Daily Dialogue theme for next week: Culture Clash

March 22nd, 2013 by

This week’s theme — arrest, suggested by Teddy Pasternak — has been going quite well and thanks for all your recommendations. But it’s time to think about next week’s theme which is Culture Clash, suggested by Debbie Moon:

The usual drill:

* Copy/paste dialogue from IMDB Quotes or some other transcript source.

* Copy/paste the URL of an accompanying video from MovieClips or YouTube.

I’d also ask you to think about why the dialogue is notable. Is there anything about the dialogue which provides some takeaway re screenwriting?

Here is the lineup for upcoming Daily Dialogue themes:

April 1-April 7: Death [SandbaggerOne]

April 8-April 14: Action hero wisecracks [Shaula Evans]

April 15-April 21: Fan boy/girl conversations [plinytheelder]

April 22-April 28: Making a scene [Trent Carroll]

April 29-May 5: “I’m not who you think I am” [Mark Twain]

May 6-May 12: Profanity free insults [Mark Walker]

May 13-May 19: Recounting a legend [alexmatu]

May 20-May 26: Original composition: Song/Poem [churnage]

May 27-June 2: Sex scenes [Dean Scott]

June 3-June 9: Witty banter [stoneinthesling]

June 10-June 16: All is lost [Turambar]

June 17-June 23: Dinner scene [Liri Nàvon]

June 24-June 30: Interrogations [Def Earz]

July 1-July 7: Profanity [JasperLamarCrab]

July 8-July 14: Begging for one’s life [Despina]

See you in comments for your suggestions featuring culture clash!

And while you’re there, be sure to congratulate Debbie Moon. The TV series “Wolfblood,” which Debbie created and writes, won the Royal Television Society Award for Best Children’s Drama. You can go here to read Debbie’s own thoughts on the experience. She has kindly agreed to an interview, so look for that in the next few weeks.

Here is the Wikipedia page for the series.

Here is the BBC site for the series.

10 thoughts on “Daily Dialogue theme for next week: Culture Clash

  1. Debbie Moon says:

    Here’s a behind the scenes culture clash – finding out what one side really thinks of the other – from Dances With Wolves (1990), screenplay by Michael Blake from his own novel

    Kicking Bird: [in Lakota; addressing the village council] He may be a special man or even a god. I ask that Chief Ten Bears give us permission to talk with him.
    [murmurs around the council as Wind in his Hair rises to speak]
    Wind In His Hair: [in Lakota; subtitled] I do not care for this talk about a white man at the soldier fort. Who ever he is he is not a Sioux and that makes him less. We took more then a hundred horses from these people and there was no honor in it. They don’t ride well. They don’t shoot well. They’re dirty. Those so-called “soldiers” could not make it through one winter in our country. And all these people are said to flourish? I think they will all be dead soon… maybe in ten years.
    [murmurs circulate around the council]
    Wind In His Hair: [in Lakota] I think this fool is probably lost.
    [the councel laughs as Wind in his Hair sits back down and Kicking Bird raises his right hand as a call for silence]
    Kicking Bird: [in Lakota; subtitled] Wind in his Hair has spoken and his words are strong. It is true that the whites are a poor race and it is hard to understand them. But make no mistake, the whites are coming. Even our enemies agree on this. But when I see one white man alone and without fear in our country, I do not think he is lost. I think he may have medicine. I think this is a man who will speak for all white people. I think this is a man from which treaties may be struck.

    (What’s great about this is that we’re seeing that the “natives” have just as much contempt for the white man as he has for them – and even level much the same insults at him. There’s no moral high ground when two cultures come into conflict.)

  2. Debbie Moon says:

    The Wicker Man (1973) screenplay by Anthony Shaffer

    [outside, several young girls are dancing naked over a fire]
    Lord Summerisle: Good afternoon, Sergeant Howie. I trust the sight of the young people refreshes you.
    Sergeant Howie: No sir, it does NOT refresh me.
    Lord Summerisle: Oh, I’m sorry. One should always be open to the regenerative influences. I understand you’re looking for a missing girl.
    Sergeant Howie: I’ve found her.
    Lord Summerisle: Splendid.
    Sergeant Howie: In her grave. Your lordship is a Justice of the Peace. I need your permission to exhume her body, have it transported to the mainland for a pathologist’s report.
    Lord Summerisle: You suspect… foul play?
    Sergeant Howie: I suspect murder and conspiracy to murder.
    Lord Summerisle: In that case, you must go ahead.
    Sergeant Howie: Your lordship seems strangely… unconcerned.
    Lord Summerisle: Well I’m confident your suspicions are wrong, Sergeant. We don’t commit murder here. We’re a deeply religious people.
    Sergeant Howie: Religious? With ruined churches, no ministers, no priests… and children dancing naked!
    Lord Summerisle: They do love their divinity lessons.
    Sergeant Howie: [outraged] But they are… a-are NAKED!
    Lord Summerisle: Naturally! It’s much too dangerous to jump through fire with their clothes on!

    (A great meeting of two men with utterly opposite and immovable convictions, which will end badly for one of them… )

    1. Mark Walker says:

      So much good stuff in the Wicker Man, and such great casting with Woodwood and Lee….loved it since I first saw it in installments after my mum banned me from watching it, not realising I was an expert in VCR control when she was out shopping….a great choice!

      Could happily fill the whole week of Culture Clash with scenes from it!

  3. The Intouchables (2011), written by Olivier Nakache and Eric Toledano.

    This first clip has no subtitles, unfortunately, but it needs no translation: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i85uG3UfYaw

    And then there’s this scene: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N_NzAvUCZ1M

    Driss: Okay, after your classics, let’s listen to mine. Earth, Wind & Fire. It’s a killer.

    I guess there’s not much takeaway as far as dialogue goes, but I like how both scenes use music to effectively underline the differences in these two characters’ backgrounds.

    And congrats, Debbie!

  4. Mark Walker says:

    Okay, I promise not to post from Withnail and I every week, but for an example of clashing cultures, the Penrith Tea Rooms is a corker.

    The drunk Withnail and I, disheveled and still without wellingtons, invade the quiet, restful Penrith Tearooms and shake them up a bit.
    Withnail and I emerge unsteadily from the pub.

    Where is he. Utterly aresholed.

    We’re early.

    I looks across to some tearooms

    We want to get in there don’t we. Eat some cake. Soak up the

    They enter the Penrith tea-rooms. I sits down at a table and starts buttering the bread rolls on the table. Withnail, still standing, points to the table and addresses an elderly waitress, Miss Blennerhassit.

    Alright here?

    Miss B
    No, we’re closing in a minute.

    We’re leaving in a minute. Alright here?

    Miss B
    What do you want?

    He sits down at the table and makes a rather perfunctory
    examination of the menu.

    We’ll have tea and cake.

    An elderly man comes across to their table. He is the proprietor

    Did you hear her? She said she’d closed. What do you want in here?

    Cake and tea. what’s it got to do with you?

    I happen to be the proprietor. Now, will you leave?

    Ah good, I’m glad you’re the proprietor. I was going to have to have a word with you anyway. We’re doing a film up here, location see. We might want to do a film in here.

    You’re drunk.

    Just bring out the cake.

    Cake and fine wine.

    Miss B
    If you don’t leave we’ll call the police.

    Balls. We want the finest wines available to humanity. We want them here and we want them now.

    The police, Miss Blennerhassit.

    I breaks off from stuffing bread rolls but hasn’t quite emptied his mouth at the start

    Don’t do that Miss Blenerhassit. I’m warning you Miss Blennerhassit, if you do – you’re fired. We are multi-millionaires. We’ll buy this place and fire you immediately.

    Yeah, that’s right, we’ll buy this place and install a fucking juke-box and liven all you stiffs up a bit.

    The police Miss Blenerhassit. Just tell them there are a couple of drunks in the Penrith tea rooms and we’d like them removed.

    We are not drunks, we are multi-millionaires.

    Come on Mabs, we’ll keep them here until they arrive

    She starts to dial

    You won’t keep us anywhere.

    Miss B
    Police please

    We’ll buy this place and have it knocked down.

    It’s alright, ‘s alright. Our car has arrived.

    He pulls back a curtain to reveal that indeed their car has arrived, in the form on Monty in the Rolls. They get up and I stagger out the door

    We’re coming back in here.

    He tries to lean on a convenient post but misses and staggers a bit. He points meaningfully at the various customers as he leaves, shutting his coat in the door.


    The clip is available here:



    So, a great scene, with definite conflict and a clashing of cultures. And very funny.

    The behaviour is opposite to I’s previous attempts to get “eggs and things” from a farmer’s wife by proclaiming he was “not from London you know” as if he understood the potential divide between town and country and, indeed, is almost seen to be trying to become one with nature when he takes those first steps out into the countryside on that first morning….perhaps he is torn between those two worlds, on the cusp of the change in his career later in the film that leads from one world to another….only to later wind up in the tea rooms, acting in exactly the way the country folk expected….albeit pretending to be the rich and famous people they both aspire to be….

    Of course, it may not have any deeper meaning, other than to picture what two drunks in the Penrith Tea Rooms might behave like….and to cement I as a trouble maker in the eyes of Uncle Monty.

    But, yeah, I promise I will chose a different film next week! :-)

    1. That reminded me of the restaurant scene in Blues Brothers:


      JAKE: How much for the little girl… the women … how much for the women?
      DAD: What … ?
      JAKE: Your women… I want to buy your women… the little girl… your daughters… sell them to me… sell me your children!

      1. Of course that movie has one of the greatest culture clash scenes of all time:


        Elwood: What kind of music do you usually have here?

        Claire: Oh, we got both kinds. We got country *and* western.

  5. WriterCarmen says:

    I can’t find a script for the movie Outsourced. This bit is not at all deep, just hilarious. The clip is 48 seconds.


  6. Here’s what can occur when you add certifiable insanity to the awkwardness of culture clashes!

    BANANAS (1971), written and directed by Woody Allen

    Fielding Mellish: [getting off the plane in the USA disguised as the President of San Marcos]
    The interpreter: [in English] I am Mr. Hernandez, the official interpreter!
    Senator: Welcome to the United States.
    The interpreter: [in English to Fielding] “Welcome to the United States.”
    Fielding Mellish: [in English] Thank you!
    The interpreter: [to the Senator] “Thank you!”
    Senator: Did you have a good flight?
    The interpreter: [in English to Fielding] “Did you have a good flight?”
    Fielding Mellish: [in English] Yes, I did!
    The interpreter: [in English to the Senator] “Yes, I did!”
    Senator: Well, we hope your stay in our country…
    The interpreter: [English, to Fielding] “We hope your stay in our country…”
    Senator: …will be delightful!
    The interpreter: [in English] “… will be delightful!”
    Fielding Mellish: [in English] I am looking forward to it…
    The interpreter: [to the Senator] “I am looking forward to it…”
    Fielding Mellish: Ah, with great anticipation!
    The interpreter: [to the Senator] “With great anticipation!”
    The interpreter: [Two men in orderly uniforms and butterfly nets appear and attempt to drag the interpreter away]


  7. Scott says:

    Do The Right Thing suggested by @adanisnice.


Leave a Reply