Friday, October 21, 2011

Plot VII: Character vs Nature

Ah now this is a good one. when it's not just that someone or something is out to kill you, but when the world itself rises up to destroy you. that is scary, I mean why else would there be so many disaster movies? Armageddon, Twister, the Day after Tomorrow, Titanic. This is the plot to every disaster story. It is a kinda cool plot from where i stand as a christian, not only have people been corrupted, bent and broken, but sin has even corrupted bent and broken creation. after all Creation groans and suffers the pain of childbirth. in it's waiting for the true king to come back its pains are expressed in the form of national disasters.

Jack London Nailed this plot. if you want to know how cold Alaska is just read his books. with descriptions like "the Yukon, where to lose a glove was to lose a hand." or "the man spat, it crackled into ice before it hit the ground" The very world the character lives in is out to get him or her.

This is what is cool about a fantasy that takes place in a desert or in the north, its not just the monsters, it is the world itself that is out to get the characters. George RR Martin has Winterfell and the reminder that Winter is Coming. an ominous saying where we learn that winter can last for years and there are dangers north of the wall that will come down south when the weather changes. Then there is the Dark sun world where Magic has disrupted the normal world and outside of the 'civilized' world is a desert waist land filled with monsters with no reprieve if the characters wander to far from the city with to few supplies, there is no if we die, there is only when we die.

That is scary, the world is a scary place. sometimes in real life it seems that the world is out to get us.

Okay how about an example of this plot that is not so frightening. Robinson Crusoe. here is a guy who just wants to get to his new property, but there is a wreck and he is the only one who lives. So he gets all whining  on the beach, but see he is a man, and as a man he can think and reason. so he finds a way to have fire, he finds food, he makes a shelter, and so he survives. take that movie put it into a modern time and put Tom hanks in a s the leading actor and what do you have? Castaway. Pretty cool huh?

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