en-scene: Set in a house, sets the scene makes it more realistic. When interviewing children, they are all sat in a very messy looking bedroom. Because of the Mise-en-scene we can make the assumption that the family are in group E of the socio economic grouping table Mode of documentary: Expositional, with elements of fly on the wall and profiling Linear structure: Presents documentary in a very rigid way- a problem is presented and the goal of the documentary is to try and find a solution to the problem Editing: Montage of shots at the beginning, coupled with fast paced editing suggests an action packed documentary. All throughout the pace of editing is quite fast in comparison to a regular documentary. Suggests mayhem Sound: Non diegetic background music creates an action packed feel. The background track is by a band called madness, which also connotes that the footage on the screen is manic

Fire and Rescue (ITV)


Aimed at a younger audience, less inclined to inform and entertain, due to the fact the documentary is being shown on ITV, which is not a public service broadcaster. This particular documentary is primarily focused on entertaining. Editing: Opens with a montage of shots, edited at an extremely fast pace with short shot duration, suggests dramatic scenes, that match the visual content on screen. Research undertaken: Frequently the voice over (the news reader, Alaister Stewart) reads out facts and figures to match the on screen visuals. For example The fire service serves over 120,000 people a year. The fact the narrator is a news reader; you will find people are more inclined to believe what he has to say. Mise-en-scene: Interview conducted in front of a fire engine, enhances authenticity. Camera: Scenes that have been filmed with a handheld camera- places the audience in the action, exciting.