Throughout my schooling life I’ve constantly been taught how to write a ‘good story’. Yet, this well-rehearsed ‘novel format’, has almost become a hindrance to my attempts at writing a ‘good’ screenplay. When writing a story for a book, one must rely solely on word choices to conjure remarkable imagery within the readers mind. As Screenwriting is writing for a time-restrictive visual medium, the opposite can be said. I found this point was detrimental to the direction of my brainstorming ideas. When thinking of story outlines, i was no longer thinking in terms of descriptive language but instead of a story that would be visually engaging. I thought to myself…without a voice over, how can I show what each of my characters is feeling? How could I transfer the omnipresence felt when reading a book to the medium of film?
As Christine highlighted in the lecture, this obstacle is one of the biggest to tackle when writing a screenplay. Without being able to read what is happening in each of the characters minds, how can you know what they are feeling….. well it seems that in screenwriting actions often speak louder than words. Well at least that’s what I found when I started writing my story outline. Never underestimate the power of a facial expression!
The use of body language and character mannerisms are also great tools to use to implicitly suggest what the written word can more explicitly say.
In considering this, i also had to remember the role of genre and its effect on dialogue. This closely tied into the lectures emphasis on Brevity vs Verbosity. As my story outline is a black comedy, I felt that quick sharp sentences and witty retorts would suit its style the most. With the end of the world enclosing in on my characters their dialogue wouldn’t be long and descriptive. Instead it would be to the point, somewhat rushed and frantic. Would my characters really waste their precious life on using overly-descriptive language? Probably not.
Losing someone you love is arguably one of the most difficult of human experiences. But in our modern age what is the fate of our online life after our offline life ceases to exist? should we pay homage to those we love, or delete their existence all together? how we now deal with grief is remarkably different from 50 years ago.
The imprint of data we leave behind is only a ghost of our online presence. But what possibilities could occur If we connected all this data together, as Weinberger states in his article ‘Too Big To Know’, we create knowledge. If we can cross these ‘ideas over large spaces of time and space’ could they also cross the mortal limitations of our body?
In his second series of Black mirror Charlie Brooker raises this very poignant topic.He suggests that in the near future, there is the possibility of talking to our dead loved ones. Through a certain program, all the data that exists on the web about your loved one is found and organized to re-create them. It’s very creepy, but also remarkably possible.
Watch the video below.
When considering what to do for another one of my crazy Saturday night-in’s ,I didn’t think that going to the hospital would quite make the cut .But unfortunately…. it did.
One moment you can’t feel your legs, next moment your ashamedly wearing the most hideous and embarrassing excuse for clothing there is in the world… ‘le hospital robe’. maybe making it sound french will bring back my dignity?
yet whilst in the pits of despair, what had me worried the most was the opportunity I was missing! All week I had been deliberating on how I could encapsulate this weeks integrated theme of ‘travel’, and here I was being whisked from one ward to another on a giant wheely tripod….or should I more blandly say: Hospital bed.
Hooked to a drip i couldn’t reach my phone and fulfill the aspirations of my supernerd alter-ego. Lest i tried, which is probably as worrying as the trip to the hospital itself. I’m just hoping life will throw me another filming possibility…. Hopefully less macabre this time….
Being the cynic I am, I was certainly critical of our first integrated task. Yet finding squares and circles to film, seemed to be a more difficult task then I had first intended. Surely it couldn’t be that hard? I certainly wasn’t about to go film an orange for 10 seconds, surely my creativity could exceed that! So I sought refuge in the Mason reading. Outlining the different forms of ‘noticing’ he guided me through some simple and quite peculiar tasks. I attempted stating that ‘I’m walking through a door’ every time I did so, but I cant say a burst of creativity consumed me. Instead my family had undoubtedly thought that their daughter had finally gone mad and probably had OCD.
Of course I couldn’t keep this charade up for long, but It did teach me a valuable lesson about noticing. My brain processes millions of information every nano-second, so if I was going to notice squares and circles I would have to prioritize them into a field of ‘intentional noticing’ .Let’s be honest. once I made a conscious effort to start noticing them…. I couldn’t stop! my dreams became invaded by endless spinning circles and squares (maybe a tad over-dramatic, but you get the point).
As I begrudgingly started filming, I actually felt a wave of optimism come over me. Could i possibly be enjoying myself? It turns out I was.
All the things I was never allowed to do as a child were suddenly possible! (cue Disney music) Standing on tables, playing with food, setting up make-do tripods….all the things any regular child does? isn’t it? With this new creative license , I could pretty much destroy anything in our house and my parents would be fine with it. Manhandling every piece of bread we have… just to be super arty and creative.
Retrospectively viewing all of my week 1 videos, I can definitely see an underlying theme. Somehow I have focused on the permeability of my shapes. is it really a square ice cube, or just a puddle of liquid? Funnily enough I seem to attempt this in most of my assessments,by on some level trying to escape the criteria set.