Narrative conventions structuring a documentary
Narrative conventions and Narrative Structure
Published on: Mar 3, 2016
Transcripts - Narrative conventions structuring a documentary
structuring a documentary
Must capture the audience attention
Central question of documentary can
be posed at the beginning in an
One way of doing this is quick
interviews, capturing conflict
with different people.
Otherwise known as the complication stage
Needs to be the most interesting sectionExplores the issue in human terms
Conflict is strengthened during this stage
Makes the exposition fully apparent
By this stage the audience should be clear
what the argument is trying to say.
Be between people with different beliefs,
goals, circumstances or ambitions
Or can be a variety of others.
Sense of Movement-
Can add strength to the narrative elements
There are three types of movement we see
in a documentary;
physical movement e.g. change of location
movement in time e.g. day to night or
change of seasons
psychological change e.g. witnessing how
someone deals with new situations.
Music and SFX
Sound effective in producing an emotional
response in the audience
Can be extremely important in creating the
mood or adding realism to the
What we see on the screen including
Construction of Reality
When you watch a documentary you
should be asking yourself not just what
you’re seeing but also what you are not
This concept is known as gatekeeping
(selection and rejection of information by
editors or producers)
Audience makes up their
own mind at the end.
There is a definitive ending and outcome.
Only one main plot running
throughout the programme.
Many sub-parts that interweave.
In chronological order.
Not in chronological order.
One question at the start. Question is revisited at the end.
Circular narratives can tie in with