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Directing the Documentary, 6th Edition by Michael Rabiger

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CHAPTER 19

FORM, CONTROL, AND STYLE

 

 

The word style often gets interchanged confusingly with form. Both express concern with the way you present a film’s content, but form is the configuration and logic of the narrative, while style describes the ways in which the work allies itself with artistic precedent. This involves the telltale references and conventions by which audiences recognize a type of film and its purposes. Form is the structuring by which the film’s content becomes a story.

Form and style seem symbiotic in the finished work, but during the film’s inception you should try to see them as separate concerns. If, for instance, you have a body of filmed material about homelessness, you could conceivably edit it either as a societal ...

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