Chances are anyone who’s found this article is a film enthusiast. Movies have been around since it was discovered that pictures could be sequenced and for great reason. The film can evoke emotion, tell a story, teach or motivate the viewer. They can be purely for entertainment or purely to educate. The possibilities are limited only be the script, actors and film crew. But what makes a movie truly great?
A great film is may have a deep and enlighting story. The characters may be portrayed by masterful actors giving award-worthy performances. The cinematography and score may lead to an ambiance and atmosphere lending to the beauty of it all. Each of these respective elements can lend themselves to making a film great. When more than one come together, you get a classic.
The foundation of any film is its script. The script gives wings to the actors and lends itself to the development of the story. Any good script will have conflict and dialogue. These two things help create tension and lend to the realistic nature of people. The script will also lend itself to the overall plot. The can be straightforward or have a deeper meaning.
Those that read the script are characters in the plot. These characters need flaws and desires to be believable. These flaws and desires make them relatable and lend to creating conflict. A perfect hero or purely evil villain aren’t memorable because the viewer can’t see themselves in a character that lacks depth or motivation.
What truly brings these characters to life are the actors. Their ability to convey emotion, their body language and ability to react in a “real” way given their fictional situation make the characters more believable. This all helps keep the viewer in the atmosphere as the illusion hasn’t been broken. An actors ability can’t be understated.
The timing of key plot elements is an entirely stylistic choice but is paramount in how the plot is revealed. The order of reveals, whether they be events or characters can shift an audience’s perspective and accomplish or ruin the aim and presentation of the film. On the topic of timing, a film’s pace also lends itself to ruin or accomplishment. A detective noir and shoot em’ up film will seldom share the same pacing.
No less important than the above is sound. It’s the sound that eases you into the ambiance or shakes you with its booms. The background noises, sound effects, and voices in the distance help to trap you in the environment of the movie. The score ties all of the above with the mood that’s being conveyed to the audience.
It wouldn’t be a movie without being able to see the plot and it’s the visuals that tie the above together. The expressions of the characters, the lighting, the way location and the costumes all lend to the mood and atmosphere. Great directors use different lenses and shoot from different perspectives to convey a feeling to a scene.
Finally, tying everything together is the overall story. The viewer is to be taken on a ride from beginning to end. The story is told through the script and plot while being brought to life through the performances of the actors. Without the story you have seperate and disconnected elements. They can make a film good alone, but never great.
If this article has you excited about watching movies, be sure to stop by your local Nu Metro and enjoy a film. If you’re not sure where it is or want to see movie times for cinemas in South Africa be sure to check out VibeScout.