Tag Archives: movies

Writing Prompt: a swellegant trio in a taxi

Hi there, just a quick Monday writing prompt.

What’s going on here? Who are these people? What are they up to?

(If you’re stuck, first think of the most likely scenario, then think up the least likely scenario.)

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Weekly Eldritch: Theremin!

If I asked you to make a sound that matched the word “eerie”, chances are good that you’d start mimicking theremin music.

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Movie Stills for Dialogue Prompts

Here’s a good idea for a writing prompt – look up photos of scenes from old movies, and fill in the blanks. What’s happening here? What’s the backstory? What happens next?

Write some dialogue for this scene…

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A Quiet Moment of Writerly Bliss

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So my progress on the Eldritch sequel has been halted for the moment as I put together an outline proposal on another project. More on that to come, but it’s a novel and after much gnashing of teeth I finally came up with my Act III! Nothing like breaking through a mental barrier and solving plot problems all at once!

The secret to my breakthrough was both taking a break and indulging in a research-related movie. The story is to have a historical setting and watching newsreel footage from the time suddenly filled in the gaps for me. There is nothing more useful than being able to picture the setting, the people, the events…

A fresh blanket of snow outside, peace and quiet, and a roaring fire did their bit to contribute as well.

Yay me!

(Moments of satisfaction for writers are solitary and rather fleeting, therefore they must be enjoyed. I shall celebrate with egg nog and then take the garbage out.)

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What Would Hitchcock Do?

alfred_hitchcockThis is quite a good look at the mechanics of scriptwriting and how the great Alfred Hitchcock put together his immensely popular thrillers.

A meticulous craftsman, Hitchcock made movies that are textbooks on the art of effective visual storytelling.

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Bambi Meets Godzilla (1969)

Another animation classic. For clever concept and perfectly focussed execution, this very short short is peerless. A one-joke film, but so well done!

Bambi Meets Godzilla from Global Mechanic Media on Vimeo.

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Weekly Eldritch: Empty Streets

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Stepping into a street that is unexpectedly empty always makes me uneasy. Continue reading

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Banks rattle me.

Here’s another favourite of mine, a lovely animated short based on a story by the great Canadian humourist Stephen Leacock. This shows you how devastatingly simple cut-out animation can be. Watch the writing hands… no need to animate a whole arm! And I love that shadows show around the moveable paper bits. Beautifully written and performed too, of course. Starting with stellar source material is never a bad idea.

My Financial Career by Gerald Potterton, National Film Board of Canada

Perfection!

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Fantastic Animation App: McLaren’s Workshop

th_cd3b0ba944968798efa226bcc0656742_1370466323mclarenappthumbJust a couple of weeks ago I was talking about Norman McLaren, animation visionary at the National Film Board, and now the venerable NFB has released a truly awesome app: McLaren’s Workshop. And it’s free! I couldn’t download it fast enough!

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Richard Condie: Piano practice, scrabble and nuclear war

Among my NFB animation favourites are two crazy funny shorts by Winnipeg filmmaker Richard Condie.

Getting Started (1979) is the sad tale of someone trying to sit down to piano practice. All musicians (and procrastinators) will find this painfully familiar.

Getting Started (1979) by Richard Condie, National Film Board of Canada

The Big Snit launched a good half-dozen catchphrases that I still find myself saying over twenty years later…*

The Big Snit (1985) by Richard Condie, National Film Board of Canada

*and when I write out my grocery list I always include “carrost”

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