UFO Documentaries And Why They Stink [was: The
From: Carol Rainey Csrainey1.nul
Date: Wed, 18 Apr 2007 11:47:52 -0400
Fwd Date: Wed, 18 Apr 2007 12:09:34 -0400
Subject: UFO Documentaries And Why They Stink [was: The
>From: Robert Gates <RGates8254.nul>
>Date: Mon, 16 Apr 2007 22:48:43 EDT
>Subject: Re: The Roswell Incident - The True Story
>>From: Dennis Balthaser <truthskr.nul>
>>Date: Mon, 16 Apr 2007 07:57:10 -0600
>>Subject: Re: The Roswell Incident - The True Story
>>>From: Nick Pope <nick.nul>
>>>Date: Sun, 15 Apr 2007 23:57:28 +0100
>>>Subject: Re: The Roswell Incident - The True Story
>>voicing are disappointment with the National Geographic
>Personally I expect the outside documentaries to be slanted.
>The only way to get a good documentary is if somebody was
>willing to put up some cash, say have yourself and Stan set up a
>Roswell documentary etc etc. The skeptical viewpoints should be
>presented as well.
>However even if that was done, people inside the UFO community
>would howl and yell about why Dennis/Stan didn't cover say
>something like the jewel encrusted helmet, or something from
>Corso's book, this witnesses testimony, or that persons theory
>etc etc. Do it in a 2 hour DVD, with no commercial interuptions.
>It would be my guess that a person doing that would sell a
>bunch. Sure videos have been done before, but not lately.
I often read here of people's great disappointment after a UFO
documentary is aired - and their often justifiable sense that
they, as vitally interested explorers in the realm, and also the
participants featured in the show, were somehow duped. As a
producer/director of 30 documentaries, most broadcast on PBS and
cable networks, I wouldn't disagree with those feelings most of
the time. The shows that have aired over the past decade are
usually banal and simplified, reworking cases mined to death,
and, by the end of an hour or two hours, the producers simply
haven't done more than touch the tip of the submerged mystery.
And that's a description of the 'good ones'!
But - and I'm not by and large defending my fellow producers - a
better understanding of the limitations of the broadcast medium
might alleviate a bit of the frustration. And as I try to cut
together my own two hour doc out of approximately 125 hours of
footage shot with Budd Hopkins all over the world, including 20
some cases - I'm as frustrated as the next guy.
This, as you know, is a subtle, shifting, hard-to-pin-down
phenomenon and making a film about it is a little like trying to
pick up a thousand globules of quicksilver, somehow stick them
all together and come up with, voila!, an internally coherent,
unified, and easy to comprehend "big silver ball" which mirrors
the truth each of us devoutly hopes to see revealed.
Forgive me for stating what may be obvious to some of you, but
not apparent to others: television and film are inherently
reductionist media. They don't do detail, make subtle
distinctions, or usually address well the concerns of an
informed subculture, like the Listserve. If you want that, read
a good book on the topic, footnotes and all. Visual media's
great for the gestalt of the thing, the feel, tone, and just a
taste of whatever the subject is. The best ones focus on one
major theme (one story) with a couple of secondary storylines.
Obviously, a documentary's not likely to include even a
fraction of what we all know to be possibly significant clues to
the mystery. Bottomline, that's because a real world story
unfurls in real time - over days, months, years. The filmmaker,
in retelling that story, only has 48 to 96 minutes to tell the
very same story, given time for commercicals and breaks.
But these shows do reach hundreds of millions of people in one
fell swoop. They _get_the_story out_, no matter how
incompletely or skewed. Over time, I think that counts.
Cumulatively, over years, the viewers will start to sort things
out. Many obviously already have.
As to Robert Gates'proposal that money be raised within the
community to make the ultimate documentry... Hey, that sounds
good to me. But another little problem with television and film
is the terrible cost. I've put in 11 years of paying my dues
with this subject, doing my homework - and I still need $400,000
to get started on a two hour program, with more to raised later
for music and post-production. If 20,000 readers, here,
contributed $25 apiece, that's the sort of commitment it would
take to make budget. Or if one or two philanthropical souls
cared to fund the 'insiders'" film, we could get started sooner.
Whoever has the money to reach millions owns "the truth."
Listen to 'Strange Days... Indeed' - The PodCast