Culloden is a docudrama written and directed by Peter Watkins for BBC TV and originally broadcast on December 15, 1964. It portrays the 1746 Battle of Culloden that resulted in the British Army’s destruction of the Jacobite uprising and, in the words of the narrator, “tore apart forever the clan system of the Scottish Highlands”. Described in its opening credits as “an account of one of the most mishandled and brutal battles ever fought in Britain”, Culloden was hailed as a breakthrough for its cinematography as well as its use of non-professional actors and its presentation of an historical event in the style of modern TV war reporting. The film was based on John Prebble’s study of the battle. —Wikipedia
Peter Watkins (born 29 October 1935) is an English film and television director. He was born in Norbiton, Surrey, lived in Sweden, Canada and Lithuania for many years, and now lives in France. He is one of the pioneers of docudrama. His movies, pacifist and radical, strongly review the limit of classic documentary and movies. He mainly concentrate his works and ideas around the mass media and our relation/participation to a movie or television documentary.
Nearly all of Watkins’ films have used a combination of dramatic and documentary elements to dissect historical occurrences or possible near future events. The first of these, Culloden, portrayed the Jacobite uprising of 1745 in a documentary style, as if television reporters were interviewing the participants and accompanying them into battle; a similar device was used in his biographical film Edvard Munch. La Commune reenacts the Paris Commune days using a large cast of French non-actors.
In 2004; he also wrote a book… read more