Also found in: Wikipedia.
A cinematographic technique in which the camera is operated by hand, as opposed to being fixed on a mount, resulting in a jerky, unstable image. This is done to emulate a first-person perspective or imitate what an ordinary person might have captured on a handheld camcorder in order to create a sense of immersion or heighten the sense of excitement, terror, urgency, etc. I'm really sick of the trend in recent horror movies to have the whole thing filmed in shaky camera. It isn't scary, it's just nauseating! It just felt like the shaky camera was a cheap way for the filmmakers to give the documentary a sense of authenticity. The director uses shaky camera to give the audience a glimpse into the protagonist's point of view during especially emotional scenes.