Another News Story is a startling documentary shot during the Syrian Refugee Crisis of 2015. It is a documentary by Orban Wallace who takes a different and refreshing look at the crisis by following the news crews who follow these stories. Rather than looking at the crisis and the images that we the viewers are bombarded with, he turns his lens on the newsmakers. By looking at those who create the news, the images they select and their motivation behind those choices: is it to tell the news story or something else? In turning the spotlight on the news cameras what we get is a spotlight on those who really do sway public opinion and can present it. How do they balance their humanity with their professionalism.
Orban covers those refugees trying to get safe passage across Europe and the 24 hour media trying to satisfy the hunger for news – but what exactly is news. There are so many interesting scenes, constructed and insights of those behind the camera. It is the perception of these news crews as to what type of people viewers will connect with. Another News Story raises an interesting question in only showing certain types of refugees, what about the invisible rest – in not showing the latter group does it lead to bias that only one type of refugee matters – the poor, walking across who cannot afford the air fare.
Is it diverse?
The instinctive answer would be yes and you’d be right although I don’t think all documentaries are diverse some cover the same tired tropes. Here what Orban manages to achieve is to really show a different view point by capturing those behind the lens and how they view their job.
It is National Refugee 17 – 23 June 2019 and it is documentaries such as this that inform our view of what a refugee are and to check our humanity. However, we need to be critical of what we are and crucially not shown so as not to dismiss those who don’t fall into the category of refugee. What is most striking is that the very reasonable questions Orban asks of some news crews are ignored or in some cases individuals are suspicious of him. If their role is to tell the news why should they be fearful of someone asking how they select their stories. Some of the most interesting scenes of this documentary come at the end from the battle weary news reporters imparting their views after many years covering crisis stories.
Whether you have news fatigue or an avid news story – this is a definite much watch.
Another News Story is available on digital download here: https://apple.co/2Kww65z