A development in the plot, and some thoughts on what to include in my trailer…

Posted: September 9, 2010 in Media

Okay, after much thought and research into various thriller /revenge films and their trailers I have decided how to edit my last plot so that it will be more practical to film and relate to my research…

And also here I have analysed the parts of the plot and thought about what I might put into my trailer. But of course, at this stage, these are only ideas and can always be changed…

The pieces that are in bold are the plot points

The pieces that are not in bold are my analysis/explanation/ideas


Equilibrium: The film is set in a small and quiet village, where everyone knows everyone and everyone is happy.

A simple equilibrium, but then again, equilibrium’s aren’t supposed to be complicated. It’s just basic really: everything’s happy and nothing is out of the ordinary. The end.

But I think, in the trailer at least, the equilibrium may be short lived or maybe not mentioned at all. I don’t want it to take up a lot of valuable time anyway.

The First Disruption of the Equilibrium: a stranger moves into the village,

So who is this character going to be?? Well, to sort this out in my head I’ll do a character profile…..

Gender: Male.

 It has to be male. Every protagonist I’ve analyzed so far, whom has been seeking revenge, has been male (apart from the obvious Kill Bill but we’ll leave that out for now). So it only makes sense to create a male protagonist to take the leading role in my trailer. Unless I can’t find an actor willing to act for me, then I may have to rethink things a bit….

Appearance: Well, to be honest I don’t really care what my character looks like at the moment as I don’t think this will effect the mood or ‘feel’ of the trailer as such.

Age: I want to be in his twenties at least. He has to be old enough to have held a grudge for a long time. And if I really can get anyone this age I’m sure a younger actor could do the same job…though honestly I’d prefer an older actor to make it look a bit more professional and a bit less like….some teenagers messing around with a camera…

Costume: Well I haven’t thought much about costume yet, but I think I’d want him to be in dark, thick clothing, like he needed it to battle against bad weather on his journey to get his revenge. I also wouldn’t want the costume to reveal much of his body or face- like he is wrapped up and is hiding something from the characters and also, the audience. Anyway, I want him to stand out from other characters but perhaps not too much…

Complication: He is said to have his child with him too, but no one ever actually sees him

This is where I want to confuse my audience. I want them to see the kid he has with him in the trailer, so if they were to see the film they would believe that the child was real but in fact, it is revealed in the end, that he isn’t.

I have thought of some shots I could have, like having the protagonist walking through a field holding a child’s hand, supposedly going towards the village they’re going to move into.

Second Disruption: Meanwhile in the village, bad things start happening to a group of people who run a local youth club

These people are loved by everyone in the village and seen as nice and caring

Here are my villains- carefully constructed to look like poor and helpless victims. In other words, it is another attempt from me to confuse my audience while they watch the trailer. So they think that these characters being killed are innocent and genuinely nice people- they run a local youth club and work with children, what could be more innocent and caring? But in fact they hide a dark secret that I am choosing not to reveal in the trailer, as it would give too much away.

Mostly it looks like their deaths are caused by just accidents or are suicides

I don’t want actual scenes from murders in the trailer, as looking at a lot of other student’s film trailers most violence they portray just looks fake and makes the trailer seem all the more amateur.

So any violence/murders/crimes I think will be subtle so nothing is actually shown in the trailer, but it is hinted at with weapons and distressed/angry characters. And I think this will be a lot more affective in interesting audiences and portraying what is happening than just showing it.

Complication: But one girl who attends the youth club believes that they were murdered

But no one believes her

I think this should be hinted at a bit- that something is suspicious about their deaths and that the stranger is suspected but not too much should be hinted to. I think just hinting that something is being hidden from us will interest the audience alone without saying too much.

Attempt to restore the Equilibrium: She thinks the stranger is behind it all and attempts to find out who he is

Maybe a hint to her breaking into his house or just trying to discover who he is but not too much should be given away in case it is telling the audience too much of what happens.

Attempt to Restore the Equilibrium: She finds out that the stranger is the culprit because he was getting his revenge on them for what they did to him when he was a child

We discover they turned him into a criminal and he ended up doing lots of terrible things

The young boy is in fact (and here’s where it gets complicated) him. It’s him, as a kid, like his innocence that he lost when the criminals influenced him and now it’s coming back to haunt him.

I can say that I definitely don’t want to include any of this in trailer. This would be giving too much of the plot away to the audience and therefore they wouldn’t want to go and see the film.

One thing I don’t even want to hint at is the fact the boy is him. This is probably the biggest twist in the film and I don’t want to give it away.

At first she doesn’t believe him

Another disruption/complication: But there’s one last member left for him to kill, and she wants to stop him

No, I think from the last point I don’t really want to reveal any of this. Perhaps there could be various ‘shots’ or dialogue featured from the final scenes of the film but I’d want them to be short and confusing. Put there but the audience doesn’t really know the whole truth of what’s going on. That kind of thing.

The stranger takes the last member and the girl to the house where he used to live when he was younger

I’d like to add that this is inspired by a lot of revenge films. They seem to like to take people back to where the ‘bad thing’ that they want revenge on happened. It seems fitting and adds to the tone of the film itself. Like in ‘Dead Man’s Shoes’ Richard takes Mark to the place where Anthony killed himself and in ‘Sweeney Todd’ he gets his revenge on the Judge in the house he used to live in before the Judge ruined his life completely.

The last member finally recognizes him

The stranger shoots him, and then hands the gun or whatever weapon to the girl

Like many revenge films I have seen. Revenge cannot satisfy the protagonist. No they want more. Most of the time they realize that they have turned into a monster on this path of vengeance and most of the time, give in to death. Like in ‘Sweeney Todd’ or are killed later on in life because the damage could not be erased by vengeance alone like in ‘Sleepers’.

He says he will give himself in and says that he deserved what he gets

The police arrive and arrest him

The girl is left feeling that maybe he doesn’t deserve to go to prison, because he was only giving them what they deserved.

This is what I want- I want my film to leave the viewer ending up feeling sorry for the protagonist. Fell sorry for him because he was only giving the people he killed what they truly deserved (like in ‘Sweeney Todd’ and ‘Dead Man’s Shoes’) and bringing dark secrets that deserved to be told out into the open (Like in ‘Gladiator’ and ‘Sleepers’). Most of the time I personally side with the person getting revenge and although I cannot speak for the majority, on personal opinion I was influenced by Richard’s character in ‘Dead Man’s Shoes’ because the final scenes really made me emphasise with him, his actions and what they were caused by. And that’s what I want for my protagonist- he was not a bad character, but bad people tore his innocence from him and made him into a monster. So for that, he kills them before they can taint anyone else. And even then he doesn’t run from what he did, or deny it, he just takes his punishment.

Of course, soon I will be creating another, more specific questionnaire to help me judge what to and what not to put in my trailer judging from my plot idea. So that’ll help me think about how my trailer is going to look and whether my ideas expressed here are as good as I initially thought they were…


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