Documentary Guide

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It is a popular myth that the word documentary was coined by John Grierson, a Scottish documentarian, in his review of Robert Flaherty's film Moana (1926), published in the New York Sun on 8 February 1926.

Grierson's principles of documentary were that cinema's potential for observing life could be exploited in a new art form, that the "original" actor and "original" scene are better guides than their fictional counterparts to interpreting the modern world, and that material "thus taken from the raw" can be more real than the enacted one. Similarly, Dziga Vertov argued for presenting "life as it is" (i.e. life filmed surreptitiously) and "life caught unawares" (i.e. life provoked or surprised by the camera). In this regard, Grierson's views align with Vertov's contempt for dramatic fiction as "bourgeois excess", except that Grierson expresses them with considerably more subtlety.

Grierson's definition of documentary as "creative treatment of actuality" has gained some acceptance, though it presents philosophical questions about documentaries containing staging and reenactment. On similar lines, Pare Lorentz defines a documentary film as "a factual film, which is dramatic." Some go a step further and state that documentary stands out from the other types of non-fiction films for providing an opinion and a specific message, along with the facts.

While documentaries can also be created to influence masses wrongly or to propagandize, we do not organize, promote or influence our results based on any bias or with specific algorithms. Our results are purely keyword and context based.

Documentary is the most influential form of content and can have sustaining visual and emotional impact on each of us. It can drive within us a need to make a difference, to become aware and to call for common understanding of social, political, environmental and every other type of global issues that we as humanity face today. Our urge to create came from these fundamental beliefs.

Documentary Guide is conceived to bring to its audience the widest collection of documentary films from around the World Wide Web. It is one of the few CURATED search engines on the Internet. We have researched and indexed thousands of films, hundreds of sites and numerous databases from around the globe. We have organized them, tagged them and curated them for education and awareness. This platform is made for film makers, researchers, filmgoers, students, educators and all individuals who strive to learn more, know more and do more.

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