Neighbors (view this story)

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Rep: 50
Michael Lloyd June 21, 2010, 8:56 p.m. permalink

Nathan exemplifies great shooting and editing to tell a story that has already happened. Except form some gristly archival footage, the shots were of burned out cars, ground in which victims are buried, and well-shot interviews which tell a story of violence in the name of God. Sadly, an all to familiar story.

To address Nathan's questions:
Not having "leaders" interviewed is rarely a weakness. We suffer from too many so-called experts preaching. These interviews are powerful eye witness accounts.

The music is subtle and powerful. I love Ira Glass' characterization that music is "the frame around the picture" and reject the notion that it is inappropriate in journalistic work. It can be done poorly, like anything else, but this piece uses it well. I think it could come in earlier than it did.

Let's also remember Errol Morris' question about so-called documentary style-handheld, available light, etc.- "does documentary mean poorly shot?" Does journalism have to mean the same? Does it need to look like the evening news to be true? This piece by Nathan shows otherwise.

Mike Lloyd

Rep: 19
David Brooks June 22, 2010, 11:11 a.m. permalink

WELL DONE! Exceptionally WELL DONE! Interviews are well composed, audio is clear, narrator establishes the setting and situation and then quickly allows the subjects to speak. Edits are clean and advance the story.

The fact there are no "officials" speaking is fine since you interviewed people that not only were eye-witnesses and victims but extremely articulate and compelling. I cannot say enough about the great fortune in finding the right people to speak on camera, they literally make the story, the quotes from Dr. Shadrack Gaya Best are especially thought provoking, he really helped to move the story along as well as close it.

The color balance is off, a little warm, but I watched before reading your "feedback requested" and thought it was intentional since it was the same throughout, I think it looks fine in the context of this story.

The music is good, I don't usually use music but it works here.

The one item I would like to see and this is really nitpicking..., for some reason I remembered Isaac and Ibrahim's name but forgot the doctor's name, halfway through I was asking myself, "who is this again?" Maybe identify him again at 4:45? Just a thought.

Well done.

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