Archive for March, 2010
THANK YOU EVERYONE! We made the #1 screenwriting book on both Amazon.com and Amazon.ca on April 1. Virgin’s Promise was in the top 10 for all books sold at Amazon.ca. All in all it was a great beginning to this journey for me. I had so many well wishers I feel really grateful for the support.
My book comes out on April Fool’s Day. At first I was concerned this was a bad sign.
But now I think it is an easy day to remember. And the archetypal fool is a wonderful Crone character that messes with people’s lives and brings them to their truth or true purpose. That’s not bad at all.
And if you think of my book on this day of fools and would like to own it, please push on the picture of my book and it will take you directly to Amazon.com. I’m trying to see how many people I can get to buy on opening day.
Thank you for your support!
For easy reference, here are the basic beats of the Hero’s Journey:
- ordinary world
- call to adventure
- refusal of the call
- meeting with the guide
- crossing the first threshold
- tests, allies and enemies
- road back
- final battle
- return with the elixir
My favourite Hero movie right now is Blood Diamonds. Bourne Identity is also good with his amnesia causing him to develop his ordinary world in his relationship with the woman he just met, Marie. The best examples for learning to find the beats are Star Wars (first one), The Matrix, and Beverly Hills Cop. Vogler enthusiasts may notice that these beats are slightly modified from the beats he uses in The Writer’s Journey which looks closely at the beats of this archetype. My book gives an overview of the Hero and shows how the Virgin and the Hero archetypes are polar opposites of each other, each making the other more vivid. As a result I modified the beats slightly.
This movie keeps me thinking.
The logline is “The story of a man ready to make a connection.”
But did you notice Ryan takes a chance on a woman who tells him “think of me as you with a vagina.” He isn’t taking a really big chance. Ryan projects himself onto Alex and then opens his heart to her. It’s narcissistic really. Not as narcissistic as he was before. But still….
Ryan loved wallowing in his childhood and family life with Alex but never did it occur to him to ask her about her life.
Maybe this is not a bad way to go. Jung describes men as having an anima, a feminine ideal or their feminine side which they project onto others and then attach to. Maybe this is just a technique built into the human condition for learning to join with others. The Lover/King start by projecting himslef onto someone else and practices loving that person. She’s easy to love because she is him.
Even if Alex accepted Ryan’s offer, eventually he has to notice the person he projects onto is not quite him. And the differences are surprisingly appealing and expanding and scary and annoying. And maybe it will be enough to take the death-like risk and love the real person. Or maybe not, if he’s just not that into her. In any event, the Lover/King is taken to a crossroads.
You know what this means. Up in the Air is ripe for a sequel, archetypally speaking. Ryan is merely at the crossroads. Will he submit to the Femme Fatale in Alex and accept her offer to just use each other to avoid growing up? This will make him the archetypal Coward or emasculate him in Freudian terms.
Or will Ryan become the Tyrant, willing to enter into a relationship now that he has tasted the benefits but always making sure he gets more than he gives. Nobody will make a chump of him again.
My hope is that he becomes the dieing and rising god. The final transformation of the Lover/King archetype. Either through growth with Alex or another woman he moves beyond projection to genuine love of another. I’m not exactly sure what that would look like but it involves a surrender to love as a higher purpose (an opening of the heart not to be confused with submission), the art of offering without measuring what you get in return, holding your power as an individual, a king, but allowing love of the feminine to give meaning to life.
I wanna see that movie!
The Virgin is the princess story and the Princess is beautiful. It’s almost a law.
Why is that?
Jungian analyst Ronald Schrenk (Soul of Beauty) believes beauty is a reflection of the soul. A beautiful garden or a blazing sunset is an expression of the soul of nature and we as humans connect with nature by perceiving its beauty. I like this idea, especially when you transfer it to people. True beauty is when your outward appearance matches your soul. Everyone has the potential to be beautiful at any age.
Ugly happens when your appearance is out of sync with your soul. I always think of Cruella Deville who has many outward appearances of cultural dictates of beauty but it doesn’t match her black heart making her freakin’ scary. Michelle Pffeifer plays this role of appearing tired and unattractive because her soul is not beautiful in Hairspray and the White Witch is scary and unappealing in The Chronicles of Narcia: The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe despite her good looks.
Beauty is the aesthetic. The coming to life of the senses. Beauty makes people feel awake and alive. This explains why humans are so drawn to beauty. Lucy has this effect on her mother’s friends when she comes to Italy in Stealing Beauty.
Anesthetic is the opposite. It makes you fall asleep. Like Sleeping Beauty. When the Virgin is unaware of her inner being, and fails to bring it to her life, she is dull looking. Sleepiong. This aspect of beauty, where it is waking up, is seen in many movies like The Princess Diaries. Characters like Fran go from mousey, hiding behind huge glasses, to strikingly beautiful in Strictly Ballroom.