I mentioned some concrete things I did to help me with plotting my novel in an earlier post. After reading this post, writer Sierra Millman (http://www.sierraprasada.com) wrote me with a great observation about plot in movies which I wanted to share with everyone. Sierra was interested in the idea of plot as “the interaction of what happens with what you’re expecting to happen,” and she pointed me to the following review of “Lost in Translation” by Roger Ebert:
“She wants to show two people lonely in vast foreign Tokyo and coming to the mutual realization that their lives are stuck. Perhaps what they’re looking for is the same thing I’ve heard we seek in marriage: A witness. Coppola wants to get that note right. There isn’t a viewer who doesn’t expect Bob Harris and Charlotte (Scarlett Johansson) to end up in love, or having sex, or whatever. We’ve met Charlotte’s husband John (Giovanni Ribisi). We expect him to return unexpectedly from his photo shoot and surprise them together. These expectations have been sculpted, one chip of Hollywood’s chisel after another, in tens of thousands of films. The last thing we expect is… what would probably actually happen. They share loneliness.”
I just thought this was a wonderful way to talk about the process of expectation and action in a movie, and wanted to thank Sierra for making this connection and sending it my way.