Story Ideas

Here are some of the ideas I have floating around for the story of the three objects - Castle, Deck Chair and a Big Game Hunter (BGH from now on).

With a deck chair, most of my line of thought has been to link these two objects by setting the scene on a beach or desert environment, thus effectively turning the castle into a sand castle. Of course, the deck chair opens some typical comedic gags such as being unable to deploy a deck chair or falling through one when sitting -
While these may provide some potential, I’m wondering if I can push the narrative further for a more comedic or serious tone.

Story 1 – Comedy, Beach environment
A fairly straightforward setup, with a comedic effect
  • BGH on vacation, building a grand sand castle
  • Almost complete, fetches more water with bucket
  • Wind blows umbrella over which in turn knocks a deck chair over, starting a domino effect towards sand castle
  • Races back to save his sand castle
  • Succeeds just in time using the butt of rifle(?) to steady final deck chair
  • Relief, sits on deck chair heavily
  • Deck chair collapses with a thud, similarly causing the castle to collapse with the ground shock

Story 2 – Action, suspense. Beach environment
This idea plays with the scale of the objects, with the BGH being miniscule in relation to the sand castle, but with the deck chair remaining ‘life-sized’ so as appear gigantic in comparison to the BGH character. However, I’m lacking a sense of closure with this idea.

  • BGH stealthily moving amongst rubble of sand (ruins of a castle)
  • BGH looks into sand, finds peculiar tracks that lead over crest of sand hill
  • BGH walks over to crest of sand hill, pauses, takes off hat in solitude
  • Pannning shot, see vast number of sand castles lying in ruin
  • Cut back to BGH, noise or shadow indicates looming threat of life size scale Deck chair
  • A deck chair comes crashing down, BGH jumps to floor with a narrow miss
  • Begins running after hail of deck chairs being deployed one after the other
  • BGH sad, moves on?

Story 3 – Beach environment.
Using the same idea of scale as before, this time mixed with the concept of the life cycle of a beach. At the beach during the day, people build a variety of sand castles. When they leave when night falls, the castles are left to decay by time and the tide, only to rebuild new castles the next day for an ‘eternal cycle’ of the beach. Has a more serious quality with a twist at the end.

  • BGH looking forward to vacation, walks to crest of hill
  • Pauses in disbelief, drops gear. Takes a photo from pocket and holds it up to landscape
  • POV of photo in hand, picture perfect world of city made of sand castles
  • Pulls photo away to reveal sand city of castles in ruin [pull focus]
  • Cut back to BGH, noise or shadow indicates looming threat of life size scale Deck chair
  • A deck chair comes crashing down, BGH jumps to floor with a narrow miss
  • More deck chairs come crashing down, being deployed in a row one after the other, ready to begin a new day at the beach
  • BGH devoid and desolate, picks up gear and looks at photo one more time before letting it drop to the floor
  • Begins to walk off in opposite direction
  • Camera zooms out to see time lapse of sand city built anew with activity of humans, before decaying in rubble when the humans leave as night falls.

Story 4 - Beach Environment.
This idea follows similarly to the previous two, yet further plays with scale and time. Being set on the beach, BGH is miniscule in comparison to the sand castles where his scale of existence will be real-time. The object of the deckchair being life sized will be in a slower scale of time. See the 'Antz' scene with the human shoe below for a better example. Bears a more serious tone, with possible comical elements.

  • [Real time]BGH returning home, walks over crest of sand hill
  • Sees his home of sand castles standing tall and well, BGH joyous, proud (establishes emotional connection)
  • As he begins to walk down to sand castles, [Slow Motion] shadow of deck chair comes looming overhead
  • Deck chair comes crashing down in the middle of sand castles, destroying them utterly as debris fly into air. More deck chairs continue to fall (placed by man)
  • [Real time]BGH tries desperately to save the castles with no effect (fires off rounds of rifle?)
  • Sand castles lie in ruin. BGH in despair at loss, starts to turn and walk away
  • As BGH walks away [Slow Motion] a slow moving bucket comes crashing down, leaving a new castle in its place. More sand castles continue to be rebuilt.
  • BGH turns at noise, rejoices as home is rebuilt, runs towards them.
  • Pan upwards, End.

Antz scene time/scale distortion

Out of the ideas so far, I am leaning towards the 3rd and 4th ideas so far for their creative content and different interpretation of the objects playing with time and scale. It may be a little ambitious, but I'm trying to see how far I can go with these objects in the narrative sense.

Am keen to hear any thoughts and feedback that you may have. Other than that, I'll try to flesh some ideas out with sketches.


Baja said...

Hey Leo

I feel strongly about Story4 and if you could concentrate more on that, I fink it would turn out quite well...and perhaps even fit within the time.

Which one is your favorite?...

tutorphil said...

Hey Leo,

Hmmm - I think there's an over-complication issue here - and I'd argue it stems from not spending enough time with your character; ask yourself this very simple question; let's imagine that a Big Game Hunter is on holiday; he lives is life combatatively; he lives for the hunt - and he's used to triumphing; imagine then, his utter frustration if he were to be 'beaten' by a humble deck-chair - it would be man vs. chair; therefore you have an 'escalation' narrative, which implies slapstick gags and a character going from in control to out of control; for further reference, think about Captain Ahab versus Moby Dick - one man driven to extreme lengths to conquer his nemesis; the psychology of the hunter is key... remember, stories derive from character (and back-story). In short, I don't think you're using the BGH to your advantage - yet.

Leo said...

Hmm ok, think I missed some of the details I had in mind for the character in the post, establishing the idea of emotional link between the BGH and the sand castles which are his homes, full of his trophies and games from past adventures, and that he is hunting the deck chair in revenge for destroying his home. Will make a new post to clarify some ideas which have developed further.

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