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Old 03-10-2008, 08:04 PM   #1
grapeape
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Default Vantage Point - Struture

What did you guys think about how they did "VAntage Point?" I loved it. Then again I was expecting the same event to be told from seven different viewpoints.

Did you guys like it or not and why. Did you know going into the film that was the way they were going to do it?

Jim
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Old 03-10-2008, 09:30 PM   #2
DeaconBlu
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Default Re: Vantage Point - Struture

Did you like/have you seen Kurosawa's "Rashomon"?
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Old 03-11-2008, 11:39 AM   #3
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Default Re: Vantage Point - Struture

No I haven't
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Old 03-11-2008, 12:01 PM   #4
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Default Re: Vantage Point - Struture

I had been using the script with my clients for the last couple of years. I think its cleverness in in its concept. IT makes for a fun read and it's fun and gimmicky.

Someone in CS actually articulated very well a point I have been making....that it is not an exercise in subjectivity or the ambiguity of memory, it's just an exercise of controlled and limited point of view. It doesn't have any thematic or interesting ideas about truth or subjectivity (a la Rashomon). (Courage under Fire sits somewhere between Rashomon and VantagePoint in this regard) It's just a novel and fresh-feeling way to tell a pretty standard story.

The bad guy wants to be bad because he is bad and the good guy--starts nervous because he was hurt by being super loyal--and then has the small and obvious character arc: I am going to be loyal and steadfast even though I am a little shaken up by my past. But it was also his job. What else was he going to do?

I am going to reference this and CLovervfield in my Killer Screenwriting workshops. 15 years ago, all of the screenwriting books were teaching old school dramaturgy, the craft of story and how to tell meaningful stories. But the truth is if you want to appeal to Hollywood, you probably need to have or develop the talent of understanding and implementing "concept" and what makes a film appealing to large audiences and easily digestible.

I have a super low concept script--it's about a guy and a girl--and it has taken several years, contest wins and work to try to get talent interested to make it work. If you wrote the Savages, you would probably win some contests, but it might not wow agents and managers if you are an unknown or so I have found. Hey, and let me tell you another thing about me...

My point is if you are really looking at breaking into mainstream Hollywood: CONCEPT must be partof your screenwriting growth and thought process.

Uneloquently yours,
Jim
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Old 03-11-2008, 01:40 PM   #5
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Default Re: Vantage Point - Struture

I love the story about how Vantage Point was sold. I can't remember the details, but there was a huge and IMMEDIATE buzz based on the script and the concept which brought about a producer speeding through town in his car to make a deal. The deal was a "sell now at this price, or it's off the table."

Something like that. Great story.

I agree with what Jim wrote above. As I like to put it: write for Spielberg, not Cronenberg.
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Old 03-11-2008, 03:44 PM   #6
argo
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Default Re: Vantage Point - Struture

When I first heard about it, I too thought it was a good concept. After seeing it, was dissapointed that it played out more like a gimmick.


MINOR SPOILERS

But I think what really rubbed me the wrong way was that they threw out the "vantage point" concept about 2/3rds of the way in and just went linear. And it worked fine. Actually, you almost could've started the movie with the final character and be good from there.

Also, had problems with the Deus Ex Machina ending and have no idea why they felt all the characters needed to be at the same place in the end (Forrest's character pulled me right out of the movie).

Oh, and my wife cringed every time the movie "rewound" and went back to the starting point. And for the final POV, we both gasped in horror when they made it look like you were about to follow that idiotic girl. Thankfully they didn't.
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Old 03-11-2008, 04:58 PM   #7
grapeape
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Default Re: Vantage Point - Struture

Did she know that the film was told from seven different points of view?

How would a film maker pull off something like that without restartering the sequence each time?
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