1922: How Robert Flaherty Invented the modern documentary

In 1922 Robert Flaherty released what was the very first feature length documentary. It used a passive camera to capture seemingly unmediated footage of Inuit life, but the film came under criticism when it was revealed that Flaherty had staged several scenes. One of the most celebrated scenes, which shows the building of an igloo was in reality a three walled set built from ice. In this video, One Hundred Years of cinema explores how Flaherty’s film went on to influence two new schools of documentary film making, Cinéma vérité and Direct cinema.


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