Posts Tagged ‘dramaturgery’

So, I didn’t think that I especially cared very much about The Avengers 2: Robo-Boogaloo and after seeing the teaser trailer I actually still kind of don’t. But I also kind of do, because even though the adventures of a bunch of super-powered guys who shoot and punch shooting and punching a bunch of robots doesn’t have a huge amount of appeal for me, puzzles about story DO have some appeal for me.

I am, therefore, going to play a game – based on what we’ve got here in the trailer and the very little we know about what’s definitely in the movie, I’m going to see if I can figure out what happens in it.

Strictly-speaking, this is me just improvising – I am sort of talking my way through the sort of movie that I might make if I knew these things had to be in it. Don’t count it as a real prediction (though, if I turn out to be exactly right, or close to right, or even better than the movie that actually comes out, definitely call me up to work on all of your movies, you guys know I am a genius, right?); this is the idle speculation game.

Let’s play though. (more…)

Fine!  It was fine.  A fine movie.  It had some exciting space adventures, people flew around in ships and shot each other with lasers.  There was some kind of power-exploding MacGuffin, that was great.  The character stuff was for the most part exceptional.  Groot was there, he was awesome, Rocket Raccoon was awesome.  My favorite was actually Drax the Destroyer!

(“We just established that blowing up the ship I’m on isn’t saving me.” “When did we establish that?” “Like three seconds ago!” “I wasn’t listening to that part, I was thinking about something else.”)

Hahahah.  Excellent use of Dave Bautista, finally we’re seeing him live up to the potential he revealed as Bronze Body Man in The Man with the Iron Fists.

A good time was had by all.  I am going to write a few things here, because it is in my nature to be a Debbie Downer, and a natural enemy of all that is good and fun, so if you HATE FUN, by all means, keep reading.

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I saw this movie the other day.  It…could have been worse, I guess, but it also could have been better.  On the one hand, I guess if you’re going to use the Comanche as a plot point, it’s nice that the war is started entirely by greedy white guys, and propagated by a white guy who can’t admit that he did anything wrong.  That’s a step forward.  On the other hand, a hundred Comanche get massacred and it doesn’t have any bearing on the story at all, the Lone Ranger just wants to rescue that lady, Tonto just wants to get his revenge.  No Comanche massacre was required for either plot OR story in order for that to happen.

It’s especially galling because let’s be real, that entire movie was just a set up for an amazing 20-minute railroad battle climax set to Hans Zimmer’s orchestration of the William Tell Overture.  And that part was great!  It was fantastic!  But also literally every single minute before was interchangeable plot filler.  I heard that they were going to have werewolves in it originally, I wish there had been werewolves.  That’s the thing about this movie; if you’d taken out the Comanche massacre and put in some outlaw werewolves instead, it would have been exactly the same movie.

Anyway, I’m not going to talk about any of that, or even about why did Johnny Depp play Tonto, or any of it.  Instead, I’d like to take a few minutes and talk about Frame Stories.

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I think the way to describe the “best” narrative – that is, the narrative that, regardless of its content, is the most structurally-sound, streamlined, well-put-together – is that it is both unexpected and inevitable.  While watching it, you can’t predict the outcomes of the events you’re seeing onscreen, but once you’ve seen it and you look back on it, you realize that it couldn’t possibly have happened any other way.

What I think is interesting about this is that it seems to describe two different modes of appreciating a movie, so what I’m going to do is assume that this is (as it intuitively seems) a correct assertion, and proceed from that to elucidate what I think are the two fundamental elements of narrative.  Some of this is going to seem pretty obvious, but just because a thing is obvious doesn’t mean it isn’t worth exploring a little bit.

Those two elements are Plot and Story.

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braak

This fucking show.  Okay, so, let me be clear about one thing right at the front here:  I like all of the actors on this show.  Nicole Beharie, Clancy Brown, that Handsome Guy, John Cho.  Even Orlando Jones!  I didn’t think I’d like to see Orlando Jones, because I think of him as being kind of a silly guy, but no, Orlando Jones is great!  Everyone on this show is great, the diversity of the cast is great, I hope they have long and happy careers.  I even don’t have a problem with them having a long career on THIS show.  I don’t want Sleepy Hollow to get kicked off the air or anything, I am not petitioning for the DESTRUCTION of Sleepy Hollow.

I want Sleepy Hollow to be a better show, that’s all.  All those actors that I like, all that chemistry that’s so great, it deserves a better show behind it.

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braak

W - MillerThe Wolverine was pretty okay, but I think we can all agree that there was room for improvement, and I think we all know what that improvement is. To that effect, I am going to write a treatment for the third installment of the Wolverine series. I am actually torn between this title and also Wolverine 3: Wolverine with a Vengeance, except I’m not sure how much vengeance I really want to make use of. Don’t worry about the title. Here we go.
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wonder-woman602

braak

You know, it’s more than a little bonkers that we’re going to see Rocket Raccoon and Groot the Sentient Tree in the movies before we see Wonder Woman, that we got two Tomb Raider movies and an adaptation of a board game, they’re going to do Batman vs. Superman and probably the Flash, a prequel to Alien that nobody was asking for, THREE Hobbit movies, et cetera and so forth.  Wonder Woman is a well-known property.  It is insane that Warner Brothers thinks they can’t make a Wonder Woman movie that would be good!  I mean, first of all, it CAN’T be that they think they can’t make a GOOD movie, since producing a movie against all prevailing signs against its quality has never even slowed down a major movie studio.

But still, though, it can’t be that hard, right?  To make a Wonder Woman movie that isn’t terrible?

Well, wait, let me see if I can do it.

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braak

For Dramaturgery this time, I’m going to forgo dramaturgering Man of Steel, since plenty, PLENTY of people have already worked on it, and Holland has already stolen my gimmick title.  INSTEAD, I am going to use my INVINCIBLE ATOMIC INTELLECT to put together a treatment for the sequel to Man of Steel (Man of Steel 2: Man of Steelier), one that both continues with the plot and characters established in the first movie, but also solves all of the problems that those guys created by maybe not thinking very hard about Superman.

[Bear in mind, before we continue, that this is me thinking my way through it.  This is less a treatment than it is a sort of off-the-cuff hypothesis about what the first draft of a good treatment would maybe look like.]

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braak

World’s Edge
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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

This article is about the film. For other uses, see World’s Edge (disambiguation).

World’s Edge
 
Directed by Neil Blomkamp
Produced by Michael G. Wilson
Barbara Broccoli
Screenplay by Neil Blomkamp
Mark Boal
Based on James Bond 
by Ian Fleming
Starring Idris Elba
Archie Panjabi
Tom Hardy
Sharlto Copley
Aishwarya Rai Bachchan
Don Cheadle
Ralph Fiennes
Music by Trent Reznor
Atticus Ross
Cinematography Emmanuel Lubezki
Editing by Stuart Baird
Kate Baird
Studio Eon Productions
Distributed by MGM/UA Communications Company
Release date(s)
  • 29 June 2015 (London, premiere)
Running time 131 minutes
Country United Kingdom
Language English
Budget $75 million
Box office $2.2 billion
Idris Elba as James Bond in World's Edge

Idris Elba as James Bond in World’s Edge

World’s Edge (2015) is the twenty-fifth entry in the James Bond film series and the first to star Idris Elba as the fictional MI6 agent James Bond.  The film is the first to allude to the fan-theory that James Bond is a cover identity.  The theory would be stated explicitly in the twenty-sixth entry.
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braak

There’s really no colon there, huh?  So it’s not like, “Into Darkness is a Story of Star Trek,” it’s like, “darkness is where my trek through the stars is taking me.”  Okay, man, sure.

I just watched this movie, and it made me think of this article I read about how snack companies hired a bunch of snack food engineers to manufacture the perfect snack, one that provided maximum oral stimulation and minimal nutritional satisfaction so that people would constantly munch on it without thinking, and how the perfect expression of that snack food was Cheetos.

That’s what this movie, this movie is Cheetos.

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