Capturing the Friedmans Essay

1515 Words Jan 29th, 2006 7 Pages
Steward 1
Melissa Steward
Research Essay
English 367.01
Capturing the Friedmans

"Home movies are about innocence--our lost fuzzy, glowing personal pasts, all horseplay, and funny hats and the promise of youth" (Cooper, 23). Andrew Jarecki's remarkable film, Capturing the Friedmans captured just what is clearly a case study of extreme family dysfunction through such home videos. At first Andrew Jarecki just wanted to do a nice little documentary about clowns. He decided to try film making and thought he would cut his teeth on something easy like birthday party clowns. He had met David Friedman a top childrens birthday party clown from Manhattan, New York. Much to his surprise David
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The viewer sees not only that the presence of innocence portrayed by David but we see that Jarecki calls into question the polices behavior. The theme of voice appears in scenes involving the Friedman family. In the same way, that imagery and editing is shown to the viewer from different placements in the film. The Friedman family engage in many home videos in which significant conversations of guilt, truth, and lies begin to unfold. "Arnold had a need to confess, Elaine says. He had a need to go to jail." Through Elaine's character, she expresses a remark to be made as either lied-to, deluded wife and mother, or a cold, uncomforting woman. This use of voice makes the film stand out in a way that the viewer gets a sense of what she may or may not be feeling towards her accused husband. In the present, the Friedmans don't carry as that close of a bond between them as they did. The present video footage suggests this as their voice goes from happy family in home videos to perplexed and sad in present day interviews. Editing, Jarecki chops up interviews and found footage into bite-sized pieces. Thus each individuals statements are placed in, at times contradictory. For instance, Elaine, in family video shot by David complains to Arnold about his behavior, Jarecki cuts to an early home movie in which Elaine and Arnold amiably frolic for the camera. It continues on with the amount of editing that

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