Monday, February 2, 2009

Dietz Blog Post on CONFLICT

So reflecting on last class, I am really unsure as to how to elaborate. I mean, CONFLICT is the name of the game, and while we may have drawn a newly concious attention to it, we always knew it existed since we saw Bambi's mom get shot, Mufasa killed by his brother, or even Elmo try his hardest to cheer Oscar up.

But this weekend, I ran into a point that I hope translates in a way that we can reflect upon in this class, or maybe we already did and I was just zoned out daydreaming of what it would be like to be known as Andy "the grouch".

Friday, I went to opening night of the movie Taken. First of all, awesome action film. Totally go see it if you havn't yet! But then again, was it?

Personally, yes, it was. But according to all the critics its average rating was two stars, and not because the acting was poor, everyone thought Liam Neeson was excellent. Not because it failed to entertain. People were litterally jumping out of their seats. No, it was critically a flop because most reviewers thought it was just too unbelievable for someone's daughter to go abroad for a summer and be abducted by a gang that ultimately forced young women into prostitution.

Now, granted, this sort of conflict may not happen everyday, and one out of five of us may not even be able to name a person this has happened to, but without the girl being abducted the movie would have had no conflict. It would have been the story of a dad whose daughter was overseas. Not nearly as bad ass you know?

So here is the point. We need conflict, but what are its limitations? I mean, how can a movie receive bad reviews because of the conflict that makes the story. I mean, if movies of aliens are acceptable than we know that all characters and settings can work for movies but what about conflict?

Must it be both internal and external? Does one matter more? Does the conflict have to be original or must it reflect things that are traditionally conflicted in society? How much conflict can you have and is there ever too much? These are the things I wonder about. Because if conflict makes a story, then how could you ever do it wrong?

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