If it wasn't for properly documented proof much of history would have been lost to us. Newspapers, books and even government records are sources that help us piece together a complete picture of the incidents of historical value. A picture is worth a thousand words and a movie is worth even more. When you've had your fill of fictional movies where sometimes even true events are molded to suit the plot, you switch to documentaries where you get the opportunity to witness events unfold in real time or hear about it from the people who were actually there. If you like watching movies a lot, you must have also seen a lot of behind-the-scenes moments of your favorite movies. If you haven't yet, here are some documentaries on movies you should not miss.
Fitzcarraldo (1982) is an amazing movie about an eccentric tycoon who wants to build an opera in the middle of the Amazon. Although the premise is excellent and Werner Herzog did a fantastic job of executing such a unique concept. He went into the forest with his cast and crew to shoot for this movie much to the displeasure of the local residents.
Not long after the movie, came Burden of Dreams, which showed in detail the troubles the locals had because of the shoot. Like the tycoon in the movie, Werner was not without his own eccentricities and went to great lengths to get those perfect shots which did not please his cast or crew that much.
Apocalypse Now (1979) was co-written and directed by Francis Coppola of The Godfather fame. It is considered to be one of the best movies of all time according to the British magazine Sight and Sound in the year 2012. The book Hearts of Darkness was adapted in a Vietnam war story for this movie. Although this movie came out in 1979, the concept and the script were ready by 1969.
The crew faced a lot of problems while shooting for this movie. A documentary was made on the making of this movie in 1991. It includes footage, which was secretly recorded by Francs' wife and all the people who were involved with the film talking about how they overcame all the problems while the making of this movie.
Visions of Light (1992)
This one is not based on a particular movie but has a variety of cameramen and women explaining the secrets behind their craft. The process that leads to a certain scene being lighted or set the way it is. They talk about the equipment they might sometimes create on the set to perfect the look of the movie. The subtle differences that go behind explaining film noir and the New York look are explained perfectly with the help of movies like Citizen Kane and The Conformist.
The Thing: Terror Takes Shape (1998)
The Thing (1982) which was a moderate success at the box office went on to gain a cult following in the later years. The timing of the release was considered to be one of the main reasons for it to not being a box office success. A reboot was also made in 2011. Between those came a documentary that took you behind the scenes and showed the creation of the monster. If you enjoy horror movies, this will be enlightening to you.
American Movie (1999)
What if you have a passion for making movies but no one to back you? You have talent but no money. This documentary follows the life of one such filmmaker whose only aim in life was to make movies. It takes him about three years to make a short horror film as he battles with his own inner demons. This might seem like a story of a movie, the only difference is, this really happened.
Lagaan (2001) is still considered to be one of the finest movies in Bollywood. Satyakal Bhatkal, who was a production assistant during the filming, takes us behind the scenes of this epic film. An account of the making of a movie through the eyes of a production assistant is certainly going to be insightful.
Which are the documentaries on films you have enjoyed? Tell us in the comments below and don't forget to share.