A discussion forum for history enthusiasts everywhere
 
HomeHome  Recent ActivityRecent Activity  FAQFAQ  RegisterRegister  Log inLog in  

Share | 
 

 Historical documentaries, film reenactements

View previous topic View next topic Go down 
AuthorMessage
PaulRyckier
Censura
avatar

Posts : 1629
Join date : 2012-01-01
Location : Belgium

PostSubject: Historical documentaries, film reenactements   Sun 31 Aug 2014, 21:07

I was hesitating to add this to the tread:"Does accuracy in film...". I wanted also to put it first under the forum: "The history of history"...At least I have made a new thread of it...


First I have to say that I don't prefer film reenactments as they mostly differ from reality, putting a "supposed" character on certain persons without confirmation from historical research...but who am I?...from my inquiry these reenactment films seems to be more popular to the grand public than the real historical documentaries...and it is the amount of viewers which brings the money...and which dictate the film makers and their historical supporting team what kind of film they have to produce...even BBC and German ZDF...I will elaborate the problem along my examples I found and I saw in the time...

http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/worldwars/wwtwo/getting_behind_closed_doors_01.shtml
Well, how well made the series was, I didn't like the reenactment Churchill, Roosevelt, Stalin reenactments...
http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/worldwars/wwtwo/ww2_behind_closed_doors_01.shtml
And Laurence Rees seems also to be the author of "my" ultimate top favourite series: " Nazis a warning from history"



From the above link:
About the author:
Laurence Rees, writer and producer of the six part BBC/PBS series 'World War Two Behind Closed Doors: Stalin, the Nazis and the West' is an award winning historian of World War Two and the Third Reich. His previous book 'Auschwitz: The Nazis and the ''Final Solution'' won the British Book Award for History Book of the Year in 2006 and the television series of the same name won him a Grierson Documentary Award. He has written five other history books including, 'Nazis: A Warning from History', 'War of the Century', 'Horror in the East' and 'Their Darkest Hour'. 'Nazis a Warning from History', 'War of the Century' and 'Horror in the East' were also successful television documentary series - all written and produced by Laurence Rees
Perhaps that the BBC or PBS has asked Laurence Rees to include the reenactment scenes to obtain popular viewers quota Wink supported by a study of an international marketing research company Wink ...?
About my ultimate top favourite series:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Nazis:_A_Warning_from_History
http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xq1ym0_the-nazis-a-warning-from-history-1-helped-into-power_lifestyle


And then the whole reenactment films as:
The Charles II series...
I remember when the series started "our" Minette in 2003 on the old BBC history messageboards made an eulogy of the series...and when in the first episode the head of Charles I was chopped of with nearly "new western cowboy style" floods of blood that I was disappointed about the populist approach of the series...
But yes viewers statistics are the guide lines as how to edit and construct a series...
http://www.bbc.co.uk/drama/charles/


And yes a German series that I also found a bit "populistic", "public favour seeking"...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Generation_War



And yes the public was there, it was a bestseller...


I discussed on the old BBC messageboards with the German Thomas: "Der Untergang" that I, although it was also a bestseller, found not an excellent film from historical point of view...
http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/downfall/

Will stop here and go further in another message for an addendum...

Kind regards, Paul.
Back to top Go down
PaulRyckier
Censura
avatar

Posts : 1629
Join date : 2012-01-01
Location : Belgium

PostSubject: Re: Historical documentaries, film reenactements   Sun 31 Aug 2014, 21:26

Addendum to the previous message.

The above research was started when I two days ago saw on the French-German Arte 7+ (films you could still view during 7 days after the emission):
https://www.tvfrance-intl.com/en/programmes/presentation/fiche/47016_linsurrection-de-varsovie.html

For those, who understand French:
http://www.pointdujour-international.com/catalogueFiche.php?lang=fr&action=setcookie&alpha=&typeAlpha=&rub=0&idFiche=38190&projet=




Yes well made as I like it....

And yes some memories also of a mixed reenactment film, which I vilified on these boards in front of Ferval some time ago Embarassed ...looking at it now again I have to say that it is in fact not that bad made...but Ferval has to know that I during months on several fora was discussing the circumstances in which the WWI was started including the roles from Germany and Russia and their respective monarchs the Kaiser and the Tsar...
http://royalcorrespondent.com/2012/06/16/the-king-the-kaiser-and-the-tsar-a-documentary/

Kind regards, Paul.
Back to top Go down
LadyinRetirement
Decemviratus Legibus Scribundis
avatar

Posts : 691
Join date : 2013-09-16

PostSubject: Re: Historical documentaries, film reenactements   Thu 04 Sep 2014, 13:34

This is a difficult topic.  I could never plead guilty to being a military historian.  Many productions seem to use an element of "faction" but then, even when there are newsreels of real battles, they are usually from one perspective.  There is the human memory of the survivors of course but memory can be fallible.

I never went to see "Saving Private Ryan" (which I know is an entertainment film rather than a documentary) because I thought the premise of soldiers being able to go off the beaten track in the heart of battle to save a "buddy" was somewhat fantastical.  Many people have enjoyed the film though.  Paul R observed (I am paraphrasing his words here) that the re-enactment films seem to be more popular than films which adhere more closely to "the facts".  I know I read (if memory serves me correctly on Wikipedia) that the BBC docu-drama "Ancient Rome: the Rise and Fall of an Empire" stuck reasonably closely to what actually happened but was not a "hit" with the public at large while the HBO/BBC series "Rome" - which no doubt gave an idea of what life was like in Rome back in the day but was a bit "rompish", cherry-picking events from here and there, and not always adhering to truth, e.g. Octavian didn't kill Cleopatra's sons [he asked his sister if she'd like to adopt the girl and younger boy which I don't think happened in real life - the girl was married off to a minor king I always thought] - was better liked by a greater number of people.

Some time in the 1980s I saw a documentary "Shoah" about the "final solution" which was mostly in the form of interviews with survivors of the Holocaust and from people on the other side if they could be persuaded to address the camera.  The maker of the film was certainly more sympathetic in the way he dealt with the Holocaust survivors than a lot of the other people who he interviewed, though he did say in an interview that he had come to like the man who drove the train to one of the camps.
Back to top Go down
PaulRyckier
Censura
avatar

Posts : 1629
Join date : 2012-01-01
Location : Belgium

PostSubject: Re: Historical documentaries, film reenactements   Sat 06 Sep 2014, 22:49

Lady in retirement,

this is indeed a difficult topic and by the way thank you for the response. I wonder if I am not too severe towards these documentaries. Yesterday evening I was searching the whole evening for some documentaries on the former Belgian television from the start already split in a Dutch speaking and a French speaking part. I wanted to view again some documentaries that I remembered as very valuable and found indeed one:
For those who understand French it's about "14-18 Le Journal de la grande guerre" started in 1964...
http://www.histoire.be/colloque14-18/colloque14-18.htm
I have only found some interviews and not the episodes, 126 ones spread over four years...
http://www.sonuma.be/collection/14-18
For example: The fraternisation of Christmas 1914:
http://www.rtbf.be/video/detail_la-fraternisation-de-noel-1914?id=1938005
In the time I found this an excellent series but now I see that a lot is nostalgia is mixed into it. And the RTBF has now made a new series about the subject...to not bore in...three episodes...
But nevertheless I still find that the boring long series has a great value...as the interview with a soldier about the bayonet fighting that I saw yesterday...incredible television work...

Even better I found another endless series from Mark Ferro:
I didn't find anything in English:
http://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Histoire_parall%C3%A8le




"Paul R observed (I am paraphrasing his words here) that the re-enactment films seem to be more popular than films which adhere more closely to "the facts".  I know I read (if memory serves me correctly on Wikipedia) that the BBC docu-drama "Ancient Rome: the Rise and Fall of an Empire" stuck reasonably closely to what actually happened but was not a "hit" with the public at large while the HBO/BBC series "Rome" - which no doubt gave an idea of what life was like in Rome back in the day but was a bit "rompish", cherry-picking events from here and there, and not always adhering to truth, e.g. Octavian didn't kill Cleopatra's sons [he asked his sister if she'd like to adopt the girl and younger boy which I don't think happened in real life - the girl was married off to a minor king I always thought] - was better liked by a greater number of people."

Yes, the public wants perhaps a less boring "novelist" narrative without the interventions of historians a every moment, interventions which are indeed only interesting to history buffs as we...if the narrative is more or less historical that's enough for the general public and as it is pleased with it the program ratings go up and the money support too...I think the time of "educating" the public "willy-nilly" is past...it is perhaps another approach nowadays?

Kind regards and with esteem,

Paul.
Back to top Go down
LadyinRetirement
Decemviratus Legibus Scribundis
avatar

Posts : 691
Join date : 2013-09-16

PostSubject: Re: Historical documentaries, film reenactements   Sun 07 Sep 2014, 03:58

Have come online as have woken in the wee small hours of the morning. A 26 part documentary made to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the first World War "The Great War" which used newsreels from the war and still photographs is perhaps worthy of mention:- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Great_War_%28documentary%29 That was on BBC.  On another TV station, Granada, though not relating to World War I was the series "All Our Yesterdays" based on cinema newsreels:-  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/All_Our_Yesterdays_%28TV_series%29  which ran from the early 1960s to the early 1970s and then had another run in the 1980s. I will have to look at Paul R's recommendations when I have some spare time as I think they may take time to absorb.
Back to top Go down
PaulRyckier
Censura
avatar

Posts : 1629
Join date : 2012-01-01
Location : Belgium

PostSubject: Re: Historical documentaries, film reenactements   Tue 09 Sep 2014, 21:06

Lady in retirement,

"A 26 part documentary made to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the first World War "The Great War" which used newsreels from the war and still photographs is perhaps worthy of mention:- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Great_War_%28documentary%29 That was on BBC. "

Yes in the documents that I provided about the Belgian "14-18" this particular 26 part BBC documentary was mentioned as the only one in the world! up till then and the Belgian RTB has taken it as an example to construct their own documentary. Thus it was then the second in the world about that subject Wink . I don't find, even in range 2 and 3, an emoticon to express national pride Wink , but perhaps it is better that way, because with national pride you never know where you end....
Not much time for this board now...for the umpteenth time involved in an Hitler and Nazism thread...and that on Historum!...
And thanks again for your comments...

Kind regards and with esteem,

Paul.
Back to top Go down
 

Historical documentaries, film reenactements

View previous topic View next topic Back to top 
Page 1 of 1

Permissions in this forum:You cannot reply to topics in this forum
Res Historica History Forum :: The history of expression ... :: The Arts-