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Analyze how the opening sequences of two documentary films help to establish genre and narrative.
The two documentaries I’m going to discuss are called one day in September and when we were kings these are both documentaries about well known sporting events. One day in September is about a group of Israeli athletes in the Olympics who are captured and held hostage by Palestinians whereas when we were kings is based on two boxers from America who compete for their country in Africa in 1974 called George Forman and Muhammad Ali. They are both an example of a well known competitive sport.
One day in September opens with a short clip of Munich where the Olympics is due to be held it is presented as if it is advertising it as a holiday destination. The music at first is very cheerful and light with a narrator describing Munich and its attractions this is known as non diagetic sound. There are quick clips of the lifestyle and scenery in Munich to give you a general idea of what Munich’s culture and lifestyle is like. It soon changes very serious and dramatic credits with a man quoting ‘Well nobody could foresee what later on happened’ this leads the viewers to think already that this is not going to be a usual day. The credits slide onto a very dark blurred background with distorted reports on what seem to have happened in the background, this effect intrigues the audience to what actually happened on that ‘day in September’.
When the credits finish the music changes back to the calm, peaceful music as before and the audience see slides of what appears to be a happy couple’s marriage. The viewer can already sense that these people are going to be involved. A woman is narrating over these short clip and goes straight in to talking past tense saying ‘It was only a year and three months that I was married to Andrï¿½ Spitzer’ this gives the audience the impression that they are not married anymore. The narrator carries on discussing her marriage and how she met Andre Spitzer this creates a bond between the audience and the narrator to leave a bigger effect on the viewers. The shot then changes to a prisoner however you cannot see his face, the sound then changes into tension building music to create suspense between the audience and this prisoner this also shows us black and white images of were he lives over these shots the prisoner goes directly into who he is and describes his past and his training.
The camera shots keeps us curious into who he is and what he has done while the suspense of the music engages us into what happened one that day in September. The audience then go back to Andrï¿½ Spitzer’s wife’s perspective however the music stays the same building up the suspense while the point of view changes from the ‘goodies’ to the ‘baddies’. The documentary then changes into a anonymous male describing what was about this Olympics that made it different from all the others for Andrï¿½ and his team. The sound then changes to an upbeat ‘feel good’ song showing clips of the Olympics which confuses the audience slightly to what went wrong.