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The “California Homeless” Documentary Analysis

Title of the Film

California Homeless | Seniors on the streets: More older people in Sacramento are on the brink.

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Expectations Statement

Judging by the title of the documentary and its length of a little over 6 minutes, I expect a news report featurette about the issue of increasing elderly homelessness in Sacramento.

How camera angles, lighting, music, narration, and/or editing contribute to creating an atmosphere: the techniques and approaches used contribute to the heightened sense of realism that brings attention to the currently relevant social concern.

The documentary’s principal subject is the issue of homelessness and other housing struggles among the elderly population of Sacramento. Its purpose is to call general attention to this problem and to the heartbreak associated with it. It is difficult to say whether the documentary argues or critiques a position since it is largely dedicated to the portrayal of current events. By extension, the film is not very argumentative and struggles to do either of these things. I would argue that the film manages to make its audience think.

The documentary includes a lot of mid-close-up shots that focus on the faces of its subjects. The shots thus aren’t overtly intimate but ensure that the entire face of every participant is in the focus of the shot. This tactic emphasizes the personal tragedy of disadvantaged elderly people without overstepping their boundaries. This directorial decision creates greater immersion and compassion on behalf of the audience but avoids invasiveness, staying respectful to the privacy and dignity of subjects.

The documentary includes directly solicited observation, information, and commentary by witnesses and participants. The contribution of the participants is rightly prioritized within the movie. The developer’s team asks the subjects about how their circumstances have led them to homelessness, thus highlighting the social injustices the documentary focuses on.

Live footage and direct interviews are the main components of information delivery. I did not observe a noticeable pattern, but I would assume that the structure of the film followed directions from the news channel. Editing choices, again, focus on the balance between intimacy and respect toward the subjects.

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StudyCorgi. (2023, January 18). The “California Homeless” Documentary Analysis. Retrieved from


StudyCorgi. (2023, January 18). The “California Homeless” Documentary Analysis.

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"The “California Homeless” Documentary Analysis." StudyCorgi, 18 Jan. 2023,

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StudyCorgi. 2023. "The “California Homeless” Documentary Analysis." January 18, 2023.


StudyCorgi. (2023) 'The “California Homeless” Documentary Analysis'. 18 January.

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