“research films from the genre of your proposal and pick out key traits”

With classic fictional docudrama horrors such as Chronicle, Cloverfield, The Blair Witch Project and District 9, clear themes and ideas link them all together. Here are some examples;


A list of identifying traits (things the docudrama must include) –

  • Representation of some historical events (fictional)
  • POV angles
  • Literary and narrative characteristics
  • All done with a non-professional camera, filmed by a character pretending to be a non-professional cameraman – adding realism and personality


Mise-en-scene characteristics for fictional docudramas –

  • Dark lighting full of monotone colours
  • Characters are acting as amateurs in these situations and don’t use proper weapons when defending themselves, e.g. Baseball bats
  • The characters usually wear casual modern day clothing, but in muted colours rather than bright colours
  • Music is subtle if there is any, and is usually in the actual scenes rather than added as additional background music
  • The films are all set in places that the characters are familiar in, but which they only seem to visit during darker hours
  • The sound effects are again kept to a minimum, yet any real-life sounds occurring in the videos may be enhanced
  • Some films, such as Babadook, tend to have a clear motif. In the case of Babadook, lighting would go down and insinuate the idea that something bad is about to happen
  • All the former mentioned films have clear themes of horror and suspense, set in a docudrama way
  • Editing is kept simple, and the majority of films above are edited as if running continuously from a camera, so jump cuts are quite prominent but not very noticeable

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