Watching Movies Will Never be the Same

Watching Movies Will Never be the Same

When I produced my first music video last fall, I had no idea that I would awaken a driving desire to CREATE. To combine the written word with music and visual imagery. I knew I wanted to do more of this type of project, but I wasn’t sure where to go from there.

During March, I took a class on “How to produce a TV show” at the local community TV station. It covered camera work and the overall planning necessary for a simple interview-style show. I started thinking about the many comments I’ve received about how my novels would make great movies. Could I write a screenplay? Do I think like a director? (The answer to both is, I think, yes…given the time!)

These thoughts have changed how I watch a movie. In fact, it’s sometimes changed how many times I watch a movie. (Or, more specifically, certain scenes in a movie.)

A recent viewing of “Grace Card” (a Christian movie that deals with the theme of prejudice) is a case in point. The first time I watched the movie a few days ago, I watched the acting, the placement of the actors, etc (and just enjoyed the story, which had an incredible twist).

The next day I went back to just a few scenes that I found really compelling. I watched them over and over again, noting how multiple camera angles were used (including “moving” cameras) and creative use of lighting. Noting how they may have “patched together” the audio to be more effective.

And, in the case of a particular scene in an emergency room (a 17-year-old boy with a gunshot wound), how the director established pacing with those things (camera, lighting, audio) – changing rapidly from camera to camera – as well as what small touches created a more believeable performance.

And then there was the choice of words (dialogue) by the writer. There might be a hundred ways to ask a patient’s name; why was the actors’ delivery of “Can you tell me your name?” – then repeated – so powerful?

Another example: When the ER doc says “Blake, are you with me? I’m Doctor Curry” the teenage Blake interrupts with “Where’s Mom?” This is a powerful line that shows how young this guy is – and how scared – and (for me at least) emphasized how tragic it was that he was in that situation at all.

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