Clip that I like:
Star Wars Episode 7. Opening scene.
I think the best thing about the clip is the use of lighting in the scene. Everything is carefully framed and lit to create a sense of danger and tension.
Timing: There seems to be different bursts of speed and pauses to the movie that prevent it from becoming monotonous, though the entire scene unfolds at a much faster rate than the Original and Prequel movies. The dark mood suits this part of the story very well.
Clip available here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0G7XMoZViBo
Several key details about the scene:
- The scene connects the main character to the problem/goal for the story which is finding look and it keeps you constantly focused on what is going on, particularly the First Order troops trying to catch Poe and obtain the information about Luke’s location.
- The scene changes initially appears to lead you to the conclusion that Poe will be the main character of the story, and sets up Finn for something, but ends with Poe being captured and BB8 trying to figure out what to do next.
- The scene sets up BB8 as the McGuffin and also introduces several important characters and the villain.
- It definitely makes you somewhat afraid for the fate of Poe who is captured, and Finn who is clearly not in love with the job of being a stormtrooper.
- The subtext of what’s going on is pretty clear.
Other positive details and pitfalls avoided:
- All of the dialogue in the scene contributes to the story
- It tells a necessary part of the story.
- Completely driven by the central problem.
- Times are definitely not good for the protagonists.
- The motivations of all characters are made slightly evident.
- You definitely experience parts of the scene as Finn when he’s breathing in heavily and looks conflicted about what he’s been sent there to do.
- You definitely feel the fear and disgust of Finn as well as some exhilaration and fear of Kylo Ren.
- Overall it’s a very entertaining scene.
Personal Project: The Red Tyrant
A once noble warrior mage (Overlord Bram) who fought in many battles and conquered a good portion of the world has become an evil tyrant who now seeks dominion over the rest of it. Opposing him are a ragtag group of rebels, small kingdoms and temple guardians who hope to protect the last remaining sources of magical power from falling into Bram’s control.
Once Bram gains control of all remaining ancient temples he will be able to control the flow of magical power in the world.
Overlord: Bram (tentative name).
Evil tyrant antagonist (anti-hero?).
Capable of fighting as both a warrior and a mage, Bram was once a hero from a small kingdom. After his kingdom was invaded by its powerful neighbor and most of the people he cared about were slain, his heart became hardened. What began as a quest to to liberate his people escalated into a desire for ultimate power. With each new victory his ambition and desire for revenge grew, until there was little left of the once proud warrior he used to be.
Now the Overlord of a vast empire he seeks ultimate power and control over the world and its sources of magical energy. Still keeping some aspects of his time as a hero he likes to personally participate in battles and use his tremendous magical abilities to lay waste to those who stand in his way. He leads armies of disciplined soldiers who march like roman legions to all corners of the known world.
Supreme Temple Guardian: Rayamund
An ancient mage with the power to direct the flows of magic in the northern areas of the world. He is the last of the northern temple guardians and controls the most powerful temple in the north, along with all of its secrets.
The Hero: Jayna
Given the scepter after Rayamund’s shield collapses, the hero is tasked with keeping it from falling into the hands of the Overlord.
The Scepter of the North:
An ancient artifact capable of channeling the powers of the ancient Northern Temple.
The Northern Temple:
A massive structure built on top of an area where magical energies gather. Unlike other temples, the power of the Northern Temple was channeled into the Scepter of the North and the one who holds it controls the vast majority of its energies, though temple monks are also able to channel small amounts of its power.
Assignment 1: Introduce a character: Bram the Overlord.
- We see a large military camp full of soldiers and tents.
- We zoom in to the biggest tent.
- Inside, we see an attendant fastening someone’s armor.
- Another attendant working on the man’s the boots.
- Another one attaches his gauntlet.
- From the man’s POV we see someone hand him a sword.
- He grabs it.
- He puts in it a scabbard, still in POV while an attendant brings him his helmet.
- POV He grabs the helmet, camera holds a bit at him looking at the helmet.
- Cut to some time later. A banner surrounded by spears waves in the sky. The banner has the symbol of the Overlord.
- Shot of the troops’ feet as they march in orderly fashion, their ordered march shows that they are a disciplined and capable force.
- Long lens shot of the troops marching in an orderly fashion (muted perspective shot that we talked about).
- Establishment shot of the army approaching an enormous temple covered in intricate designs.
- Shot from the rear of the army showing the Overlord towering over the others.
- Zoom into the rear of the overlord.
- Shot of the Overlord’s horse’s hooves as it marches forward, carrying Bram.
- Shot of the O’s horse’s head looking all menacing and angry, reflecting the personality of the Overlord.
- SHot of the design of the overlord’s helmet.
- Wide shot showing the overlord at the head of his troops from the side.
- The overlord begins to draw his sword.
- He lifts his sword and raises it above his head in a threatening manner.
- Close up of the overlord’s face covered in shadow from his helmet, a smirk in his face.
- Back to the temple.
- Slow zoom into the temple balcony, demonstrating the huge scale of the temple.
- We see an old man (Rayamund, the leader of the Temple Guardians) looking through a telescope, accompanied by a few temple monks.
- We see the silhouette of the Overlord through the looking glass, holding his sword in the air.
- Rayamund puts the telescope down.
- Shot of Rayamund frowning.
- Shot of Rayamund addressing his monks. “Bring the scepter.”
- Shot of Rayamund holding the scepter, its power manifested as green flames flowing in the wind.
- Shot of the Overlord’s expression, a smile that reaches his face, as he savors the prospect of unleashing his power on the Temple Guardians.
- The Overlord lowers his sword, aiming it at the temple.
- Power begins to gather around the sword as visible black tendrils.
- The Overlord’s horse rears as even more power gathers around the sword.
- A black lightning bolt emanates from the sword at rapid speed, aimed at the Temple.
- Shot of Rayamund holding his scepter in the air defiantly.
- Wider shot of Rayamund as his scepter also gathers power.
- Shot of the black lightning hitting a barrier conjured by Rayamund.
- Shot of Rayamund concentrating as he tries to fight off the Overlord’s magic. Sweat forming on his face
- Wider shot of Rayamund’s scepter with swirling energy around it.
- Shot of sweat dripping from Bram’s brow as he strains to force his way through Rayamund’s magical barrier.
- Eventually both sides manage to cancel each other out. Exhausting their magical power.
- Bram orders his troops to advance on the temple.
- Shot of his soldiers charging forward, storming the temple.
- Shot of Rayamund, exhausted, calling forward one of his monks, a girl named Jayna. “Jayna, come here.”
- “Yes, Guardian. Are you alright.”
- “No, I am not, that assault by Bram took everything I had to repel.”
- “You must survive Guardian, without you who will protect the Temple?”
- “The temple will fall today, there is only one hope, you must take the Scepter as far away from here as possible. Without it, Bram will not be able to control the Temple’s power.”
- “Me? I can’t, I don’t…”
- “You are the most talented of the young ones. The most talented I have seen in a long time. In truth, I’d hoped you’d replace me one day. I guess that day is today.
- Jayna looks at Rayamund, tears forming in her eyes.
- “The rest of the monks and I will try to fight off Bram’s troops, he has likely already expended most of his power trying to break through the barrier. Go to the underground passage way and get the scepter as far away from here as you can. Go to the resistance.”