FMP: Research – The Imposter

‘The Imposter is a 2012 British documentary film about the 1997 case of the French confidence man Frédéric Bourdin, who impersonated Nicholas Barclay, a Texas boy who had disappeared at the age of 13 in 1994.’


*BAFTA Award for Outstanding Debut by a British Writer, Director or Producer, British Independent Film Award Douglas Hickox Award, British Independent Film Award for Best British Documentary*

After seeing the trailer for this in my documentary cluster I decided to go away and watch it as the trailer itself was so very gripping. The documentary is fantastic with it’s mix of original audio and footage, interviews and reconstruction drawing you in to this very complicated story, in which you just want to delve deeper into and find out the reasoning behind this somewhat  ludicrous situation that is unfolding. The mix of lighting in this film is very interesting to me as it is quite dark and has a cold blue tone perhaps to imply that this act was somewhat cold hearted, it definitely adds to the chilling mood of the film and makes you feel uneasy as there is no warmth or joy to the piece.

The best thing about this documentary film was the narrative and how it unfolded and the characterisations making the imposter out to be a villain with close ups and harsh lighting, and making the family of course the innocent victims capturing them in their homes and natural surroundings with neutral lighting. I have since been thinking about using a cold tone within my film rather than a warm one as I want it to represent that when you are mentally unwell , very often your actions and emotions don’t feel like your own and you become a different person. The colouring would represent the disconnection between the person that was, before becoming mentally unstable and the person that you become during.

This film has given me a lot to think about in the way I tell the story and let it unfold and also to be careful of how I portray my contributor and the issue of mental health.


About gailenepierre

Ambitious and driven but knows how to have funnnn :)

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