Finding a Narrative Form

Although my final project might be more “experimental” than a normal narrative film I still think it will be more then flashing lights, or scratches on films. Not because I don’t like those films but because its not the style that I’m after. Although I choose to put experimental in quotations marks because I’m a student at the University of Colorado Boulder. And when we think of experimental we think of Stan Brakhage, and for me personal “Moth Light”. If you’re unfamiliar with who Brakhage is, I recommend looking him up.

Anyways, even experimental films hold some type of narrative in them. It is simply the form, or structure of that narrative that is experimental. Something i find fascinating in both film and literature is the playing with the discoures of the storys. I like to think of this as the difference in the ‘How’ and the ‘What’. The ‘what’ being the story, the cause and effect of the narrative events. And the ‘How’ being the discourse of the story. Theres a lot of essays on the difference of these two and how they work together. I’ve written some on it, and believe (as of 2011) if i was going to go to get a masters it would be in the comparing of literature and film, with a focus on narrative theory. But one again off topic.

I have been very interested in playing with the form of my narrative for a long time. It began with an interested in the embedding of storys-within-storys like Christopher Nolan did in “Inception”. But taking it a step farther would be Richard Linklater’s 1991 “Slacker”.

Slacker (1991)

The wikipedia for the film says that it is a plotless film, which I would agree is true. However the film allows for the viewer to become involved with in a characters story (background or topic that their talking about ect) and then shifs to another character, and then another character and then another and another…

A similar structure is used in the Liberty Mutual Commercials. Where one person is seen helping someone, and then that persone helps someone else. Some one sees that act and then returens it to someone eles… its a similar chain of events. The commercials end with the person that first saw to good act being then the person that is helped, or something along those lines.

By returning to the  first person the commercials create a loop between ever thing that is has happend. Its this return to the beginning that i find interesting. In Richard Linklater’s film the film seems to die off. (it becomes very self reflective and ends with the ending of a super8mm film being filmed. While in the commercials the collection of unrelated characters are woven together into a loop.

I would love to incorporate this type of style into my project. Allowing for the audance to see a group of unrelated characters. Get to know a little bit about them. And then move to another character… and then another… until we come back to the first character, who is in a slightly different place, yet we gain a little bit more about them. The closing of the loop would be the closing of the story…


About jauquet

My name is Jade Jauquet. I live in Lafayette Colorado. I'm a senior at the University of Colorado Boulder, I'm currently working on my final film project. View all posts by jauquet

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