Cultural theory and Documentary film

Does documentary make difference?
January 13, 2010, 19:02
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Documentary footing has proven to make difference, one notable filmclip was the police brutality towards Rodney King which was witnessed and filmed by a person through one of the windows in her apartment.
But if you think of ordinary documentaries done by professionals, I sincerely wonder about their ability to influence.

Fredrik Gertten made the documentary movie “Bananas” about bananaworkers that had been and still is risking severe damage by the poisons used by banana companies. And I wonder if somebody more, than the usual 5 percent that care about human conditions and does actions to make a difference, even would have noticed the documentary altogether.
Now the documentary hit the headlines of the big press in several countries because of the lawsuit filed by the Dole Company in order to silence the critic. And the movie and the situation of the Banna workers got noticed by very much more people than usually for conscience hitting documentary material.

Then did the documentary do any massive impact on opionion? Well Dole, for what I know, still does sell loads of bananas. The working conditions hasn´t surely improved in any great extent, with expection of a small increase in interest for Fair trade bananas.
The documentary has moved on to be shown in public theatres at least in Sweden, but it goes for only a short period in a few small saloons, and the visitors are the usual crowd of “do-gooders” that drives the whole activist and political action in the westworld…

I am sure that the documentary hadn´t even seen so much of moviesaloon´s if Dole hadn´t made such fuss of it.The lesson learned is, are you doing crooked business, just go on doing it, do not draw any attention to critics as it only exposes you. And if you are big enough just do whatever you want, the masses will keep on consuming your products if they are cheap enough…