Question by neverneverland: Are filmmakers obligated to tell the historical truth?
If so, to what extent?
I’m researching this question for a college paper, and was wondering what some “real” people think about this, to get some fresh ideas. I originally thought the essay would be, pick a movie and dissect what is true and false about it, but the prompt actually has us pick a movie and argue whether the director/writer are obligated to tell the historical truth about it and why. I chose Scorsese’s 2004 film The Aviator on Howard Hughes life. Does anyone have any opinions on this in regards to The Aviator, or just in general what responsibility filmmakers have to tell the truth to the public regarding an event or a life?
If you can refer me to any articles or sites for reference, that would be great too!
Answer by MOM KNOWS EVERYTHING
If they don’t represent their work as a documentary, they are entitled to take creative liberties with the truth. Their goal is to present an entertaining story, not to educate with historical fact. If I wanted to know the “truth” about Howard Hughes’ life, I would look for an authoritative scholarly biography; I wouldn’t go to the movies.
What do you think? Answer below!