Future Cinema

Course Site for Future Cinema 1 (and sometimes Future Cinema 2: Applied Theory) at York University, Canada

Early Online Interactive Documentaries

I’m posting URL links to two well-known early online documentaries, made in Flash.

These were done before Flash could handle video streaming, so they’re made with photographs, texts, etc.
I remember looking at these 3 years ago, so they’re at least that old.

The first one, “Black Friday”, documents a terrible 1939 fire in Australia. It’s a cross between documentary and website, as it’s separated into various sections. It incorporates primary footage, sound clips, and some flash maps. There’s a good “about the project” section, which discusses the motivation and thinking behind the project.

The second one is “Becoming Human”, and it covers the history (and biology) of human evolution. This one is arranged in a more linear manner, although you can still skip ahead to other chapters. What’s really interesting about the way this one is made, is that various links or exhibitions pop up as the documentary progresses –clicking on the links will temporarily pause the documentary, so that you can find out extra information, or find out which resources were used for this component. While this seems like it would get annoying, I think it’s actually well-designed, and it’s a good mix of the linear documentary and the “educational” website (often they do not have enough stimulating visual material).

Fri, March 16 2007 » Flash, Future Cinema, digital storytelling, documentary, history, interactivity