Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Five Things That People Want From Movies

What are you looking for in movies? Is it the story? The action sequences and the special effects? Or how it affects you in a way that you become emotionally invested in the characters in the movie? Are these simply your expectations, or will you go home and feel like empty-handed or cheated if the film does not deliver? If you’ve answered more seriously than anticipated on these questions, then you must truly have an eye for cinematic storytelling and a hunger to be satisfied by films with good tone and taste.

Personally, I think that the average movie-goer has universal hopes when they go into movie houses and watch the films they’ve read on newspapers and magazines, listened to on the radio, or seen on TV that came from the marketing arm of the movie studio that created them. The main goal for filmmakers is to keep the audience interested, because if they fail on that part, then people will have a bad impression on them. The result will most likely be that people won’t want to watch films with the director’s name attach to it, and to the more careful observer they might mark the producers and the movie studio itself, God forbid!

To the filmmakers who are reading this blog, I can understand that this may feel a bit odd and even like taking you back to school, but it’s really not. For the rest, however, this is a good information to fix your bearing if in case you want to have a good set of expectations – this blog can be your guide. Whether you’re going to watch a big budgeted film or just those that focus on the story more than the climatic effects of CGI and explosions, you will need to take these five important things into consideration:

  • Take the Audience to an Adventure. Try not to fall into the common mistakes that filmmakers make, where they seem to confuse the audience more through a maze of satirical redundant scenes that are all too familiar. Allow them to discover the “Easter eggs” (not related to superhero films) for themselves! You can guide them to a completely new place, person, or thing. You can also delve into their subconscious mind by letting them experience the beauty of a certain object or the aesthetic nature of something.
  • Get them to Invest not just on Movie Tickets but their Thoughts and Emotions as well. It’s not uncommon for films to explore human emotions as well as their conscious and subconscious mind, but attempting to manipulate the audience into it can backfire and cause them to lose interest in the film altogether. Again, as with the first point of this blog post, you must allow the audience to explore the film on their own. The more surprises and twists you put in there, the better! Joy, sadness and fear are perhaps the easiest emotions to convey in films, I think we’ve been able to make people laugh, cry and get frightened in their cinematic experiences. The more complex the emotion is, the more difficult it becomes for people to relate to it, and a clever screenplay and director is required in order to successfully accomplish it.
  • Help People Understand what the Story is About. Remember that your audience are not all psychologists or rocket scientists, so even though you’re making a movie about gene splicing, try to explain it to them in a much more comprehensive manner without all the technical jargons.
  • Deliver Fun and Surprises. Unexpected plot twist that will send shivers down their spines as well as giggles is a good way to start. Go the extra mile by adding beauty and different desires of the characters and make the audience want to own those qualities as well.
  • Give them an Experience that will Transform their Lives. This can be either for the viewer or for the characters on screen (and thus potentially replicated by the viewer too)/ I’ll go out on a limb and say that TV and movies are actually tools for mind conditioning; now it’s up to the filmmakers to use it for a good thing or the opposite. If your movie is about righteousness, then show it through the characters and make people want to be like those characters they see in the film. If it is a dark tale that can affect people negatively, then try to focus on how undesirable these qualities are.

It’s surprising sometimes at how many opportunities we miss when we forget how to entertain and inspire audiences, because we became too ambitious in our filmmaking projects. By taking a moment to reflect on our work and retracing our steps we find treasures that helps us make a better film.

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