Top 10 Mockumentaries


5. I’m Still Here (2010)

It seems ridiculous now, but when Hollywood a-lister Joaquin Phoenix announced to the world a few years ago that he was to leave acting behind instead pursuing a career in hip-hop, many people (including for a miniscule amount of time myself) bought it. As it transpired however, it was all just a ploy from the actor and pal/director Casey Affleck, with the eventual mockumentary based on aforementioned career transition being released in 2010 to mixed reviews. I enjoyed it; I found it to be creative and amusing in equal measure, the amount of time the two managed to keep up the act during the run-up to the movies release is also worth credit.

 

4. The Blair Witch Project (1999)

An outcast amongst the other films on this list, The Blair Witch Project is the supposed remains of a documentary made by film students in mid-90’s Maryland. An early pioneer of the ‘found-footage’ film variety, the movie documents the students’ attempts to shed some light on the legend of the ‘Blair Witch’- hiking through dense woodland and filming as they go. The trio soon become lost however- leading to an emotional and psychological journey which gradually gets more sinister. Extremely scary for what it is and at less than 80 minutes in length- you need to see this film.

 

3. Lake Mungo (2008)

Based around a story which consists of the drowning of a teenage girl in rural Australia, Lake Mungo follows the distraught family in the aftermath of the tragedy. Soon experiencing strange things in their home, they decide to bring in an expert to take a guess at what might be going on. As you can imagine, the situation escalates rather rapidly and there’s some pretty terrifying stuff going down throughout. I realise I may as well of just described any horror film since (and including) ‘Paranormal Activity’ however what sets Lake Mungo apart is the slick combination of not-in-anyway-over-the-top acting and an undeniable edge of unpredictable plot structure.

 

2. Exit Through the Giftshop (2010)

I would in no way say that I was a disciple of Banksy, of course I’ve enjoyed some of his work from time to time – but who hasn’t? He is known for creating artistic pieces which cause people to deliberate upon a particular subject or situation- and this film is no different. Documenting the rise of wannabe LA based street artist Thierry Guetta or ‘Mr Brainwash’ and his rise to prominence in the scene. People are still arguing over whether or not the film is for real or not, however I for one believe it to be a mockumentary. Watch it and decide for yourself, it’s far more interesting than I just made it sound.

 

1. This is Spinal Tap (1984)

Probably the most legendary film ever produced in this genre, Christopher Guest and Rob Reiner’s’ early piece is of undeniable cult status. Following an English rock band and their slow but sure journey into obscurity, ‘This is Spinal Tap’ combines outrageous humor with moments of gripping drama and touching emotion to create a movie that is just 100 per cent watchable in every way possible. Not necessarily for lovers of rock music alone, there is something for everyone here- most obviously the many, many quotes just asking to be imitated. This movie was so successful at the time of its release that it enabled the fictional band featured to actually tour and release music.

One thought on “Top 10 Mockumentaries

  1. You should have included Woody Allen’s ‘Zelig’.Made in 1983,it ‘documents’ the life of a ‘human chameleon’ in the 1930s who changes appearance and manner to fit in with whomever he’s conversing.Made long before sophisticated CGI and Forrest Gump,it includes wonderful black and white footage of Zelig interacting with real 1930s celebrities and hilarious ‘talking head’ interviews.Great little film that lampoons the culture of that era and the need for conformity.

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