The following is a very important article, the reason for which is it not only gives you insight into what power a movie has as an art form, but also what power a screenplay writer can bring to the screen. I researched this topic, thought about for awhile and came up with some reasons as to why movies are so powerful:
Firstly what springs to mind is that movies and/or TV shows are an entertaining escape. We can use movies to unwind after a long day, use it as a distraction from our daily routine or to make us feel better.
Movies are such a strong community tool. You share movies with others. There are not many people who don’t like movies. It is a universal interest, while most interests are not.
When we are in a theatre, we share our feelings and emotions with a whole room of strangers. I remember the exhilaration I felt, the exciting atmosphere when I watched Final Destination in a theatre. Watching a movie in the theatre is like going on a rollercoaster ride. It is intense, intimate and you feel a stranger’s emotions way more than in a day-to-day scenario.
Movies are special because we get introduced to a whole set of different art forms within one specific medium: Cinematography, Visual Effects, Make-Up and Hairstyling, Costume Design, Production Design, Sound Score/Songs, Editing, Acting, Directing, Scriptwriting, etc.
It is a feast for the eyes; music to your ears which all makes it pleasant to take in. In essence, it is a myriad of expressions, sounds, portrayals and landscapes that for those two hours, takes us away into a fantasy land we will gladly follow. We’re more than happy to go down the rabbit’s hole. If the above components work together flawlessly and are created with thought and sincerity, the movie experience can be very powerful.
They are a blueprint of the world with its issues and stories. People go on meaningful journeys, face obstacles, there is conflict, something to learn, and there are morals and ethics. People can relate to this as it happens within their own lives and other peoples lives.
My dad said when he was young he loved to go to the movies, because back then he couldn’t afford to travel. So watching westerns was a way for him to get close to his dream to travel to America.
Of course traveling has become more affordable over the years. People who once only saw places in film are now traveling all over. But what inspired people to visit those locales initially were seeing those places in the films. Films allow us the chance to view the world, to see places we’ve never dreamt of going or imagining, be it fantasy or reality. Traveling through movies is wonderful; movies show us the world in a visually stunning way, at times even looking better than the real thing.
Movies can take us to places that don’t even exist. They make worlds come alive and spark our imagination; think of Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings. We not only get to see different parts of the world or completely new worlds, we also get to experience different cultures, families, etc. – real ones or made up. A movie gives us a glimpse into other people’s lives and worlds.
The most powerful impact a movie has though is through feeling. Movies can make us feel hope, sadness, excitement, happiness, etc.
If you look at the highest grossing films of all times, with Avatar leading the list, most of them have all the elements listed above. A great example of a recent movie is Jurassic World, which takes us to an amazing amusement park we all would like to go to.
Watch a scene from Jurassic World here.
As a scriptwriter you can put your vision and ideas into all of these categories from the start and make them accessible to viewers in an intriguing way. A screenwriter is also the director of the movie, even if they only are directing the movie in their minds and putting it on paper.
Why do you think movies are such a powerful art form?