Modern Film: Emotional or Narrative?

Q&A Notes Webinar: “SETTING UP CHARACTER AND STORY, PART II”

From the Webinar Archives of Syd Field The Art of Visual Storytelling.

Q: Marty asks: “What is the more important part of a story for a modern film viewer, an emotional or narrative moment?”

A: You can’t separate the two because it really depends on what kind of a story you’re writing. Now, it could be an emotional dynamic, very much like “500 Days of Summer,” or a narrative moment, like “American Beauty” or “Lord of the Rings.” It depends on the style, on the genre, you have to identify the genre, and you have to determine what is your story and who your character is. We’re talking about both an emotional and a narrative moment, and you can’t really separate the two because they’re really connected if you go back into it. The narrative moment really pulls up the emotional dynamic and the emotional dynamic will influence the narrative moment.

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