Last night I sat down and watched a movie. Big night, I know! I'd collected a few movies on Netflix and figured since I'd finished my first successful read through of book 2 I deserved a break. I was also feeling a bit brain dead and I find sometimes you just can't force creativity. Not only is it virtually impossible but it's also quite ugly to look at!
So I turned on Jane Campion's Bright Star.
Now I love period movies. Especially if they are set in England or Scotland or, well, pretty much any country that ends in -land.
I also love movies that look like moving photographs. So many times during the movie I found I was distracted by the colors and scenery, like I was the one holding the camera and would occasionally change the vantage point the way I do when I'm on a shoot. And since the movie moved quite slowly I was able to enjoy each visually stimulating scene.
Now this movie wouldn't make my top ten list, even though I was very entertained, but it did bring to mind something I've been spending a lot of time thinking about. Character development.
You see the female MC in this movie had a very strong personality and from the very first scene she came off as overly confident and headstrong. But then every once in a while these crazy insecure moments would pop up and get me thinking...wait? what did I miss?
Now I'm not sure if this was just a quirk of her character or not. Nor will I ever know. But I do know that this occasionally happens when I'm reading. I often pause and think, I don't actually believe the character would say/do or think this.
It's very important that characters don't wander. I mean I get that people are strange and unpredictable but when I'm reading a book or watching a movie it's crucial that I figure them out. The characters, I mean. Even if I don't like them. I need to know them.
Characters should be nailed down, set in a coloring book where their colors are within the lines of reason.
Leave the surprises to the plot twists.