#InspirationFriday: Storytelling

You don’t need to be a genius (or a creative) to know that a well told story makes the visual medium more bearable. It is an aspect that I have personally faced when writing and directing films – trying to make the story want to be believed. But I’ve also found (especially over the last few months with the short film script submissions) that a good story is a hard find. Without a doubt each year we find those films that hit the screens which are just subpar, and you always question, “who would see that?” as well as, “how did that get made?”

It’s no mistake, and you aren’t misinterpreting the films, it’s simply that those films will still sell out, make studios money. But then every once in a while you will find a film so raw – emotionally and physically – that you wonder who in their right mind wouldn’t like this film?

For me it comes down to films like Her (2013), or Tree of Life (2011), that make me just adore everything about it. Especially Her, which is a very simple story but so beautifully told that ignoring (or trying to) is futile. The resonance on screen and off screen in Scarlett Johansson’s case is simply jaw dropping. Hell, I’d even throw it to Lost in Translation (2003) which just grasps you so tightly, and begs you to feel with it.

These are the films which I try to explain but can’t. As I recently told a friend, it’s this ability to leave me speechless that makes me know that I have invested more than any other film. I have devoted my full attention to the characters, their lives, and story. While other films I have an opinion, but I usually just feel indifferent because it hasn’t made me feel.

So where does this leave us with this weeks inspiration? Well if you watch the 30 second Lacoste spot (above) you’ll be amazed with such well told storytelling.

Here we have a metaphorical relationship evolve. From the mental leap of faith to the physical engagement of the kiss. Now what does it have to do with the brand besides the tag? Well not much, but that’s besides the point and something that not a lot of people are understanding when it comes to inspiration.

You need to look past the bare essentials or the “inside the box” expectation. Look at advertisements and see how a story is told in 15, 30, 60 second spots. Question how a commercial can make a fully fleshed out film in less time than it takes for credits to roll.

You need to apply your inquisitive state of mind to your films. No matter if you’re simply the scriptwriter, or the gaffer, you need to understand how emotions and stories are told to evoke the emotions that make your audience connect. This is the aim of the industry, and it’s only something that you can harness.

So get out there and be inspired from some great stories!