Character is most deeply revealed in moments of decision that produce change.
I think this is a principle of life, too.
Change can occur when the character makes a decision to do something different than what they’ve been doing before (like seizing control of their destiny, for example). Or the change can take place in the audience, when they recognize something they hadn’t known about the character, so that they change their attitude towards the character or their conception of them. Aristotle called this “Anagnorisis,” Notice that the change in the character can take place simultaneously with the audience. There are significant examples of this in Casablanca, Citizen Kane, The Godfather, and, Apocalypse Now, to name just a few. Read more
“Films Must Have a Happy Ending”: Wrong
The press, audiences, and people in the film industry itself all seem to believe that, to be a success, a Hollywood film must have a happy ending, but as the list below demonstrates, this is not born out by the evidence. While comedies and musicals generally end happily, a very large proportion of the most memorable popular films (those that were popular in their own day and have remained popular) do not. Read more