The future of Storytelling

Most movies have to do with stories. This is one of the reasons I recently enrolled in a MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) called ‘the Future of Story Telling’. If you want to participate, it is free and you may follow the link to register. It is really interesting.

In the first assignment, participants were asked to:

… think about a story you have read, seen, listened to, played or experienced has impressed you most in your life. … Which story can you still very well remember? Write down both, the summary of this story (what you remember of the story, not what Wikipedia says.. 🙂 and – on the other hand: – what made it so special to you that you can still remember it.

Retell this story by giving a short summary of what you can remember of it. (in less than 400 words).

Think about (try to remember) and write down what fascinated you most about this story. What can you remember best? What impressed you most? … Its characters? The locations? The plot? The style and voice of the story? Or maybe even the surroundings of how this story was told, maybe by your parents, grandparents, or maybe in your first self-read book? Tell us the story OF the story so-to-speak. (less than 500 words).

There was no doubt in my mind what that story should be. It was ‘The Matrix’ (1999). For someone entering this blog for the first time (or not personally knowing me), just the film title gives the wrong idea, unless there is an understanding under the action-layer used by the movie to convey a deeper meaning (will come back to this later).

What was really interesting, was the summary of the story (attention: contains spoilers!),  resulting after couple hours of work. It was like seeing the skeleton, the bare bones of someone you love without flesh! It had no resemblance whatsoever with all the things you cherish him/her for. May be that is the goal but regardless of that, the result is still very interesting. It generates thinking which is after all the goal of the course.

So, the second part, which is the “story of the story” (analysis pending), has to restore the balance! It has to convey the logic and the feelings for the preference of that story among other beautiful stories.

The Pervert’s Guide to Cinema (2006)

There are so many things that need to be said about “The Pervert’s Guide to Cinema“. Bare with me regarding this one. Because sometimes we … fear words, let us check on the dictionary what the word below means:

pervert: person whose behavior deviates from what is normal, particularly in sex habits.

Do not be alarmed. Focus on the first part. The film takes an entirely different approach on analyzing numerous films in order to elucidate what our desires are, and what we humans are, from a psychoanalytic point of view. It is a breath-taking deposition of ideas by the Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Žižek supported by the unobtrusive direction of Sophie Fiennes. It is only after one has enjoyed the film so much that understands her contribution to the final outcome. Because the packaging is as important as the interior 🙂

So, the idea is to draw scenes and stories from a multitude of films in order to define what drives and also what enslaves the human soul. The radical approach on the examination of ideas, the different perspective on what we consider as granted, make a very dense, deep philosophic movie. One may need to see it more than once to fully appreciate and understand what is said. It is obvious that having seen the related films one gets a greater satisfaction. As a side-effect to the development of the main line of thinking, one also gets an exquisite analysis on films difficult to understand, like “Blue Velvet (1986)” by  David Lynch, “Psycho (1960)” by Alfred Hitchcock, Fight Club (1999) by David Fincher, Eyes Wide Shut (1999) by  Stanley Kubrick, etc. One also gets a surprising different interpretation of another set of films like “Vertigo (1958)” by Alfred Hitchcock, Persona (1966) by  Ingmar Bergman, Solaris (1972) by Andrey Tarkovskiy, Three Colors: Blue (1993) by Krzysztof Kieslowski, The Matrix (1999) by the Wachowski brothers, etc.

A piece of advice: it would be beneficiary for the better understanding of the film, if one had a quick (do not throw stones now, ok?) understanding of the concepts of Id, ego and super-ego defined by Sigmund Freud, since they are extensively used during the analysis of the different films.

My rating: 10/10