Gauthier’s theory of film essay
In his documentary film recapitulation, Guy Gauthier deals with typizations in the spirit of Plantinga’s non-fictional film characterization that needs to be "suggestive and enlightening, rather than artificial and controlling". In his work, Gauthier does not directly refer to the existing critical definitions of the documentary but resorts to the freedom of interdisciplinary interpretation of the phenomenon and the existence of the fictive and the factual, which makes him close to film essay interpretation. Films classified by Gauthier as historic editing films, analyzing them within the typology View and Reflection, as well as films presented as documentary reflection films (contrary to direct view films) share common characteristics with film essay, which understand films in which the project organizes the film and draws accessible material without the previous shooting precondition. According to Gauthier, such a documentary strives towards the vision of unity which, depending on the case, results in poetic intuition, analytical procedure, presentation of synthesis or demonstration of a method, or that which lies on the boundary of the factual and the fictive, the improvised and the non-improvised, which we shortly call a film essay.
Ivana Keser Battista