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The fly-on-the-wall technique is also known as 'tl verit' and it meant to be the most unmediated style of documentary filming. In this piece of work I will show the principles behind this documentary filming method.

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Introduction

The fly-on-the-wall technique is also known as 't�l� verit�' and it meant to be the most unmediated style of documentary filming. In this piece of work I will show the principles behind this documentary filming method. As an example for fly-on-the-wall filming I chose 'Jamaica ER' and 'Head on the Block' to show, which problems occur to documentary producers and the audience. 'Jamaica ER' is a fly-on-the-wall documentary, which presents the Kingston Public Hospital in Kingston, Jamaica. In this series the hospital weekdays, with all their emergencies and problems, are shown. The doctors are playing a significant part. They are not only shown during their work, but also in their 'private' life, which is very limited, because of the place of the hospital. The area around the hospital is shown as a dangerous slum, 'where you cannot even get a pizza delivered'. Moreover, bad circumstances and overcrowded hospital rooms are shown, and the staff do not seem very qualified. When a serious casualty is treated and a woman tries to put a hose into his lungs, the doctor says that it is a very difficult matter, and that the nurse is doing it for the first time. ...read more.

Middle

The cameraman must provide long, uninterrupted tracking shots and capture fast- moving scenes without any chance of a re-take. Actually this documentary should show real people in real situations without the use of voice- over, to guide the viewer's response, and without non- diegetic sound or music, because of the authentic. The filmed people are, in theory, allowed to speak for themselves and the viewers are left to interpret the images and scenes as they wish. The fly-on-the-wall technique is meant to be the most 'natural' form of documentary filming. The programmes are popular, because they take viewers 'behind the scenes' to observe institutions, such as an ambulance team in 'Blues and Twos'. And they also tended to have natural drama and humour from real people rather than that of actors or staged scenes. As soon as one begins to think carefully about this theory, particularly when applying the ideal to the highly technical and artificial process of film making, one realizes that the ideal of truth in documentary is an extremely controversial one. You hardly ever find real fly-on-the-wall documentaries, because many directors tend to use voice- overs, reconstructions and interviews, to make their themes more interesting. ...read more.

Conclusion

The aim of fly-on-the wall is to show the real behaviour of people, without the affection of cameras, but this you can only achieve, if the cameras seem to be invisible, and therefore you need very small microcams, which could worsen the quality of the footage. Moreover you have to make sure that you crew is not affecting the kids. You have to make sure, that you take places, where you could get interesting footage, because reconstruction is not real, and is not the type of fly-on-the-wall. Schooldays are long; you cannot show the whole footage you have filmed, so you have to select which scenes are interesting to the audience and significant for the subject. And you have to work out a structure for the film, or more over a narrative to guide the audience through it. Maybe to make the whole thing more interesting you could add music or sound effects, for more excitement, and a voice-over for further information. Each film is marked by the distinctive style of its author/s, but they all share a common sense of purpose that distinguishes the best practitioners of the 'fly-on-the-wall' documentary, a desire to lift the lid on society, to expose its iniquities and illuminate its truths. ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 ...read more.

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