Friday, December 28th, 2012

Writing Prompt: At the Cinema

The Brothers Lumier: Louis and AugusteToday in 1895, the first commercial movie was viewed at the Grand Cafe in Paris, France. Admission was charged.

The film was made by two professional photographers, Louis and Auguste Lumier, who were goaded into creating a movie when their father saw Thomas Edison’s Kinetoscope, and told them they could do better.

(Let’s hear it for a little parental guilt!)

The movie was a series of short scenes of everyday French life.

It enthralled the public, and the rest is history.

Here’s Your Prompt:

  • Write a scene as if you might be writing a movie script, rather than a novel or short story. Don’t worry about making a perfect script. Simply set the scene with a few paragraphs at the top, then write the dialogue.
  • Part 2 from above: once you’ve written the movie treatment, turn around and write the scene as if for a novel or short story. Does the dialogue still work? If not, revise.
  • Write a journal entry or essay on your favorite movie you’ve seen on the big screen. What about it seeing it in the theater makes it your favorite?
  • In Cornhuskers, chapter, 28 Memoir of a Proud Boy, Carl Sandburg writes, “There is drama in that point: the boy and the pigs. Griffith would make a movie of it to fetch sobs…” Write about a movie bringing you to tears. What emotion stirred the tears? Why?

Good Luck!

Thursday, July 19th, 2012

The First Thing I Learned about Lincoln City, Oregon…

… is that they take tsunamis very seriously around here.

Tsunami Warning System at the Beach, Lincoln City, OR

This is a photo of the Tsunami Strobe Light Warning System right at the beach. It’s got a klaxon which blows in the event of a tsumami to warn people off the beach and to get to high ground. [It’s also tested every Wednesday at 11 a.m. You can hear it for miles.] The light on top blinks blue.

Here’s a close-up of the explanatory sign on the Tsunami Early Warning System.

Photograph of a sign which reads: Tsunami Hazard Zone: In case of earthquake, go to high ground or inland.

And yet another sign, posted in the parking lot near the beach, warning that the beach is a hazardous area in the event of an earthquake (which will cause a tsunami.)

Photograph of a sign which reads: Tsunami Evacuation Route. An arrow points in the direction you should be going.

Here’s an unusually round sign (only unusual because all the other tsunami signs have been square) posted along the evacuation route. It makes certain you’re going in the right direction.

Photograph of a sign which reads: Leaving: Tsunami Hazard Area

When you’ve reached high enough ground, this sign lets you know.

Photograph of a sign which reads: Evacuation Site

And here’s a sign in front of an evacuation site, which interestingly enough, leaves off the word “tsunami.” Presumably the locals know it’s for that purpose.

Photograph of the Lincoln City, OR Movie Theater Sign

The sign just happens to be in front of the local movie theater, which I presume is an awesome place to ride out a tsunami. Because if the world is going to end, and Oregon goes floating off into the sea, you might as well enjoy a good movie (and some popcorn) while it’s happening.

Monday, April 11th, 2011

What Movie Would You Drive 2 Hours to See?

It’s been pointed out to me that next week Atlas Shrugged — the movie — is being released (April 15).

How serendipitous! (Or not, really…)

I had no idea a movie was in the making (but I generally don’t follow that stuff anyway – so, please, cut me a break 🙂 ).

There will be limited showings, so, I hope there’s one in my neck of the woods — or close by. I’ll define “close” as within a 2-hour one-way drive. I’d like to see it ASAP since I’ve finished the book so recently.

(My take on the book, in case you missed it.)

Apparently, the book is so long, that the movie needs to be produced in three parts. Only part 1 is available next week. You can see the trailer, which I’ve plugged in below, as well as several scenes from the movie at the official web site. There are also two spankin’ movie posters on the site.

I love the “Who is John Galt?” poster. I’m going to hang it here in my office.

Here’s the trailer:

So: what movie would you drive two hours to see?