I saw the definition on Wikipedia page and found it too complex to understand being a layman and knowing nothing about film-making. From what I could understand, it looks like it refers to the exaggerated emotional moments (making them so intense and powerful which may not even be relatable to common audience) in any movie with all the music tones and chorus and showing things in slow motion. I don't know if that's entirely true. Please enlighten me.


2 Answers 2


Wikipedia clears it up a little when referring to our arena, Movies & TV...but essentially, it's just storytelling using actors.

All forms of cinema or television that involve fictional stories are forms of drama in the broader sense if their storytelling is achieved by means of actors who represent (mimesis) characters. In this broader sense, drama is a mode distinct from novels, short stories, and narrative poetry or songs.

In the modern era before the birth of cinema or television, "drama" came to be used within the theatre as a generic term to describe a type of play that was neither a comedy nor a tragedy.

It is this narrower sense that the film and television industries, along with film studies, adopted. "Radio drama" has been used in both senses—originally transmitted in a live performance, it has also been used to describe the more high-brow and serious end of the dramatic output of radio.

Today that definition, something neither full-on comedy or tragedy would be a "drama".

It might have overtones of those things but it would be considered at drama...but these things are usually sub-categorized...into types of drama as is explained in the linked article.


Drama (in film) more often than not tends to be more about an approach to presenting a story seriously, even if yes, at times, fictionally or emotionally exaggerated.

Drama itself gets tacked onto a lot of other genres such as period or historical drama (The Last Kingdom, Vikings) a crime drama (Elementary, Sherlock, Hawaii Five-O, Law and Order, The Wire, The Blacklist, Ozark), fantasy or science-fiction drama (Once Upon A Time, Game of Thrones, 12 Monkeys, Westworld), drama romance (Gossip Girl), Psychological Drama (Gypsy, The Affair, Big Little Lies) and/or a conglomerate of these: Historical Fantasy Romance Drama (Outlander) or Physiological Thriller Fantasy & Science-Fiction Psychological Drama (The OA), etc.

Now sometimes drama gets skewed into types of comedy, such as a dark comedy (Fargo), or kinds of 'dramedies' (Dexter, Pushing Daisies, True Blood, Limitless), or even melodrama (Grey's Anatomy, Scandal)--IMO more and more works, especially in television are hugging this line and redefining these genres more and more.

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