Documentary Paper

The documentary I have chosen to use for this paper is the Planet Earth series.  I have not decided if I will pull from one or all of them at this time.  I plan on explaining what separates Planet Earth from every other nature documentary ever created.  I also plan on explaining how this particular documentary, even to this day, is one of my greatest inspirations.   I will be citing the BBC and Discovery official sites for this paper.  I also own the master collection of Planet Earth, so this will help as well!

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Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival

I had the wonderful opportunity to attend this years Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival.  Even more, I got to experience the brilliant film Bridegroom.  Bridegroom is the story of Shane Crone and Thomas Bridegroom and the unconditional love that they find for each other.  Against all odds these two come together and create the closest thing to true love (straight or gay) that I have ever seen.  Tragedy strikes when tom falls off of a four story building one night while taking pictures of their mutual friend.  Tom does not survive the fall.  Due to current legal reasons and technicalities, Shane is not considered a family member so he can not be let in to see Tom.  Tom’s family does not allow Shane to attend the funeral either, and even threaten an attack on his life if he attempts to make an appearance.  The aftermath of this tragedy sparks a vast and overwhelming depression that we get to experience with Shane.  This is because he documents the entire period of and after this horrific tragedy.  The bond these two had was unlike anything I had ever seen.  One interviewee even states that Tom and Shane had the love that each and everyone of us was searching for and that we all envied them.  After watching this, one will surely agree. This movie completely eradicates the barrier between straight and gay couples.  This movie is not a straight thing, or a gay thing.  It is a human thing.  I encourage anyone and everyone to go view this film.  It encompasses unconditional love and gut wrenching heartache in a way that is just out right brilliant.

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Diabetes

Diabetes has ravaged my entire family for generations.  Type 1 Diabetes, the insulin dependent form of the disease, often strikes at an early age.  This disease targets the insulin producing cells in the pancreas.  Without insulin to break down glucose (sugar) in the body, it stays in the blood stream and damages the organs in the body.  My grandmother had three sons: Shane (my father), Brent, and Andy.  Brent and Andy both contracted the disease at early ages.  Brent had two daughters and a son.  His son Brant, contracted the disease around the age of ten.  Brent died this past year due to an infection that his immune system could not fight due to the years of attack from his disease.  Andy had a daughter, a son, and recently had two twin boys.  His first son Cole, recently contracted Diabetes. Neither Brant nor Cole are above the age of thirteen, yet they both have to take a minimum of self injected insulin shots a day.  I personally do not believe that any child should suffer through that.  On top of all of this they can not have anything with real sugar in it.  This causes them to feel left out of many childhood indulgences that normal kids partake in on a regular basis.  My fathers line, consisting of my brother Luke and I, is the only one that has not contracted this deadly disease.  I however, have hypoglycemia.  Hypoglycemia is a disorder that a occurs when ones blood sugar levels are constantly to low and is usually a precursor to Diabetes.  To counteract this disorder I have to eat constantly to keep my blood sugar regulated.  Growing up around this I have experienced things that most people do not.  I feel as if most people do not realize the magnitude of this disease.  It does not get the recognition that Cancer or Aids would, however this disease is just as deadly.  I have literally watched my Uncle die in front of me at the age of 37 and little cousins suffer at the hands of this disease.  I think footage of what my cousins go through on a day to day basis at the tender age of twelve would change peoples minds about how devastating this disease really is.   

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Ethics Surrounding Certain Images

Most people cringe at the sight of a murder, however, when recreated on film, it does not even phase them.  Our society as a whole has become jaded to quite a bit of disturbing things.  Murder, rape, and destruction, to name a few.  Nowadays, when shown to someone in the form of movies, or a photograph ones first thought is it is just a picture.  Some convince themselves that the images are not real.  For this reason I believe that showing scenes of extreme violence or other traumatic things should be shown to the majority of the public.  The purpose, a wake-up call.  When shown in a documentary that informs the audience of truth, one can not as easily convince them self that the image is fake or that it is just an image. People should realize that these terrible things did actually happen.  I believe it is the right of the people to be well informed on everything, including the gruesome stuff.  Should children be exposed to scenes like this?  No, of course not, and that is why we have rating systems and viewer discretion warnings. 

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The Flaws in Boleslaw Matuszewski’s Theory

Clearly there are obvious flaws in Matuszewski’s theory, however, this was published in 1898.  This was prior to extensive editing of footage.  One can almost compare this to a weather forecast.  No matter how intelligent one is or how sophisticated the equipment used to make a prediction,  it will always be a guessing game.  This applies to the theory at hand.  Matuszewski believed that it would be almost impossible to edit footage (animated photography), because one would have to edit thousands of pixels for each frame.  For this reason, he stated that film could not be altered and that it was absolute truth.  The lens could not lie, because it did not have the human emotional capability to achieve such a feat.  He concluded that because of this, film would be the ultimate tool to prove truth in any circumstance.  At the time this would have actually seemed quite logical.  Matuszewski’s prediction’s, however, were far from correct.  In terms of accuracy he didn’t even hit the board.  Soon after this was published many film makers began to tamper with their respective reels of footage to create and alter the feelings of their target audiences.  Editing footage quickly became the norm and was almost expected of the film maker.  Today footage can be edited so highly that one can completely control every single aspect of his or her film to produce whatever his or her imagination can cook up.

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