Sunday, April 15, 2012

M is for Movies

Movies are one of my joys in life. My theater room is the room I've put the most time, effort, and money into so I can get the most out of it. I have neighbors who come over on a weekly basis to enjoy it as well. I should start charging admission...
I love movies as much as I enjoy reading books. I love the ability to get an entire story in roughly two hours, complete with special effects and loud noises. Notes: books have their advantages as well, I'm not saying movies are better.

Something interesting has happened lately. As I've studied the intricacies of story structure I'm noticing them a lot more in movies. It has given me a new thing to enjoy about movies as I try to find certain story structure elements. I wish I could watch movies with other writers so they'd understand what I mean when I turn to them and say, "Oh, look, the first plot turn."

This also makes it so I can watch nearly anything. The other day I went out of my comfort zone and watched "The Vow." I loved picking up on the plot turns, the midpoint, and other writerly things.
But there is a downside, too. I can also be critical in ways that other people can't. Again to The Vow. No spoilers here (I don't think) but the story starts with the inciting event and then goes into a series of flashbacks. And I'm sitting there thinking, "Ummm... that isn't how you start a story. Why didn't they show us what happened in the flashbacks first and THEN bring on the inciting event. That way we care for the characters more and we don't have to deal with flashbacks, which are usually a bad idea anyways. The author is getting into the story too late if the first fifteen minutes are all flashbacks!"

Overall, I love it! I refer to movies in a way my non-writing friends don't understand: research.