Seeing should not always be believing. My husband and I are what you might call cinephiles. We LOVE watching movies. When I say that I mean every kind of movie . We like foreign films (with subtitles no dubbing,) documentaries, comedies, historical films, tragedy, etc. We love watching every type of movie . Now, we don’t necessarily like every movie we see, I mean who does, but we do watch as much as we have the time for.
One of the things we do is, when we get into a certain genre of movie we will stay with it for a while. A few weeks back we had an Asian horror movie fest. I can’t tell you how many horrible movies we watched over that weekend. They all started to run together after a bit. Anyway! We have watched more than a few documentaries lately. I like watching documentaries for the most part. They often put a new perspective out there on issues or situations that many people may be unaware of. It is a great way to involve the public and bring awareness at the same time. There have been many documentaries that I have seen that I truly enjoyed. I feel they can be informative and helpful in many ways.
One problem, however, is that people don’t realize that too often documentaries are one person’s, or a group of people’s, viewpoint on a certain topic. If you are producing a film on your home life you may omit certain details that you don’t want everyone in the world to know about. In some aspects documentaries can be the same way. People need to understand that drama and tension are often highlighted to make that topic seem more defined than what it might be. I too, have had to take a step back at times and realize that maybe not everything I have seen or watched is necessarily 100% accurate at times.
I watched a documentary about the food industry. In the documentary it showed less than desirable breeding situations for our countries domesticated animals. I can honestly say I was disgusted. Then I was angry in a lot of ways. I felt that I had been lied to in a sense by our food industry and it upset me. Not long after I saw the documentary, I had an opportunity to actually go inside and see a chicken house firsthand. I didn’t want to go in. I had this sickening feeling at the thought of seeing what I had pre-conceived. Still there was also this overwhelming urge to be a witness to it. So I went in and I braced myself for the decision I had made. It was clean, air-conditioned, and it was not the scene I had imagined at all. I was surprised because I thought I had already known what I would find in there.
This made me realize that each person in this business can run their own business in their own way. So, by only showing one type of situation, you don’t get a real sense of the entire industry. It was a jaded view-point that I had been shown and that jaded point of view had taken root within me for a while as well. I’m not saying that some of these places aren’t run poorly but that doesn’t mean that all of them are.
The people who make these films are in control of every aspect of them. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the documentary that I watched. The thing is that you cannot take it to be 100% truth. It is a viewpoint. It is an opinion. That doesn’t mean that there is no truth to it, but that also doesn’t mean that it is not promoting something in a specific way to get a specific type of reaction out of people. I learned from the documentary. I realized that a lot of things that go unnoticed by consumers. I became more proactive for my family concerning what we spend our money on and who we give our money to. I also realized, that as I stood surrounded by chickens, that there was a lot that was left out. One person cannot account for every person. Do not believe everything without question.
It is our duty to be informed but the best information comes from your own research. Google is not a scientific study. Wikipedia is not a legitimate encyclopedia. Reading WebMD does not make you an educated and trained Doctor. Find legitimate information and let’s try to do our best not to continue to spread false information as truth. Too many people only half read anything anymore. Too many people talk as though they know, but have never actually looked. I am not always right, but I try my best not to speak about the things I do not know anything about. Our society is too full of access and too lazy to take advantage of it so that we can use it promote knowledge instead of talk.
I will continue to love and watch movies, but I will also regard them as such. I hope that maybe we can all keep things within the context they should belong to.