Apart from the three-dimension that human nature can perceive, there is a fourth, characterized by a unique quality: the subconscious interpretation. An internal process of emotions that each person receives and then externalizes in his own particular way. It is the human approach and receptivity to positive or negative messages, through audio-visual stimuli, messages that emerge from the participatory process of viewing, through the visual of Collective Arts and Cinema.

We do not disagree that Documentary is Cinema, since it uses the same means, however - in its overwhelming majority - the obvious absence of the typical, linear fiction narration, classifies this cinematographic genre somewhere within the limits of the above mentioned fourth dimension. That of the sociological study and of the imprinting of the "Next to Us".
The fictional Cinema presents and expands, by reflecting the human actions in all the derivatives of existing sociological systems (adventure, drama, comedy, horror, etc.). On the contrary, the Documentary, investigates, informs, understands, re-examines, reveals, concerns and eventually awakens the consciousness.
The documentary reflects the real (sometimes the non-existent) world on the screen, sometimes with plausibility and others with truth. Truth about the diversity of the elements of the human being, religious and political controversies, the naked truth about human rights abuses, violence, abuse, brutal involvement in the destruction of the ecosystem, the truth about the natural creation of any biological living organism.

Finally, the arranger / director of a documentary film, is an artist, a recorder or an activist? Is he a creator or a researcher? Ethnographer or anthropologist? Whatever you may choose, it is sure that the director faces a philosophical problem. The problem of perception of objectivity in approaching the truth of "Next to Us". Scientifically, objectivity is evidenced by the senses of collective experience, the results of experiments and the study through statistical science. An "invisible", internal camera, which must be armed with all the objective criteria of the complex concept of truth. Of reality, we mean, and its connection with the insecticidal semiology of the serum of truth. Of the drainage of every element of subjectivity and the concession in the imprint of reality.

Even the poor understanding of the problems of "Next to Us" leads gradually to the conscious acceptance of the truth. A tool, therefore, that if the director uses as a manual, a driver of conscious distancing from cinematic teaching, it can help to the maximum degree in the social interpretation of Newton's law: Action / Reaction. 

How many of the tens of thousands of directors do it? This is another question that must be answered by
all of us, with the difference in perception that characterizes us as a kind of thoughtful human being.

Translated by Eleni-Agapi Lygizou


Kostas Konstantinidis
Film Critic
Member of
Hellenic Greek Academy
Panhellenic Cinema Critics Association