Documentary Appreciation Course| October 16-17th, 2017|The Mandrem House


Today we are more aware of the documentary films around us because it has became more available to us through film festivals, internet and television. But, good documentary viewing also requires good audience, one that is socially and culturally conscious and can appreciate the difference between the good and the bad, the pedestrian, the valuable, sensational and in-depth films. To be consciously discerning as an audience, we need to be able to appreciate and relate to the documentary film culture from all over the world. We need to cultivate the capacities of an evolved documentary viewing enthusiast, so that the experience of watching documentary films can become an enriching experience. For that we need to cultivate an evolved understanding of the language, technique, form and subject matters of documentary films.

This documentary film appreciation workshop by eminent film maker Ajay Raina aims to make the participants not only aware of the potential of documentary films in a general sense but also to empower them towards a more nuanced, enriching and educative experience of watching and understanding documentary films. The workshop would enable us to understand the various ways of making sense of documentary films and of the key dynamics of what documentary films are made up of in terms of language, art, technology and industry.

This workshop is not a comprehensive course in hands-on documentary filmmaking. The accent in this workshop is on developing a more nuanced understanding of documentary form, the language of documentary, its artistic, social and cultural contexts that can produce in us a critical and more ‘rounded’ understanding of the documentary form. Participants of this workshop are not expected to be given instructions in any practical aspect of films eg. how to research, shoot, structure or how to design a shot or how to edit films.

In this course, the stress is more on why and how a documentary film is structured, and presented in a certain way, the historical and cultural context in which the film was produced and received. A rudimentary history of cinema and how it evolved over the years is an important component without which a deeper understanding of documentary form is not possible, while emphasizing its uniqueness and importance as an independent art form.


This Documentary appreciation Workshop is designed for people with a serious engagement with Cinema. At the end of this workshop, we expect the participants to develop adequate skills to be able to appreciate and analyse the documentary form of the films, so that they can use the knowledge acquired in this workshop to form a better understanding of documentary film as an art form, to be able to write about documentary films and use documentary films for cultural and social awareness.


The content of the workshop is divided into 2 weeks of screenings, discussions, readings and analysis of various forms, genres and types of documentary films. The objective is to better understand the documentary form through viewing and analysis and to give enough time to all the aspects of documentary form.

On the last day of the course, the participants will each have to make a 750 – 1000 word presentation about his/her understanding of the documentary form.

30 Seats | 2 Weeks

For Registration and Fees details, please mail with subject line ‘Documentary Appreciation Workshop’ to