Daily Dialogue — July 19, 2014

July 19th, 2014 by

“It’s your time, boy.”

Rolling Thunder (1977), screenplay by Paul Schrader and Heywood Gould, story by Paul Schrader

The Daily Dialogue theme for the week: Revenge.

Trivia: In the book “Schrader On Schrader” Paul Schrader who co-wrote the movie complains how the studio completely twisted his original version of the story. He wrote it as a critique of US involvement in Vietnam War and fascistic and racist attitudes in America. Rane was originally written as white trash racist with many similarities to Schrader’s more famous character Travis Bickle (the main character of Martin Scorsese’s Taxi Driver). In this version, Rane becomes a war hero without ever having fired a gun, and comes home to confront the Texas Mexican community. Rane’s racist upbringing and hatred that grew in him in Vietnam slowly come out. This version ends with Rane’s indiscriminate slaughter of Mexicans which was meant as a metaphor for Vietnam. Schrader concludes with a claim that he basically wrote a film about fascism and the studio made a fascist film.

Dialogue On Dialogue: For this type of genre-piece, there’s a tradition of revenge one-liners. “It’s your time, boy” slots right in with that trope.

If you have any suggestions for this week’s theme, please post in comments.

Declare Your Independents: Volume 21

July 18th, 2014 by

GITS development assistant Wendy Cohen here, and welcome back to Declare Your Independents, our series highlighting the latest developments in the world of independent film!

This week…

The Best Films of 2014 (So Far)

And, The Most Underrated Films Of 2014, So Far

2015 Oscar Preview: Expect Reese to Rise Again and Angelina to Crash the Directing Category

Writers Can Do Anything

Life Itself and 6 Other Biographical Documentaries You Can Stream Right Now

Scott and I encourage any of you who go to see an independent movie to post your reactions to the film in these posts. Good, bad, indifferent, whatever. If there’s a film you want to recommend, do it. Use your words to inspire readers to transport themselves into a local cinema.

INDIE SPOTLIGHT: MOVIES TO SEE IN THEATERS THIS WEEK

OPENING FRIDAY (7/18) 

I Origins


Writer/director Mike Cahill’s drama I Origins centers on medical student Ian Gray (Michael Pitt). Ian specializes in the evolution of the human eye. One day he attends a party where he meets a masked woman whose eyes transfix him, and soon the two fall in love. Years later, Ian makes a startling discovery in the lab, forcing him on a trek across the globe in order to uncover profound truths about mankind. I Origins screened at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival.
Watch Sundance’s Q&A with director Mike Cahill and the film’s cast here.

Wish I Was Here


Following his celebrated debut feature, Garden State, Zach Braff delivers a new postcard from the edge of existential crisis, this time playing a thirtysomething family man wrestling with a few minor hindrances—like his disapproving father, an elusive God, and yes, adult responsibility. Aidan Bloom is a pot-smoking actor whose last job, a dandruff commercial, was longer ago than he cares to admit. Pursuing his thespian dream has landed him and his wife in tough financial straits, so when his grumpy father can no longer pay for the kids to attend Jewish Yeshiva, Aidan opts for homeschooling. To the chagrin of his hyperdisciplined, religious daughter and the delight of his less-than-studious son, Aidan takes matters into his own imaginative hands, rather than sticking to the boring old traditional curriculum.

Watch a DP/30 interview with director Zach Braff here.

And So It Goes

A self-centered real-estate agent (Michael Douglas) gets the surprise of his life when his estranged son appears on his doorstep with the granddaughter he’s never known, and leaves the young girl in his care. Rob Reiner co-produced and directed this comedy-drama co-starring Diane Keaton, Frankie Valli, and Scott Shepherd.

A Five Star Life


Single and middle-aged, beautiful Irene (Margarita Buy) is wholly devoted to her job as an inspector of luxury hotels. Constantly on the road, she indulges in expensive pleasures at impeccable resorts, but always incognito and alone, soon escaping to the next exotic destination with her checklist and laptop in tow. When her best friend and ex Andrea (Stefano Accorsi), who has always been a source of emotional support, suddenly becomes unavailable, Irene is thrown into a deep existential crisis. “Luxury is a form of deceit,” she is told by a fellow traveller in the fog of a steam room, and thus begins Irene’s quest to bring more meaning into her life.

Mood Indigo

Eminently inventive Michel Gondry finds inspiration from French novelist Boris Vian’s cult novel to provide the foundation for this visionary and romantic love story starring Audrey Tautou (Amélie, Coco Before Chanel) and Romain Duris. Set in a charmingly surreal Paris, Duris plays wealthy bachelor Colin, whose hobbies include developing his pianocktail (a cocktail-making piano) and devouring otherworldly dishes prepared by his trusty chef Nicolas (Omar Sy, The Untouchables). When Colin learns that his best friend Chick, a fellow acolyte of the philosopher Jean-Sol Partre, has a new American girlfriend, our lonely hero attends a friend’s party in hopes of falling in love himself. He soon meets Chloé (Audrey Tautou) and, before they know it, they’re dancing to Duke Ellington and plunging headfirst into a romance that Gondry rapturously depicts as only he can. Their whirlwind courtship is tested when an unusual illness plagues Chloe; a flower begins to grow in her lungs. To save her, Colin discovers the only cure is to surround Chloe with a never-ending supply of fresh flowers.

Watch a Q&A with director Michel Gondry here.

There’s No Place Like Utopia


Filmmaker Joel Gilbert journeys across America to find out what’s at the end of the Progressive rainbow — utopia or something far worse? From the ruins of Detroit to the slums of Chicago’s South Side, and from Denver’s illegal immigration invasion to Newark’s urban removal project, Gilbert pulls back the curtain. He confronts Progressives on his quest, and takes us deep into their political fantasy of paradise on earth. There’s No Place Like Utopia is a humorous and horrifying exploration of Progressivism, amnesty for illegals, race relations, Islam in America, political correctness, and Barack Obama himself, who promises to “remake the world as it should be.” But is utopia a real destination for America? Or, does the true path to happiness still remain faith, family, and hard work — back home in Kansas?

Among Ravens


The story of a group of friends who reunite for their annual 4th of July weekend only to be confronted by Chad, a strange and beautiful nature photographer who begins to change their lives one by one.

An American in Hollywood


A talented young filmmaker from New York sets off to Los Angeles in pursuit of the Hollywood dream, only to discover through his relationship with a beautiful feisty young actress, that Hollywood is not all that it seems.

Video Games: The Movie


Video Games: The Movie, a feature length documentary, aims to educate and entertain audiences about how video games are made, marketed, and consumed by looking back at gaming history and culture through the eyes of game developers, publishers, and consumers. The film is not just another film about the games industry, but attempts something much more ambitious; the question of what it means to be a “gamer”, a game-maker, and where games are headed. Storytelling and the art of the video game medium are also explored in this first of it’s kind film about the video game industry and the global culture it has created.

Alive Inside: A Story of Music & Memory


Alive Inside is a joyous cinematic exploration of music’s capacity to reawaken our souls and uncover the deepest parts of our humanity. Filmmaker Michael Rossato-Bennett chronicles the astonishing experiences of individuals around the country who have been revitalized through the simple experience of listening to music. This stirring documentary follows social worker Dan Cohen, founder of the nonprofit organization Music & Memory, as he fights against a broken healthcare system to demonstrate music’s ability to combat memory loss and restore a deep sense of self to those suffering from it. An uplifting cinematic exploration of music and the mind, Alive Inside‘s inspirational and emotional story left audiences humming, clapping and cheering at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival, where it won the Audience Award.

Watch the Sundance Institute’s interview with director Michael Rossato-Bennett here.

NOW IN THEATERS

Boyhood

Filmed over 12 years with the same cast, Richard Linklater’s Boyhood charts the rocky terrain of childhood like no other film has before. Snapshots of adolescence from road trips and family dinners to birthdays and graduations and all the moments in between become transcendent, set to a soundtrack spanning the years. Boyhood is both a nostalgic time capsule of the recent past and an ode to growing up and parenting.

Watch a 30-minute interview with director Richard Linklater here.

Land Ho!

Feeling disenchanted with life after retirement, Mitch, a brassy former surgeon, convinces mild-mannered Colin, his ex-brother-in-law, to holiday with him in Iceland. The pair set off through Reykjavik ice bars, trendy spas, and adventurous restaurants in an attempt to reclaim their youth, but they quickly discover that you can’t escape yourself, no matter how far you travel.

Watch a Sundance Q&A with directors Aaron Katz and Martha Stephens here.

Life Itself

Hoop Dreams director Steve James creates a portrait of influential Chicago Sun Times film critic Roger Ebert. Officially an adaptation of Ebert’s bestselling memoir of the same name, the documentary uses Ebert’s valiant struggle with cancer as a structural device to examine his many career accomplishments. As a series of flashbacks take us through Ebert’s colorful life and times, James periodically returns to his subject’s traumatic last days in the hospital, where his wife Chaz and other loved ones prepare to say their last goodbyes. The result is a reverent meditation on the life and death of the writer whose passion for film was evident in every review he penned, but whose love of life taught his loyal readers to treasure every moment.

Watch an interview with the film’s director Steve James here.

The Internet’s Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz

The Internet’s Own Boy follows the story of programming prodigy and information activist Aaron Swartz. From Swartz’s help in the development of the basic internet protocol RSS to his co-founding of Reddit, his fingerprints are all over the internet. But it was Swartz’s groundbreaking work in social justice and political organizing combined with his aggressive approach to information access that ensnared him in a two-year legal nightmare. It was a battle that ended with the taking of his own life at the age of 26. Aaron’s story touched a nerve with people far beyond the online communities in which he was a celebrity. This film is a personal story about what we lose when we are tone deaf about technology and its relationship to our civil liberties.

Begin Again

An ambitious young female singer moves to New York City in search of stardom, but finds only disappointment until falling for a struggling record-industry executive who helps her down the road to fame. Songwriting duo Gretta (Keira Knightley) and Dave (Adam Levine) had been dating since college when they decided to seek their fortune in NYC. When Dave is signed by a major label, temptation proves too powerful for him to resist and the couple call it quits. Crestfallen, Gretta fights to get back on her feet until one night, while performing in the East Village, she catches the attention of Dan (Mark Ruffalo), a once-respected music executive who’s since fallen on hard times. Enchanted by Gretta’s powerful voice and skillful songwriting, Dan convinces her to join him in a collaboration that will transform them both over the course of one unforgettable summer. Written and directed by John Carney (Once).

Watch a Q&A with writer/director John Carney here.

Many thanks to Wendy for today’s post. Remember to Declare Your Independents by going to a theater or use V.O.D. to watch an indie feature this weekend.

Spec Script Sale: “The Long Run”

July 18th, 2014 by

Twentieth Century Fox acquires action comedy spec script “The Long Run” written by Drew Pearce.

Pearce, who is a credited writer on Iron Man 3 and Mission: Impossible 5, is repped by WME.

By my count, this is the 35th spec script sale in 2014.

There were 63 spec script sales year-to-date in 2013.

Screenwriting Lessons: "The Social Network" — Part 5: Handling Exposition

July 18th, 2014 by

[Originally posted February 18, 2011]

As I watched The King’s Speech recently, I was struck by how many screenwriting lessons could be gleaned from the movie. So I decided to analyze The King’s Speech and The Social Network, the most likely winners of this year’s Academy Awards for Best Screenplay (Speech for original, Network for adapted) to see what takeaway we could derive from both movies and their excellent screenplays.

Today: The Social Network — Handling exposition.

A fellow scribe once told me, “Exposition equals death,” his way of saying there is nothing less entertaining than a character or characters engaged in expository dialogue. “Talking heads” is another way writers refer to the phenomenon.

Why does exposition have such a bad rap with screenwriters? Consider the definition it definition:

Writing or speech primarily intended to convey information or to explain; a detailed statement or explanation; explanatory treatise

Information, explanation, treatise. How boring can you be, right? But then there’s this:

INT. FIRST DEPOSITION ROOM - DAY

               EDUARDO
I told him I thought it sounded great.
I mean it did, it was a great idea.
There was no reason to hack, people
were going to put their own pictures
up. What they were interested in, what
they were looking for, what classes
they were taking...and people had the
ability to invite their friends to join.
Or put a different way, not invite their
friends to join. In a world where social
structure is very important, that was sexy.
(beat)
It was a big project and he was going to
have to write tens of thousands of lines
of code so I wondered why he was
coming to me and not his roommates.
Dustin Moskowitz and Chris Hughes
were programmers.

CUT TO:

EXT. QUAD - NIGHT

               MARK
We're gonna need a little start-up cash
to rent the server and get it online.

CUT TO:

INT. FIRST DEPOSITION ROOM - DAY

               EDUARDO
That was why.

               GRETCHEN
Did he offer business terms?

CUT TO:

EXT. QUAD - NIGHT

               MARK
We'll split to 70-30. 70 for me and 30
for you for putting up a thousand dollars
and handling everything on the business
end. You'll be CFO.

CUT TO:

INT. FIRST DEPOSITION ROOM - DAY

               GRETCHEN
And you said?

               EDUARDO
I said “Let's do it.”

               GRETCHEN
Okay. Did he add anything else?

               EDUARDO
Yes. He said--

CUT TO:

EXT. QUAD - NIGHT

               MARK
It probably was a diversity thing but so 
what?

CUT TO:

INT. FIRST DEPOSITION ROOM - DAY

               GRETCHEN
Why do you think he said that?

               SY
Gretchen, what's the relevancy?

               GRETCHEN
This is discovery, I'm trying to discover.

               MARK
They're suggesting that I was jealous of
Eduardo and began a plan to screw him
out of the company.

               GRETCHEN
Were you?

               SY
Gretchen--

               MARK
Jealous of Eduardo?

               SY
Stop typing, we're off the record.

               MARK
Ma'am, I know you've done your homework
and so you know that money isn't a big part
of my life, but at the moment I could buy
Harvard University, take the Phoenix Club
and turn it into my ping pong room.

This scene from The Social Network is largely exposition, the dissemination of facts. I mean it’s a legal deposition, for crying out loud. And yet it doesn’t equal death. In fact, it’s riveting. How can that be? Because it follows the first principle of how to handle exposition:

Make it interesting.

Make the facts themselves interesting.
Make the people who reveal the facts interesting.
Make the way in which the facts are revealed interesting.
Make the circumstances surrounding the revelation of the facts interesting.

Exposition = Death only if a writer shows no imagination in making it interesting.

That concludes this week’s series of Screenwriting Lessons from the movie The Social Network. What did you learn from it?

Spec Script Sale: “Terminal Point”

July 18th, 2014 by

Universal Pictures acquires spec script “Terminal Point” written by Stuart C. Paul. From Deadline:

Details are under wraps on the script which [Will] Packer and fellow producer David Alpert snagged in a pre-emptive buy. It’s the first spec sale for Paul, who recently wrote and directed short film The Lord of Catan, about a young married couple (Amy Acker and Fran Kranz) whose game night descends into cutthroat competition.

Paul is repped by CAA and Circle of Confusion.

By my count, this is the 34th spec script sale in 2014.

There were 63 spec script sales year-to-date in 2013.

“Box-Office Woes: Age and Gender Gap Helping Fuel Summer Decline”

July 18th, 2014 by

Summer 2014 is very likely to go down as a memorable one, but for the wrong reasons. From Flavorwire this:

Variety: “SUMMER BOX OFFICE DOWN NEARLY 20% AFTER JULY 4TH FILMS FIZZLE.” Box Office Mojo: “’TRANSFORMERS’ REPEATS ON WEAK INDEPENDENCE DAY WEEKEND.” The Hollywood Reporter: “WHAT’S BEHIND SUMMER’S FREE FALL AT THE BOX OFFICE?” And Gawker, as usual, is not afraid to put too fine a point on it: “NO ONE WENT TO THE MOVIES THIS FOURTH OF JULY WEEKEND.”

—-

Going into the summer season, domestic box office was up nine percent over last year. Now, it’s down an astonishing 19 percent. A full four percent of that was just from the Fourth of July weekend, when the junkie didn’t get its hit. The junkie needs its hit. “Thank goodness we have Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and Guardians of the Galaxy coming, because we need it,” Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst at Rentrak, told Variety, uncomfortably aping the language of the industry’s beloved street-corner crackhead archetype. “Boy, do we need it.”

Down 19%. So the inevitable question: Why? The Hollywood Reporter weighs in with this analysis:

For years, Hollywood studios have catered to young males in building their summer slates. But as the demo takes fewer trips to the multiplex, distributors are scrambling amid a 20 percent decline in summer revenue in North America. It’s one of the worst year-over-year drops to date, putting increased pressure on global returns.

According to the MPAA, frequent moviegoers between the ages of 18 and 25 plunged 17 percent in 2013, the largest drop of any age bracket, while those between 12 and 17 fell by 15 percent. Some blame video games, YouTube or a disconnect between studio tastes and what today’s kids like. Regardless, in 2007, nearly 65 percent of opening-weekend ticket buyers for Spider-Man 3 were under 25. This summer, only 51 percent of The Amazing Spider-Man 2‘s initial audience was 25 and under.

Young males down 20% from 2014 to 2013. So if young guys aren’t going to movies as much, where can Hollywood turn? How about women:

Adding to the problem, many male-skewing summer tentpoles are luring fewer females. That’s an issue because the women demo is wielding more influence. Moms and girls helped turn Frozen into one of the biggest successes of all time ($1.27 billion), and they have powered Disney’s Maleficent to nearly $670 million, including $222 million in North America — more than any other summer film aside from X-Men: Days of Future Past. Fox’s The Fault in Our Stars also mobilized younger girls (82 percent of the opening audience was female; 79 percent was under 25).

And at TheWrap suggests — Hispanics:

Hispanics have accounted for at least 20 percent of opening weekend ticket sales for every hit this summer, Nielsen research shows

Hollywood experts love to fret about the future of the movie business, but the industry has begun to embrace one group that is indisputably on the rise: the Hispanic audience.

Hispanics are the fastest-growing ethnic group in the United States, and their passion for movies is unsurpassed. The group bought 25 percent of the tickets sold in 2013 though they comprise just 17 percent of the population, according to the Motion Picture Association of America’s year-end study.

According to figures from the U.S. Census and a Nielsen report on movie audiences, Hispanics make up 15 percent of the population over the age of 12, and 19 percent of tickets sold for teens and older.

The expanding potential of women and Hispanics versus the same old same old obsession with young adult males who for whatever reasons are not as reliable as before.

What will the studios do? What should screenwriters do?

For rest of the TheWrap article, go here.

For the rest of the Hollywood Reporter article, go here.

For the rest of the Flavorwire article, go here.

 

Movie Trailer: “Dear White People”

July 18th, 2014 by

Written by Justin Simien

A satire that follows the stories of four black students at an Ivy League college where a riot breaks out over a popular ‘African American’ themed party thrown by white students. With tongue planted firmly in cheek, the film explores racial identity in ‘post-racial’ America while weaving a universal story of forging one’s unique path in the world.

IMDB

Release Date: 17 October 2014

2014 Scene-Writing Challenge: Day 14

July 18th, 2014 by

As noted in this recent post:

In May, it was 90s movies. In June, it has been 30 Days of Screenplays. What is that but the first two of three from that essential screenwriting mantra: Watch movies. Read scripts. Write pages.

Can you see where I’m going for July? That’s right: Write pages!

July is Scene-Writing Month here at Go Into The Story. Every Monday-Friday at noon Eastern / 9AM Pacific, I will upload a post with a prompt for writing a script scene. Each day, write a scene per those guidelines. If you really want to get in the spirit of things, upload your scene here in the comments section of the original post. That way you can critique others’ pages and receive feedback on your scene as well.

Why scene-writing? Think about it: If the average scene is 1 1/2 to 2 pages long and a script is 100-120 pages, then a screenwriter writes between 50-80 scenes per screenplay. Thus in a very real way, screenwriting is scene-writing. The better we get at writing scenes, it stands to reason the better we get as a screenwriter.

Plus there’s this: To provide extra motivation for this series — to get people to WRITE PAGES — I am giving away some of my Core classes to Scene-Writing Challenge participants. That’s right: For free!

The Core curriculum provides a comprehensive, coherent, character-based approach to screenwriting theory, eight 1-week online classes. I only teach them once per year. Here is the schedule:

July 7 – Core I: Plot
July 21 – Core II: Concept
August 4 – Core III: Character
September 1 – Core IV: Style
September 15 – Core V: Dialogue
October 27 – Core VI: Scene
November 10 – Core VII: Theme
December 2 – Core VIII: Time

To qualify to take one Core class for free, write and submit ten [10] Scene-Writing Challenge posts. If you complete all twenty [20] Scene-Writing Challenge exercises, you get two Core classes for free.

You can choose any of the Core classes as your free gift.

That’s what I’m prepared to do to encourage you to write pages.

[Note: If you want to take Core I or Core II, which are scheduled for this month, I will hold those course sites open into August to allow you access to all of that content.]

A couple of logistical notes:

* Limit your scenes to 2 pages. First, most scenes are 2 pages or less in length. Second, out of fairness to everyone participating in the public scene-writing workshop, let’s not abuse anyone’s patience or time with really long scenes.

* Don’t be concerned about proper script format when you copy/paste your scene, rather the content and execution are the important thing. So as a default mode, do this: (1) Don’t worry about right-hand margins on scene description or dialogue, just keep typing until it manually shifts each line. (2) Don’t worry about character name position, rather do this:

SCARLETT: Rhett, Rhett... Rhett, if you go, where shall I go? What shall I do?

RHETT: Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn.

Today’s prompt: A scene in which a gesture plays a key part.

Dialogue is wonderful, but movies are primarily a visual medium. Write a scene in which something significant gets conveyed by a character or characters using a gesture, some bodily movement that communicates something.

Write a 1-2 page scene, then copy/paste in comments.

Remember: If you are interested in qualifying for 1 or 2 free Core classes with me, please note the number of scenes you have written. If today is your first effort, note that it is Scene 1. The next one, Scene 2. If today is Scene 13, please note that. And so forth.

You are on an honor system, as I don’t have time to check every post, so do the right thing!

NOTE: If you have completed and posted 10 scenes, just email me to let me know which of the eight Core classes you’d like to take as my gift to you for your hard work!

NOTE: The Challenge ends on July 31st, meaning that is the last day I will accept scenes for credit toward free Core classes.

Finally, if you have what you think is a good suggestion for a scene-writing prompt, please post that as well.

It’s the 2014 Scene-Writing Challenge! Give a jolt to your creative and writing muscles… and win 1 or 2 free online classes with yours truly.

GOOD NEWS: To date, 7 writers have qualified for a free Core course and I have enrolled each of them. How about you? 10 scenes = 1 Core course. 20 scenes = 2 Core courses.

Onward!

Great Character: Gay Perry (“Kiss Kiss Bang Bang”)

July 18th, 2014 by

The Great Character theme for the month: Action Comedy. Today: Gay Perry from the movie Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, written by Shane Black.

When the celebrated screenwriter Shane Black, who invented the Lethal Weapon franchise, sold his typed up adrenaline rushes, they didn’t sell for cheap. The sale of his Bruce Willis and Damon Wayans combo The Last Boy Scout raised the economic bar for cinema scribes to $1.75 million, only to be eclipsed by his Geena Davis and Samuel L. Jackson flick The Long Kiss Goodbye with an unbelievable $4 million price tag.

But the 2005 intoxicating action comedy Kiss Kiss Bang Bang marked the professional awakening of Shane Black after a nine-year hiatus. Black returned with this unpredictable, genre-regenerating jolt that stared a fresher than ever Robert Downey Jr. as East Coast thief in Hollywood, Harry Lockhart, and a vital Val Kilmer as his reluctant California chaperone, private eye Gay Perry.

GAY PERRY: (to Harry) Go. Sleep badly. Any questions, hesitate to call.

Kiss Kiss Bang Bang IMDB:

A murder mystery brings together a private eye, a struggling actress, and a thief masquerading as an actor.

Before anyone boycotts the character of “Gay” Perry, keep in mind that he is not your average Hollywood stereotypical homosexual. Not only does he own his nickname Gay Perry with pride and conviction, he is not too concerned with what any homophobe could possibly think of him.

GAY PERRY: Okay, you’ve got 30 of my fucking seconds. Thrill me.

There is no flamboyant pastel wardrobes, no forced squeaky voices that sound like they are giving puberty a second go-around, and there is no passive male “damsel” in distress that needing saving. To put it bluntly, Gay Perry will knock you out. He tolerates fools with a zero patience policy.

GAY PERRY: Why in pluperfect hell would you pee on a corpse?

Although well groomed, Perry is too busy being the smartest guy in the room to give himself superficial dreamy eyes in the mirror. When Harry finds it difficult to match wits with Perry’s matter-of-fact practicality, the laughs ensue.

GAY PERRY: I don’t think you’d know where to put food at, if you didn’t flap your mouth so much. Yes, I think you’re stupid.

As a matter of fact, Gay Perry could just as easily be a heterosexual action character when it comes to his macho aggressive assertiveness. But even after every insult and gun shot, Perry never hides his sexual preferences in the closet from anyone. He also doesn’t hide his need for control over every situation.

Even as Harry’s mentor for survival in Hollywood, Perry also has a little bit of self-serving trickster in his blood. He shares secrets, deals with the concept of “friendship” on an as-need basis and is ice cold when he suddenly would rather leave you crying than cater to your emotions.

GAY PERRY: I want you to picture a bullet in your head. Can you do that for me?

As his journey with the high-strung Harry Lockhart to solve the murder mystery of how the sister of Harry’s high school sweetheart wound up permanently breathless – Perry’s character arc swings from selfish to a team player, even if it’s only for his team. He swings his version of justice without the kid gloves.

GAY PERRY: (to Harmony’s father) Harmony was right, her sister was murdered. You pulled the trigger. It just took this long for the bullet to hit.

For his wisecrack quips, his wise reactions and his wisely written formidable presence that ignores disgraceful gender clichés – Gay Perry is certainly a GREAT CHARACTER that we have never seen in the action comedy realm.

Thank you, Jason, for this take on one of Shane Black’s most interesting characters and best movies. Please join us in comments to discuss Kiss Kiss Bang Bang.

You may follow Jason on Twitter: @A2Jason.

Daily Dialogue — July 18, 2014

July 18th, 2014 by

“My name is Maximus Decimus Meridius, commander of the Armies of the North, General of the Felix Legions and loyal servant to the TRUE emperor, Marcus Aurelius. Father to a murdered son, husband to a murdered wife. And I will have my vengeance, in this life or the next.”

Gladiator (2000), screenplay by David Franzoni and John Logan and William Nicholson, story by David Franzoni

The Daily Dialogue theme for the week: Revenge.

Trivia: Though dozens of versions of the script were written, the original 130 page draft, dated October 1997 by David Franzoni, is “… different in almost every detail from the finished movie.” (As quoted by ‘David S. Cohen’ in his book ‘Screen Plays’.)

Dialogue On Dialogue: The penultimate moment in Maximus’ revenge, revealing the truth of who he is and what his plans are.

If you have any suggestions for this week’s theme, please post in comments.